Artists, authors, and musicians are taking full advantage of technology, bringing events and concerts online to spread joy, share creativity, and help us all feel more connected. Check out the up-to-date and ever-growing list of FREE readings, music, arts and culture events that you can attend or watch from the comfort of home. Look for **New** to see what we've added most recently.
Thu Nov 26 to Sat Nov 28
gritLIT: Hamilton's literary festival celebrating Canadian authors. Live readings and more - all online and almost all are free (one ticketed workshop event).
Sat Nov 28
The Disability Narrative: In this frank panel discussion, authors Dorothy Ellen Palmer, Amanda Leduc and Rasiqra Revulva challenge the way disabled people are represented by taking back ownership of the narrative, sharing their own stories and opening up a world that can learn to appreciate disabled lives as equal, authentic and valuable. Presented by GritLIT. Reserve your spot in advance. Live online - 1pm.
Hamilton Reads: Join HPL for the finale Hamilton Reads 2020 live event. Waubgeshig Rice, author of this year's title Moon of the Crusted Snow, speaks with fellow authors Cherie Dimaline and Janet Rogers. Live online - 2pm.
High Tea at Home: Join us for a cozy high tea at home with four bestselling authors: Cathy Marie Buchanan, Cecilia Ekbäck, Joanna Goodman, and Alka Joshi. Presented by HarperCollins Canada. Reserve your spot in advance. Live online - 2pm.
Medics in the Line of Fire with Ted Barris: Rescuing the wounded on foot, hunting for scarce medical supplies, dodging bullets and booby traps: these were just some of the trials faces by medics during World War II and outlined in Ted Barris’s latest book, Rush to Danger. In this live online presentation, the author describes his father’s experiences as a medic on the front lines. This is a must-see event for Canadian history buffs and for anyone fascinated by the ever-changing world of medicine. Reserve your spot in advance. Live online - 4pm.
Thu Dec 3
Telling Tales - Let's Draw: Join Canadian Illustrators Charlene Chua, Josh Taylor, Mr. Ben, Paul Covello, and Ruth Ohi and learn about drawing. Get tips on how to draw different types of animals and sing a song that will inspire us to draw some winter pictures. You’ll also have a chance to submit your own picture for a chance to win a prize. Ages 4 to 8. Live on Facebook and YouTube - 6pm.
Can Geo Talks with Ian Dejardin: Art historian Ian Dejardin joins us for a virtual Can Geo Talk. Ian is the Executive Director of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, and was a collaborator on our Group of Seven Special Collector's Issue. Live on YouTube and Facebook - 7pm.
The Early Life of Frank Armstrong: 92 year old Frank Armstrong shares his stories of growing up in Burlington, what the city was like during the Second World War, his experiences with the fire department, the Lions Club and raising a family in this free podcast. Listen online, or click here to check out historical photos and documents from topics included in each episode.
ROCK EarlyON Virtual Programs & Support: Local child development experts are available online for conversation, and are posting interactive programs and storytimes. Check their schedule on Facebook.
Bookmarks - Celebrating Black Voices: A collection of 12 episodes featuring prominent Black celebrities and artists including Lupita N'yongo, Misty Copeland and Common reading children's books from Black authors, highlighting the Black experience. Hosted by Marley Dias, On Youtube or Netflix.
TelePALS: A free, over-the-phone program for adults from Burlington Parks & Recreation.
Live at Massey Hall: 30 minute concert films, free online.
Hamilton Originals | Live Music from The Westdale: Live music from The Westdale stage on YouTube and Facebook.
National Arts Centre Live Events: Live music performances and more.
Opera At Home: The Canadian Opera Company brings opera into your life with podcasts and videos posted on Facebook.
For Viola: A new and important screening series centering Black, Indigenous, and People Of Colour (BIPOC)-led stories and filmmakers, named in honour of Canadian civil rights icon Viola Desmond. The series seeks to affirm Hot Docs as a space of inclusion for BIPOC creators and audience members alike. Stream live online.
Digital Doors Open: Forget the limitations of geography - Doors Open is going digital! Check out virtual tours and explore some of Ontario's most fascinating sites.
Alanis Obomsawin’s 52nd Documentary Jordan River Anderson, The Messenger: Now available to watch online from NFB. Discover now Jordan River Anderson's short life helped pave the way for a better and more just future for thousands of Indigenous children in Canada.
