It may be February, but Montréal’s intent on keeping things hot this week: Off-Igloofest gets us dancing in the snow; indoors there’s art, ballet, comedy, theatre and music to keep us on our toes; and brilliant winter festival MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE kicks off with constant entertainment.
In a city that’s been celebrating winter like a a pro for 375 years, this winter’s Les Hivernales 375th anniversary events have been a stand-out – they wrap up as electronic music festival Igloofest continues with Off-Igloofest on Feb. 17 – ÎleSoniq festival presents Aussie producer Thomas Jack – and on Feb. 18, an entirely free all-ages night with music from Le Matos, Hatchmatik and more along with the Nordik games (including the Slap Shot movie zone) – and don’t miss the Nordik Slide and Nordik Village on the afternoon of Feb. 19. Among this week’s extreme winter sports: race along with or cheer on the participants of the Polar Hero Race on Feb. 18 at Parc Jean-Drapeau, featuring a unique 5-km, 25-obstacle course and a 10-km, 50-obstacle course. And the wonderful MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE winter arts, culture and fine dining festival starts Feb. 23 at various locations – among the outdoor site activities to try: Curling en lumière.
We’ve had a lot of the white stuff here in the past few weeks, so why not get outside and play in the snow – among the many free things to do this winter, try tobogganing or ice skating on the Mountain or visit Mammouth Village at the Olympic Stadium Esplanade, featuring skating, ice slides, activities for little kids and, on Feb. 18, the Snow Food food truck event. Go from tropics to boreal forests at the Biodôme and Botanical Garden (the Butterflies Go Free event starts Feb. 23!) and explore space at the Planetarium, part of the many worlds at the Montréal Space for Life. Or play a game of cricket, ultimate Frisbee or even quidditch at the Ministry of Cricket (and Other Homeless Sports). Cheer on the Montréal Canadiens as they take on the Jets on Feb. 18, the Islanders on Feb. 23, and open their practice to fans on Feb. 19 at the Bell Centre – or watch the games at one of Montréal’s best sports bars.
Food and drink
Winter weather calls for winter warm-ups: try a big bowl of pho or Japanese authentic ramen, go for a signature winter cocktail at one of Montréal’s Hidden Bars or cozy up next to Montréal’s coziest fireplaces. A cup of tea at Montréal’s tea houses might hit the spot, whether you’re looking for a Parisian café, British high tea or Japanese green. Feed your sweet tooth and spoil your inner child at Montréal’s candy shops – they’ve seriously got everything. And starting Feb. 23, indulge in the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE winter festival’s many fine dining options from multi-course meals to workshops and food-focused tours.
Stage and screen
Sing along to the sweet pop sounds of ABBA at hit Broadway musical MAMMA MIA!, at Place des Arts, Feb. 17-19. This year’s winter-spring dance program includes Perm Opera Ballet’s rendition of Swan Lake, presented by Les Grands Ballets at Place des Arts Feb. 22-26, while 100Lux brings urban dance troupes such as Tentacle Tribe to the intimate Cinquième Salle stage Feb. 16-18 and Alessandro Sciarroni adapts the Schuhplattler traditional folk dance in his show Folk-s / Will you still love me tomorrow? at Usine C, Feb. 21-23. February is Black History Month – this week, see acrobatic multimedia production Afrique en Cirque with Kalabanté at the Olympia Theatre on Feb. 17, Black Theatre Workshop’s children’s musical Bluenose on Feb. 18, and more. In theatre, laugh along with farcical play Noises Off at the Segal Centre or Centaur Theatre’s comedy Bakersfield Mist. Comedian Amy Schumer might get controversial at the Bell Centre on Feb. 17. And in film: at the Phi Centre watch indie films and step into new realities’s Virtual Reality Garden and Not Short on Talent installation, and see Québecois films on new music in the Salle d’exposition at Place des Arts.
