Montreal arts winter dance Tanzmainz Soul Chain

Montreal arts calendar for Winter 2023–24

From visual arts to Virtual Reality experiences, classic ballet and circus performances to artisan fairs, theatre festivals to LGBTQ archival gold, there’s plenty to see this holiday season.

A Montreal visual arts calendar for the holiday season.

The St. Lawrence River, Echoes From the Shores

Pointe-à-Callière, Montreal’s archaeology museum, presents a multisensory exhibition showcasing the rich history of the St. Lawrence River. With 300 objects, the exhibition explores one of the longest rivers in Canada through themes like transportation, battles, shipwrecks, fishing, tourism and environmental issues. As a trade corridor and settling ground dating back millennia, the rapids of the river have many stories to tell. 350 Place Royale, through March 3, 2024

Montreal arts calendar for Winter 2023–24

Space Explorers: THE INFINITE

PHI Studio brings its VR experience, created with Felix & Paul Studios and INFINITY Experiences, to the Montreal Science Centre, with new footage captured in space. 2 de la Commune W. through Jan. 7, 2024

Exhibition events at Fondation PHI

Fondation PHI is holding special events in conjunction with their ongoing exhibitions, which both continue through March 10. Affiliated with JOUEZ/PLAY by Rirkrit Tiravanija there will be guided tours (Jan. 18, Feb. 8, March 7), Iconic Montreal Albums listening sessions (every Thursday Feb. 1–29 and March 7) and zootherapy sessions on Jan. 26 and Feb. 4. The exhibition The Bureau of Noncompetitive Research invites attendees to witness The Interviews on Jan. 18 and join in on happy hour on Feb. 9.

Montreal arts calendar for Winter 2023–24

Puces POP Winter edition

For the two weekends ahead of Christmas, POP Montreal is holding their biannual craft market. Dozens of artisans will be selling their accessories, art prints, jewellery, ceramics, food, body care products and clothing, with a lineup that will change from one weekend to the next. All the more reason to come back for a second go! Église Saint-Denis (5075 Rivard), Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays, Dec. 8–17


To celebrate 40 years of the Archives gaies du Québec, the archive asked 40 queer thinkers, researchers, activists and art makers from around Montreal to each pick one item from the collection to display in a special exhibit running from December until March: FAG QC (a play on words for “Fonds des archives gaies du Québec”). Highlights in the upcoming exhibit include a 1912 photo of Québécois men in drag, police reports from the Sex Garage raid in 1990 and matchbooks from long-gone gay bars. 1000 Atateken, #201-A, Dec. 10 to March 31

Montreal arts calendar for Winter 2023–24

Jeremy Shaw’s Phase Shifting Index

The Musée d’art contemporain will be exhibiting Phase Shifting Index by Jeremy Shaw, a Vancouver artist now living in Berlin. The piece features seven videos played simultaneously, which can be viewed individually or all at once. Depicting archival films of movement therapy sessions from the 1960s to 1990s, these videos are accompanied by an anthropological narration, studying the images as if they are from a distant past. Place Ville Marie #11220, Dec. 12 to Feb. 25

Montreal arts calendar for Winter 2023–24

Les Grands Ballets Canadiens’s The Nutcracker 

The holiday season isn’t complete without this classic, put on every year by les Grands Ballets at Place des Arts’s Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier. As the Grands Ballets Orchestra plays the iconic Tchaikovsky score, the dancers jeté, pirouette and chassé in stunning costumes, in front of a pristine set. Follow Clara as she ventures to the Land of Snow and the Kingdom of Sweets, to a place where imagination becomes reality. 175 Ste-Catherine W., Dec. 14 to 30

Cirque du Soleil’s Crystal

In a first for this world-renowned circus company, Cirque du Soleil is venturing onto the ice. This newest performance, Crystal, combines its trademark acrobatics with ice skating, making it a perfect show for this holiday season. Classic circus disciplines like the trapeze and juggling will be mixed with extreme skating and freestyle figures, on the ice and in the air. 1909 Canadiens-de-Montréal, Dec. 21 to 31

Centaur Theatre’s Wildside Festival

Centaur Theatre’s festival of provocative, experimental theatre returns in January 2024. This edition of Wildside features five shows and events, unabashedly delving into the creepy, absurd and unsettling. A writer with general anxiety disorder, an exploration of all the usual present-day fears from sentient AI to environmental collapse, a mysterious arrival on the doorstep of a mother and son and a night of stranger-than-fiction true storytelling are all in store for attendees of this subversive festival promoting emerging and independent theatre. 453 St-Francois Xavier, Jan. 18 to Feb. 3

Montreal arts calendar for Winter 2023–24


From the group Other Animals, plasticity/desires is a piece using dance, music and visual arts to explore notions of individual and mutual desires. Seven performers interact with each other, a mass of clay and a pool of water in a study of human nature, adaptability, contemplation, memory and sensation, at the MAI. 3680 Jeanne-Mance, Jan. 18 to 27

Tanzmainz’s Soul Chain

Danse Danse presents German dance company Tanzmainz’s award-winning work Soul Chain, choreographed by Sharon Eyal and Gai Behar, coming to Place des Arts in January. The show features 17 dancers performing to the techno music of DJ Ori Lichtik, promising a high-energy, hypnotic movement. Théâtre Maisonneuve (260 de Maisonneuve W.), Jan. 23 to 27

Montreal arts calendar for Winter 2023–24

For more Montreal art events, please visit our daily To-Do List and Event listings.

This article was originally published in the December 2023 issue of Cult MTL.

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