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Ottawa's Latest and Greatest on Sights & Sounds

Wicked Grin head to Memphis 2014!

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Wicked Grin, from left to right: Murray Kingsley, Liam Melville and Leigh-Anne Stanton. All photos by Terry Steeves.Wicked Grin, from left to right: Murray Kingsley, Liam Melville and Leigh-Anne Stanton. All photos by Terry Steeves.

Ottawa’s own Blues band, Wicked Grin, winners of the Ottawa Blues Society Road To Memphis Competition in 2013, will be representing our city in the International Blues Challenge 2014, being held in Memphis, Tennessee from January 21-25. The IBC, now in its 30th year, is the world’s largest gathering of Blues musicians, competing for cash, prizes, and industry recognition. Organized by The Blues Foundation and its affiliated organizations, the annual competition is a search for the best Blues band, and the best solo/duo Blues act. Last year, 125 bands, and... | Continue reading article

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The Central Art Garage – Bringing challenging, conceptual art to Ottawa

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Bridget Thompson (L) and Danny Hussey (R) of the Central Art Garage. Photo by Adria May.Bridget Thompson (L) and Danny Hussey (R) of the Central Art Garage. Photo by Adria May.

Walk a little bit down Lebreton Street in Chinatown and you will see a parking lot to your right and a white garage. Enter the building, and there’s no sign of an automotive repair business. What you will find instead is the Central Art Garage. It opened its doors last September and is bringing challenging conceptual art to Ottawa. You will be greeted by bespectacled Ottawa artist, framer and curator, Danny Hussey, who is recognizable by way of his amazing beard and friendly smile. He co-owns the Garage with his... | Continue reading article

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Take the National Gallery’s Bluebeard Challenge

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Bluebeard illustration by Gustave Doré, circa 1862.Bluebeard illustration by Gustave Doré, circa 1862.

Lily Pepper is a project consultant with this National Gallery of Canada initiative . In summer 2014, the National Gallery is hosting a major exhibition on Gustave Doré, jointly organized with the Musée D’Orsay in Paris. In the mid-1800s, Doré worked in high-art forms like painting and sculpture, but was better known for his commercial and populist works, especially book illustrations. The illustrations he made for works like the Bible, Don Quixote, and Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven have shaped how generations of readers and artists envision these works. One... | Continue reading article

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The Shape of a Girl is a provocative one-woman show sure to impress.

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Cart Before the Horse theatre incorporates a chorus of eight female grade ten Canterbury drama students to capture the authentic teenage voice. All photos by Zahra Larche.Cart Before the Horse theatre incorporates a chorus of eight female grade ten Canterbury drama students to capture the authentic teenage voice. All photos by Zahra Larche.

“I want to go home and cry. That’s the saddest thing EVER!” says a sweet young thing after leaving the Avalon Studio. “No dear, it isn’t.” I think to myself. “It ain’t Auschwitz!” But then I think of Stanley Milgram. In 1997, fourteen-year-old Reena Virk was surrounded and beaten by seven girls and one boy. And left to die. Two people from that group returned to drag her into the water and hold her head under. No one reported the incident to the police. No one. Reena’s body washed ashore... | Continue reading article

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The Strumbellas play Zaphod’s Saturday night

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Photo by Heather Pollock.Photo by Heather Pollock.

The Strumbellas embark this weekend on their official Ontario/U.S. tour for their latest release. The group is in town Saturday night for a late show at Zaphod’s. “One of our bandmates used to live in Ottawa, so he shows us the ropes when we visit,” says singer/songwriter Simon Ward. “We’ve played the Tulip Festival and Cafe Dekcuf. This will probably be about my fifth time being in your city.” The six-piece band released its sophomore album, We Still Move On Dance Floors in October, to rave reiews. The release builds... | Continue reading article

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Classic Canadian hockey story to be reborn with music at two special NAC shows

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Image taken from The Hockey Sweater by Roch CarrierImage taken from The Hockey Sweater by Roch Carrier

The Hockey Sweater by Roch Carrier is an iconic piece of Canadian literature.  Based on a real-life experience while Carrier was growing up in Quebec in the 1940s, this wonderful short story tells the tale of a boy who is an avid fan of the Montreal Canadiens and their superstar Maurice Richard. Needing a replacement sweater of his beloved Habs, the boy’s mother orders a new jersey via Eaton’s mail catalogue.  To his horror, however, there is a mistake with the order and the boy receives a shirt of the hated Toronto Maple... | Continue reading article

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Weekend roundup: What to do in Ottawa

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Another beautiful winter weekend, folks. Head out sledding on some of the best hills, or strap on your skates for a bit of a glide. Or, stay cozy inside with any of these exciting activities… Kick off your weekend tonight with Tara Holloway at the Lunenburg Pub, playing her trusty guitar. Toronto indie rocker Brendan Canning stops by Zaphod’s on Friday, playing the early stage with The Gallop. Kitchen Party guarantees to be an awesome sweaty dance-a-thon, as always. The Tiny House Mansion Concert series is back, this time celebrating... | Continue reading article

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Umi Café: An energizer for the soul and for the stomach

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A performer steps up to the mic at the Umi Café.A performer steps up to the mic at the Umi Café.

Umi (pronounced oo-me) means “mother” in Arabic and “life” in Egyptian, embodying the atmosphere of the Umi Café in downtown Ottawa. Both the warm and open café, though a bit run down, is clearly full of life and laughs on Friday nights, when the café hosts an “Open Mic” night. People from all walks of life can read their own poetry, sing an original song and many other endless possibilities. As a youth in the city, I often struggle to find entertainment besides going to the movies, and for anyone... | Continue reading article

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Video of the week: The Hilotrons’ My Number

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This slow burn of a song keeps the music light and the lyrics heavy. The video, created by Ryan Paul Gibson, Luca Fiore and Craig Conoley, shows the most drab of our everyday routine with hint of hope, at the very end. ‘My Number’ can be found on The Hilotrons’ most recent album, At Least There’s Commotion.

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Filed in: Music

Weekend roundup: What to do in Ottawa

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Photo of Ptarmigan by Agatha Rowland.Photo of Ptarmigan by Agatha Rowland.

Still recovering from New Year’s? It seems the city is – while there’s not a lot going on this weekend, there’s enough to keep you warm and cozy. Raw Sugar is having an indie music evening on Friday, with Toronto’s Ptarmigan stopping by along with Mara Nesrellah. Out at the Black Sheep, Kelly Sloan will be joining the Dusty Drifters for a bit of bluegrass on Friday. Animal Cash, the Will Hunter Band, and the Ginger Fox Band are all playing at Zaphod’s on Friday night. Saturday, Winchester Warm will take... | Continue reading article

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