The Thanksgiving long weekend in Montreal features many things to be thankful for, and food is naturally among them. But on top of all the good meals Montreal provides, this week brings a film festival, world-class dance, theatre and art, a massive dance party, and lots of live jazz, rock and more…
(fabulous food) Thanksgiving wouldn’t be complete without a proper feast or three, so if on October 5 you’re in the area of Olympic Park, wandering through the Botanical Gardens or visiting the Biodome at the Space for Life, stop in at the stadium’s outdoor grounds where their First Fridays event features gourmet food from some of Montreal’s fanciest food trucks: tacos at Grumman 78, burgers at Winneburger, sandwiches, poutine and more from Lucky’s Truck and La Mangeoire, ice cream and sundaes at Monsieur Crémeux, coffee at Café Dispatch, and more, starting at 4 p.m. On October 11, caterer and food enthusiast Nicolina Servello pairs cook books with delicious rustic food in an afternoon event at Indigo Place Montréal Trust, noon to 2 p.m.
(fall film) New feature films, fantastic shorts and experimental video work from around the world all come out to play at Montreal’s Festival du Nouveau Cinéma, October 10-21. Along with plenty of international fare, the fest features some of the best sort of Canadian content in Ang Lee’s Life of Pi, based on Montreal author Yann Martel’s novel, opening films Simon Galiero’s La Mise à l’aveugle and Martin Villeneuve’s Mars et Avril, screenings of work by French singer Albin de la Simone, Sarah Polley’s new film Stories We Tell, Albert Nerenberg’s witty doc Boredom, and many more. As well, the popular Temps Ø program continues this year with off-the-beaten-track features, shorts and documentaries.
(dance party) The Black and Blue Festival is all about making this weekend into a three-day LBGT-and-friends party, culminating in a massive all-night, all-morning, three-room dance party a Palais des Congrès on October 7, with DJs Gareth Emery, Sander van Doorn, David Morales and more. On Saturday afternoon and evening at Palais des Congrès, get lost in free live music and entertainment event, De-Light, with entertainment from Debbie Tebbs, The Easton Ellises, Donzelle and other great Montreal performers. Of course, there’s also the night-time party rituals of Leather Ball on October 5 and the HardBall on October 6 at Club Soda.
(world-class performance) Les Grands Ballet Canadiens pulls out all the stops October 11-27 with choreographer Jiří Kylián’s Kaguyahime, The Moon, a ballet based on a culturally influential 10th-century Japanese folk tale of beauty, violence and worlds colliding. On a different note, The Segal Centre presents big-time Tony-award winning musical Guys and Dolls, to October 28. At the Centaur Theatre, see family drama August, An Afternoon in the Country by award winning playwright Jean Marc Dalpé. And French circus troupe Akoreacro positively delights with their acrobatic, musical circus Pfffffff, while Montreal-based circus Cirque Éloize blends circus arts with hip hop and breakdance in all-ages show iD, featuring 14 high-energy performers, both at Montreal circus centre La Tohu to October 6.
(art & architecture) Two new exhibitions at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal are both real eye-openers: an amazing retrospective of the work of Montreal painter Pierre Dorion, and intriguing videos focused on far-off places and people by Brooklyn-based artist Janet Biggs – the MACM also holds its monthly Nocturnes music series on October 5, featuring Tanuki, 7 p.m. The Canadian Centre for Architecture opens its exhibition First, the Forests, looking at the relationship between forestry, planning and design. And definitely go to the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts to see their outstanding Tom Wesselmann retrospective show, which closes this Sunday, as well as their expanded permanent collection. See the Montreal Buzz Fall Arts Guide for more ideas.
(comedy & cabaret) On the stranger side of entertainment – and Montreal’s got a lot of that – comedy show Let’s Do This!, a night of comedy and drinking games, headlined by DeAnne Smith, on October 11 at Mainline Theatre, 9 p.m. On Saturday, October 6, Quality Theatre hosts not only a sing-along to The Rocky Horror Picture Show, but a full-on band, comedians and a bevy of sexy burlesque performers, also at Mainline Theatre, 8 p.m.
(jazz off) The Montreal International Jazz Festival may get most of the summer jazz hype in this town, but all that jazz and more goes on throughout the year: check out The OFF Jazz Festival, October 4-12, with shows (some of them free!) at several venues around town, featuring traditional and experimental jazz from local and out-of-town musicians and bands, including pianist Baptiste Trotignon, saxophonist Anna Webber, Ironico Orkestra, Jean Derome and many, many more.
(more music) A busy Friday night begins the music week with Swedish folk-pop musician Jens Lekman at Le National, while DJ Shadow plays what’s sure to be a sweet DJ set at SAT, arts and activism group Howl presents eclectic Montreal rock-tinged ensembles Léopard et Moi and Avec le Soleil Sortant de sa Bouche, at Sala Rossa, and How to Dress Well gets Club Lambi electro-hopping. Also on Friday, Montreal Symphony Orchestra conductor Kent Nagano teams up with DJ Champion, while on Sunday he conducts the orchestra through The Rites of Spring. More big tours make Montreal stops at rock venue Metropolis this week: on Saturday, October 6, see Irish indie-rockers Two Door Cinema Club, on October 7 it’s electronic party makers Crystal Castles with openers Health and more, followed on October 9 by ever-popular singer-songwriter Regina Spektor and captivating British singer Joss Stone on October 10, while French trip-hop DJ Wax Tailor (http://waxtailor.com/) spins cinematic electronic grooves at L’Astral that night.