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 from the comfort of home. Look for **New** to see what we've added most recently.
What's coming up:
Sep 2 - Oct 2
Reading is Magic: Step into a world of creativity with the Reading is Magic Festival this autumn. Six days of free, inclusive and engaging digital events for schools and families.
Sep 9 - 23
Mako Idemitsu - Another Day of a Housewife: Salon is an online program that takes cues from the Oakville Galleries collection and from our past and future exhibitions to share new ways of encountering contemporary art. Every two weeks, we invite visitors to see new installments of moving image works and images from our collection, hear our curators talk about contemporary art at live events, and engage with the work of a community of incredible artists. Online until Sep 23.
Through to Sep 25
SHIFT 2020: McMaster Socrates Project invites you to imagine the future you want for yourself and those you love. In this, the culminating project of The Socrates Project, we are excited to bring together a brilliant group of presents and provide several avenues for people of all ages, political stripes and walks of life to join them. Full schedule available online.
Tue Sep 22
The Orange Shirt Story: Speaker program for all ages. Orange Shirt Day grew out of Phyllis Webstad’s story of having her shiny new orange shirt taken away on her first day of school at residential school. It has become an opportunity to keep the discussion on all aspects of residential schools happening annually. Presented by the First Nations House of Learning and the UBC Learning Circle. Register in advance. Live online - 9.30am.
Telling Tales - Shocking Science and Fab Facts: Join Jess Keating, Josh Taylor, Kevin Sylvester, Ted & Will Staunton, Elizabeth MacLeod and Ishta Mercurio as they think outside the book and talk about science, technology and fabulous facts. Live on Facebook and YouTube - 11am.
Wed Sep 23
Telling Tales - Twists and Turns: Join Kevin Sylvester (Moderator), Kenneth Oppel, Jonathan Auxier, Sylv Chiang, Hamilton Children’s Choir and Krista McNaughton to explore the twists and turns of storytelling. Live on Facebook and YouTube - 11am.
Thu Sep 24
Telling Tales - Telling Your Story: Join these Canadian children’s authors, illustrators, and performers to hear
about family stories – and about families who have had to leave home in search of a new one. Live on Facebook and YouTube - 11am.
Globe Book Club: Join The Globe and Mail for a livestream conversation between Margaret Atwood and Thomas King. Live on Facebook - Sep 23, 7.30-9pm.
Sep 26 - Oct 4
FOLD Kids Bookfest: FOLD Kids Book Fest is going virtual with an amazing lineup of diverse authors featuring events for young readers, writers, and educators. Events are designed for children 0-18, with a few events for parents and educators. Schedule available 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.
Art Gallery of Burlington: Tune in twice a week for a 90-minute live webcast hosted by an artist and musical guest. For each episode, a different dynamic duo will walk viewers through an art project using ingredients you can find at home.
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.
Socrates Project Online: Videos of popular lectures from McMaster University's interdisciplinary hub
Burlington Teen Tour Band: Online performance, #Band Together/Stay Apart.
Sound of Music @ Home Edition: Local musicians live from home at 8pm every evening.
HPO @ Home: Interviews and performances with Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra Composer-in-Residence Abigail Richardson-Schulte Wednesdays at 12pm via FaceBook live.
Hamilton Youth Poets: Live writing workshops weekly on Instagram Live.
**New** Cheltenham Literature Festival: In partnership with Toronto International Festival of Authors, presenting a conversation with acclaimed Canadian novelist and poet Michael Crummey, author of four critically acclaimed and bestselling novels and five poetry collections. Roland Gulliver speaks to him in Newfoundland, his home of many years and a rich source of inspiration for much of his writing. Live online - Oct 10, 4am.
**New** Globe Book Club: Join The Globe and Mail for a livestream conversation between Margaret Atwood and Thomas King. Live on Facebook - Sep 23, 7.30-9pm.
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.
