What's happening during Montréal's Italian Week

Laure Juilliard

Montréal will be honouring the beauty and diversity of Italy through music, culture, food and folklore from August 4 to 13. The Italian Week agenda is packed with events such as an outdoor opera, a starlit fashion show, a Fiat 500 car exhibit, Italian film screenings, a dessert contest and even a historical tour of Little Italy. Now boarding for la dolce vita!

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Italian indulgences

You can’t even mention Italy without thinking about the country’s cuisine.  The Best Cannoli Contest, which focuses on the classic Sicilian treat, will set sweet offerings from Montreal’s pasticcerias before a demanding (not to mention hungry) jury on August 13 at 2 p.m. Conduct your own taste tests once the contest’s done!

Italian-Canadian culinary partnership

There’s a new event on the schedule this year for thrill-seekers in love with sugar highs. Come join the fun at the BeaverTails Pastry Eating Contest on August 12 at 2 p.m. It's a guaranteed good time!

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Italian culinary workshops

Still feeling a mite peckish? Let yourself be wowed by one of the area’s fabulous restaurants, then follow up with a visit to culinary school Ateliers & Saveurs in Old Montréal. It offers several cooking classes and wine tastings inspired by the scents and flavours of Italy.

Experience la dolce vita

Eager to explore Little Italy, one of Montréal’s oldest and best-loved neighbourhoods? Take a historical tour offered by Amarrages sans Frontières and learn all about its storied past. Tours are offered in French (August 12 and 13), English (August 13) and Italian (upon request). There's also a cultural conference scheduled at the Leonardo da Vinci Centre on August 10 at 7:30 p.m.

Colourful exhibitions

Immerse yourself in works by artists of Italian descent at the Leonardo da Vinci Centre, the Galleria d’Art Elisa (in French only) and outdoor exhibitions organized especially for the occasion.

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Love, Fiat 500-Style!

Don’t miss out on this select showing of Fiat 500 automobiles focusing on both classic cars and the latest models. To celebrate the brand's 60th anniversary, the Dufresne-Nincheri Museum will hold a conference on “The 500 - The big little car that has helped Italians grow” at 7 p.m. on August 7.

Italian film and literature

From August 4 to 11, the Leonardo da Vinci Centre and the Casa d’Italia will offer free screenings of classic Italian films. For more information, call 514-279-6357. There will also be something to please avid readers. Montreal’s Italian Week is proud to offer a literary program with presentations on books and discussions at the Writers’ Tent on the corner of Mozart and Saint-Laurent on August 12 to 13 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Outdoor opera

Putting the spotlight on music: On August 13 at 9 p.m., Mascagni's Cavalleria Rusticana will be presented jointly by the Cantabile orchestra and choir and the Orchestre Symphonique de la Semaine Italienne, under the baton of Maestro Gianluca Martinenghi. Come watch this free outdoor performance on the Mastro & San Daniele stage.

Ever wanted to be an artist?

Budding artists and future Leonardo da Vincis can express themselves at the annual Il Piccolo Leonardo art competition. This contest is reserved for children between the ages of 4 and 12 and runs from August 4 to 13. It offers them a chance to let their creativity run wild and create works representing the festival's featured region: Sicily. Break out those brushes and register before July 25.

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A la mode!

Watch a starlit fashion show that brings together a group of designers for a spectacular event showcasing Italian style. See it on the Mastro & San Daniele stage at the corner of Saint-Laurent and Saint-Zotique on August 12 at 9:30 p.m.

Let's play!

Montreal’s Italian Week has upped the ante for die-hard card lovers with its Scopa tournament. Scopa is a classic Italian card game often played at parties. To register or learn more, click here (before August 2). Meanwhile, bocce fans can let the good times roll at several bocce tournaments once they sign up with the local club.

Happy Italian Week, everybody!

Laure Juilliard

Laure Juilliard, blogger

Laure is a writer, community manager and the founder of the blog Une Parisienne à Montréal. She’s also an epicurean globetrotter who’s always on the hunt for innovative concepts and must-try restaurants. In 2016, she co-founded Slow Journeys, a webzine that focuses on ecotourism and design.

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