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Ottawa Little Theatre

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for November 9 to 11

Friday, November 9

Blackie and the Rodeo Kings bring along some of their friends for their Kings and Queens tour at the NAC Friday night.

Blackie and the Rodeo Kings’ latest record saw the band joining forces with some of their favourite female musicians, including Emmylou Harris, Lucinda Williams and Roseanne Cash. Now, the roots rockers from Hamilton, Ont. are taking the album on the road – and a few famous friends are coming along for the ride. Catch the Kings and Queens tour live at the National Arts Centre and be treated to special appearances by Matt Andersen, Amy Helm, Mary Margaret O’Hara and Harlan Pepper. Tickets range from $42.50 to $64.50.

Hosted by the Children’s Aid Foundation of Ottawa (CAFOTT), the annual World Trivia Night has quickly become the largest event of its kind in North America. Drawing more than 2,000 people a year, the evening sees teams of 10 facing off in an epic battle of wits — all in the name of charity, of course. Registration is $350 per team, with all proceeds going toward education and enrichment opportunities for youth in the care of the CAFOTT.

Rock-star-turned-choreographer Hofesh Shechter will present his first full-length work, the contemporary masterpiece Political Mother, this weekend at the NAC. Performed by 11 dancers of the Hofesh Shechter Company in Brighton, England and accompanied by a seven-piece live band, the show is meant to challenge the viewer’s perception of what it means to be normal.

Saturday, November 10

Funnyman John Heffron hosts the annual Just For Laughs Comedy tour.

The annual Just for Laughs Comedy Tour hits Ottawa this weekend with its hilariously agonizing Relationship Edition. Featuring host John Heffron, Canadian girl Debra DiGiovanni, tour favourite Godfrey and Saturday Night Live alum Jim Breuer, these comedians prove that even the most embarrassing romantic mishaps have a silver lining — or can at least garner a few laughs. Tickets start at just $35.50.

In celebration of its 100th anniversary, the volunteer-run Ottawa Little Theatre presents 10 plays from the past 10 decades. Agatha Christie’s classic murder mystery The Hollow, which was first produced for the OLT stage in 1960, was chosen this month to represent the 1950s. Be sure to act quickly: Saturday is your last chance to take in this infamous tale of jealousy and deception!

The Ottawa Wine & Food Festival returns for its 27th year with a five-day spread of unrivaled culinary expertise. Featuring hundreds of exhibitors, an exceptional lineup of sommeliers and celebrity chefs (including Montreal’s own Martin Picard), and the ever-popular “Taste and Discover Series,” there’s a little something for everyone at this year’s event.

Sunday, November 11

Famed Métis artist Bob Boyer presents His Life’s Work at the Canadian Museum of Civilization.

Bob Boyer — His Life’s Work is the first large-scale exhibition devoted entirely to the famed Métis artist. Known for using traditional motifs to explore contemporary Aboriginal life, Boyer often critiqued the harmful effects of colonialism through his work. Don’t miss out: This one of a kind show ends on Monday.

Aptly described as “a short, sweet show of really worthwhile clay art,” 260 Fingers features pieces by — you guessed it — 26 potters and clay artists from eastern Ontario and western Quebec. The exhibition showcases work from both new and established artists, including Bill Reddick, Michelle Bishop and Maggie Roddan, to name a few. The three-day showing starts this Friday at 6 p.m. Admission is free.

Now in its 10th year, the annual Homes for the Holidays tour continues to be the premiere fundraiser for The Hospice at May Court. For the event, Ottawa designers decorate six gorgeous area homes (located in Rockcliffe, Manotick and the Glebe) with flowers, Christmas ornaments and table settings. Then, over the course of a weekend, roughly 2,500 visitors are invited to wander through the various creations. Tickets are just $40 and can be purchased online from their website or at various retail outlets throughout the city.

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for August 31 to September 3

Friday, August 31

The Gatineau Hot Air Balloon Festival.

This year marks the 25th edition of the renowned Hot Air Balloon Festival at parc de la Baie in Gatineau. Colourful hot air balloons fill the sky, while an amusement park, circus entertainment, and more fill the rest of the weekend. With a lineup of nightly performances, including KC and the Sunshine Band and Quebec’s own Simple Plan, this festival is staging an unforgettable anniversary.

Come out for a haunting night at the Cumberland Heritage Village Museum with a throw-back drive-in screening of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s 1939 film, The Hound of the Baskervilles. Site opens at 8pm, screening at 9pm.

With the end of the Classic Theatre Festival’s third summer season comes Labour Day weekend and back-to-school admission specials for the festival’s comic hit “Mary, Mary,” a comedy of second chances, and a product of the era that brought us TV’s Mad Men. From Wednesday, August 29 to Sunday, September 2, students get in for free with any parent who purchases tickets, and in honour of Labour Day, all union members and public servants get a 20% discount on tickets for the last week as well.

Saturday, September 1

Legendary impressionist and stand-up comic Rich Little.

