Toronto music lovers have two big music festivals to look forward to this month: Canadian Music Fest and the Juno Awards shows. This is in addition to the regular plethora of international touring artists that are playing live in the city, so get your tickets and enjoy!
JUNO Awards at the ACC; Junofest; OVATION: Classical music at JUNO Awards; Juno’s Songwriter Circle
To celebrate its 40th anniversary, the JUNOs are presenting a number of big events throughout March. The main event is the JUNO Awards show itself on March 27 at 7:45p.m., with performances by recent Grammy winners Arcade Fire, Broken Social Scene, Chromeo, and Sarah McLachlan. You can watch the show live at the ACC, with tickets from $79 to $230.50 at ticketmaster.ca, or watch it on television.
If you enjoy singer-songwriters sharing their confessional songs and the stories that inspired them, check out Juno’s Songwriter Circle at Massey Hall, featuring Johnny Reid and four other artists, on Wednesday March 23, 8p.m. Tickets are $37-$57 at masseyhall.com or ticketmaster.ca.
For classical music aficionados, there’s OVATION: Classical music at JUNO Awards at Roy Thomson Hall, Tuesday March 22, 8p.m. Hosted by Peter Oundjian, Music Director of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the concert features JUNO Award winners and nominees such as Measha Brueggergosman, Angèle Dubeau & La Pietà, Duo Concertante, and Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra. Tickets are $29.50-$69.50 at roythomson.com or ticketmaster.ca
Finally, for the rock, alternative, and indie music fans, there’s Junofest from March 25 to 26. Featuring over 100 artists that include Bedouin Soundclash, Justin Rutledge, Basia Bulat, Elliott Brood, and Julie Doiron, Junofest takes place in a number of venues (The Horseshoe Tavern, El Mocambo, Lee’s Palace, The Great Hall, The Opera House). Tickets are $17.50 for each show, which feature two or three artists on the bill, or you can buy the $30 festival wristband to see everything. Get your tickets at ticketmaster.ca.
Various dates in March
Janet really needs no introduction, with radio smashes from the 80s like “Nasty” and “Rhythm Nation”, through the 90s with “If” and “Together Again”, to the noughties with “All for You” and “Feedback”. Performing tracks from her #1 hits compilation, expect an evening of hi-NRG choreography, massive fan sing-alongs and fond memories at the Sony Centre.
March 12-13, 8p.m.
Sony Centre for the Performing Arts
$85.10-$165.60 at ticketmaster.ca
For underground dance/DJ music lovers, don’t miss hip remixers LA riots at the Mod Club where they’ll be spinning electro, techno, and house.
Friday, March 11, 10p.m.
$15 at ticketweb.ca
A well-known indie rock band with emo posterboy frontman Conor Oberst, Bright Eyes have been making music for over a decade, producing earthy, folky, and desperately sad music that have struck a chord with the hip college crowd. Get ready for a packed and emotional evening at the Sound Academy.
Sunday, March 13, 7:30p.m.
$36 at Rotate This, 801 Queen St. W
One of the most successful Canadian musicians in recent decades, Sarah McLachlan is beloved for her numerous international hit singles, including “Possession”, “Angel”, “I Will Remember You”, “Adia”, and “Sweet Surrender”, as well as organizing the female-focused Lilith Fair music festival in the late 90s. Her live shows are renowned for the superb musicianship of her band and pitch-perfect vocals from Sarah, elements that are sure to impress the audience at Massey Hall this month.
March 17-18, 7:30p.m.
$53.14-$109.89 at ticketmaster.ca
Canadian Music Fest
Boasting 800 artists across 55 venues and 5 nights, there’s bound to be an act you’d like at Canadian Music Fest, from local musicians like Gentleman Reg and Justin Nozuka, hipster artists like Janelle Monae and MEN, established performers like Melissa Etheridge, Good Charlotte, and Big Sugar, to a host of underground indie acts who may become the next big thing. Most of the above artists are performing as the headlining act in a four- to five-act bill, at venues that include the Canadian Room in Royal York Hotel, the Drake Underground, El Mocambo, Horseshoe Tavern, Lee’s Palace, Massey Hall, and the Phoenix.
If you’re interested in more than one of the 800 acts listed on the official website (which is more than likely), I highly suggest buying the 5-day wristband at $75; for less than the price of seeing one concert front row at the ACC, you get access to five nights of shows!
Single tickets¬: $10-25 (depending on acts and venue); 1-day wristbands: $35; 5-day wristbands: $75; VIP wristbands: $150