MontrÃ©al, "the city of festivals," known for its superb cuisine and vibrant nightlife, will light up the Canadian skies and warm the soul with outstanding culinary offerings and exciting cultural entertainment during the 13thÂ edition of theÂ MONTRÃ‰AL EN LUMIÃˆREÂ festival.Â Â This midwinter party, formerly known asÂ The MontrÃ©al High Lights Festival,Â features an unrivalled performing arts series, exceptional food and wine tasting activities and brilliant light shows, including a multitude of complimentary activities attracting adults and children alike.
Each year, the Festival featuresÂ a country, city, and region while taking place in MontrÃ©al.Â This year's featured country is Belgium, the featured city is Seattle, WA and the featured region is Quebec's Outaouais.
A unique event in the world of delectation, notably for its concept pairing the finest MontrÃ©al chefs with the greatest culinary masters from five continents, the gastronomy and wine program of the festival has become an absolute must for foodies. Since 2000, some 400 renowned chefs, wine producers and speakers have taken part, offering unforgettable experiences in such components as theÂ Festival's Finest Tables, famed for their perfect harmony of food and wine.
Yves Mattagne, an illustrious master of contemporary Belgian cuisine and a receipt of two stars from the famed Michelin Guide, is this year's Honorary President.
- ThreeÂ Honorary President's DinnersÂ on Friday, February 17, Saturday, February 18 and Sunday, February 19.Â The chef will be welcomed by Normand Laprise of Toque!, in collaboration with Belgium chef Marc De Canck of restaurant La Chronique.
Featured city Seattle's culinary treasures will be showcased through ChefsÂ Matthew DillonÂ of The Corson Building,Â Jason FraneyÂ of Canlis,Â Ethan StowellÂ of Staple & Fancy Mercantil,Thierry RautureauÂ of Rover's,Â Jason StrattonÂ of Spinasse andJason WilsonÂ of Crush.
This year's wine list will feature ambassadors from vineyards such as Amber LaneÂ fromÂ Bergevin Lane, David Millman fromDomaine Drouhin, Jeff Gordon fromÂ Gordon Brothers Family Vineyards, Christophe Hedges fromÂ Hedges Family Estate, Steve Thompson fromÂ King Estate Winery, Marty ClubbÂ fromL'Ã‰cole No. 41, Gilles Nicault fromÂ Long Shadows, Butch Milbrandt fromÂ Milbrandt Vineyards, Sean Boyd fromÂ Rotie Cellars, Kirk BrewerÂ fromÂ Precept WineÂ and Jim BernauÂ fromWillamette Valley Vineyards.
More from the Gastronomy Program:
- Visitors can enjoy theÂ Quebec Chefs and Cheeses, in the Grand Salon of the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth, during which the four chefs will present 12 culinary creations based on various Quebec cheeses. A full slate of 400 guests will elect the winning chef of this unique contest.
- The Wallonia-Brussels Convivial DinnerÂ will be hosted on Saturday, February 25, in Bonsecours Market, where the chef of Buvette du CafÃ© des Spores, Nicolas Scheidt will showcase three classic Belgium dishes.
- Â Saturday, February 18 and Sunday, February 19, the mezzanine ofÂ Jean-Talon MarketÂ hosts workshops, demonstrations and tastings for fans of the Outaouais region.
- Throughout the 11 days festival, restaurants throughout the area will offerÂ Festival Lunch Menus, which will include exotic three-course meals for $12.75, as well as the Culinary Tours and gourmet itineraries that allow guests to discover Montreal with their taste buds.
Every facet of culture including music, circus arts, song, theatre and dance glitters in MontrÃ©al during the Arts Program of MONTRÃ‰AL EN LUMIÃˆRE. The program puts the spotlight on the city with a rich and eclectic program welcoming icons as well as emerging artists from home and abroad. Over the course of 11 days, an array of new discoveries, original creations and dazzling performances become part of the daily fabric of MontrÃ©al life.
The Festival's honorary Co-PresidentÂ Toots Thielemans, a harmonica pioneer, contributed mightily to bringing the instrument a new musical pedigree. While working primarily in jazz, the Brussels native has never hesitated to cross over into pop and world music. A brilliant whistler and accomplished guitarist, Thielemans plays the harmonica with a speed and fluidity generally associated with saxophonists
Other highlights include:
- France D’AmourÂ will perform songs from her Jazz album
- Marie Denise PelletierÂ will make her grand return to music
- Catherine MajorÂ will celebrate her 3rdÂ album
- Brigitte BoisjoliÂ and her FÃ©lix for Discovery of the Year
- Antoine GrattonÂ will launchÂ La dÃ©fense du titre
- StromaeÂ will bring electro-chic edgy sounds
- Ã‰tÃ© 67Â will perform some energizing rock
- My Little Cheap DictaphoneÂ will perform atmospheric rock
- Coeur de pirateÂ will sail in to present songs fromÂ Blonde
- The Barr BrothersÂ will charm Club Soda
- Paulo RamosÂ will fire up the Nuit brÃ©silienne
- Performance by the "new" members of theÂ Rat Pack
- A new vision of winter courtesy of theÂ Nouveau ThÃ©Ã¢tre ExpÃ©rimental
- Acrobatic poetry ofÂ C!RCA
- A crucial creation fromÂ Pigeons InternationalÂ at GrÃ¢ce Ã Dieu, ton corps.
This February the festival transforms the Quartier des spectacles and its Place des Festivals"”the festive heart of downtown"”into the ultimate family destination. The Free Outdoor Site bursts with open-air activities including braziers, shows, activities for children, all showcasing MontrÃ©al's renowned party spirit and flair for entertainment.
Every year, the festival closes by kicking off the "Nuit Blanche" celebrations around the world. The Nuit blanche Ã MontrÃ©al invites locals and tourists to enjoy some 180 mostly free activities, all of them linked by a free shuttle service. Whether onstage or onscreen, in the great outdoors or under the spotlights, in music or in story, installations, exhibitions or dance, the city lights up the night with a full spectrum of fun and festive discoveries for all.
For more information visit www.montrealenlumiere.com.