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NAC Orchestra

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for December 21 to 23

Friday, December 21

A Christmas Carol is on stage at the National Arts Centre.

Charles Dickens’ classic holiday tale is brought to life with the National Arts Centre‘s annual production of A Christmas CarolNow in its 10th year, this solo show has grown to become  a Christmas tradition in the nation’s capital. Starring John D. Huston and featuring the haunting music of Ottawa folk trio Finest Kind, this is a show you won’t want to miss.

Theatre legend Colm Wilkinson stops by Centrepointe Theatre for two full hours of music and storytelling. Broadway, Christmas and Beyond will feature theatre classics such as “Music of the Night,” “Some Enchanted Evening,” and “Somewhere,” as well as Wilkinson’s signature song, “Bring Him Home.” A seven-piece band and two female vocalists joins Wilkinson on stage.

Canadian Brass returns to the NAC with a spectacular display of holiday showmanship. Easily identified by their trademark tuxes and tennis shoes, the five-piece ensemble is the perfect blend of music, spontaneity, and humour. Together with the NACO, they will treat audiences to a string of Christmas favourites, including “O Holy Night,” “White Christmas,” and “God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman.”

Saturday, December 22

Stuart McLean brings his storytelling prowess to Ottawa.

Beloved Canadian storyteller Stuart McLean returns to Ottawa for a two-night engagement at the NAC. The Vinyl Cafe 2012 Christmas Tour will include two brand new stories, Christmas music from The Vinylettes, and a special performance by Vancouver singer-songwriter Reid Jamieson. The tour will also celebrate McLean’s latest release, a four-CD collection of favourite holiday stories.

Ottawa’s own Jim Bryson returns to the national capital region for his Annual Holiday Show at Wakefield’s Black Sheep Inn. This will be Bryson’s first solo gig in a while (he spent the better part of the last year backing fellow local girl Kathleen Edwards), so the folk-rock musician plans to go big. Not only will be be joined by special guests Rueben Degroot and Kelly Sloan, he also plans to unveil a special holiday EP.

Now playing at the Museum of Civilization‘s IMAX theatre is Rocky Mountain Express. Awarded “Best Film” and “Best Cinematography” by the 2012 Giant Screen Cinema Association, this film centres on the construction of Canada’s first transcontinental railway. Breathtaking aerial shots and rarely seen archival footage add to this impeccable showing. All aboard!

Sunday, December 23

This weekend is your last chance to see Miracle on 34th Street: The Radio Show.

Have you been meaning to check out The Gladstone‘s production of Miracle on 34th Street: The Radio Show? Well, you’d best act quickly. Today’s matinee performance (slated to begin at 3 p.m.) is the final showing. Plosive Productions takes audiences back to the golden age of radio in this creative re-telling of a holiday classic.

If you have yet to take advantage of the Canadian Museum of Nature‘s seasonal specials, now’s the time. Until Christmas Eve day, kids aged three to 12 can enjoy half-priced admission. While you’re there, be sure to check out the newly renovated Vale Earth Gallery. The now 8,000-square-foot exhibition features interactive games, simulations, and even a Canadian Mining Hall of Fame.

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for October 12 to 14

Friday, October 12

Comedian Gerry Dee performs at Centrepointe Theatre on Friday.

Though Canadian comic Gerry Dee is well known for his starring role on the hit CBC show Mr. D, his career in comedy didn’t happen overnight. Instead, the high-school-teacher-turned-comedian had to work his way up, and it wasn’t until 2007 (when Dee placed third on the American reality series Last Comic Standing) that he became a household name. You can experience Dee’s inimitable sense of humour tonight at Centrepointe Theatre as part of his Life After Teaching Tour.

The One World Film Festival is an annual collaborative project that sees local filmmakers, activists, and students coming together in support of human rights and environmental sustainability. The 23rd installment, which runs from October 11 to 14 at Library and Archives Canada, will feature documentary film screenings (including the Canadian premieres of The Eyes of Thailand and Words of Witness), panel discussions, Q&A sessions, and presentations from NGOs.

Billing itself as “the best food, wine and spirit show in town,” Le rendez-vous des saveurs invites guests to experience the incomparable tastes of the Gatineau region. Now in its 16th year, the event is bringing in some big-name exhibitors to please even the most distinguished diners. Vendors include Restaurant l’Orée du Bois, Le Tartuffe and Chelsea Pub, as well as Ernest and Julio Gallo Winery, Fromagerie Montebello and Érabeille Artisan. (more…)

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for July 6 to 8

The Sound and Light Show runs nightly through September 6 on Parliament Hill

Friday
The Sound and Light Show kicks off tonight and sees the façade of the Parliament Buildings become the backdrop for a 30-minute audio and visual experience that highlights Canada’s cultural and physical landmarks. The current showing is entitled “Mosaika: Canada through the eyes of its people.” Running until September 3, this bilingual event is held nightly on Parliament Hill, and admission is free.

A trip to Ottawa in July is incomplete without a night at Bluesfest. The fest runs from July 4 to 15, and Friday night features artists such as City and Colour, Arkells, Sleigh Bells, David Grey, and Tommy Lee and Dj Aero, just to name a few.

The NAC Orchestra performs the award-winning score from The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring as the film is projected on a 60-foot screen. The show, running Thursday to Saturday, provides avid fans and newcomers alike with a fresh experience of the film.

Saturday
Urban Craft, Ottawa’s first and only monthly craft market features pieces from hip and fresh vendors. Come out for some great finds, from gourmet and local food to body products and accessories, even handmade toys for the kids. The event is held the first Saturday of every month from 10am-2pm at the Great Canadian Theatre Company.

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Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for June 8 to 10

Rajaton plays the music of ABBA at the NAC on Friday

Friday
Join award-winning vocalist group Rajaton this Friday as they perform some of ABBA’s greatest hits with the NAC Orchestra. Expect to hear songs like “Dancing Queen,” “Mamma Mia,” and “Money Money Money,” and catch yourself singing along with the crowd. The six-member group has risen to fame in their native Finland with platinum record sales.

The three-day Carnival of Cultures, a celebration of music, song, and dance from different cultures across the world, starts this Friday. Over 50 performers will take to the stage this weekend, showcasing dance, music, and storytelling. Cultural exhibits and food are also on the bill. Friday’s performances include an opening ceremony, dancers from Flamenco Studio Ottawa, and Bollywood for Fun.

Saturday
For over two decades, the Canada Dance Festival has celebrated the art of dance in Canada. This week-long event will feature performers from across the country. Saturday’s events include a Professional Training Program Showcase, a performance by Kidd Pivot, and more. Jeanne Holmes joins the festival this year as newly appointed Artistic Director.

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Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for May 11 to 13

Friday, May 11
Join a talented group of vocalists as they sing hits from iconic musicals Les Miserables and Miss Saigon. Do You Hear The People Sing is put on by the NAC Orchestra and runs Thursday through Saturday. The Ottawa Festival Chorus is among the many performers.

Kaya 2 by Shannon Kaya of Teomae Designs, who will be exhibiting at the Glamour in the Glebe Jewellery Show

Over 30 jewellers will be present for this Friday’s Glamour in the Glebe event, which features a jewellery fashion show and refreshments. Pick something up for yourself, or grab a gift for mom from one of the many vendors.

Saturday, May 12
If you’re searching for great local food, look no further than the Locavore Artisan Food Fair. Over 20 local vendors will be present, and a silent auction will take place with proceeds going to the School Breakfast Program (an Ottawa initiative).

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