Sarah's Weekend List, December 4-6

The stars of Habibi's Angels tackle everything from feminism to racism to secularism to Quebec history to good neighbours - and more.
Sarah Deshaies produces the Andrew Carter Morning Show. Every Friday at 8:20am, she tells you about the big, quirky and off-the-beaten-path events happening in Montreal. Here is this week's list, with links for more information so you can get out and enjoy the city! Submit your event to sarah.deshaies@bellmedia.ca

 

Planning to get ahead on holiday shopping? It's free to park in downtown Montreal on the weekend until the end of the year. And while you are there, check out a new feature for families: Follow Santa Claus. Along Ste Catherine street, search for Christmas-related items hidden in store windows, and take part in free games like Rudolph's Mission. Several prizes are up for grabs! Also, floats from the Montreal Santa Claus Parade have been set up along the route. Until December 28. More info on the city's Christmas programming and markets here.
 
Shop local, and from the comfort home, with two different holiday markets: you can shop the Souk sale online, but there is a physical space you can visit at 1 Place Ville Marie. And Pop Montreal has put its fab Puces Pop online as a catalogue. Both have fashion, food, art and homey delights like candles and prints available! 
 
Twenty-five floats and eight marching bands plus the man in red himself will make The Original Santa Claus Parade one to remember. Filmed at Canada's Wonderland amusement park, with appearances from stars like Dolly Parton, Meghan Tranior, Kelly Clarson, Shaggy and more. Saturday at 7pm, CTV. 
 
Saturday Night Live is back, with just three more shows left this year! Jason Bateman (Arrested Development, Ozark) guest hosts, and country star Morgan Wallen gets another kick at the can as musical guest; he was turfed earlier this fall after images of him partying sans mask circulated in the week of his gig. Saturday at 11:30pm. 
 
A bevy of musicians play homage to folk star Cat Stevens in CatSong FestivalSee HAIM, Dave Matthews, Passenger, Jack Johnson and more Saturday at 3pm. 
 
Rising pop punk star Yungblud of Yorkshire is performing his world tour virtually, 'one city at a time', and this weekend he hits up Atlanta. Seattle and Los Angeles, with shows Friday through Sunday. 
 
The Christmas Chronicles 2 has Kurt Russell returning as Jolly St Nick, and includes his real-life partner Goldie Hawn as Mrs Claus. Our relatable kid hero is Kate Pierce, who visits Santa and conspires to prevent a baddie from spoiling the holiday forever. Now on Netflix. 
 
Quebec artists like Elisapie, Ariane Moffatt, Natasha Kanapé Fontaine and Patrick Watson performed a special concert in celebration of the life of Joyce Echaquan, the Indigenous woman who filmed racist abuse from hospital workers shortly before she died. The concert, called Waskapitan (meaning 'come together'), was filmed live in Joliette and is now available online. Organizers are also raising money to improve Indigenous life in Joliette, to make a public work in tribute to Echaquan and to support her family. 
 
Talisman Theatre had to kibosh the live debut of its new show last week, when the government prolonged lockdown orders. But Habibi's Angels: Commission Impossible is getting another airing: this meta theatrical piece covers a wide range of subjects, including diversity, feminism, secularism, Quebec history and more. It's superbly acted and produced. Catch it live, Sunday at 3pm. Free, but you are invited to make a donation.
 
The Segal Centre is going ahead with plans to present Underneath the Lintel, a one-man show about a mystery spanning hundreds of years. It will be streaming live next weekend, and I will be hosting a special discussion in advance for a virtual 'Sunday @ the Segal'. Emmanual Schwartz, a bilingual theatre star on the French side, plays a librarian keen to track down the story behind an overdue book, returned 113 years late. The author, Glenn Berger, Schwartz and other members of this virtual show join me, Sunday at noon on Zoom. Hope to see you there! 
 
My pals at The Wandering Chew have been hosting wonderful food workshops. Learn to make sweet ricotta latkes (inspired by Italian Jewish food tradition) in advance of Chanukah, Sunday at 1pm. 
 
Can Bruce Willis save the day, Nakatomi Plaza and win back his ex-wife's love? Every year, Montreal actor Terence Bowman directs an all-female, all-star cast reading of Die Hard. Proceeds go to Canadian Women's Foundation, whose work with girls and women in leadership, health and safety is more important than ever. The show was performed live Thursday, but is available to stream just on Friday. See it on Facebook, Twitch or YouTube
 
The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts has made some of its exhibitions available online for free, as government regulations mean it will not reopen before the new year. Marvel at the ongoing Post-Impressionist show, and check out the brand new Jean-Paul Riopelle show, which focuses on his connection to Canada's Arctic and its people. From the comfort of home... until January 11. And the Museum's online gift shop reopened this week, until December 23. 
 
