Armela Escalona
Armela Escalona

Aug 02. 2 mins


August is a wonderful time to be in Canada. After wreck diving in Tobermory and taking the best eastern Canada road trip, we highly recommend going to the most splendid annual cultural event in Montreal: The First People’s Festival.

Celebrating its 28th year, Montreal’s First Peoples’ Festival will once again be held in the Quartier des Spectacles on August 7-15. Quartier des Spectacles is an art and culture district area found in the eastern section of Downtown Montreal. This year festival-goers will get to taste authentic indigenous dishes, see documentary and films about the culture of Canada’s First People, and watch several colorful traditional ceremonies and dances live on stage.

First Peoples’ Festival : What It’s All About?

Montreal’s First Peoples’ Festival features North American aboriginal art, history, and tradition. It is an event that celebrates Canada’s historical heritage and roots. Aside from teaching about indigenous culture, the festival also aims to help indigenous art (which is often ignored and neglected) reach international exposure.

The First Nations’ desire for affirmation, and their will to go forward, combined with recent immigration, supports the idea of the new American continent we need to create with warmer bonds if we wish to advance together towards a new identity.”

According to André Dudemaine, festival director and honorary cultural trailblazer, the First People Festival is an event that teaches and reminds Canadian people that “we are living on Indigenous land, which was not ceded.”

This historical fact is the primary message of the festival. It’s not an opposition to modernism as what some people liked to point out in the past. “We are searching to create a new collective ‘us’ in order to be able to place ‘us’ in a present that is fair,” explains Dudemaine.

Festival Highlights

First Peoples’ Festival 2018 will feature films, concerts, seminars, traditional crafts, and awarding ceremonies throughout the week.

Iosheka and Tawiscara: The Great Game of Creation
Watch a theatrical act inspired by a traditional Aboriginal story. Concept by Andre Dudemaine, set design by Studio 703.

Friday, August 10 2018 – 8:30 pm
Place des Festivals

Sunday, August 12 2018 – 8:30 pm
Place des Festival

Indigenous Street Food
Taste the best of chef George Lenser’s contemporary and innovative presentation of authentic First People indigenous dishes.

Thursday, August 9 2018 – 11:00 am
Place des Festivals

Friday, August 10 2018 – 11:00 am
Place des Festivals

Saturday, August 11 2018 – 1:00 pm
Place des Festivals

Sunday, August 12 2018 – 2:00 pm
Place des Festivals

The Violence of a Civilization without Secrets
Watch a short documentary about the discovery of the prehistoric man of Kennewick.

Saturday, August 11 2018 – 4:30 pm
Concordia de Sève

Cercle des nations 2, Le : Les femmes
A 60-minute closing film featuring indigenous women and their views on issues such as land, identity, and femininity.

Wednesday, August 15 2018 – 7:00 pm
Grande Bibliothèque

For a full list of events, you can visit the First Peoples’ Festival calendar here.


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