15 Holiday activities in the Quartier des Spectacles

November 24, 2017

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The Holiday Season is all about spending quality time with our nearest and dearest, and rediscovering our childlike sense of wonder. In the Quartier des Spectacles, you’ll find some wonderful seasonal culture and festivities to make the season as special as can be.

Come down to the Quartier with your sweetie, friends or the whole family and enjoy 1 km2 of holiday magic!


Luminothérapie: a winter wonderland!

After eight years in the Place des Festivals, Luminothérapie has become a beloved winter ritual for thousands of Montrealers. And there’s great news this year: Impulse, the massively successful installation made up of 30 giant, illuminated musical seesaws, is back! The seesaws work like regular ones, except they produce enchanting sound and light. It’s joyous, amazing and fun. Grinches beware: you are sure to smile!

Christmas in the park

To get in the holiday spirit, head over to Place Émilie-Gamelin! From December 1 to 25, the Noël dans le parc festival conjures up old-fashioned Christmas magic with a traditional village where you can pick out just the right tree, meet Santa, have a snack and a drink, and enjoy live music by KRoy, Louis-Jean Cormier, Lary Kidd, Mudie and more. An evening where every Christmas wish comes true.

PARENTS AND KIDS : An enchanted world

The Holiday Season is also a wonderful time for song and dance. Mary Poppins a critically acclaimed French-language adaptation of the holiday classic, is a wellspring of supercalifragilisticexpialidocious joy!

Another big festive production, Décembre de Québec Issime, is already in its 15th year of celebrating the holiday classics, with 30 artists taking us on a fantastic musical journey set in an old-time village.

And don’t miss Le Grand Marché de Noël de Montréal, a Christmas market set up as an open-air village, featuring local artisans and activities for the whole family, from karaoke and square dancing to choirs and train rides!

FOR LOVERS : Heartwarming music

Why wait for the 31st to ring in 2018? Jig on down to Club Soda on the 30th for an old-fashioned pre-New Year’s shindig with La Veillée de l’avant-Veille, Montreal’s best-loved traditional Québécois music night, starring Nicolas Pellerin and Les Grands Hurleurs and Vent du Nord.

For romantic types, the Maison symphonique presents an inviting and warm concert, Noël symphonique, an excellent way to hear the great Christmas classics performed by 45 musicians and some of Quebec’s finest voices.

In the spirit of giving, check out the exhibition dedicated to the iconic Leonard Cohen - A Crack in Everything, a stirring tribute to the remarkable poet.

WITH THE GRANDPARENTS : Santa, the Nutcracker and more!

You’d have to be a robot to resist the allure of Montreal’s one and only true Santa Claus at Complexe Desjardins until December 24. All children, naughty and nice, are invited to pay him a visit!

At Place des Arts, swinging songs, gripping stories, the famous red suit and that long white beard come together in the musical tale Nicolas Noël, Le livre des enfants du monde, which shares its big secrets in a winter wonderland. Nicolas Noël shows up on stage after his sleigh breaks down and he’s lost one of his magic books. Is Grésille, the North Pole’s head elf, to blame?

And, of course, there’s the return of the always-enthralling ballet Nutcracker, set in Clara’s warm and wonderful house, with Tchaikovsky’s timeless compositions. The holidays just wouldn’t be the same without this classic – go see it for the first time, or the fiftieth!

FOR THE LITTLE ONES : Théâtre des merveilles

One night, while dreaming, a bear hears the call of a cub who’s searching desperately for a dad to look after him. Aimed at kids ages 3 to 6 and putting fatherhood front and centre, Ma petite boule d’amour is a musical adaptation of a story by writer and actress Jasmine Dubé.

Another charming show, Le cœur en hiver, is a tale featuring live actors and marionettes. It will spark the imagination and expand the minds of children age 5 and up.

WITH FRIENDS : Oh Happy Day!

If you’ve never heard live gospel music in a hall with great acoustics, you haven’t really heard gospel. And it’s a special treat when it’s the uplifting Montreal Jubilation Gospel Choir, directed by the legendary Trevor W. Payne.

Lastly, join Cowboys Fringants to close out the year in the finest festive tradition with the band’s trademark rollicking tunes. It’s PPP time – parties, pints and pleasure!