Friday, September 22, 2023

Critics’ Picks: 5 Must-See Performances This June

One of the best things about summer (or soon-to-be-summer) is the ways in which this city’s creative community comes alive. As the evenings turn warmer, Art Crawls become packed (and can spill onto the streets starting this year). Performances move outdoors and invite not only new settings, but new ways of collaborations. Festivals abound. And, in the case of this month’s top picks, free events are plentiful. See our favourites, featuring four free events and one that’s definitely worth paying for, below. 

For more details on other events happening in and around Hamilton this month and great shows to check out, stay up to date with our full event calendar

Finding What Grows

Planning to head to Gage Park this month? Take some earbuds and activate McMaster Museum of Art’s latest offering; a free twenty-five minute audio walk by Lisa Myers. The walking tour takes place within the park and is inspired by a garden artwork originally planted in 2000 by the late Mi’kmaw artist Mike MacDonald. Listeners will be guided around the park and asked to consider the relationships and interconnection between land, humans, pollinators and plants with an eye to nearby industries. Available until the end of June, it’s a unique way to see the park through a different lens, as well as develop a new type of appreciation for the natural world around us. 

CMA Ontario Bonfire

It’s a sure sign of summer when friends gather around a campfire with a guitar. In this case, those friends happen to be some of Ontario’s hottest up-and-coming country performers. Presented as just one part of this weekend’s Country Music Awards Ontario festivities, the June 3 bonfire take place on June 3 at Pier 4 from 7-11pm and is free to attend. Headliners include some of this year’s nominees, including Robyn Ottolini, Owen Riegling, Dayna Reid, Graham Scott Fleming, Elyse Saunders and David Boyd Janes; however, it wouldn’t be completely out of the ordinary for some special guests to also make an appearance- it is a friendly bonfire, after all. 

Mini Hearts Arts Fest

Open Heart Arts Theatre uses storytelling, music and movement to collaboratively and compassionately tell the stories of the amazing people in our city. Their latest offering, presented as a Signature Event in Hamilton Arts Week on June 11 is a pint-sized community festival at Bernie Morelli Recreation Centre on Cannon Street. Free to attend, the day provides a variety of community-engaged art experiences for professional and amateur creators alike, as well as families and community members. Look for sessions on storytelling, clowning, and empowerment art and dance- all available to be signed up for in advance on Eventbrite. 

Hearing Portraits at an Exhibition

In 1874, composer Modest Mussorgsky sat down at a piano and wrote a ten-movement composition inspired by a tour of an art exhibition that he had seen in St. Petersburg. Each movement was named after a particular work of art, connected together with a “promenade” that guided the listener from one piece to the next. On June 15, Trevor Copp (Tottering Biped Theatre) and Mimi Han have challenged themselves to turn the work on its head to provide an experience unlike no other. Entitled Hearing Portraits at an Exhibition, the free event at New Vision United Church, the collaborators have started with the classic piano work and taken it apart- sometimes literally with the creative and engaging flair that Copp is known for.  

Something Else Festival

The annual festival is quirky, fun, full of great music and has quietly become Hamilton’s go-to place for music lovers to hear some of the best jazz, world and experimental music in the Golden Horseshoe Region. This year’s tenth iteration of the Something Else Festival takes place June 23 – 25 in Westdale. Each day and night feature something a little different- from Festival openers Earth, Wind & Choir to Saturday’s return of New York-based creative collaborators Hope Cries for Justice and the Tania Gill Quartet. The closing program features newcomer Jessica Ackerley and Ralph Alessi’s This Against That. If you’re interested, act fast- Saint Cuthbert’s doesn’t look like a venue with a large capacity, promising intimate shows.

Related Articles

Stay Connected

- Advertisement -spot_img

Latest Articles