Blip Festival: This annual Game Boy symphony allows those with a penchant for antiquated video game sounds to come together and create retro-electro concertos for similarly-minded music fans. You may have thought you were clever recycling your orange juice cartons, but the nearly 30 international artists who attend Blip create original music out of low-bit video game consoles that otherwise would have found their second life in the scrap heap. This style of music, known in the underground scene as chiptune, is anything but simple. In the hands of artists such as Random and Nullsleep, these toys create rousing, throbbing electronic music. The conference gives those who create the music a chance to tinker during the day. They then perform in the evening for the benefit of those who have never pulled apart their
Whistler Film Festival: When they’re working in Hollywood, Canadian celebrities are skilled at downplaying the “Canadian’’ and playing up the “celebrity.’’ We’re looking at you, Pamela Anderson. But at the Whistler Film Festival, Canadians are celebrated, without being cagey about their northern roots. The festival prides itself on drawing more than 60 percent of its films from Canada. This year, director-producer Ivan Reitman (yes, he is Canadian, too) will be attending the event, helping to judge the best new Canadian film. The good news is that if you don’t find many films to your liking, there’s always skiing, and lots of it. Passes for the festival start at $38. www.whistlerfilmfestival.com, 877-838-3456
Resolution: Amateurs reserve their revelry for New Year’s Eve alone. Here the party spills over to New Year’s Day - and the day after. The aptly-named Resolution kicks off at 9:30 p.m. on Jan. 1 and keeps going until 10 the next morning. Your feet may resolve to quit the rest of your body if you participate for the entire evening. Mega star DJ Paul van Dyk headlines the party, which takes place at Bell Centre stadium. Tickets have already gone on sale, and will probably sell out by late December. Prices start around $80. 1260 De la Gauchetiere West, bellcentre.ca
Sunburn Festival: Early passes have sold out, but another round of tickets for South Asia’s original electronic music festival will go on sale soon. This year’s Sunburn Festival features trance DJ luminaries Armin Van Buuren, Roger Sanchez, John “00’’ Fleming, Sanjay Dutta, and Dave Lee, along with live sets from Jalebee Cartel and Midival Punditz. Sunburn lives up to its name by staging massive dance parties on the beach in the warm and tropical state of Goa. This year the festival adds a Sunburn After Dark party for those who prefer to dance under the cloak of darkness. Three-day passes are available starting at $55. www.sunburn-festival.com
Ice Music Festival: Halfway between Oslo and Bergen this small town hosts its annual music festival where the instruments are made of ice and the vodka is always very, very cold. Ice sculptors create everything from ice harps to ice violins for musicians to play in the stunning, snowy setting. This year’s performers include percussionist Terje Isungset and singers Lena Nymark and Helene Boksle. Local food and drink are served in an igloo (where else?) and it all takes place under a full moon. Festival dates are dictated by lunar cycles. www.icefestival.no
Events are sometimes canceled, rescheduled, or sold out; check online. Christopher Muther can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.