Sarah's Weekend List, May 28-30

Flex your green thumb at the Little Great Gardening Weekend at the Botanical Gardens! Pick up a plant, some products or get advice for your green team. PHOTO: Espace pour la vie (Mathieu Rivard)
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


Well, here we are! Quebecers get to enjoy several reopening measures today, including the end of curfew, the chance to be with up to eight people in a backyard (from maximum two households) and to enjoy a meal on a terrasse. (That is, if the cooler temperatures don't put you off.) But don't forget the fine print: your mask, hand sanitizer, distance and common sense are the best accessories you can bring with you to make sure you, your loved ones and everyone else remains safe and happy this spring.   

Disney explores the origin story of the mean lady in 101 Dalmatians with new release, Cruella.  But we meet her as young Estella (Emma Stone, a street urchin who ends up in the dog-eat-dog fashion industry. She plots, with her friends-slash-henchmen, to take down her wicked boss, The Duchess (Emma Thompson). The costumes are sumptuous and the soundtrack is packed with rock 'n roll hits. In theatres now to kick off the summer blockbuster season!

Flex your green thumb at the The Great Little Gardening Weekend, hosted by the Botanical Gardens. Thirty exhibitors will be hawking plants, advice and various products, and you can learn about urban agriculture and conservation. Don't forget to purchase your timed ticket in advance! Until Sunday.

The Old Port reopens the terrasses at Terrases Bonsecours, Marché des éclusiers and Scena restaurant. Also launching Friday: the electricity-powered Le Petit Navire takes on a leisurely tour of the port and Lachine Canal, with information about local marine life and maritime history! Launches every hour. And the Pointe-à-Calliere Museum is opening its doors on Sunday for a pay-what-you-want event: give any amount to enter for the day. And if you buy a membership, you get an adult membership as a bonus to gift to whomever you like! Check out the trained-themed show, A Railroad to Dreams, or Italian Montréal, which draws on loaned treasures from local families to talk about the arrival of Italian families in the city and how they have impacted the larger community. Other activities include: the Voiles en Voiles adventure park features archery, aerial circuits, inflatable games. And MTL Zipline and The Observation Wheel in the Old Port has reopened, open daily 11am to 7pm. (Each carriage is cleaned after use.)  

The Grand PoutineFest drive-thru rolls into Pointe-Claire, at the Fairvew parking lot, near pole No. 6. Six trucks offer up 20 different poutines, and there will be entertainment, too. It's also a fundraiser with collections for West Island Community Shares. Until Sunday.

The Festival TransAmériques kicked off this week with a myriad of multidisciplinary shows, both virtual and in person events. Check out O2 , a daily six-hour show with 20 dancers weaving through different locations, beginning Saturday. In BOW'T-Tio'Tia:Ke Haitian-Canadian dancer Rhodnie Désir reclaims the city's colonial history in Old Montreal, starting Saturday until June 7. And there is _jeanne_dark_ a show about a teen girl finding herself (get the name?) all on Instagram, with a new episode out Friday at 12:45pm. The festival continues until June 12. 

Tableau d'hote theatre company spotlights recent theatre grads, who have entered a very precarious job market. The showcase Class of 2020: Voices from the Pandemic is a short look at new and more established works with young performers and designers. It's also a great way to ease yourself back into theatre, with short excerpts and the show only running an hour. Three shows on Saturday at the Segal Centre. The Segal also launches a new series, Sunday Sessions, with a different local musical act each week. It's free but you are encouraged to register, as there is a limit on attendance. Catch Jay & Cave Present: A Date with Summer on Sunday, 3pm. 

Violette is an immersive theatre piece where a young woman with Down's syndrome invites you into her room for a visit. But Violette has a harrowing experience to share with you. This brief theatre experience melds live performance with virtual reality headsets. It's an interesting premise, from Joe Jack et John theatre company, which works with actors with intellectual disabilities; this bilingual show is their first big introduction to English audiences. Until May 30. 

Two theatre schools are releasing student projects online: National Theatre School's New Words Festival presents two new plays: I Got My Life Back! by Sarah Currie and Bonus Points if You Have Air Conditioning by Jena McLean. It's pay-what-you-can, and online until June 2. 

The Montreal Comics Arts Festival marks its 10th year virtually with workshops and talks. Learn to draw comics with Jackie Davis, creator of Underpants and Overbites, Friday at 10am. Or Monster Love, a Saturday afternoon panel about our relationship to the supernatural and paranormal. Or settle in to watch the fun Quebec action classic, Turbo Kid, Saturday night. Until Sunday. 

Montreal post-punk rockers We Are Monroe launch a new EP with a virtual show, Saturday 9pm from L'Astral. 

The 36th edition of Festival Accès Asie spotlights arts and culture on the occasion of Asian Heritage Month. The festival also has an on-demand shadow theatre video workshop for kids aged 7 to 10, and a podcast exploring the experiences of Asian-Canadians, titled Asiate Imparfaite. Closing the fest on Saturday, 8pm is On The Move, a national showcase from three cities to celebrate Asian Heritage Month. Until May 31. 

Catch up with some Friends! The reunion is out now on Crave - along with the 236 episodes from the iconic sitcom. 

The National Ballet School offers up seven different workshops for all ages and abilities, with a myriad of dance styles, AND starring Canadian artists, for its 2021 Sharing Dance Day Friday at 12:30pm. You can also take part on Facebook and YouTube.

The eighth edition of SatFest presents eight short immersive works to be enjoyed under the dome, on a cozy black bean bag chair: check out a 'vertigo-inducing ive into entropic chaos', a fictional exploration of microbiology titled Immunity and an AI-generated trip called Piece.

Final weekend to check out the 'best of' series of sex and relationship columnist Dan Savage's Hump Film FestivalLast call is May 29. 

OASIS immersion is a new, 'touchless', next-level experience on the ground floor of the Palais des congrès. There are 105 laser projector, 119 surround sound speakers and a LED lighting setup. You begin in the Anticipation Room, proceeding through a set of different rooms and wind down in the Decompression Chamber. Current exhibitions include: stepping into the worlds of pianist Alexandra Stréliski, and astronaut David Saint-Jacques's recent trip to space. There is also a tribute to hygge, the Danish tradition of finding coziness in the everyday. Each visit is about 75 minutes.

Consider checking out a museum, now that they are open to the public: you pick your entry time in advance, so visits are socially distanced. Demand is high as well, so you will want to select your date in advance. Visit the McCord for the Dior haute couture show (today is the anniversary of the debut of the New Look!) or the MAC for Des horizons d'attente, its bundle of recently acquired works that address today's sense of malaise. The Museum of Fine Arts presents Riopelle: The Call of Northern Landscapes and other shows.

And if you don't want to leave the house, several museums are still offering virtual shows... including the MAC, which has updated and expanded their sensational exhibit on Leonard Cohen, A Crack in Everything. Cohen gave his bliessing for the show, which features pieces inspired by his life and work, back in 2015, and it went on display around the time of passing in 2017. The show has been enriched for online viewing, available until February 2024. The Louvre has also just put its over 480,000 items online. From the world's most-visited museum, check out the antiquities to Islamic art to medieval decorative arts, to modern sculpture and beyond.


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