Alliance Française Ottawa launches fall cultural activities

By Wes Smiderle

A musician performs at the Allaince Francaise Ottawa
The Alliance Francaise Ottawa is resuming in-person events, like its concerts. Photo supplied by AFO

The Alliance Française Ottawa (AFO) is kicking off a range of cultural activities this fall, both online and in-person.

The AFO is known as a language centre offering French courses, tests and assessments but it also hosts a variety of cultural francophone activities.

“People from any skill level are welcome,” says Marie Clémence Brou, AFO communication and marketing manager. “There are all sorts of activities where people can take the opportunity to practice their French.”

Online events include “Speak Dating,” a “pan-Canadian” meeting held via Zoom where people pair off for friendly conversations in French.

This year, the association resumed in-person activities, including its monthly “pub night in French” resuming Friday September 30 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at The Gilmour 313 Bank St.

Near to the Manor Park area, the AFO holds a weekly Zumba session in French every Saturday from 4:30 to 5:30 at Décathlon, 1055 St. Laurent Blvd. Admission is $5, or free for AFO members.

Other upcoming in-person events include:

  • Movie Night for the month of October features the French-Belgian production “La Dernière vie de Simon”, a story of a young orphan with the power to acquire the appearance of whomever he touches. The movie will be screened Friday October 7 starting at 7 until 8:45 p.m. and followed by discussion in French. Admission is $5, or free for AFO members.
  • The Elysée Quartet, who combine the French and Russian schools of classical music, perform at 7:30 p.m. Thursday October 20 at the Church of St. Bartholomew, 125 McKay St. Tickets are $20, or $15 for AFO members.
  • The Lorenzo Naccarato Trio featuring drummer Benjamin Naud, pianist and composer Lorenzo Naccarato, and Adrien Rodriguez on the double bass performing cinematic jazz-inspired music at 7:30 p.m. Thursday November 3 at Club SAW, 67 Nicholas St. Tickets are $20, or $15 for AFO members.

The AFO is part of a wide international Alliance Française network created in 1883 whose missions are to promote French language and Francophone cultures around the world. Found in 133 countries, the Alliances Françaises are non-profit organizations forming an international network but each one is founded locally. The AFO is a Canadian association founded in 1905.