Richard "Bugs" BurnettWhat’s on in Montréal courtesy of Tourisme Montréal


With vocals by Montreal jazz and soul legends Ranee Lee, Kim Richardson and Dawn Tyler Watson, the Orchestre Metropolitain presents Holiday Melodies on December 9 and 10.

Grammy-winning maestro Kent Nagano and Fred Pellerin unite with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal to deliver the brand-new Christmas tale Le secret de Polichignon for five shows from December 14 to 17.

After his acclaimed performance with the OSM in 2019, French conductor Hervé Niquet is back to direct Berlioz’s L’enfance du Christ on December 19.

All concerts at the Maison Symphonique.

The Orchestre Classique de Montréal performs Handel’s Messiah in the crypt of Saint Joseph’s Oratory on December 13 and 14.

Then Grammy-winning maestro Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts the Orchestre Metropolitain and an all-Canadian cast of soloists in Handel’s Messiah at Notre-Dame Basilica on December 19 and 20.


The Nutcracker

With more than 60 dancers and 100 extras, plus the Orchestre des Grands Ballets Canadiens will perform The Nutcracker December 14 to 30 at 2pm and 7:30pm

Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal’s famed adaptation of The Nutcracker by Quebec choreographer Fernand Nault returns to Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier for its 60th year. This two-act ballet based on E.T.A. Hoffmann’s classic tale is set to the music of Tchaikovsky and brings together more than 60 dancers and 100 extras, plus the Orchestre des Grands ballets Canadiens de Montréal. The Nutcracker runs from December 14 to 30, at 2 pm and 7:30 PM.


The glorious Church of St. Andrew and St.Paul – whose Gothic Revival architecture looks like it comes straight out of Robin Hood – has scheduled their hugely popular Carols by Candlelight concerts with the A&P Choir on December 15 and 16.

If you’re a gospel music fan, NOËL GOSPEL features more than 70 singers backed by a live band when the Jireh Gospel Choir and Montreal Gospel Choir directed by Carol Bernard headline three concerts at Salle Pierre-Mercure on December 9 and 10.

Founded in 1990, The Lyric Theatre Singers presents Candlelight Christmas 2023 at Concordia University’s Loyola chapel for four concerts, from December 7 to 10. Under the direction of Bob Bachelor, the company’s 46 singers will perform their timeless holiday repertoire of classical songs to Broadway-style showstoppers.

Bourgie Hall presents the ninth edition of their holiday classic A Charlie Brown Christmas featuring the Taurey Butler Trio. This four-concert series (December 20 and 21) will sell out, so get your tickets early.


Montreal burlesque legend Velma Candyass and her cast of Vaudeville-style entertainers headline her annual Candyass Cabaret Christmas Tease at the iconic Café Cléopatre on The Main on December 15.


For its annual holiday pantomime, Hudson Village Theatre presents playwright Ben Crocker’s Puss In Boots directed by Steve Walters. With singing, dancing and silly jokes, the Hudson Village Theatre Panto is a hugely entertaining family theatre experience. Runs from December 15 to January 7.

Space Explorers: THE INFINITE teleports visitors virtually 400 kms above Earth onto the International Space Station


Last chance to see the blockbuster immersive exhibition Space Explorers: THE INFINITE which teleports visitors virtually 400 kilometres above Earth onto the International Space Station for an unforgettable journey into space. Wearing VR headsets, visitors experience life on the ISS as if you are really there, thanks to free-roaming virtual reality which gives visitors amazing access to personal moments filmed in cinematic 3D, 360° format by the eight astronauts who live on board. Space Explorers: THE INFINITE is located in the Old Port next door to the Montreal Science Centre. Children under 8 not admitted. Runs to January 7.


Michelle Sweeney

Montreal soul legend Michelle Sweeney headlines Upstairs Jazz Bar & Grill on December 16

At Théâtre St-Denis, The Grinch: Live with Orchestra screens the beloved holiday classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas, directed by Ron Howard and starring Jim Carrey, with the Orchestre Symphonique de Trois-Rivières performing James Horner’s musical score live to picture, on December 10.


Cirque du Soleil’s Crystal runs at the Bell Centre from December 21 to 31.


The annual Andy Kim Christmas concert returns to the Beanfield Theatre (formerly The Corona) on December 9 with special guest performers, with all proceeds donated to Starlight Children’s Foundation Canada. The Montreal native’s mega-hits include Rock Me Gently and the iconic Sugar, Sugar for The Archies.

Other December shows of note: Montreal indie rockers Half Moon Run headline MTELUS on December 13 and 14; and Montreal soul legend Michelle Sweeney headlines Upstairs Jazz Bar & Grill on December 16 with her band (7 and 9:30 pm), then brings Noël Gospel Experience with Michelle Sweeney & The Gospel Tribe to Le Balcon on December 28.

Dubbed “Mr. Montreal” by the CBC, arts and culture journalist and columnist Richard “Bugs” Burnett knows Montreal like a drag queen knows a cosmetics counter.