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Ottawa's Latest and Greatest on Sights & Sounds

Roberta Bondar at Cafe Alt: “We saw them when…”

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Photo courtesy Roberta Bondar's website.Photo courtesy Roberta Bondar's website.

Appreciators of the pioneering lady spaceman Roberta Bondar may be disappointed that she hasn’t, in fact, embarked upon a second career in music. The Roberta Bondar that played, along with opening acts Wtchs and Couples, to a packed house at Café Alt on Friday night is instead a group of four Ottawa musicians who play what they describe as “steamy noise rock.” The show was to celebrate the release of their new EP Hiss, released on cassette by local label Bruised Tongue. Roberta Bondar’s music is dense and rhythmic, full of... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Music, Sights & Sounds

Luca’s revenge: Nothing says success like a party

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They say that the best revenge is massive success – and nothing says success like a party. It has been just over a month since Ottawa filmmaker Luca Fiore had his Gatineau apartment turned upside down by thieves who stole close to $5000 of filming equipment. This Wednesday at Mercury Lounge, Fiore and his friends invite you to celebrate a night of music, film and successful fundraising; proving that all it takes is a little help from your friends after life throws you a nasty curveball. The fundraising campaign –... | Continue reading article

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CICLO – relieving a journey that changed 2 brothers’ lives

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The Canadian Film Institute is presenting the 17th Annual Latin American Festival. Featuring 16 films from 15 Latin American nations, the 2013 edition of the Festival began on Thursday, March 21st and runs until April 7th. I caught up with Andrea Martinez, producers of CICLO, a documentary about Arturo and Gustavo Martinez, brothers who were the first to make the bike trip from Mexico City to Toronto in the 1950s. Fifty three years later these two men, now 75 and 78, drive along the exact same route followed by a... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Cinema, Sights & Sounds

La Traviata: A phenomenal talent showcase

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Photo by jessica @ flickr on Flickr.Photo by jessica @ flickr on Flickr.

Opera Lyra Ottawa’s production of Verdi’s La Traviata opened last night at the NAC. It was a wonderful performance, but for those of you thinking about trying out an opera for the first time, this may not be the show for you. OLO’s version of La Traviata was a concert presentation, which means no sets or costumes and minimal acting, although the full score was performed. While a fully staged operatic creation makes a magical evening, a concert presentation is more like a radio play than a television soap opera –... | Continue reading article

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Artengine Critical Blogging Residency call: Deadline extended to April 1st

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Photo from Artengine's blog.Photo from Artengine's blog.

Editor’s note: This call was initially posted on Tuesday, February 26. The deadline date for applications has been extended until Monday, April 1st (no foolin’). This year Apartment613 and Artengine continue our endeavor to foster new perspectives on the media arts landscape with an open call for the 2013 Critical Blogging Residency. This residency is for an art critic or cultural journalist from the Ottawa-Gatineau area, who will cross post thought-provoking dialogues on the Artengine and Apartment613 blogs throughout the year. Conceived as a creative space for expression and research into culture, technology and... | Continue reading article

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Roberta Bondar to Debut new Tape at Cafe Alt Tomorrow

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Photo Courtesy of Roberta BondarPhoto Courtesy of Roberta Bondar

Tomorrow night at Café Alt, Roberta Bondar is releasing a new album. Just for clarification, I’m talking about the Ottawa band named Roberta Bondar, not the Canadian female astronaut. I wonder if that’s a coincidence. In either case, Roberta Bondar is about to become a pioneer, not of outer space this time, but of a musical medium that some had said would never again be relevant. This medium, of course, is the cassette tape. Belonging to a bygone era, the cassette tape was once the standard for mass-produced music. These... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Music, Sights & Sounds

Weekend roundup: What to do in Ottawa

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Photo courtesy The Peptides, who are playing the Sheep this weekend.Photo courtesy The Peptides, who are playing the Sheep this weekend.

Hey, Ottawa – what’s your passion? Let that dictate your weekend fun: Fashion: Show or shopping? You get both. Twiss and Weber are hosting a pop in shop, and The Weight is Over show will feature casual, work, swim wear and more! Food: Westboro’s got an Easter Food Market down on Churchill this Saturday, with hot cross buns, chocolate bunnies, sausages and more. Pull together a terrific feast! Loud music: Pretty Little Death Machine is down at Avant Garde Bar Friday, while Hunter Valentine and The Ecstatic stop by Mavericks... | Continue reading article

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It’s okay to go natural: Q&A with Esther Simmonds-MacAdam

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Details of work by Esther Simmonds-MacAdam. Images courtesy of the artist and La Petite Mort Gallery.Details of work by Esther Simmonds-MacAdam. Images courtesy of the artist and La Petite Mort Gallery.

It’s been about a year since Esther Simmonds-MacAdam has shown work in Ottawa. She’s returning today, to install her latest paintings at La Petite Mort Gallery, which opens tomorrow night. If you missed seeing her show last year, it would be well-worth your time to stop by an introduce yourself – she will be at the vernissage (from 7-10pm). Her latest series, it is natural, marks a dramatic shift in terms of how and what she paints. Maintaining a realistic aesthetic, the oil paintings reference specific periods of time and deconstruct... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Visual art

Sanjeev Sivarulrasa: New photo exhibit explores the cosmos with an artistic eye

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Photo by Sanjeev Sivarulrasa (Milky Way, Lake Superior, 2011)Photo by Sanjeev Sivarulrasa (Milky Way, Lake Superior, 2011)

Who is responsible for explaining the heavens?  In today’s modern world, our understanding of the universe comes almost exclusively from science, which provides breathtaking images of outer space with such instruments as the Hubble Space Telescope. Local photographer Sanjeev Sivarulrasa, however, wants to change this by having artists also provide insights on galaxies, nebulae and other celestial bodies. “Scientists are the gatekeepers of the sky,” says Sivarulrasa in a phone interview. “(But science) doesn’t tell us much about how we feel about the night sky.” While fully embracing the work... | Continue reading article

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Ottawa’s opera history: Keeping classical soaps on stage

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La Traviata starts March 21.La Traviata starts March 21.

Telling people I love opera often results in curious, funny looks – then again, if you’ve never been to the opera, you might be one of those people giving me a funny look. For some reason, people think the adoration of opera is a pretention: that opera is snobby, elitist and aristocratic, and those who claim to enjoy it are just trying to seem cool.  For those of you who’ve never been, operas are beautiful and exciting and dramatic – they’re essentially the soap operas of the classical music world.... | Continue reading article

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