Welcome, April! I got to claim that March came in like a lamb, so it is only fitting that I see out the month with the recent icy, snowy, cold stuff. Spring has sprung, businesses are open, and before you know it we are going to roll right from Easter to Mother’s Day to the Tulip Festival and patio season. Live music seems to be the theme for this weekend, so pick a show or two and hit a cool local bar or restaurant afterwards for some cheer. If you’d rather stay in, we have some livestream options for you, including this week’s Video of the Week: Farming Your Own Fungi. 2022 could be the summer of your own homegrown mushrooms, if that floats your boat.
Stay safe this weekend, friends, and show our beautiful city some love. It may be kind of dingy and muddy right now, but the truckers are gone and the tulips are on their way, so celebrate!
Have you noticed our new Magic in The Dark segment? The cool film lovers at Apt613 pull together the schedules of local independent movie theatres and break down the must-sees and hidden gems coming our way for the next month. This weekend is the start of April, so keep your eyes on this space for their key recommendations.
It’s the last weekend to catch Heartlines by local talent Sarah Waiswisz, playing at the Great Canadian Theatre Company until Sunday, April 3. Our very own Apt613 theatre insider Brian Carroll reviewed the play here, and claims that it proves “that heroism can have unlikely beginnings.” Heartlines traces the interaction of love, art, and war as it reimagines the lives of French surrealist and avant-garde artists who were secretly Jewish, lesbian life partners, active in the French Resistance during the Second World War. Ticket prices range from $15 to $55 and are still available for the last few shows this weekend.
View this post on Instagram
It’s Maple Weekend in Ontario! While I had no idea there was an official celebration of Canada’s favourite condiment, I am not surprised. This weekend, put on your rain boots and muck around at any one of the valley’s many sugar shacks. The Maple Weekend website offers a searchable map of places to visit for your sugar candy and maple taffy on snow.
Do It For The Grain is still celebrating its third anniversary with a variety of free workshops and events this weekend. Catch a social screening night for two local photo presentations at Black Squirrel Books on Friday starting at 7pm. You can dig into Photo Basics with Ali Math at Black Squirrel Books on Saturday. Note that admission is open to all and no pre-registration is required. Also, masks will be required, as will proof of vaccination if you intend on having food or drink at the venue.
View this post on Instagram
Thursday evenings at the Ottawa Art Gallery are for getting your sketch on. This week’s Sketchy Thursday will get visitors to explore Yinka Shonibare’s Mr. and Mrs. Andrews without their Heads. Materials will be provided and participants will be able to bring their drawings home with them! Register for free in advance online for the event from 6:30–7:30pm.
For one night only, The National Ballet of Canada is bringing to the stage a stunning mixed repertoire featuring two ballets by acclaimed Canadian and international choreographers and a film presentation of a new National Ballet commission. Tickets are still available for this performance at the NAC, for some crazy reason, so get them now! This intense selection of pieces is sure to move you beyond imagination.
Just down the hall in the Babs Asper theatre, you can catch Canadian legend Ron Sexsmith promoting his forthcoming album Hermitage. Ron’s music has shifted with his recent move from bustling Toronto to idyllic Stratford, and his new album is a tribute to that change in pace. Shockingly, tickets are still available, starting at $59 each. The NAC is still checking for vaccine passports and maintaining mask guidelines, so be prepared with yours.
This week, the NAC has hosted livestreamed mini jazz concerts from three schools around the world. On Saturday evening, enjoy the full Northern Cadence International Jazz Series 2022, hosted by NACO Music Director Alexander Shelley. This special jazz concert features students and faculty from the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland, the Manhattan School of Music in New York, and the Schulich School of Music at McGill University in Montreal. Each school’s jazz ensemble will perform original compositions and standards. Inspired by the NAC Orchestra’s 2022 Tour, Truth in Our Time, in which NACO presents the world premiere of Philip Glass’s newest work, each school’s jazz ensemble will select repertoire based around this theme.
Keeping it classy, the internationally renowned Vienna Piano Trio (which is actually one piano, one cello, and one violin) is bringing some Schubert and Mendelssohn to Dominion Chalmers’ perfect acoustics. This trio has been all over the world, and this weekend Beyond Music is bringing them here. If you fall down a deep enough rabbit hole researching this group, you too would find out that the Stradivarius cello we’ll be seeing in person on Saturday was made in 1698. Holy moly. Tickets are $40 for adults and $20 for students. Special reserved section seating is $75. The concert will also be livestreamed, costing $15 to enjoy from the comfort of your own home.
After selling out their Thursday evening show, Manchester UK “anti-folk” band Crywank has added a Saturday matinée at LIVE! On Elgin from 1-3:30pm. If you are already going to the Thursday show, they are promising different content on Saturday for the full experience. Honestly, the fantastic band name is enough for me to grab tickets. The event is 19+ and tickets are $23 online. Toronto indie band Commuted will open and warm up the crowd.
If you’ve been pushing back a wedding for the last million years or so, The Ottawa Wedding Show is back at the EY Centre for all of your planning needs! Tickets are $15 and there will be fashion shows and door prizes Saturday and Sunday 11am–4pm. Our collective fingers are crossed for your big day!
Food festivals are back!! On Sunday afternoon, get your fill of delicious tamales during the Tamal Festival at the Horticulture Building at Lansdowne. Whether you prefer them made with a base of rice, plantain, or corn, the event is promising an abundance of as many regional varieties as possible, as well as Brazilian desserts, traditional drinks, Guatemalan crafts, jewelry, accessories, clothing, beauty products, and more. Admission to the event is free, but they recommend that you bring some cash to have on hand for the vendors. Doors open to the public at noon, with entertainment throughout the afternoon beginning with a screening of Encanto at 1pm.
After the sad news of Eugene Melnyk’s passing, the Ottawa Senators’ game this Sunday afternoon might be a sombre affair, but there are lots of tickets available for the 1pm game against the Detroit Red Wings. Our 7th-place Sens are not going to make the playoffs this year, but that doesn’t mean we have to miss out on our favourite winter pastime before the season is over.
End the weekend right with a performance by Yukon Blonde at SAW Gallery Sunday evening at 8pm. Tickets are still available online for $29, and the show is 19+. The promotional materials for this high-energy rock show still mention proof of vaccination and masks as part of the safety procedures at the venue, so please be sure to come prepared with both! Rock safely, friends!