NAC Presents is back with another exciting season of Canadian music and to mark its 5th anniversary it’s an especially rich and diverse lineup with nearly 50 shows all taking place between October and May.
In five years NAC Presents has grown up quickly from about 20 concerts all staged at the Fourth stage in its first year to its current bustling lineup of 45-50 shows on all four of the NAC’s stages. The NAC Presents team has been behind some of the most memorable concerts to come to town in the last few years from Gordon Lightfoot to Tanya Tagaq to Daniel Lanois jamming with the NAC orchestra last spring. From the beginning the series has been all about presenting the best in Canadian music and making the NAC a home for Canadian artists where they can grow their audiences and grow as artists as they graduate up to the NAC’s larger rooms.
It’s no small feat putting together a concert series that’s somehow representative of all that is Canadian music, what with two official languages, a multiplicity of cultures and so many genres to balance. But if anyone is up for the challenge it’s producer Simone Deneau who works the magic to make it happen.
Some highlights in the upcoming season include Hey Rosetta! in Southam Hall, Royal Wood performing with guest Rose Cousins accompanied by the NAC orchestra, The Wooden Sky’s Christmas show, and a solid showing of roots music with Lindi Ortega, Old Man Luedecke and Corb Lund.
The NAC Presents’ new season is also shining a particularly bright spotlight on local music with shows from Amanda Rheaume and Kalle Mattson who’s returning to play the series with songs from his new EP Avalanche. Asked about the series Mattson says, “I really think the NAC Presents series is a great thing here in Ottawa for a lot of reasons. The main thing though is that I think really for a musician like myself the NAC might be the only real viable full-time music venue in Ottawa where you can have an actual concert experience. Most other venues in the city (outside of the Blacksheep Inn) you have to compromise on location, sound, stage etc. which is a shame. I don’t feel like any of that applies with the NAC & the 4th Stage and I’m looking forward to the show on November 5.”
Then there’s Petr Cancura’s Crossroads, a genre-crossing trio of shows where a top-notch house band featuring Roddy Ellias, Greg Ritchie, John Geggie and Petr Cancura will reinterpret the songs of three of the city’s best loved singer-songwriters, Ian Tamblyn, Lynn Miles and Jeremy Fisher.
Luckily the end of festival season does not bring a fallow period for great music in Ottawa. The NAC Presents’ lineup is packed with something for everyone so you can get your fix all year long.