The Canadian Guitar Festival celebrates digits’ artful dexterity with performances, workshops, and competitions that pay tribute to the musical battleaxe. Strapped with a single-day pass, step into a workshop where champion string masters Don Ross, Stephen Bennett, and Gareth Pearson gently touch on the techniques that won them fingerstyle plucking competitions and spaghetti-separating battles. Sunday's schedule boasts performances at the covered pavilion by Canadian and international strum swamis such as Australia's folksy Hunter Van Larkins, Prince Edward Island's punky Brooke Miller, and Italy's eclectic Guitar Republic.
The Kingston Canadian Film Festival celebrates local and national productions with a three-day presentation of new movies, film receptions, and director and cast discussions. Film enthusiasts explore the life and career of the late Nell Shipman in "On a Grand Scale," a curated exhibition that probes her theatrical contributions as an actress, writer, director, and inventor of the scrolling credit. The silent-film-era artist, known for portraying strong female characters throughout her 13-year career, starred in more than 20 films, including movies based on James Oliver Curwood stories. As the clock tolls 4 p.m., audiences make their way into a darkened theatre for a showing of Shipman's Back to God's Country— a taboo-shattering 1919 silent film set in the Arctic wilderness—which will be paired with live musical accompaniment and fake indoor blizzards.
Time to Laugh Comedy Club has earned a black belt in gut busting by providing well-known and amateur stand-ups from across North America a stage from which to cast their punch lines. December’s rotating lineup sports a cabal of Canadian joke hurlers such as impressionist Mark Walker and observational cannon Mike Harrison, as well as the hard-rocking riffs of musical comic Jay Brown. With seating for more than 200 audience members, the club pleasantly accommodates pairs and clusters of friends determined to break the monotony of hosting monotony nights at home. Time to Laugh is situated in the Hub of Kingston, making it a convenient comedic nightcap after dinner or a business-casual food fight at one of the many neighbouring restaurants.
This June, the Queen's Conservatory of Music conducts a concert to celebrate its fifth anniversary as an all-ages centre for encouraging musical passion and discovery. Former and current conservatory instructors form ensembles of strings, piano, flute, and voice.
Musical spectacles reverberate within Oh Canada Eh? Dinner Show's 250-seat log-cabin venue, entertaining tourists and Niagara residents year-round. Running February 17 to April 2, On the Radio cruises through the dial to catch tunes that hail from as far back as the Andrews Sisters to as recent as Lady Gaga's latest clone. The five-course family-style dinner features heaping plates of robust fare, such as Manitoba roast chicken, Alberta roast beef, and maple-chocolate cake. Grease vocal chops for sing-a-longs to hits such as Hound Dog and Hit Me With Your Best Shot. Since the production combs through so many eras, it's easy to enjoy On the Radio with grandparents, children, girlfriends, and cryogenically frozen forefathers.
Canadian master mimic Rich Little amuses audiences with his exaggerated impressions of more than 200 American popular culture figures. Known for his spot-on impersonations of American presidents and the Statue of Liberty, the chameleonic thespian pays tribute to Hollywood icon Jimmy Stewart during a comedic one-man performance. Little portrays Stewart throughout memorable segments of his life, revisiting many of the actor’s now-deceased costars through laugh-evoking impressions and an unexpected séance.