The musts according to Louis Robitaille
Louis Robitaille

Artistic Director
Ballets Jazz de Montréal

close PHOTO CREDIT : Christopher Pozio


Notre-Dame Basilica

116, rue Notre-Dame Ouest

When we think about the famous Basilica of Notre-Dame, built between 1824 and 1829, an architectural jewel of Montreal’s religious heritage, the picture that instantly springs to mind is of the crowds of tourists, horse-drawn carriages and tour buses gathered in front of this neo-Gothic masterpiece. But for me, it is above all a place conducive to meditation, whether or not one is a believer. The harmony of the colours and the richness of the decoration are a delight to the eyes and to the mind. I love the feeling of peacefulness that pervades the church, which you feel as soon as you enter it, far from the noise of the city even though it is there just outside the massive doors. Music also delights the soul, and in this unique venue we’ll soon be able to enjoy the concerts offered in the context of the Festival international des Grandes Orgues de Notre-Dame, from July 7 to August 25.

Source: Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal

Place des Arts and the Quartier des spectacles

175, rue Sainte-Catherine Ouest

Since I’ve visitedPlace des Arts so often as a spectator and have trod the boards on numerous occasions – especially in the Théâtre de Maisonneuve – the place is full of memories for me. I relish the energy you feel there and the liveliness of the crowds. With institutions like the Théâtre du Nouveau Monde, the Musée d’art contemporain, public spaces like the Esplanade and all the new facilities, this neighbourhood has become an indispensable gathering place. It’s a real cultural hub where Montrealers and visitors can stroll at leisure all year long and throng in their thousands to the many different performances and festivals held there, including the famous Montreal Jazz Festival, that fabulous celebration of the joy of living and of summertime.

Photo: Martine Doyon, Partenariat du Quartier des spectacles

Mount Royal

Mount Royal! Few are the Montrealers who have not wandered, alone or in company, along its woodland paths and taken in the wonderful panoramas to be had from its viewpoints. On a fine day we can picnic, read a book or just doze off in the shade of a tree, and ski or skate in the winter. Designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the American who designed New York’s famous Central Park, since its inauguration in 1876 the park has attracted Montrealers in every season. I remember that some years ago we could attend performances there, particularly concerts beside Beaver Lake given by the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. Magical moments in an enchanting setting that one would like to see repeated. Meanwhile, this summer we’ll have the Dimanches en musique concerts at the Chalet Mont-Royal. Nearby, the Mount Royal Cemetery, where I visit my mother, a peaceful place where I like to dwell.

Crédit photo: BANQ. Concert au belvédère du Mont-Royal en 1948.

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