It’s Labour Day long weekend and public life is in the spotlight this first week of September: live music, from indie-rock to hip hop, at Olympic Park and around town; film from around the world and from the bike world; fashion shows; outdoor art and performances; a food-and-shopping-filled street party – and it’s Burger Week too!
(olympic showtime) The second weekend of new music festival ExperienceMTL shakes the bedrock, well, concrete at the Olympic Park’s Esplanade Financière Sun Life. On Friday, August 31, Greenland Productions hosts the legendary Atari Teenage Riot and Jello Biafra & the Guantanamo School of Medicine, while on the second stage, Pop Montreal presents CTZNSHP, Topanga, Sean Nicholas Savage and Jef Barbara. Hip hop tears up the main stage on Saturday, September 1, Public Enemy headlines a night that includes Grim Skunk, Lunice and more. All that and it’s affordable too, with a select number of early-entry tickets going for $6 and regular tickets a mere $12.
(film movements) With hundreds of feature films and shorts from countries near and far, the Montreal World Film Festival, running to September 3 at Place des Arts, the Cinema Imperial and the Latin Quarter Cinema, including Cinema Under the Stars, outside at Place des Arts at 8:30 p.m. each night, see The Shining (Aug. 31), Hugo (Sept. 1), Quebecois film Starbuck (Sept. 2), and The Artist (September 3). Meanwhile, the Bicycle Film Festival moves of its own people-powered accord, showing short films by and for bike lovers at at Cinema Du Parc, August 31-September 1, plus a “fashion ride” on Saturday and a festival afterparty at Katacombes. And catch the surround-sound film Six mil Antennas screening in the immersive Satosphere dome at the SAT, extended by popular demand to September 14.
(street party & burger time) Take a stroll down one of Montreal’s best food-and-shopping streets during the Mont-Royal Avenue Fair, August 30-September 2, when Mont-Royal Avenue is closed to traffic and shops, restaurants and bars expand onto the street. Enjoy BBQ and corn-on-the-cob outside the Mont-Royal metro station September 1-2, while the kids play games and make crafts. And on September 2 at 1 p.m., watch locals clown around at a violence-free Cream Pie Battle, organized by bakery Crémy. In serious food news this week: over 30 local restaurants offer deals on their best burgers during Montreal Burger Week, September 1-7: choose a $5, $10 or $15 burger situation and then vote online for your favourites.
(art and artistry) The annual public art and performance festival Escales Improbables happens September 2-14 at the Old Port and at other Montreal locales, beginning on August 2 at the Quartier des Spectacles with Montreal artist Phil Allard and architect and professor Justin Duchesneau’s art installation, symbolically titled Forêt, made of 650 recycled wood palettes. There’s plenty more art of note in town too: thought-provoking multi-artist exhibition Zoo, based on animal themes, ends its run at the Montreal Musée d’art contemporain on September 3; and see the work of well-known and often controversial Canadian artist Kent Monkman, whose Miss America show (as exemplified in the above image) is at Pierre-François Ouellette Art Contemporain, to September 22.
(fashionable fall) Montreal Fashion Week moves to a snazzy new headquarters this year at Griffontown’s Galerie Arsenal, September 4-7, where Quebec-based and internationally known designers show their high-style, cutting-edge wares. And get fashionably set for Pop Montreal at Vintage Pop, September 5-9, a pop-up shopping event at 19 Prince-Arthur West, featuring racks of vintage clothes and accessories for men and women, selected by great local vintage hunters – doors open at noon and cash and credit are accepted.
(long music weekend) On top of ExperienceMTL’s live shows with Public Enemy, Jello Biafra and more the Olympic Park, there are plenty of music picks this week to start the school year right, whether you’re a student or not – and you’re probably not if you’re headed to see The Cult on September 1 at Metropolis or Roxette and Glass Tiger (!) at the Bell Centre on August 31. Though you might be reliving your high school days if you’re up for The Offspring September 3 and 5 at Metropolis. Dance the long weekend away at world-famous outdoor dance party Piknic Electronik, September 1-3 at picturesque Parc Jean-Drapeau’s Place de l’homme, with DJs the likes of Claude Vonstroke, Thomas Schumacher, Misstress Barbara, and many more. On September 5, An Opening of Doors celebrates the music of composer John Cage, who would have turned 100 this year, with four sets of his music played by amazing Montreal musicians, at Sala Rossa, 7 p.m. And Kent Nagano conducts the Montreal Symphony Orchestra in Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony, September 5-6.