The summer festival season has finally reached the Parc La Fontaine for this year’s iteration of Théâtre de Verdure. Since last Friday alone, the Park’s airy outdoor amphitheatre has already been the stage of live poetry readings, tango, animated film, dance performances and even a Tchaikovsky symphony or two from the Orchestre Métropolitain. If that’s any indication, it’s just another year for the Théâtre—now in its fifty-fifth year of existence and still putting on a diverse and high-caliber collection of cultural acts.
For the next few nights, performers will give the amphitheatre an African-inspired makeover in partnership with the ongoing Vues d’Afrique. Plan to hear the beats of virtuoso-percussionist Maloukai between the trees on the 15th, before more musical sets by Zekuhl and Namori over the weekend. Also catch movie screenings courtesy of said continent, namely Voyage à Alger, a Franco-Algerian film set in the city of Saïda post-independence and a Julie et Roméo take out of Burkina Faso.
The following week features an equally broad range of worldly bits, including a triple program from Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal, the reggae-rap of Haitian troupe BIC et Wisli, and a screening of the dark Créole-Québécois gangster film, Sortie 67. The Sunday is booked by two movies from France, one called La Brique Lego, tracing the long history of the beloved little blocks, and the other, Jane Birkin, So French, tracing the history of the famous singer gone actress.
In collaboration with the Conseil des arts de Montréal, the Théâtre is presenting the Afro-Brazilian sounds of Rommel Ribiero on the 26th and—as the program slips into August—the dance number, S’envoler, performed by local troupes Création Caféine et Montréal Dance on the 3rd. Now, Thursday the 4th belongs to multi-talented artist and our delightful May issue cover boy Socalled, with a double program that includes a 2010 film-biopic and the man himself on the outdoor stage.
Many more acts and films are also in store before the Théâtre closes for the year on the 8th. If you’ve got a head on your shoulders, you’ve probably already seen these gems—but just in case—make sure you don’t miss the chance to view fresh air screenings of Potiche, The King's Speech, and of course, Incendies. Check out the program via the link below and prepare to feel slightly overwhelmed with the cultural options.
July 8 to August 8