Travel Blog

27 Feb

Things to do in Montréal: February 24 to March 2

montreal-en-lumiereWith the idea of spring in the air, Montréal celebrates with one of the biggest winter festivals in the world, MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, along with more inspiring dance, theatre, art, film and music, plus some top-talent hockey, indie video games and outdoor fun.


Montréal is no stranger to winter festivities – we’ve been celebrating winter like a a pro for 375 years – while these last 18 winters have been even brighter with the wonderful MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE winter arts, culture and fine dining festival. From Feb. 23 to March 11, the fest shines with an all-new program of performing arts, diverse fine dining optionsall-nighter event Nuit blanche on March 4, and the free and family-friendly downtown outdoor site. That’s where you’ll find great local food and drink (sample Québec cheeses, sip Cabral porto, roast marshmallows over open fires), live music and performances such as X-Lumina, and more unique activities: take a ride on the illuminated Ferris wheel, glide down the urban ice slide and zip line, and try your hand at a classic Canadian sport with Curling en lumière


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. If you’re starting spring break early, begin with a visit to the extremely spring-like Botanical Garden’s Butterflies Go Free event – and explore the tropics at the Biodôme or space at the Planetarium, all part of the many worlds at the Montréal Space for Life. Play board games, video games and more all for free at Festival Montréal Joue, Feb. 25 to March 12, including local indie games at the SAT on Feb. 25 and activities at libraries. Or play a game of cricket, ultimate Frisbee or even quidditch at the Ministry of Cricket (and Other Homeless Sports). If you or your kids love the comic book universe of Astérix, see the characters step off the page at Grévin Montréal wax museum. Watch the Montréal Canadiens as they take on the Blue Jackets on Feb. 28 and the Predators on March 2 at the Bell Centre, or go cheer on Montréal’s CWHL stars Les Canadiennes as they skate hard in the Clarkson Cup Playoffs, Feb. 24-26.

L’Atelier Nespresso: une expérience gastronomique unique offerte dans le cadre de #MTLenLumiere ! Venez voir des chefs de renom montréalais et lyonnais à l’oeuvre les 11 et 12 mars prochain ! Toutes les infos sur #MomentsNespresso

Une publication partagée par MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE (@mtlenlumiere) le 9 Févr. 2017 à 6h28 PST

Along with the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE festival’s many gastronomic delights – dozens of incredible local and international chefs, multi-course meals, workshops, food-focused tours! – you’re sure to stay warm in winter with a big bowl of pho or Japanese authentic ramen, a cup of tea at Montréal’s tea houses, a signature winter cocktail at one of Montréal’s Hidden Bars, or an evening of decadence next to Montréal’s coziest fireplaces. And for sweet tooths, why not spoil your inner child at Montréal’s candy shops.

This year’s impressive 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 dance meets rock concert in Helen Simard’s Idiot at La Chapelle Feb. 27 to March 3, and the incredible Dana Michel performs her work Mercurial George at Usine C, Feb. 28 to March 3, while Flamenco Vivo presents the fabulous Lo Esencial by Luis de la Carrasca, Feb. 28 at Le Gesù and it’s Flamenca Night on March 1 at Le Balcon Cabaret Music-Hall. In theatre, laugh along with farcical play Noises Off at the Segal Centre or Centaur Theatre’s comedy Bakersfield Mist. In film: watch indie films and step into the Virtual Reality Garden and Not Short on Talent installation at the Phi Centre, see Children of Men at the Canadian Centre for Architecture on March 2, and America Wild 3D at the Montréal Science Centre, while the Massimadi Afro-Caribbean LGBTQ film festival runs Feb. 21 to March 4 at various venues and 360-degree, surround sound film experiments astound at SAT Fest. And test your film knowledge: did you know that these movies were filmed in Montréal?

Ce chef-d’oeuvre est à voir au #MBAM, profitez-en dès maintenant! Commandé avec “La Danse” (1950-1952) pour décorer le foyer du Watergate Theatre de Londres, “Le #Cirque bleu” est une #oeuvre emblématique de #Chagall. This #Masterpiece is on view now at the MMFA, don’t miss it! Commissioned along with “The Dance” (1950-1952) to decorate the new auditorium of the Watergate Theatre in London, “The #Blue #Circus” is an emblematic work in Chagall’s oeuvre. Marc Chagall (1887-1985), “Le Cirque #bleu”, 1950-1952. Nice, Musée national Marc Chagall, dépôt du Musée national d’art moderne – Centre Pompidou, Paris. © SODRAC ADAGP 2017, Chagall ®. © CNAC / MNAM / Dist. RMN-Grand Palais / Art Resource, NY. Photo Gérard Blot #mbamchagall

