À vous de jouer. Ici, là, partout ! New ways to enjoy summer in the Quartier des Spectacles

Press release | For immediate release

Montreal, July 16, 2020 – Montrealers now have many safe ways to get back into culture and summer fun in the Quartier des Spectacles. The Quartier des Spectacles Partnership is pleased to announce its summer 2020 cultural program, À vous de jouer. Ici, là, partout !, which invites the public to put a new spin on summer with activities and public spaces reimagined to comply with public health guidelines. The summer program in the Quartier des Spectacles runs from July 16 to September 6, and until September 27 in Les Jardins Gamelin.

While singers, musicians, acrobats and comics aren’t onstage this summer, the public is free to visit the Quartier, have some fun, grab a snack and take in the impromptu cultural presentations happening everywhere in the Quartier all season. Everyone is invited to be part of a happy, laid-back rediscovery of Montreal’s cultural heart.

Adults and children can make beautiful music with the classic 21 Balançoires/21 Swings on the promenade des Artistes. While strolling through the Quartier’s square kilometre, visitors will find a green and welcoming Place des Festivals with a large patio, a transformed Jardins Gamelin, and plenty of other places to make the most of summer days. Won’t you join us?


Place des Festivals has been redesigned and greened to become a prime spot for taking a peaceful, refreshing break. There are several different species of trees and flowers in the new layout designed by Sentier Urbain and Soverdi, as well as picnic tables decorated with illustrations by six local artists (Romain Boz, Delphie Côté-Lacroix, Mathieu Labrecque, Mathieu Potvin, Amélie Tourangeau and Lateef Martin), a Quartier des Spectacles Partnership production in collaboration with BAnQ, produced by MU. 

Two new oases

The fountain creates a refreshing mist in Place des Festivals, and at each end of it there are two large new gathering places: a zone for chilling out to an original composition by Patrick Watson, mixed by Mathieu Parisien, and a patio for eating meals from the nearby restaurants and, possibly, watching spontaneous performances.

Cultural surprises

Short artistic presentations, specially created by more than 60 artists and cultural partners, will animate Place des Festivals all summer. Montrealers are invited to keep their eyes and ears on the alert for some fun surprises. At any moment there could be clowns, jugglers, mini improv tournaments, or music played by roving artists and brass bands. On some days, the public will be invited into the world of fairy tales, dance or literature. After dark, be amazed by EN FORME!, a light-hearted celebration of summer fun in the form of a video projection by Gabriel Poirier-Galarneau of the CHAMPAGNE CLUB SANDWICH multimedia studio and illustrator and animator Gabriel Masella.

Activities will be rolled out progressively, including any necessary adjustments, over the coming weeks. Stay tuned!


21 BALANÇOIRES/21 SWINGS by Daily tous les jours

This iconic installation is synonymous with the arrival of warm weather in the Quartier. This year, Montrealers will play with it for the tenth year in a row. Summon your inner child and take part in a wonderfully amusing game of musical cooperation. Until early August.

OUR DNA by Patrick Bérubé

This enormous spiral staircase – an iconic Montreal symbol – hangs in the air, transfixing passersby outside UQAM’s Pavillon Président-Kennedy.


Has it been a while since you visited Sainte-Catherine St. ? Go there now and you’ll find that pedestrians rule. There are picnic tables, plenty of benches and the original installation Dans ma cour... ç’a du chien ! by Mélanie Crespin, back for a third year. The work is inspired by Montreal backyards and pays tribute to our canine best friends. Until September.

If you like chess, you’ll love the Quartier’s giant chess boards. Challenge a friend or a stranger! July 22 to September 6.


The sixth season of Les Jardins Gamelin features a space redesigned with physical distancing in mind. The space is decorated with colourful illustrations by Vincent Tourigny, and the little stone creatures that children love, the Gamélites, are back. Montrealers can relax on the Jardins’ large terrasse – a great spot for socializing or relaxing – and appreciate this year’s new plantings by Sentier Urbain. There will also be plenty of chances to see and hear spontaneous music, street art, circus, dance and more, both roving and on the Jardins stage, along with a photo exhibition presented by the BAnQ. Background music for the Jardins is a creation of ICI MUSIQUE. The playlist is available on the Radio-Canada OHdio app.

Les Jardins Gamelin, a perfect spot for whiling away the steamy days of summer with the people who mean the most to us. Until September 27.


The entirety of the 2020 summer program and related urban design elements have been implemented to make it practical to follow public health guidelines, particularly those regarding distancing. These experiences allow people to live and play in the Quartier des Spectacles safely. The Partnership encourages all Montrealers to follow government recommendations for preventing the spread of COVID-19. 


  • Bicycle: bike paths, 15 BIXI stations and free bicycle parking at the Destination Centre-Ville Rallye station at the corner of Président-Kennedy and Jeanne-Mance.

  • Public transportation: 10 bus and metro routes; Place-des-Arts, Saint-Laurent and Berri-UQAM stations are in the Quartier.

  • The area includes accommodations for persons with reduced mobility. Please check each venue’s website for details.


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The Quartier des Spectacles is Montreal’s cultural heart, boasting North America’s most concentrated and diverse group of cultural venues as well as numerous festivals and events. The Quartier also hosts innovative urban installations involving cutting-edge lighting design and immersive environments. The Quartier des Spectacles has become an international showcase for digital public art.

The Quartier des Spectacles Partnership, founded in 2003, is a non-profit organization with more than 85 members active in the district. It is responsible for animating the Quartier des Spectacles by programming cultural activities, managing and animating public spaces, providing distinctive illumination and promoting the Quartier as a must-visit cultural destination. The Partnership benefits from the support of the Ville de Montréal.

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Marie Lamoureux
Advisor Public Relations
514 923-6772