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What to See Ottawa

Taylor Swift Arrives in Ottawa

Pop superstar Taylor Swift arrives in Ottawa as part of her 1989 World Tour.

Pop superstar Taylor Swift arrives in Ottawa as part of her 1989 World Tour.

JULY 6 With the release of mega hits “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” and “I Knew You Were Trouble”, Taylor Swift proved she has the chops to be one of the most successful singer-songwriters of her generation. The evolution of her sound from country to pop — as well as her meteoric ascent to superstardom — continues with the release of her latest album, 1989, an electronica-inspired offering that relies more on synths than twangy guitars. She brings her 1989 World Tour to the capital.
•Canadian Tire Centre, 1000 Palladium Dr., 613-599-0100. canadiantirecentre.com

Memento Mori: Tasman Richardson at Karsh-Masson Gallery

In Forever Endeavour, two characters from Poltergeist and The Ring gaze at each other across a darkened hallway. (Tasman Richardson, Forever Endeavour, 2012, CRT multi-channel A/V installation. Photo: Tasman Richardson)

In Forever Endeavour, two characters from Poltergeist and The Ring gaze at each other across a darkened hallway. (Tasman Richardson, Forever Endeavour, 2012, CRT multi-channel A/V installation. Photo: Tasman Richardson)

In his exhibition Necropolis, artist Tasman Richardson uses six video installations to explore themes of death, decay, and the unstoppable passage of time. Clips of Joan of Arc from four different movies, arranged to resemble the rose window at Notre Dame cathedral, denote pop culture’s gradual erasure of her history; meanwhile, juxtaposed images of two characters from Poltergeist and The Ring gaze at each other across a darkened corridor, both haunted by ghosts that come to them through the television set. On at Karsh-Masson Gallery until July 26.
•Karsh-Masson Gallery, City Hall, 110 Laurier Ave. W., 613-580-2424 ext. 14167. ottawa.ca/arts
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Ottawa Weekend Calendar: July 2 to 5

BY AMY ALLEN & MATT HARRISON

Pokey LaFarge brings his trademark Americana music to Ritual Nightclub on Friday night. (Photo: Joshua Black Wilkins)

Pokey LaFarge brings his trademark Americana music to Ritual Nightclub on Friday night. (Photo: Joshua Black Wilkins)

Heavenly Bodies
Over the past century, as the world has grown and cities expanded, light pollution has dimmed the stars and forced darkness from the night. This has had adverse effects on human health and the world’s ecosystems, not to mention altered our perception — perhaps even our awareness — of celestial objects. At Cube Gallery, Nocturne VII: Festival of the Night Sky celebrates the beauty of starlight with lectures, music, and sidewalk telescope parties.

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Under the Big Top: Cirque du Soleil and Spiegelworld

BY AMY ALLEN

(Photo: John Davis; Costumes: Eiko Ishioka ©2010 Cirque du Soleil)

Mysterious creatures creep out from Varekai’s magical forest. (Photo: John Davis; Costumes: Eiko Ishioka ©2010 Cirque du Soleil)

The circus has come a long way since its birth in ancient times, when it was known as the place where Romans congregated to watch chariot races, gladiatorial battles, and fights with trained animals. From the 18th century through to 1972, it was all about lion taming, equestrian acts, and clowns. But today, the power and artistry of the human body is the star of the show.

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Shania Twain Rocks This Country

Shania Twain hits Ottawa as part of her Rock This Country Tour. It's the first time she's toured in more than a decade. (Photo: Maura McEvoy)

Shania Twain hits Ottawa as part of her Rock This Country Tour. It’s the first time she’s toured in more than a decade. (Photo: Maura McEvoy)

JUNE 27 With massive hits such as “From This Moment On” and “Man! I Feel Like a Woman!” Canadian songstress Shania Twain long ago cemented her legacy as the Queen of Country Pop. Although she’s been on hiatus from touring for more than a decade, she returns to stages across North America with her Rock This Country Tour — so slip on your cowboy boots and get ready to dance!
•Wesley Clover Parks, 401 Corkstown Rd., 613-271-5452, wesleycloverparks.com

Best of the Fests: TD Ottawa Jazz Festival and More

Pink Martini, the self-described "little orchestra", is one of many groups performing at this year's TD Ottawa Jazz Festival.

Pink Martini, the self-described “little orchestra”, is one of many groups performing at this year’s TD Ottawa Jazz Festival.

JUNE 18 TO JULY 1 The TD Ottawa Jazz Festival marks its 35th anniversary this year, welcoming a roster of talented and diverse musicians to the capital for a two-week bash. Although jazz has always been the festival’s primary focus, it has begun to attract musicians from other genres as well.