Une publication partagée par Musée des beaux-arts Mtl (@mbamtl) le 17 Févr. 2017 à 10h14 PST

Among this season’s excellent museum exhibitions, don’t miss 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 Scottish artist Graham Fagen’s video and music-based installation The Slave’s Lament at Galerie de l’UQAM. And at the Musée d’art contemporain, moving works by foremost Mexican artist Teresa Margolles, as well as Québec artist Emanuel Licha’s Now Have a Look at This Machine documentary installation – the museum also hosts its music-and-art night event Nocturne on Feb. 24. In Old Montréal, Belgian artist Wim Delvoye provokes at DHC-ARTNever Apart’s winter exhibition celebrates Black heritage, Indigenous women and more, plus film Paris Is Voguing on Feb. 24. Salon des nouvelles musiques video exhibition reflects on the music of tomorrow through past composers’ views of the future at Place des Arts Salle d’exposition. Elsewhere, you’ll find art in the “underground city” pedestrian network and in the city’s most stunning churches and other sacred sites.


Among the many highlights of MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE is music, including dozens of classical concerts at beautiful venues. This week, unwind with I Musici de Montréal at the Montreal Museum of Fine Art’s Bourgie Hall on Feb. 24, Daniel Taylor and Suzie Leblanc at Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours Chapel on Feb. 25, Ensemble Caprice playing the Complete Bach Cantatas at Bourgie Hall on Feb. 26, Alain Lefèvre‘s Sas Agapo at the Maison symphonique on Feb. 26, a string quartet marathon evening on Feb. 28 at Bourgie Hall, and pianist Jean-Philippe Sylvestre on March 1 at Bourgie Hall. Meanwhile, on Feb. 24, Jean-François Rivest conducts the Orchestre Métropolitain at Place des Arts in a concert inspired by nature, and on Feb. 25 Vasily Petrenko conducts the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and pianist Javier Perianest at Place des Arts, Festival Montréal/Nouvelles Musiques brings Martin Matalon’s Le Scorpion score (for Luis Buñuel’s The Golden Ageto) to Cinquième Salle on Feb. 26, and Pro Musica presents the Hagen Quartet at Place des Arts on Feb. 27.

On Friday, L.A. rock stars Maroon 5 play the first of two nights at the Bell CentreSimply Saucer perform psych-rock mayhem at Bar le Ritz P.D.B., while Tchami and Mercer bring off-the-hook electro dance music to New City Gas. On Saturday, British singer-songwriter Benjamin Francis Leftwich plays his heart out at Café Campus, Sydney-based electro-pop production duo Cosmo’s Midnight go live at Newspeak, the SAT throws its Domesicle party with Music Is My Sanctuary, while NGHTMRE, Peking Duk and Jackal get us dancing at New City Gas. Meanwhile, among this week’s MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE shows: Bobby Bazini at Metropolis on Friday, Champion and his G-Strings electro-symphony at Club Soda on Saturday, French singer Benjamin Biolay on Feb. 26 at Place des Arts, Black Joe Lewis The Honeybears at La Sala Rossa on Feb. 27, Danish singer Agnes Obel on Feb. 28 at Place des Arts, and on March 2, The Tea Party wows at Metropolis, Leif Vollebekk shines at La Tulipe, and Milk Bone’s Camille Poliquin plays solo as KROY at Théatre Fairmount.

At the same time, Black History Month Montréal presents a weekend of music featuring Lee Fields The Expressions at L’Astral and jazz stand-outs Aaron Diehl, Adam Birnbaum and Cécile McLorin Salvant at Centre Pierre-Péladeau on Friday, followed by a soul, Motown and disco evening with Dawn Tyler Watson at Le Balcon on Saturday, and on Sunday Malian kora master Ballaké Sissoko and French cellist Vincent Segal at Gesù and Khari Wendell McClelland in Searching for the Sound of the Underground Railroad at Le Balcon. Sunday night also brings the sweet electro-pop sounds of Vallis Alps to Bar le Ritz P.D.B. On March 1, join singer-songwriter icons Rickie Lee Jones and Madeleine Peyroux in a stellar double bill at Place des Arts, rock with Billy Talent at the Bell Centre, or get into the serious groove of Thundercat at the SAT. Singer Ariane Moffatt joins the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal for an OSM POP concert at Place des Arts on March 1-2. And Arcade Fire’s Tim Kingsbury is Sam Patch at Bar le Ritz P.D.B. on March 2. For more, check out where to hear live music in Montréal.

Up next:Spring break for families in Montréal




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