Between a Canada Day celebration that wrangled the majority of Ontario into the Byward Market to see Tiesto work his house music magic and an NHL All-Star extravaganza weekend that blended NHL icons with mere mortals throughout the capital region – the supposedly sleepy government town of Ottawa has had a very lively eight months of visitors.
As we dabble in the early months of 2012 with birds chirping, temperatures improving and at least two months having passed since the last city-wide festivity – we might as well fly in a mix of both the country’s most legendary and budding new artists for a week of hype, fanfare and awards show mania, because it’s JUNO week – and that deserves some more celebration.
Despite having just moved down the road to the Big Smoke, I’m so very lucky to be heading back to the nation’s capital this Thursday to be a part of this wonderful musical exhibition on behalf of the magazine I write for. For the past month I’ve been receiving emails detailing the events I’m accredited to attend, and I must say that Ottawa has hit the jackpot with this event, and everything leading up to it.
Not only will renowned actor and comedian William Shatner host the awards ceremony on Sunday night, introducing the likes of Blue Rodeo, The Sheepdogs, City and Colour, deadmau5, Feist, Hey Rosetta!, Nickelback, Sarah McLachlan, Avril Lavigne and Dragonette (to name only a few) – but the city will be bursting with smaller scale artist performances decorating Ottawa’s hot spots, a musician vs. NHL hockey game, meet and greets at the St. Laurent shopping mall, an ornamental gala and a songwriting workshop with some of our most esteemed homegrown musicians.
For the wristband events and the awards evening, tickets are amazingly affordable considering the breadth of local and national talent that will be showcased in Ottawa this week. The best part? Similar to the toddling crowds of red and white adorned enthusiasts on July 1st and the families happily gliding to upbeat tunes on the NHL All-Star “rink of dreams” at City Hall – Ottawa will once again light up with cultural pride and passion.
Here is a JUNO playlist comprised of only a few of the fabulous artists making appearances in the capital over the course of the next week, and if for some reason you’ve yet to hear any of them, take the time and listen; we should welcome every single thing about this amazing Canadian honour with open arms.
Rural Alberta Advantage
JUNO WEEK EVENTS
JUNO CUP hockey game – Featuring NHL greats Brad Dalgarno, Boyd Deveraux, Claude Lemieux, Gary Roberts, Jason York, Laurie Boschman, Paul Coffey and more versus JUNO attendees and nominees Classified, Matthew Barber, members of Hollerado, Sloan, City and Colour, Stars and Jim Cuddy. When?: Friday, March 30, 2012 – 7:30pm. Where?: Steve Yzerman Arena – Nepean Sportsplex. Tickets?: Ticketmaster.com
JUNO FANFARE – Meet Alyssa Reid, Anjulie, Carly Rae Jepsen, Classified, D-Sisive, deadmau5, Down With Webster, JRDN, Jully Black, Kardinal Offishall, Karl Wolf, Mia Martina, Neverest, Shawn Hook, Simple Plan, Swollen Members and Victoria Duffield. When?: Saturday, March 31, 2012, 12:00pm – 3:00pm Where?: St. Laurent Centre, 1200 St. Laurent Blvd., Ottawa. Tickets?: Ticketmaster.com
JUNOfest: During this weekend long multi-venue showcase of both local and national talent, music hits the Ottawa streets this weekend with JUNOfest and what feels like EVERY artist under the sun. For the full listing of who plays on both Friday and Saturday night around Ottawa, see here. Tickets?: Ticketmaster.com
JUNO Songwriters’ Circle: Hosted by Dan Mangan, some of Canada’s most talented artists and writers will share songs and stories on during this intimate event. JUNO Award nominees participating include David Francey, Kardinall Offishall, Kiran Ahluwalia, Lindi Ortega, Max Kerman (Arkells) and Terri Clark. Where?: Centrepointe Theatre, 101 Centrepointe Drive, Ottawa. When?: Sunday, April 1, 2012, 1:00pm-3:00pm Tickets?: www.centrepointetheatre.com
2012 JUNO Awards: Where?: Scotiabank Place, Kanata. When?: April 1st, 2012. Tickets?: Great tickets available from $55 at Capital Tickets!
Happy JUNO week, Ottawa – see you there!