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Voltaire's 18th century wide-eyed optimist Candide gets a jaunty vehicle in Leonard Bernstein's Candide, put on by the Opera McGill and McGill Symphony Orchestra at the Shulich School of Music.
Choral chair Julian Wachner says that Bernstein's Candide comes out of the McCarthy era in the United States and is very much connected to the witch hunt mentality and undying adherence to a single philosophy.
"It's a satirical comedy dressed up as an operetta," he adds. "It's a fantastic production with a jazzy orchestra and big chorus."
Plenty of noted wits had a hand in Candide's libretto, such as Lillian Hellman, Dorothy Parker and Stephen Sondheim.
Candide, January 25 - 28, 7:30 pm, Pollack Hall, 555 Sherbrooke W. Call 398-4547 or 398-5145 for tickets and information.
Tourtière, sushi, empanadas, Mars bars, mercury-laden fish. What Canadians eat is more diverse than ever before, but that may not add up to a balanced diet. Does everyone have access to good food? Are there policies in place to help ensure that our nation's bodies are well nourished? Will the environment be able to sustain our current consumption?
The annual conference of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada, "What are we eating? Towards a Canadian Food Policy," bellies up to a buffet of pertinent food topics. Health, culture, agriculture and advertising all play a role in what we put in our mouths.
The opening night appetizer event at the McCord Museum showcases top Montreal foodies such as David MacMillan and Fred Morin of Joe Beef, caterer-spicemeister Philippe DeVienne, and TV chef Ricardo in "The Ideal Meal Challenge. " They'll talk about what makes for an ideal cheap lunch. And they'll be given the blue sky task of imagining the best meal possible. The toothsome roundtable will be followed by oysters and other goodies.
Spaces are limited for the Feb 15 - 17 conference, so register now at www.misc-iecm.mcgill.ca/conf2006/ or for more information call 398-8346 or email email@example.com.
The Players' Theatre gallops into 2006 with a production of Peter Shaffer's controversial and critically acclaimed EQUUS, winner of a 1974 Tony Award.
The play follows Alan Strang, a teenage stable hand who has blinded the six horses in his care for no apparent reason, and Martin Dysart, the psychologist left to treat the boy and "make him fit for society." Dysart eventually realizes that Strang's act of violence against the creatures he viewed as gods is anything but senseless, bringing into question the very nature of worship, sexuality and individuality in an increasingly industrialized world.
Sean Waugh, director of the upcoming production, admits that this is an ambitious undertaking. "EQUUS is indeed a hefty work to pull off. It is controversial in nature and calls for an extremely dedicated and developed cast," he says. "I think the atmosphere in Montreal and at McGill, with the history of social activism and progressive thinking, is perfect."
January 12-15 and 19-22 at 8 pm, including 2 pm matinees on both Saturdays, 3480 McTavish, 3rd floor. $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and students. For more information call 398-6813.
The McGill chapter of Engineers Without Borders will hold their annual general meeting on January 25. Any students, faculty or alumni with an interest in international development are encouraged to attend - engineering experience is optional. If helping developing countries worldwide isn't enough of a draw, fair trade coffee and snacks will be served. As well, Martin Fogl (U3 Civil Engineering) will be sharing his experiences in Senegal improving water availability and quality to the community.
January 25, 4:30 pm in room 1050, Wong Building.
All you engineer-philes take note: from January 19 to 22, McGill will host the 22nd annual Quebec Engineering Competition. More than 200 top students from a dozen universities will be duking it out in this year's edition, titled "Engineering the Urban Elements."
The competition premise is simple, though dastardly. Teams in six categories will be given 16 hours to create machines that must complete a series of tasks, none of which will be announced prior to the start of the contest. Winners in each of the six categories will advance to represent Quebec at the Canadian Engineering Competition in March.
As with all top-flight sporting events, no expense has been spared in terms of the venue. The Montreal Science Centre will be equipped with bleacher seating, bilingual commentary and overhead screens to capture all the thrills and heartbreaks. Bring your giant foam "We're #1" finger and root, root, root for the home team.
Admission free. Final rounds, January 21 from 9 am to 5 pm at the Montreal Science Center, King Edward's Pier at the Old Port.