Not-to-Be-Missed Concert Halls

A show or a cultural experience in the Townships is the perfect gift. Enjoy seven concert halls that are worth the trip.

By Marie-Claude Massé

Beat & Betterave

The name of this café, located in the heart of Frelighsburg, one of the most beautiful small towns in Quebec, is not just a whimsical idea. In fact, aside from being a concert hall, Beat & Betterave is a restaurant with a menu built around the food grown in its back yard as well as purchased at neighbouring farms. Music, storytelling evenings, film projections ... the offer is varied and quite audacious! Artists such as Fred Fortin, Fanny Bloom, Avec pas d’casque and Keith Kouna have already made their mark here. With a terrace offering a magnificent view of Mount Pinacle, a garden to table menu and a stage welcoming artists from all over, it is not surprising that Beat & Betterave can count on the presence of many faithful fans that come here every week.

Maison de la Culture de Waterloo

Located in the old neo-gothic-style church built in 1870, La Maison de la Culture de Waterloo , “the most grandiose of small halls”, has a rich history and proposes a vast selection of shows, combining music, theatre and humour, always offered by general admission. The unique appeal of this heritage building makes it the ideal place for intimate shows, even though the hall can seat up to 280 spectators. A smaller room holds cocktail hour (5 to 7) events with up-and-coming artists. Finally, the Maison de la culture de Waterloo also offers show packages. Perfect for a gift!

Cabaret Eastman

In this old, yet completely renovated church, you’ll find a hall presenting a refined and modern architectural style able to welcome more than 200 guests and offering exceptional sound quality. Cabaret Eastman , with its diversified program, its bar and charming terrace, is the ideal location for a perfect evening outing. Also, know that the Cabaret can accommodate corporate events and all kinds of receptions—they even hold weddings here! Finally, you’ll surely appreciate being able to eat a bite before your show at Le Côte restaurant, next door. Grilled meat, fish and seafood can be found on the menu.

La Petite Boîte Noire

Many years ago La Petite Boîte Noire appeared in the cultural landscape of the Townships. After rising from the ashes of a fire which completely destroyed its old building on Wellington Sud, this non-profit organization, which has become a must for all music lovers, has always been able to count on a nucleus of faithful volunteers to offer spectators many unforgettable evenings. Les Deuxluxes, Antoine Corriveau, Alaclair Ensemble, Groenland and Lydia Képinski are but a few of the artists who have performed on the stage of this cultural centre, attracting a fauna of all ages and places, wishing to savour these timeless moments. It’s here also where, every month, a renowned evening of multidisciplinary performances and other foolishness is held, when literary artists, musicians and others make the walls of this little Meadow St. oasis vibrate to the fullest.

The Granada Theatre

Built in 1928, the mythical Granada, with its rich and astonishing architecture, has welcomed many great names of Quebec and international art scenes. We have but to think of Louise Attaque’s performance and that of Jean Leloup who presented his Album Exit in the almost eerie presence of Lhasa de Sela, or the Arcade Fire’s surprise concert and Chilly Gonzales and his enthralling piano… With its gargoyles, plaster statues, hallways imitating masonry work and original blueish ceiling, the place has all the ingredients for registering undying memories in your mind. The Granada Theatre has perhaps lost its marquis, but it has been able to keep its lustre by continuing to offer such very high quality performances.

Le P’tit Bonheur de Saint-Camille

This pretty ancestral brick home has been presenting shows and art exhibits to audiences of all ages at its gallery, Espace Hortense, since 1988. Le P’tit Bonheur de Saint-Camille is more than a cultural outlet; it is a place where the community unites around a federative project by making its rural life come alive. Aside from the theatre and visual arts, community services are also very found here; meals on wheels, community meals and Friday morning coffee are some of the services offered, without forgetting their famous Friday night terroir pizzas for which many will travel whatever distance it takes to savour a slice.

© Jonathan Mercier

La Meunerie

Located in St-Adrien, the community and cultural centre la Meunerie aims to promote culture in rural areas and to offer a variety of activities to the local population. The small intimate hall welcomes as many up-and-coming artists as well-established ones (Soul Sister, Les Chauffeurs à pied, Mononc’Seerge, Élage Diouf…) and is also the stage of burlesque shows, electro-swing and even quiz nights. Besides children storytelling and their Sunday brunches, musical shows during a 4 to 7 cocktail time are offered for free throughout the summer. Finally, know that if you stay in St-Adrien for a few days, La Meunerie offers a Youth hostel type of lodging starting at $25.00. A true catalyst for the raw energy found in this region, this fairly new centre is quite right by attributing itself the title of “100% local happiness creator.”

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