Saturday, Feb. 28 is Nuit Blanche in Montreal, a night when hundreds of our cultural venues and other gathering places — clubs, bars, concert halls, galleries, museums, theatres, libraries, fitness centres, spas, cafés etc — keep their doors open into the wee hours, most of them waiving cover charges to allow the citizenry a free glimpse of the goods inside, some of them offering free snacks and hot beverages to warm the patrons passing through.
In addition to seeing pre-programmed exhibits, films, live performances and spa or sports facilities free, dozens of promoters and cultural organizations present special events for the occasion, creating plenty of competition on this night, the climax of the Montreal Highlights Festival.
Because the program/app of 200+ events is a beast to navigate — and, truth be told, there’s a lot of mediocrity to sift through — Cult MTL presents our annual list of Nuit Blanche highlights:
Acclaimed local music website Music Is My Sanctuary presents 24 Hours of Vinyl, the marathon DJ session that’s become a local tradition and an international treat. Check the DJ line-up here. Le Bleury Bar à Vinyle (2109 Bleury), 7 p.m. (Saturday) to 7 p.m. (Sunday)
Karnivale is local producer/DJ Poirier’s annual Nuit Blanche blowout, featuring Face-T, Pierre Kwenders and their musicians. Club Soda (1225 St-Laurent), 10 p.m.–3 a.m., free
We can’t not mention the party that we’ve put together with the Phi Centre: La Nuit Tribe. Ottawa beatmakers A Tribe Called Red, local act AfrotroniX and Arthur NOM DE PLUME Comeau (formerly of Radio Radio) will perform live and DJ, artists Red Bandit and Swarm will exhibit their work and create live, Mile Ex restaurant Manitoba will provide food and the 2013 film Rhymes for Young Ghouls will be screened. 407 St-Pierre, screening at 7 p.m., party 9 p.m.–3 a.m., free
Black LGBT Film Festival Massimadi presents the Afroqueer Mafia party at Pub St. Paul , with Afro-house, zouk and kompa by DJ Sweet la Rock and DJ LYKX. 124 St-Paul E., 10 p.m.–3 a.m., free
All-nigh art party Lumiere Noire showcases fluorescent work by 50 artists and music by 15 local DJs — see the full line-up here. 2915 Ontario E., 9 p.m.-8 a.m., $10
A couple of months ahead of their spring festival, MUTEK brings on the beats with DJs and live performers Woulg, CMD, Adam Feingold, Drol., Kenny Larkin, Kevin Saunderson, Kevin McPhee. Espace Réunion (6610 Hutchison), 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., free before 2:30 a.m./$10
Party large at Metropolis, where there’ll be DJ sets by Karim Ouellet and King Abid, performances by Alaclair Ensemble’s Claude Bégin (9:30 p.m.), the great Rich Aucoin (10:45 p.m.), Canailles (12:15 a.m.). 59 Ste-Catherine E., 8 p.m., free
Between the SAT’s ground floor space and the Satosphère upstairs, DJs and VJs including Construct, Johnny Ranger, Nohista, Pulses, ThisIsNotDesign, Jan Pienkowski and Mathieu Morasse will keep party people on their toes with beats and beauty. 1201 St-Laurent, 7 p.m.–3 a.m./ 10 p.m.–3 a.m. (Satosphère), free
Lovers of Brazilian and African rhythms should know about the dance party/capoeira dance demonstration at Centre Culturel Georges-Vanier, also site of a drawing workshop and print-making open-house. 2450 Workman, 8 p.m.-2 a.m., free