McMichael Art Gallery: Virtual Tour of A Like Vision, The Group of Seven at 100. Held online weekly every Tuesday and Sunday at 12:30 pm. Register in advance.
Theatre Online: Your guide to where and when to watch captures of live plays and musicals, from the National Theatre and more.
Vancouver Art Gallery Curated Talks: Live interactive art talks on Zoom.
Stratford Festival: Stream free performances online via CBC Gem.
Telling Tales: Join us for live virtual workshops and events throughout the year celebrating children's literacy.
The Longest Place Named in Canada: An animated song celebrating the Cree language and how it’s the root of many of the names of Canadian places, including Pekwachnamaykoskwaskwaypinwanik Lake.
Julie's Library: Join beloved icon Julie Andrews for story time! Julie and her daughter, children’s author and educator Emma Walton Hamilton, invite you into their library to read their favorite children's books. Podcasts available online.
Chris McKhool Free Concerts for Kids: Musician Chris McKhool will be providing online live stream concerts for K-12 schools in Burlington. Concerts will be booked on a first come first serve basis, balancing the programming among the wards. Live streams can be viewed in class and also remotely for home learners to connect your entire school community. Contact Chris at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve.
What happened when we all stopped: An animated poem narrated by Jane Goodall exploring how the Covid-19 pandemic has reminded us of the importance of living in harmony with nature.
Cincinnati Zoo: Archived home safari resources.
TED-Ed: A carefully-curated educational videos, many of which represent collaborations between talented educators and animators nominated through the TED-Ed website.
YMCA at Home: At-home arts and craft activities, as well as early years songs, all free and available online.
Bibliovideo: A YouTube channel all about Canadian books for young people, including author interviews, read-alongs, how-to demos and more.
OperationStoryTime on Instagram: Search #operationstorytime on social media to find authors reading their works online.
Penguin Kids: Penguin Kids shares read alouds on Instagram Live.
Read The World: Artist Howard Donald reads My Hero is You, How kids can fight COVID-19, in support of the World Health Organization.
Eden Mills Writers' Festival: A series of online events for kids featuring the very best of emerging and established Canadian writers, May to October. Recordings online.
PBS Kids: PBS Kids videos online.
Sterling, Best Dog Ever: Reading by Aidan Cassie.
Anita Daher: Author of books for middle-schoolers reads chapters online.
Rain Boy: Read-along with Dylan Glynn.
Truck Got Stuck: Read along with author/illustrator Jenny Lee Learn.
Dragons in a Bag: Author Zetta Elliott, reads the first three chapters of her book online.
Dav Pilkey at Home: Captain Underpants writer/illustrator hosts virtual readings, drawing classes and more.
Chasing Lemurs: Primatologist Keriann McGoogan leads a biodiverse, wonder-filled and harrowing rainforest trek.
Storytime Online: Listen to famous actors and personalities like Betty White, Oprah, and Kristin Bell read children’s books.
Wendy McLeod MacKnight: The detective fiction writer read chapters from her books geared towards middle schoolers on Instagram Live.
Debbie Ridpath Ohi: Read aloud videos, as well as print-ready activities and more.
Moon on the Crusted Snow: Live interview with #BurlingtonReads author Waubgeshig Rice.
Eden Mills Writers' Festival: A series of online events featuring the very best of emerging and established Canadian writers, May to October. Recordings online.
Google Arts & Culture: High-resolution images and videos of artworks and cultural artifacts from over 2000 leading museums and archives.
The Museum of Modern Art in New York: Free online art classes.
DWF with Buffy Sainte-Marie: A video lesson from Buffy on the science of music using a mouthbow, and will be followed by a Q&A with Buffy.
Stronger Together, Tous Ensemble: Performances/appearances from Céline Dion, Hayley Wickenheiser, David Suzuki, Buffy Sainte-Marie and more in support of frontline workers and Canadian food banks.
Burlington Teen Tour Band: Online performance, #Band Together/Stay Apart
One World, Together at Home: With performances and appearances by Lady Gaga, Andrea Bocelli, Celine Dion, Elton John, Keith Urban, and many more.
Andrea Bocelli: Music For Hope - From Duomo di Milano: Music icon Andrea Bocelli gave a solo performance representing a message of love, healing and hope to Italy and the world.
Related library links
One Page Festival virtual literary events
BPL Virtual Events - puppet shows, book clubs and more
What's Online - free movies and educational videos