20 Fall Events to Satisfy Your Culture Craving 2019

By Hannah Bock

Fall in Kingston is a near-perfect time of year. The city is far enough north that we’re graced with beautiful fall colours as the leaves turn, but not so far that those reds, yellows, and oranges are accompanied by immediate freezing cold weather like in other places (sorry, Ottawa and Montreal). Apart from enjoying the beautiful change of season or cozying up to some local fall fare from any of the city’s exciting restaurants, pubs, and cafés—Kingston’s arts and culture scene this fall has loads to offer!

From performances to paintings, here are 20 events this fall that are sure to feed your culture needs.

Image: Agnes Etherington Art Centre

1. Leiden circa 1630: Rembrandt Emerges

Until December 1 at Agnes

All season long, you can see works by the Dutch master Rembrandt and his network of colleagues and students as they found their artistic stride early in their careers in a special exhibition at the Bader Gallery at Agnes Etherington Art Centre. This exhibition is not-to-be-missed and will begin its national tour across Canada after December 1.

Admission to Agnes is always free.

2. Scottish Superstars: BREABACH

October 4 at The Isabel

Don’t miss one of the UK’s most dynamic and influential bands—Breabach. Their new spin on traditional Scottish folk music combines twin bagpipes, fiddle, bass, and guitar with Gaelic vocals and step dance, and has given them a strong foothold on the world stage.


3. Lighthouse: 50th Anniversary Tour

October 4 at The Grand

If you’re after some iconically Canadian nostalgia then you can catch horn-rock legends, Lighthouse, at the Grand Theatre. Original founders Paul Hoffert and Ralph Cole lead an all-star line-up that includes original members Russ Little and Steve Kennedy with Chris Howells, Simon Wallis, Doug Moore, Don Paulton, Jamie Prokop and dynamic lead vocalist Dan Clancy.


4. QAGGIAVUUT presents: Arctic Song

October 5 at The Isabel

Part of the Children’s Series at the Isabel, QAGGIAVUUT’s Arctic Song combines Inuit drum dance, throat singing, and contemporary music followed by a workshop on storytelling and throat music—sure to be an enriching family outing!


5. Tarantella: Viva Napoli! Vesuvius Ensemble

October 7 at The Isabel

Francesco Pellegrino and the Vesuvius Ensemble will transport you through song to the sunny countryside of Southern Italy with energetic Italian folk songs played on traditional instruments. The beautiful tones of the tammorra, chitarra battente, ciaramella, and colascione, along with the chitarrone, guitars, and lutes will warm your heart and soul.


6. Distinguished Lecturer Johnnetta Cole

October 10 at Agnes

In conjunction with The Art of African Ivory exhibition, ongoing at the Agnes until April 12, 2020, this free public lecture by international scholar, educator and humanitarian Dr. Johnnetta Cole will discuss historical African ivory art, wildlife conservation, and museum responsibility. A reception will follow the lecture.

More info

Photo: The Isabel

7. Orpheus Chamber Orchestra with Jan Lisiecki

October 16 at The Isabel

Kicking off the Bader and Overton Virtuosi Festival, the Grammy Award-winning Orpheus Chamber Orchestra will be joined by Canadian virtuoso pianist Jan Lisiecki in a program including a 2016 commission by Jessie Montgomery, Mendelssohn Piano Concerto No. 1, and Mendelssohn’s virtuosic and sunny Italian Symphony.


8. Deathtrap

October 17–November 2 (Thursday–Saturday) at Domino Theatre

This award-winning 1978 Broadway favourite will keep you enthralled with its devilish cleverness, abundant twists and turns, and have you laughing from when it starts until its startling conclusion.


9. Homecoming Showcase Concert

October 18 at The Isabel

Enjoy a musical review from the DAN School Ensembles including the Choral Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Ensemble, Polyhymnia, and the Music Theatre Ensemble. A reception with light refreshments and a cash bar will follow the concert.


Image: The Grand Theatre

10. Vic’s Mix by RUBBERBAND

October 19 at The Grand 

In an evening of exquisite modern dance, RUBBERBAND dance company explore the vastly creative choreography of Victor Quijada in a clash of urban pop and classical composition that will defy audience expectations.


11. Beethoven 3 & Brahms MW2

October 20 at The Isabel

The Kingston Symphony Orchestra featuring Violinist Robert Uchida conducted by Evan Mitchell explores the bond between two of music history’s greatest—Brahms and Beethoven—in an evening of classical symphonic music sure to dazzle.


12. World of Dance Live Tour

October 20 at Leon’s Centre

On tour from NBC’s hit competitive dance series World of Dance, this cross-country spectacular will feature some of the world’s best and most celebrated dancers—including this season’s champions The Kings, all the way from India.


13. Bruce Cockburn

October 22 at The Grand

Ottawa legend Bruce Cockburn takes the stage at Kingston’s Grand Theatre for a concert that is sure to leave a mark! As one of Canada’s most decorated and critically acclaimed songwriters, this evening of eclectic rock music is one to look forward to!


Photo: The Isabel

14. Jazz Guitar Heroes: Dave Barton Trio

October 26 at The Isabel

Join Dave Barton and his band for an evening of jazz standards spanning the decades and music from the great guitarists who’ve influenced his musical journey including Wes Montgomery, Pat Metheny, Ed Bickert, John Scofield, Lennie Breau, and more!


15. Enchanted Isle: Voces8

October 28 at The Isabel

This British acapella 8-piece vocal ensemble will show you a wonderful time with their unique and hauntingly beautiful renditions spanning an eclectic mix of songs and musical expression throughout the ages.  


Image: The Grand Theatre

16. Rossini & Rock Stars

November 3 at The Grand

This interactive, family-friendly performance by the Kingston Symphony Orchestra is sure to have audience members young and old entertained. Explore some of the rock stars of the classical world including Rossini, Beethoven, Estacio, and more!


17. Chamber Music Virtuosity: Fine Arts Quartet & Stewart Goodyear

November 7 at The Isabel

An evening of Beethoven, Shostakovich, and Brahms that’s sure to impress—the Fine Arts Quartet and Stewart Goodyear together, are a phenomenon. These spectacular musicians bring the concert to a spectacular close with Brahms Piano Quintet in F minor.


18. Sinatra with Matt Dusk

November 9 at The Grand

If you’re after a charming serenade, award-winning and multi-platinum selling Canadian crooner Matt Dusk will have you swooning to Frank Sinatra’s greatest hits. You’ll be charmed as Dusk puts his charismatic signature on your Sinatra favourites including Come Fly With Me, I’ve Got You Under My Skin, The Way You Look Tonight and so many more.


19. Spirit & Soul: Measha Brueggergosman

November 12 at The Isabel

From the soulful anthems of the powerful black women who have inspired Measha throughout her career to the stirring spirituals from her recent multi-award-nominated album—you will be stunned by the vocal talent of Measha Brueggergosman. 


20. Arkells – Rally Cry Tour with special guest COIN

November 16 at Leon’s Centre

Returning to the Leon’s Centre for the first time in almost two years, the multiple Juno Award-winning rock band are sure to put on a killer concert. Limited VIP tickets include a pre-show acoustic set and meet-and-greet with the band that true superfans of Arkells won’t want to miss!