Off the Couch Blog

Welcome to our blog! This is where you'll find longer previews and profiles on upcoming or ongoing events in and around Ottawa. We've got fresh tips on what's new and exciting in town, as well as interviews with local movers, shakers and party makers. If you're into it, you too could join our team of volunteer bloggers!
By — Sunday, October 9, 2016 - 12:35am
What do you get when you distil one of Shakespeare’s best known stories down to its emotional core? That’s the premise for David Whiteley’s adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet now playing at the Gladstone Theatre.Presented by Plosive Productions Romeo & Juliet Redux is intimate, immediate and intense. Whereas the original Shakespeare play runs about two and a half hours Redux is down to just 80-some minutes. The text has been condensed, scenes and characters have been cut, some characters have been combined, costumes deemed excessive. What remains is a cast of only four actors on a bare stage with two props between them. Supported by a live soundscape performed by Scottie Irving (The Peptides) and lighting by Laura Wheeler, the team hone in... Read More
By — Friday, September 30, 2016 - 10:07am
Blog entry originally published on Eventful Capital.Last week, l'Ambassade Culturelle, a Gatineau-based duo of talent bookers made up of Phil Roy and Steven Boivin, unveiled its Fall/Winter programming. The guys announced an exciting lineup of shows that will be presented at the Minotaure and the Petit Chicago over the coming months. As an official entity, l'Ambassade Culturelle is relatively new to the Ottawa-Gatineau scene, having only been around since January 2015, but independently, Phil and Steven have been organizing events and booking shows in the region for several years... Read More
By — Thursday, June 23, 2016 - 5:47pm
If you like your tunes full of sass and soul, snappy backbeat grooves and choruses you want to belt like no one’s listening, it’s time to check out LeMeow, the freshest new soul band out of Ottawa.LeMeow is the creation of powerhouse vocalist Gin Bourgeois and groove-savvy bassist about town James Rooke. On Friday June 24, LeMeow is set to release their first full-length titled York St., at the Rainbow Bistro. The show kicks off of a full summer of high profile gigs including appearances at the Ottawa Jazz Festival, Bluesfest and the Blacksheep Inn.We got a preview of York St. and the official word is LeMeow is a band that belongs on your summer playlist. It’s an impressive debut featuring sweet hooks, solid grooves, and... Read More
By — Tuesday, June 14, 2016 - 9:15pm
Blog entry originally published on Eventful CapitalLooking for the best summer vibes in the city on a Sunday? In need of a tropical getaway in the heart of the National Capital Region? Look no further than Pozativ Vibrationz by Da Beach, a family-friendly outdoor jam set to happen every sunny Sunday starting June 19 at Petrie Island. The idea behind Pozativ Vibrationz by Da Beach is simple: it aims at offering a free gathering for house music heads of all ages in a laid-back setting and relaxing atmosphere. And what better place than the picturesque beach of Petrie Island to enjoy top notch local DJs, tasty eats & refreshing beverages provided by Banana’s Beach... Read More
By — Wednesday, June 1, 2016 - 12:46pm
The last time BRAIDS played in Ottawa, it was to give their first headlining performance at a festival, for none other than Arboretum, an experience that the Montréal-based group keeps fond memories of. Ten months later, the experimental electronic pop trio is making a return to Canada’s national capital in an effort to promote their latest project, the Companion EP. In the lead up to their Ottawa show, happening at Ritual this Saturday, I had the opportunity to speak with lead singer Raphaelle Standell-Preston about the Companion EP, being labeled a feminist band and tour life (among other things).Elly Laberge: Your new "Companion" EP contains four tracks that didn't make it on to "Deep In The Iris" for various reasons. What makes this complementary project... Read More
By — Sunday, May 29, 2016 - 10:54am
Now playing at the Gladstone Theatre, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike  is a zany romp that finds humour in the painfully awkward and existentially painful.Perhaps the most accessible work from the pen of absurdist playwright Christopher Durang, the play found success early on, killing it on Broadway with an all-star cast and winning a bunch of awards including a Tony award. Now thanks to Plosive Productions and director David Whiteley Ottawa audiences get to see what all the fuss is about. In one long sentence, it’s got the badly behaved neurotic characters of a Woody Allen movie, some Wes Anderson quirkiness, more than a few winks to Chekhov and a charming comedic mix of witty one-liners and... Read More
By — Monday, May 16, 2016 - 8:20am
Nick Thorburn and Montreal's Islands have graced us with good luck by releasing not one but two full length albums on Friday, May 13. Taste, their sixth album is an exploration in electronica, backed with drum machines and vintage synths. Their seventh album, Should I Remain Here At Sea? Is considered a spiritual sequel to their debut work Return to the Sea which was released in 2006. The album reflects on the decade past in a stripped down and raw fashion, with some of the tracks recorded in one take. Both works reflect the band's classic exploration of dark themes such as loneliness, disillusionment and ennui, all with an edge of tart humour. Nick and co. are currently touring in support of these albums and will be performing at Ritual night club on Tuesday May 17.I got a... Read More
By — Thursday, April 14, 2016 - 1:40am
It’s one dark, stormy, sexy, funny story rolling in moments of tenderness and cringe-inducing cruelty. Wait, all at the same time?  Now playing at the Gladstone theatre, Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf packs all of this into one brilliant story set on one fateful night. Fair warning, it can get pretty intense.It’s easy to see the attraction of Who’s Afraid. The award-winning play (Tony, New York Critics’) has proven itself a classic with a look at relationships as incisive today as it was when written in 1962. As strong as the script is, it’s also very demanding. Luckily, Bear & Co. have assembled an all-star creative team for the show. In the director’s chair is Ian Farthing, former Artistic Director of the St.... Read More
By — Saturday, March 26, 2016 - 1:11pm
Quick, what’s the first thing you think of when someone says Vikings? Odds are it’s a band of fierce warriors approaching the shore of a new land fresh for the plundering, all burly bearded men with horned helmets and heavy swords. While there’s some truth to that image there was a lot more to the Viking civilization too. If you’re curious, there’s still time to catch Vikings at the Canadian Museum of History, a revealing exhibition that will change everything you thought you knew about this fascinating people.The exhibit gives a feel for the Norse people’s everyday life, as well as their beliefs and mythology while also taking a look at... Read More
By — Thursday, March 24, 2016 - 11:55am
Some people have a passion that is infectious. One that is driven by the fact that they have found their place in the world;  their community and people.  If you are ever so fortunate as to stumble upon your purpose, it is my hope that your run toward it with all the vehemence and intensity engrained in your bones.   The third annual Indigenous Art, Music + Fashion Show, presented by UN1TY Entertainment will take place at Centrepoint Theatre on Saturday March 26th at 7PM.  I had the fortunate opportunity to speak with organizer and entrepreneur Justin Holness about the events purpose and future.  When I spoke to Justin, his passion and excitement was palpable.  I hung up the phone feeling energized and inspired by his dedication to empowering aboriginal... Read More


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