Ottawa-born comedian Rich Little is hitting the stage for a special Ottawa Little Theatre benefit show. The legendary impressionist will be performing his one-man show “Jimmy Stewart and Friends” for the audience, where he impersonates everyone from Katharine Hepburn to John Wayne.

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Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for July 27 to 29

Friday, July 27

Estonia’s Arsis Handbell Ensemble plays Ottawa Chamberfest on Friday night.

The Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival is back for another season of international music from the boldest names in ensemble and solo performance. Concerts are held in churches, arts centers, and other downtown venues. Featured artists on opening night include the Arsis Handbell Ensemble, the Gryphon Trio with Julie Nesrallah, and poetry and interviews with Canadian actor Gordon Pinsent. Until August 9.

Odyssey Theatre is presenting The Game of Love and Chance, Marivaux’s classic comedy, in this 2012 season of Theatre Under the Stars. Enjoy the ambiance of the great outdoors as this 18th Century comic farce takes you on a journey through the tale of two lovers, caught up in intrigue, disguises and forbidden passion. Until August 26.

The Ottawa Little Theatre presents the last weekend of Black Coffee, one of Agatha Chrisite’s lesser-known mysteries. With many twists and turns, the audience is brought through a case that will tantalize both die-hard Christie fans and those who are new to her work.

Saturday, July 28

Steering Towards Hope showcases unique cars and motorcycles at Scotiabank Place. The Steering Towards Hope team and the Kidney Foundation of Canada are working together to make this the biggest event in its history, and the only event in the National Capital Region to involve cars, big trucks, and motorcycles. General admission is free; however, a non-perishable donation to the Ottawa Food Bank is welcome.

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Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for June 1 to 3

Friday
The third annual Orleans Festival takes place this weekend in the city’s east end. The event showcases local performing, culinary and visual arts within the community, and features a designated Kids’ Zone filled with child-friendly activities, local artisans, and performances by The Dusty Drifters, Yves Lambert, Tracteur Jack, Born Ruffians, and more.

Born Ruffians play the Orleans Festival this weekend.

Titanic: The Musical commemorates the 100th anniversary of the events and characters associated with the doomed ship. This Friday kicks off the first day of a ten-day production hosted by Orpheus Musical Theatre Society. Titanic: The Musical has won numerous awards, including five Tony Awards, since it began its run in 1997.

Saturday
Ottawa Little Theatre is hosting this weekend’s Legends In The Making Comedy Tour, a live stand-up comedy show featuring comedians Dave Merheje and Arthur Simeon. Audience members should come prepared for some serious fun, as Merheje and Simeon – who are both regulars on CBC Radio’s Laugh Out Loud – put on an entertaining show.

Victoire welcomes their first ever Kids Pop-up Shop at their West Wellington location. The shop, which will be open for all of June, launches with a party this Saturday afternoon. The party will include music and crafts by Catriona Sturton and Kristy Nease, and doughnut holes by Suzy Q. Shoppers will find vintage and Canadian-made clothing, as well as art prints and toys in a section of the store dedicated to children’s items. (more…)

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for March 2 to 4

This photo shows actors from Orpheus Musical Theatre Society rehearsing for "Rent."

Friday, March 2
Orpheus Musical Theatre brings its rendition of the Tony Award-winning Rent to the stage. Based on Puccini’s La Bohème, this rock opera follows a group of young, struggling artists trying to make it in New York City. Gritty and modern, the friends face challenges that range from relationships to money to the health threat of HIV and AIDS. See why the musical lasted 12 years on Broadway when this local theatre group takes on the show. (And don’t be surprised if you start humming songs like “La Vie Bohème B” and “Seasons of Love” and dreaming of running away to the Big Apple.) Opening tonight and running until March 11.

In 1971, Pink Floyd played two shows in Quebec, one in Montreal and one in Quebec city, for the first time ever. Celebrate the 40th anniversary of these legendary concerts with the 2011 travelling show Eclipse – The Pink Floyd Story, on at Casino du Lac-Leamy. This commemorative performance demonstrates the band’s evolution, with a live band performing the best of Pink Floyd from the early days to the later years. Moving lights, spectacular lasers, and video projections make this a complete sensory experience.

Enter the musical universe of Kyssi Wète this Friday at the National Arts Centre. Wète mixes the sounds and rhythms of blues, reggae, rumba, soul, raga, and pop to transport his audiences somewhere between France, Jamaica, and the Congo. Using human diversity and relationships as his inspiration, he relays messages of interracial harmony with his unique voice.

Saturday, March 3
Celebrate International Women’s Week on the opening day of the Celebrate HER Charity Music and Art Festival. The festival celebrates outstanding women in the Ottawa community with a week full of art, music, dance, theatre, and spoken word poetry. Check out this year’s centrepiece: the “Amazing Women-Femmes d’exception” photo installation at Alpha Soul Café, which includes women such as University of Ottawa professor Constance Backhouse and children’s author Naomi Guzman Poole. (more…)