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Lethal Entertainment: Gladiators and the Colosseum

Gladiators and the Colosseum tells the real story behind these larger-than-life figures who fought and died for the amusement of the Roman public. (Photo: Contemporanea Progretti)

Gladiators and the Colosseum tells the real story behind these larger-than-life figures who fought and died for the amusement of the Roman public. (Photo: Contemporanea Progretti)

These days, the word “gladiator” conjures images of heroism, but the legendary warriors who fought in the arenas of Rome for close to 1,000 years endured physical, mental, and social hardships that we can only imagine. Reviled as slaves, most of them fought and died in obscurity for the amusement of the Roman public. Through one-of-a-kind artifacts, Gladiators and the Colosseum: Death and Glory tells the real story behind these larger-than-life figures. On at the Canadian War Museum from June 13 until Sept. 6.
•Canadian War Museum, 1 Vimy Place, 800-555-5621. warmuseum.ca
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Greek Exhibition Brings Hellenic History to Ottawa

This bust of Alexander the Great from the ancient city of Pella is just one of 500 artifacts on display at The Greeks: Agamemnon to Alexander the Great. (Photo: © Hellenic Ministry of Culture)

This bust of Alexander the Great from the ancient city of Pella is just one of 500 artifacts on display at The Greeks: Agamemnon to Alexander the Great. (Photo: © Hellenic Ministry of Culture)

From the pages of Homer’s Iliad to the empire of Alexander the Great, our understanding of Western culture’s earliest days is a blend of myth, legend, and fact. The Greeks: Agamemnon to Alexander the Great brings together 5,000 years of Greek culture, uncovering the lives of kings, scholars, poets, and philosophers. See more than 500 authentic artifacts — including Agamemnon’s gold-plated death mask and a marble bust of Alexander from the ancient Macedonian city of Pella — that have seldom been exhibited outside of Greece. On at the Canadian Museum of History until Oct. 12.
•Canadian Museum of History, 100, rue Laurier, Gatineau, 819-776-7000. historymuseum.ca
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A-Plus Tunes: Ed Sheeran in Ottawa

Ed Sheeran is one of the hottest names in music today, and he performs at Canadian Tire Centre on June 3. (Photo: Ben Watts)

Ed Sheeran is one of the hottest names in music today, and he performs at Canadian Tire Centre on June 3. (Photo: Ben Watts)

JUNE 3 Ed Sheeran shot to fame in 2011 with the release of his first single, “The A Team”, and he hasn’t slowed down since. In his young career, he’s been nominated for six Grammy Awards, headlined sold-out shows around the globe, and has shared the stage with Elton John. He brings his distinctive blend of pop and R&B to the capital as part of an ambitious world tour of more than 100 cities in promotion of his second studio album, X (pronounced “multiply”).
•Canadian Tire Centre, 1000 Palladium Dr., 613-599-0100. canadiantirecentre.com

The Public Servant Brings Office Drama to the GCTC

The Public Servant humorously chronicles the lives of those who work for Canada.

The Public Servant humorously chronicles the lives of those who administer our country.

JUNE 2 TO 21 A satirical tour-de-force, The Public Servant takes a hilarious, heartfelt look at the individuals who administer our country. Follow Madge, a wide-eyed, idealistic public servant, as she’s forced into a competition to keep her own job, all the while contending with her immediate superior, Lois, and bitter public service veteran Cynthia as they collaborate on a major project. At its heart, the play explores what it means to be Canadian.
•Great Canadian Theatre Company, 1233 Wellington St. W., 613-236-5196. gctc.ca

Remembering Terry Fox

The van used in Terry Fox's Marathon of Hope across Canada is just one of many artifacts on display at this exhibition. (Photo: Chris Uhlig © Canadian Museum of History)

The van used in Terry Fox’s Marathon of Hope across Canada is just one of many artifacts on display at this exhibition. (Photo: Chris Uhlig © Canadian Museum of History)

Terry Fox won the hearts of millions in 1980 when he set out on a 5,373-kilometre, 143-day Marathon of Hope across Canada, with a goal of raising money for cancer research. Although his illness forced him to abandon his run in Thunder Bay, Ont., and ultimately led to his death nine months later, his legacy continues to inspire. Retrace his remarkable journey in Terry Fox: Running to the Heart of Canada, an exhibition of artifacts, photographs, press clippings, and journal entries. On at the Canadian Museum of History until January 2016.
•Canadian Museum of History, 100, rue Laurier, Gatineau, 819-776-7000. historymuseum.ca
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Man and Nature at the Carleton University Art Gallery

Currently on view at the Carleton University Art Gallery, Human Nature explores humanity's complex relationship with the natural world. (Gavin Lynch, The Pass (1794-present), 2014-15. Detail of multi-part installation comprised of oil and acrylic paintings on canvas and wood panel. Photo: Gavin Lynch)

Currently on view at the Carleton University Art Gallery, Human Nature explores humanity’s complex relationship with the natural world. (Gavin Lynch, The Pass (1794-present), 2014-15. Detail of multi-part installation comprised of oil and acrylic paintings on canvas and wood panel. Photo: Gavin Lynch)

In recent years, humanity’s impact on nature has been a popular topic in the news. From fracking to greenhouse gases to floating garbage in the ocean, it’s clear that human beings have had a deleterious effect on the environment. But the opposite is also true: as easily as they destroy, people create and innovate, and Human Nature explores both sides of the issue, presenting artworks by 14 contemporary Canadian artists. On at the Carleton University Art Gallery until August 23.
•Carleton University Art Gallery, St. Patrick’s Building, 1125 Colonel By Dr., 613-520-2120. cuag.carleton.ca
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