From May 27th to the 29th, Montreal hosted C2-MTL at l’Arsenal, right in the heart of one of Montreal’s fastest growing commercial and residential districts; Griffintown.

     Now in its third year, C2-Mtl has gained worldwide recognition as being a top tier international business conference on commerce and creativity (www.c2mtl.com). Curated by design, communications and advertizing agency SID LEE and supported by Founding Partner Cirque du Soleil, Content Partner Fast Company magazine, and Leadership Partner Microsoft, this annual gathering helps to build connecting bridges between the 4000 + participants over three activity and workshop filled days.

C2-Mtl curates international key speakers that epitomize what’s relevant in the current creative and commercial sphere, as well as share their professional industry advice and life experience to an audience of 1200 attendees with the help of large scale multimedia presentations. Before each speech bloc, charming host Justin Kingsley, would encourage audience members to participate in various collective experiences such as kissing each other on the cheek “Montreal style” and throwing thousands of lighted balls at each other for a long exposure photo. These activities were designed to unite all present and offer a taste of general Montreal culture.

This year’s impressive line up included Nobel Peace Prize Laureate & Chairman Prof. Muhammad Yunus, Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, TV Host George Stroumboulopoulos, filmmaker Xavier Dolan, economist Noreena Hertz, LCD Sound system founder James Murphy, entrepreneurs and community leaders Zita Cobb of Fogo Island, Tony Hsieh of Zappos.com and closing speaker director and adventurer, James Cameron.

Some of the speech highlights include:

–  Nobel Peace Prize Laureate & Chairman, Yunus Center, Prof. Muhammad Yunus’ Statement: “Social business is a cause-driven business”. In other words, he advocates changing the mindsets of people to encourage reinvestment, rather than just offering charity. Companies should encourage youth and women to be entrepreneurs and break the cycle of poverty and generate profit that benefits everyone involved.

–  Shorefast Foundation President Zita Cobb of Fogo Island shared her personal family and life story and passed the message that you have to live your life and dreams vicariously, stand for what you believe in and find value and reinvest in your community. The stunning slideshow of the Fogo Island Artist’s Studios captivated the audience.

– British composer and producer Philip Sheppard demonstrated how music transcends our daily lives. His loop rendition of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah on his cello brought forth thunderous applause!

– International Business and Brand Innovator Cindy Gallop delivered an inspiring and somewhat borderline racy speech encouraging both men and women to feel empowered in their daily sexual lives. Her website Make Love not Porn celebrates “realistic sexiness!” for all!

– The closing talk with visionary filmmaker and adventurer James Cameron, saw the director answering audience questions and speaking enthusiastically of his past cinematographic successes such as crowd favorite Titanic as well as his new collaboration with Cirque du Soleil on an all new live show based on the film director’s revolutionary movie Avatar!