location and times
LET’S GATHER ONCE AGAIN
OPTIMISTA: the natural junction where hope, art, and like-minded world citizens meet and effect change.
OPTIMISTA is a unique series of cinéconferences that will present the journeys and life stories of those that have faced many challenges. Their inspirational success can reignite and encourage our inner strength and hope. OPTIMISTA is a celebration of the human spirit. They are dynamic events, filled with positive messages where documentary film serves as the thematic foundation for a celebration of a panoply of artistic disciplines, meant to encourage engaging discussion in an intimate gathering. Each evening will include performance artists, keynote speakers, live music, and an exhibition of related artistic works.
You can choose to purchase individual tickets or better yet, get yourself a season pass to savour the complete season programme and join the OPTIMISTA club! It’s a fantastic way to get your artsy shoes back on! Don’t forget to get dressed for the occasion in your brightest, cheeriest, and wildest colour combos.
Quai 5160, Maison de la culture de Verdun, 5160, Boulevard LaSalle, H4H 1N8
Free parking. Nearest metro: Verdun
Doors open at 7pm, Show starts at 8pm
Season Pass tickets
Season pass regular: $150 (4 evenings plus two cocktail coupons)
Season pass students and 65+: $130 (4 evenings plus two cocktail coupons)
Student and 65+: $35
Choose evening below:
COURAGE is a bold kickoff to OPTIMISTA’S inaugural season. Each work presents a unique story and approach to the theme: a dancer wrestles with her demons on stage; a group of women in Northern India confronts politics of corruption & lies; portraits of love, violence, and joy in the Montréal Queer community, a man atones for misgivings from a past life. It’s an exhibition of courage: the courage to face oppressive forces, the courage to be oneself, the courage to be visible, and the courage to tell their stories on their own accord.
October 15, 2022
Visual Artist: Agustina Belén Pedrocca
Performance: Diana Leon
Keynote Speaker: Gamal “G” Turawa
THE BLACK COP
24 minutes, OV: English, directed by Cherish Oteka
WRITING WITH FIRE
1h32 minutes, directed by Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh,
(OV: Hindi, Eng. Subtitles)
Compassion is synonymous with care, an impetus to foster new rituals and meditative acts. Compassion is a method to love, a tool for empathy, to be at peace with ourselves, our faults and failures, and celebrate our triumphs and joys. November 19th, COMPASSION, is an evening that features a series of meditations, ruminations, and personal histories which offer unique insights and reflections on the meaning of compassion.
November 19, 2022
Visual Artist: Reihan Embrahimi
Performance: Mélissa Juillet
Keynote Speaker: Nemat Sadat
THE QUEEN OF BASKETBALL
22 minutes, Directed by Ben Proudfoot, (English)
1h29 minutes, Directed by Jonas Poher Rasmussen (OV, Danish, English, Dar, Russian, Swedish. English Subtitles)
When we speak of love, we think of romantic entanglements – passion, desire, or even heartache. When WE speak of love, we conjure the spiritual, sensual, and romantic. Love of one’s body, love of one's history, love of one's people, and the love of those who give us strength to continue to create.
February 11, 2023
Visual Artist: Hannaleah Ledwell
Performance: Laur Fugère
Keynote Speaker: Joséphine Bacon
JE M'APPELLE HUMAIN
1h18 minutes, directed by Kim O'Bomsawin, (French with English s.t.)
March 4, 2023
Visual Artist: Quang Hai Nguyen
Performance: Aliah Guerra
Keynote Speaker: Duke Eatmon
THE SWIMMING CLUB
10 minutes, directed by Ceci Golding and Nick Finnegan, (English)
The final evening of the season, COMMUNITY, honours human bonds, across the pond, in our own backyard, or just south of the 49th parallel—communities of here and now, of the past, and of ones to come. Community is a reservoir of hope – become swept away by ethereal portraits of Montréal’s Vietnamese diaspora, dive into a central London swimming pool, a sonic time capsule of late 60s Harlem, or soothed by the soulful melodies of Aliah Guerra, whose roots run deep in Montréal. March 4th is a joyous, yet contemplative salute to the human connections which bind us together, community, the greatest hope of all.
SUMMER OF SOUL
1h58 minutes, directed by QuestLove, (English)