What to do in Montreal this winter

A quick look at what’s happening in the city this semester

Winter might have its cold, cold claws firmly clamped down on the city, but that doesn’t mean Montreal’s vibrant arts and culture scene is any less interesting. With winter festivals and activities taking place both inside and outdoors, there’s something to satisfy everyone’s tastes and preferences. Here’s a quick look at some of the things you can look forward to this semester.

Montreal en lumière

Back for its 18th year, the Montréal en lumière festival will once again offer a unique program, consisting of outdoor activities, performing arts and gastronomic discoveries. The festival runs from Feb. 18 to March 11, and is one of the largest winter festivals in the world. You won’t want to miss the festival’s biggest event: Nuit blanche on March 4. With more than 200 activities spread out over 100 sites, this Montreal staple will be sure to warm up even the coldest of nights with its eclectic mix of musical and artistic performances. Mother Mother, Regina Spektor and Matt Holubowski are some of the artists set to perform. Not to mention, the metro is open all night, so you can enjoy all manner of activities until the break of dawn.

The FOFA Gallery

As Concordia students, we are lucky to have our very own in-house exhibition space. The Faculty of Fine Arts Gallery, located in the EV building, routinely displays pieces from Concordia students and faculty. Admission is free. The gallery has an interesting line-up of exhibitions for the winter semester, starting with Making Spaces, the annual undergraduate student exhibition running from Jan. 16 to Feb. 17. The exhibition, featuring works by Faculty of Fine Arts students, will include performances from Concordia’s department of contemporary dance.

Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery

Sovereign Acts II, an examination of indigenous cultural dances, will be presented at the gallery from Jan. 21 to April 1. This work delves into the way indigenous dances and practices were performed for international and colonial audiences. It looks at how these performers were faced with the conundrum of maintaining their traditional cultural practices, while also using them as performances intended to please the colonial gaze.

Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

If the winter blues have got you down, then the next exhibition opening at the MMFA will cheer you up. Chagall: Colour and Music will be on display from Jan. 28 to June 11. Four hundred of Marc Chagall’s paintings, stained glass works, illustrations, photographs and maquettes will be on display. The exhibition will not only show the Russian-French artist’s legacy, but will also examine the role music played in Chagall’s art, acting as his inspiration and muse for his modernist works.

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