6 Inspiring Ways to Celebrate Black History Month Across Canada

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Black History Month may look different during a global pandemic, but now it’s easier than ever to join virtual events taking place across Canada in 2022.

This story was originally published in February 2021 and was updated in February 2022.

While Black excellence should be celebrated every day, Black History Month is still an important opportunity to applaud the achievements and legacy of Black individuals past and present – from supporting Black‑owned businesses and non‑profit organizations to reading literature by Black authors and learning about Black heroes. Scroll through our list of Black History Month events happening across the country in February. 

February 3, 2022
A man with eyes closed and face raised from the film Dope is Death
   Photo: GAT PR
  1. Toronto Black Film Festival —

    The tenth edition of the Toronto Black Film Festival, whose mission is to amplify Black voices through diverse storytelling on the big screen, takes place February 16 to 21. Be sure to catch the opening night film, Alice, starring Emmy‑award‑winner Keke Palmer, which tells the story of a woman of servitude who narrowly escapes her oppressor and discovers a mind‑bending reality: she has been emancipated for over a century. Don’t forget to check out the TBFF Live Performance Series: This year’s lineup includes Rudy Ray Collective, Donovan Locke, Warrior Love Band and the Waleed Kush African Jazz Ensemble. 

A sign for the Halifax Black Film Festival
   Photo: Halifax Black Film Festival
  1. Halifax Black Film Festival —

    For anyone looking to catch an inspiring flick or two, the sixth annual Halifax Black Film Festival is celebrating Black History Month by promoting films that depict the Black experience. Taking place from February 24 to 27, screenings will showcase a unique array of perspectives and voices in cinema.

A performer from 21 Black Futures
   Photo: CBC and Obsidian Theatre
  1. 21 Black Futures —

    Toronto’s Obsidian Theatre Company, which is dedicated to the expression of the Black voice, commissioned 21 Black playwrights to write a short piece envisioning “the future of Blackness.” Each “monodrama” stars a Black actor and was directed by a Black director – all streaming now on CBC Gem. 

   Photo: Archives of Manitoba, L.B. Foote Fonds, Foote 291, 1 May, 1922, P7393/4
  1. The Manitoba Museum —

    In collaboration with Black History Manitoba, the Manitoba Museum is offering two free virtual field trips on February 9 and 23. Each session is live and interactive, where students in grades 5 through 11 can take a broad historical look at the contributions made and challenges faced by Canada’s Black communities.

Noedy Hechevarria playing the saxophone.
   Photo: Noedy Hechevarria
  1. B.C. Black History Awareness Society —

    This education‑ and awareness‑focused organization is hosting various in‑person and online events throughout the month of February. They include livestreamed talks from prominent figures in the community like Dr. June Francis’ session on the history of anti‑Black racism in Canadian schools and Dr. Cornel West’s talk that will explore themes of economics, democracy, racial justice and Black identity. On February 12, locals can attend the Black History and Heritage Day at the Royal B.C. Museum and explore the themed exhibits, as well as meet with direct descendants about their stories and family history.

Artist and performer Shayna Jones on stage.
   Photo: Louis Bockner
  1. Saskatchewan African Canadian Heritage Museum —

    All month long, you can stream Celebrations and Revelations, a free virtual concert, presented by the Saskatchewan African Canadian Heritage Museum and Black History Month Music Tours. The headlining duo are two brothers, Rashaan Allwood and Yanick Allwood, who explore how Black artists tell stories and celebrate community through music. This year’s concert features award‑winning performance artist Shayna Jones, who will be performing alongside the headliners with a spoken word and song piece.