Mile End is home to a venue that gets far too little acclaim despite its history and visual majesty. Rialto Theatre (5723 Parc), former movie palace erected in 1924 and current National Historic Site, recalls a pre-war era of streetcars, fancy hats and loud jewellery, a time when ‘going to the cinema’ was a high-class novelty. In its current renovated state, the Rialto’s beautiful, neo-baroque façade remains intact, with revamped seating and technological refinements. Today, the theatre acts as a main stage for excellent Broadway shows, dance performances, film screenings and more. These days, wearing a feathered hat to the show would probably anger fellow audience members; yet, despite attire, it truly feels like you are stepping into a luxurious, earlier century when passing through the theatre’s main doors, fur shawl on-hand or not.

Here are some notable events on Rialto Theatre’s spring calendar:

March 24 to 27: Canadian premier of Man Boobs, a play directed by Davyn Ryall, with local actors Jonathan Orr and Izak Benrobi. Tickets are $15 to $28. March 24, 25 & 26 @ 8:30pm, and March 27 @ 3pm.

March 27: Encore performance of the critically acclaimed production The Second Coming of Joan of Ark, directed by Liz Valdez, starring Caitie Parsons. Tickets are $17.55. Show begins at 8pm.

April 5 to 9: Vue sur la releve, an amalgamation of dance and musical performances at several Montreal venues throughout the month of April. Individual ticket prices vary, a full festival pass is $50.

April 13 to April 24: A 1973 psycho-drama production, Equus is written by Sir Peter Schaffer and directed by Paul Van Dyck. (Daniel Radcliffe – Harry Potter – starred in the London performance!) Tickets are $30. Check website for array of show times.

~ Tyler Yank