The fourth Montreal Feminist Film Festival is online, with a couple dozen short films and seven features. Rent one of the latter for $10, like Queer Genius, which profiles five remarkable queer female artists. On Saturday at noon, join a streaming conversation with about 30 filmmakers from all over the world (email fffmontreal@gmail.com for your ticket). Until December 12. 
 
I was tickled to learn this week about the Australian family that discovered a female koala had camped out in their Christmas tree. Watching her removal - ahem, rescue - it felt quite familiar. That's because I fell in love with a new Netflix docuseries this fall, titled Izzy's Koala World. Kids will love cheerful and smart Izzy, who helps her vet mom save vulnerable koalas on Magnetic Island in Australia. 
 
This Sunday marks the 31st anniversary of the 1989 Polytechnique Massacre. There will be no public ceremony at the commemorative plaque this year, but consider visiting the school's website dedicated to the 14 lives we lost and to see the initiatives created in their memory. 
The cast from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reunited recently to share stories, with Will Smith, Tatyana Ali, Alfonso Ribeiro and DJ Jazzy Jeff and more. That special is now available on Crave, along with all six seasons from the original series, a fish-outta-water sitcom about a fast-talking kid from Philly who moves in with his well off family in tony Bel-Air.
 
And got anything extra around the house that could go to someone who needs it? The Nellie Philanthropy Foundation in the West End is doing a collection this weekend…like unused gift cards, non-perishable food items, new unwrapped toys, new socks and toiletries, and more. Drop by on Sunday, 9am-1pm at the Madisons Parking Lot, àt 7977 Decarie.     
 

ONGOING

 



Since it will be lovely out this weekend, why not check out the ongoing Cité-Mémoire project in Old Montreal? I was reminded of the ongoing outdoor installation as a newly-released documentary explains its development by Cirque de soleil vets Michel Lemieux, Victor Pilon and Michel Marc Bouchard. Essentially, it is a series of visual projections that cover various parts of Montreal's history, including Expo 67, Angélique and Joe Beef. All you need is to download the app so you can hear the audio narrations that accompany the different projections (and to navigate to the displays). The projections start at dusk and continue until 11pm, Wednesday to Sunday. 

Cavalia's Illumi is a colourful escape through a 3-kilometre labyrinth, starting with spooky skeletons, meandering through pleasant forests to icy fields and a spooky town. Your drive includes a stop with food trucks at the midpoint. It's kitschy, but fun for kids and anyone who just really needs a safe adventure outside the house. In Laval off Boulevard des Souvenirs, until January 5.

Though he grew up on a dairy farm outside Brome, Kenny Streule always wanted to be a city boy. In his solo show. Malunderstood, he looks back at his childhood in the country, with the watchful eye of his tough-but-loving Swiss-German mother. Stream it here.

Explore McGill and get a thrill with a virtual escape room compiled by the university's librarians, archivists and game developers. A mysterious poisoner is on the loose, and you have to track them down! Starting at the pathology lab, then solving puzzles (based on McGill and Montreal history) all over campus. You can play Raising Spirits with a browser. The game got a fresh update this week! For ages 12 and up.

The Royal Montreal Regiment and Le Royal 22ieme Regiment look back on the October Crisis through the eyes of soldiers deployed after the kidnapping of James Cross. This virtual exhibit is geared to students and teachers, but anyone can check out The October Crisis 1970 online.

Tiny Plateau arthouse Cinema Moderne is still releasing new content, including one Korena feature film about a woman in her 40s who has to reinvent herself after she loses her job. Check out the full list here.   

Other things you can do online that will be more enriching that scrolling endlessly through your Instagram feed...a bevy of Canadian museums are putting their offers online: Winnipeg's Canadian Museum for Human Rights, the Art Gallery of Ontario and The Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau are making their works and exhibits available online. The Calgary Zoo is also sharing their Panda Cam, where you watch their two giant pandas, Er Shun and Da Mao, frolic for a few hours every day. 

International museums like the Louvre, the Sistine Chapel, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, the British Museum in London and the Hermitage Museum are also online. The Metropolitan Opera has a nightly stream. And visit Yayoi Kusama's mesmerizing Infinity Mirror installation. 

And if you're looking for something different visit Open Culture, a fantastic website that lists hundreds of free books, audio books, movies and online courses. The selection here is a mix of the classic, indie and the offbeat. Pick up a Jane Austen novel, watch the original A Star is Born or browse through videos of poets like Maya Angelou reading their work. 

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