Photo from the Winter Exhibitions Vernissage at Never Apart on Thu, Jan 26th, 2017, where over 500+ people joined us for our seasonal celebration of diversity and culture. . The exhibition shown is Chef’s I’ve Worked For by Beaver Sheppard @beaversheeperd. . Read the interview with Beaver @beaversheeperd about his first solo painting show Chef’s I’ve Worked For, a vivid exposé of the chefs he’s worked for in Montreal’s colorful restaurant scene, in the January 2017 edition of @NeverApartMTL Magazine. . Excerpt: In Chefs I’ve Worked For, Sheppard seeks to: paint chefs who have struck a chord in my life. Whether they were upsettingly hands-off or actively suffocating me under their wings, they all tried their hardest to teach me that ‘Chef’ is simply French for ‘Master’.. . The full interview can be read online at: neverapart.com/magazine. Link in bio (2/12/17). . Photo by Saad Al-Hakkak @facesmgmt @saadvision. . #chef #chefs #chefsiveworkedfor #beaversheppard #art #artist #performance #painting #music #video #fashion #film #culture #unity #montreal #mileex #mileend #neverapart #entrepreneur #creative #creativity #startup #nonprofit #installation #exhibition #gallery #design
Museums and galleries
Must-see winter’s museum exhibitions include the wonderful paintings, costumes and music of CHAGALL: COLOUR AND MUSIC, featuring 340 works by the Russian-French artist at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. Part of the 375th programming, kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) artist Skawennati’s solo exhibition Tomorrow People explores time and identity in analog and digital forms, at Oboro. See the influential work of Montréal artist Françoise Sullivan until Feb. 18 at Galerie de l’UQAM. And at the Musée d’art contemporain, Québec artist Emanuel Licha’s Now Have a Look at This Machine documentary installation. In Old Montréal, Belgian artist Wim Delvoye provokes at DHC-ART. Never Apart’s winter exhibition celebrates Black heritage, Indigenous women and more. See artist and novelist Marc Séguin’s multidisciplinary exhibition Atemporalités at Arsenal. The comic book universe of Astérix steps off the page as Grévin Montréal unveils its newest exhibition – see Asterix, Obelix, Dogmatix and more characters among the stars and historical figures already populating the wax museum. And follow our guide to art in the “underground city” pedestrian network and the city’s most stunning churches and other sacred sites.
On Friday it’s all about vocals: singer-songwriter Chantal Kreviazuk comes to Le Gesù, singer-songwriter Blaise Moore and Locals Only Sound belt it out at Le Bleury, and Mozart’s Sister makes the party happen at Arbutus Records headquarters. Also on Friday, the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal plays a different kind of concert: two organists improvise soundtracks to short films by Chaplin, Keaton, Méliès and McLaren at Place des Arts and Black History Month Montréal presents a night of soul, Motown, funk and groove with singer Marie-Christine at Le Balcon on Friday – followed on Saturday by a soul, Motown and disco evening with Kim Richardson, and all kinds of music to dance to at Groove Nation. Also on Saturday, float along to the psychedelic rock of Elephant Stone at Théatre Fairmount, while Common Kings bring their distinctive R&B meets reggae-pop sound to Bar le Ritz P.D.B. and electronic producer Grum turns the beat up at Newspeak while Borgeous runs the dancefloor at New City Gas. Spend Sunday afternoon chilling as DJs Andy Williams and Scott C curate an afternoon of music from the African diaspora at Artgang Montréal alongside a slide show and performances by Jamaican Dub poet Mutabaruka and Clifton Joseph. On Tuesday, hip hop supergroup Run the Jewels and The Gaslamp Killer overthrow Metropolis, Imani Gospel Singers launch their album FAITH in a free event at Le Balcon, and hip hop artist SonReal and Clairmont the Second are at La Sala Rossa. Vasily Petrenko conducts the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and pianist Javier Perianest at Place des Arts Feb. 22-23 and 25. On Feb. 23, violinist Alexandre Da Costa brings his project Stradivarius à l’opéra to Place des Arts, part of the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE program, and French acoustic reggae group Tryo come to Metropolis. For more, check out where to hear live music in Montréal.