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Casual Fridays at the National Arts Centre: Giveaway #1 #NACOFridays – UPDATED

Culinary Overture Culinary Overture
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Food feeds our bodies, our well-being, maybe even our souls. Food is fuel. We live in a culture obsessed with food. We talk and we read about it. We wake up wondering what to eat, what to buy, and what’s healthy. Regardless of where you might find yourself in the world, food will always bring family, friends, even strangers together.

But, there’s also something else that is as universal as food. And, that is music. For me, both food and music feed my soul.

This might sound surprising given the large role food plays in my life, but my first love was and always will be music. In my younger days, I was a pianist, devoting hours practicing and trying to perfect my scales and technique. I grew up dreaming someday I would play and compete on the national stage and perform at the National Arts Centre (NAC). The NAC once hosted Canada’s biggest music competition. Of course, I never did accomplish that goal (although my youngest sister came pretty darn close), but my love for classical and romantic music remains.

So, imagine my excitement when I received word that a new event would be taking place at the NAC, a “social and culinary overture,” appropriately called 3 Casual Fridays with the NAC Orchestra.

Bringing together music, food, wine, and people, the NAC is introducing a new concert series to music and food lovers over the course of three Friday evenings: This coming Friday (Nov. 1st); March 7th (2014); and June 6th (2014).

The NAC describes its new concert series as “a brand new way of experiencing world-class classical music in a sexy, foodie environment.” Accordingly, attendees can expect to see “amazing classical musicians, terrific guest performers, some of Ottawa’s hottest live jazz acts, tantalizing food and beverages, and a full house of fun, curious, music-loving people who are there to relax, socialize, and enjoy something new and exciting.”

Each evening will comprise of three parts:

  • From 5:45pm to 6:45pm, there will be a pre-concert in the Southam Hall Lobby. Enjoy an optional exquisite culinary overture, some live jazz music with a glass of wine and a tapas meal prepared by Executive Chef John Morris and his talented kitchen.
  • Afterwards, a 90 minute concert with the NAC Orchestra and guest artists.
  • The evening finishes with a reception at 8:30pm in the Mezzanime. Mingle with fellow attendees and the musicians over a cup of coffee or tea.

Choose to participate in all three or purchase tickets to just the concert. It’s up to you!

This being a food blog, here’s a small sample of the delicious tapas that awaits you!

Confit pork shoulder tacos with charred pineapple, mole verde & Clarmell feta

Confit pork shoulder tacos with charred pineapple, mole verde & Clarmell feta

Lump crab cakes with roasted corn, ginger-tamarind chutney & cilantro sprouts

Lump crab cakes with roasted corn, ginger-tamarind chutney & cilantro sprouts

Grilled cheese "lambwich"  - brioche, aged white cheddar, braised lamb shank, arugula & "fiery "ratatouille" relish

Grilled cheese “lambwich” – brioche, aged white cheddar, braised lamb shank, arugula & “fiery “ratatouille” relish

BBQ duck lettuce wraps with pickled radish & roasted enoki mushrooms

BBQ duck lettuce wraps with pickled radish & roasted enoki mushrooms

Black and white barley cake, crushed tomato and tarragon reduction & Quebec brie gratin

Black and white barley cake, crushed tomato and tarragon reduction & Quebec brie gratin

Tempura prawn po-boy, butter leaf & smoked chili aioli

Tempura prawn po-boy, butter leaf & smoked chili aioli

Music-wise, Friday’s concert will feature one of the world’s most popular works, Symphonie Fantastique.

Written by French composer Hector Berlioz in the first half of the 1800s, it remains a beloved piece of the early Romantic music period to this day. Having fallen deeply in love with Harriet Smithson, a Shakespearean actress, Berlioz poured his soul into this masterpiece, hoping to capture her attention.

Featuring Cameron Carpenter on the organ, it is sure to be a night to remember.

Giveaway:
Courtesy of the NAC, we will be giving away two pairs of tickets.

Here’s the deal: Leave a comment to this post, telling us what you serve with romantic music playing in the background. Supply us with an email address so that we can contact you. At noon (EST) on Wednesday October 30th, we will use Random.org to choose two winners, each winner receiving a pair of tickets. One winner will also receive passes to the culinary overture.

Particulars:
3 Casual Fridays with the NAC Orchestra
November 1, 2013
National Arts Centre
53 Elgin St
(613) 947-7000

Click here to purchase tickets Casual Friday.

UPDATE:
The contest is now closed. In total, we received 18 viable entries.

  1. Nick Bachusky
  2. Matthew Walsh
  3. Isabelle
  4. Kate Headley
  5. Craig Buckley
  6. Fumie
  7. HollyStar
  8. Mireille La Forge
  9. Amanda Cottreau
  10. Maricela
  11. Doug Cully
  12. Shamima Khan
  13. Deborah Robertson
  14. Shanley Matthews
  15. Kyle Kierstead
  16. Karen Speers
  17. Devin
  18. Mark

    Here’s are the numbers Random.org chose:

    Winner #1

    Winner #1


    Winner #2

    Winner #2

    Congratulations to our first winner, Isabelle and to our second winner, Fumie! Emails will be dispatched to you shortly!

    Thank you to everyone who entered. Stay tuned for the next Casual Friday giveaway in March 2014!

Teacher by day and blogger by night, I have always been passionate about food. I grew up watching my mother cook and bake as I sat at the kitchen table doing my homework. In the summers, I happily played in the backyard garden, picking strawberries as my parents tended their crops. A city girl with a love for the outdoors, my goal is to capture the ever-changing Ottawa food scene. When I’m not running, you can find me shopping for ingredients or in the kitchen cooking for my family and friends. Whether you’ve been cooking for a long time or are learning to cook for the first time, I hope you will find something delicious here to inspire you.