Toronto Festival of Authors: Save the dates for the 41st Festival edition and join us in embracing a brand new virtual format that will be primarily free and accessible from around the world. Starts Oct 22 at 10am.
TelePALS: A free, over-the-phone program for adults from Burlington Parks & Recreation.
Eden Mills Writers' Festival: A series of online events featuring the very best of emerging and established Canadian writers, through to October. Register in advance.
Hamilton Youth Poets: Live writing workshops weekly on Instagram Live.
**New** The 11th Annual 6 Foot Festival and the 3rd Annual Wiikwemkoong Arts & Music Festival: Debajehmujig's 1st virtual festival - due to COVID-19, the 11th Annual 6 Foot Festival and the 3rd Annual Wiikwemkoong Arts & Music Festival will be teaming up this fall to bring you the best in arts and entertainment, virtually. More details to come. Oct 1 - 3.
Celebration of Nations: Niagara’s annual Indigenous arts gathering that celebrates creativity, diversity and resilience. Featuring a traditional welcome, awards ceremony, hoop dancers, big drum, Celeigh Cardinal + LeE HARVey OsMOND. Stream performances online.
Southern Ontario Lyric Opera: Live performance by Allison Cecilia Arends, Soprano, and Paul Williamson, Tenor, accompanied by Sabatino Vacca, Artistic Director for SOLO, in a programme of opera highlights.
Live at Massey Hall: 30 minute concert films, free online.
Hamilton Originals | Live Music from The Westdale: Live music from The Westdale stage every Thursday evening at 8pm on YouTube and Facebook.
National Arts Centre Live Events: Live music performances and more.
HPO @ Home: Interviews and performances with Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra Composer-in-Residence Abigail Richardson-Schulte.
Sound of Music @ Home Edition: Local musicians live from home.
Montreal Symphony Orchestra: Weekly concerts from orchestra performers.
The Social Distancing Festival: Sharing the work of artists who have had shows cancelled due to the need for social distancing.
Opera At Home: The Canadian Opera Company brings opera into your life with videos posted on Facebook.
Oakville Galleries Home Studio: Educator Erica shows you how to create your own masterpieces.
**New** 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.
**New** 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.
Fergus Scottish Festival: Performances from the festival online.
McMichael Art Gallery: Virtual Tour of A Like Vision, The Group of Seven at 100. Held online weekly every Wednesday, Friday 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.
Art Talks: Arts and culture presentations from the Art Canada Institute.
Vancouver Art Gallery Curated Talks: Live interactive art talks, Tuesdays and Fridays on Zoom.
Stratford Festival: Stream free performances online via CBC Gem.
**New** Telling Tales: 13 Episodes | 80+ Presenters | 1 Amazing Festival. Join us starting September 20th for our first ever Virtual Event!
**New** 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.
**New** 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.
**New** 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.
TED-Ed: A carefully-curated educational videos, many of which represent collaborations between talented educators and animators nominated through the TED-Ed website.
Mr. Kane's Storytime: The kindergarten teacher whose drag persona makes up one half of Fay & Fluffy has countless storybook read-alouds for kindergarteners everywhere.
Cincinnati Zoo: Facebook Live videos highlighting a new animal each weekday at 3pm, and shared via Youtube after the live stream.
YMCA at Home: At-home arts and craft activities, as well as early years songs, all free and available online.
Art Gallery of Burlington: Starting in July, tune in twice a week for a 90-minute live webcast hosted by an artist and musical guest. For each episode, a different dynamic duo will walk viewers through an art project using ingredients you can find at home.
Eden Mills Writers' Festival: A series of online events for kids featuring the very best of emerging and established Canadian writers, from May to October. Register in advance.
Bibliovideo: A YouTube channel all about Canadian books for young people, including author interviews, read-alongs, how-to demos and more.
Author Mac Barnett: Mac Barnett hosts Mac Barnett’s Book Club Show on Instagram Live. He reads his books and hosts Live Cartoons.
Author Peter H Reynolds: On Fridays, Peter Reynolds reads one of his books and/or draws on Facebook Live.
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.
Author Todd Parr: Todd Parr reads one of his books and/or does a fun activity on Instagram Live (previous recordings available in posts).
We are Teachers: The Big List of children’s authors doing online read alouds and activities.
The Ladybird Fancypants Show: Not your average drag queen storytime.
Jbrary: A directory of online storytimes and resources for songs and rhymes.
Read The World: Artist Howard Donald reads My Hero is You, How kids can fight COVID-19, in support of the World Health Organization.
Zoo School To You: Virtual learning from the Toronto Zoo.
Author Oliver Jeffers: Oliver Jeffers reads one of his books or creates a new story.
Julie's Library: A storytime podcast for families starring Julie Andrews and Emma Walton Hamilton.
Therapeutic Paws of Canada: Listen to a variety of stories, poems, and heartwarming tales with TPOC Pet Therapy Teams.
Dr. Seuss Raps Over Dr. Dre Beats: You've never heard The Lorax, Green Eggs & Ham, and more quite like this.
Catherine Hernandez: Catherine reads aloud on Facebook.
PBS Kids: PBS Kids Read-ALong series, including Michelle Obama.
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.
Drawing lessons: With Kevin Sylvester, author of the Neil Flambé series.
Flamingo Rampant: Racially diverse and LGBTQ-positive children's books read online.
Dav Pilkey at Home: Captain Underpants writer/illustrator hosts virtual readings, drawing classes and more, live online Fridays.
Everyone Can Learn Math: Read aloud video with Alice Aspinall.
Mrs. P’s Magic Library: Actress Kathy Kinney, in character as Mrs. P, reads classic children’s stories.
Chasing Lemurs: Primatologist Keriann McGoogan leads a biodiverse, wonder-filled and harrowing rainforest trek.
Audible Stories: Free audiobooks for kids and teenagers.
Storytime Online: Listen to famous actors and personalities like Betty White, Oprah, and Kristin Bell read children’s books.
If You Met a Yeti: Author Amy Leask gives a spirited reading of her book.
YPlay: YMCA programs for kids, including songs and crafts.
Wendy McLeod MacKnight: The detective fiction writer read chapters from her books geared towards middle schoolers on Instagram Live.
Kenneth Oppel: Kenneth reads aloud from his books. All ages.
Debbie Ridpath Ohi: Read aloud videos, as well as print-ready activities and more.
Queer, Far, Wherever You are: Buddies in Bad Times artists performing from their homes on Instagram Live.
Moon on the Crusted Snow: Live interview with #BurlingtonReads author Waubgeshig Rice.
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.
FOLDA: Festival of Live Digital Art, now online with live performances and webinars. June 10 - 13. Headline performance by iskwē.
The Group of Seven at 100: A virtual curatorial talk from the McMichael Art Gallery, followed by a special musical performance by Bruce Cockburn.
Theatres United: 40 performers from 13 local theatre companies sing Do You Hear the People Sing from Les Misérables.
Canada's Great Kitchen Party: Performances by Jim Cuddy, Barney Bentall, Tom Cochrane, Ed Robertson (Barenaked Ladies), Alan Doyle, Anne Lindsay, Devin Cuddy, Sam Polley, Danny Michel, Sarah Slean, Tally & Gianni Ferraro.
Live From My Living Room: Award-winning musician iskwē hosted conversations with other artists and musicians on Instagram live.
Canadian Tulip Festival: Celebrate 75 years since the liberation of the Netherlands, and the first Gift of Tulips, from May 8 - 18.
Choir!Choir!Choir: Singing Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in support of Nova Scotia.
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.
In the Footsteps of the Group of Seven talk: Art talk with local writers Jim & Sue Waddington
InstaChoir Through the Decades: Hosted by Jordan Travis and Hayley Verrall.
Hamilton Shows Up2: An online cultural experience hosted by Cobalt Connects.
Related library links