Urban Planner is Torontoist’s guide to what’s on in Toronto, published every weekday morning, and in a weekend edition Friday afternoons. If you have an event you’d like considered, email all of its details—as well as images, if you’ve got any—to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Katie Stelmanis, aka Austra, right, will be performing at C is for Cure. Photo by Corbin Smith.
This weekend in Toronto: Toronto Design Week takes over the Gladstone, a fundraiser for Bruce Peninsula frontman Neil Haverty, a Mortal Kombat tournament, a night with comedian Maria Bamford, the Weesageechak Festival continues, and a board game design workshop.
DESIGN: Is the Toronto International Design Festival a little too mainstream for your aesthetic tastes? Looking for an alternative Toronto Design Week opportunity? Then head on down to the Gladstone Hotel for Come Up To My Room, curated by Jeremy Vandermeij and Deborah Wang. (Not sure which one you like? We have reviews of both.) The entire hotel has been transformed into a design showcase, with room installations and public space projects on every floor—and even outside. In addition to the regular exhibition running Saturday and Sunday, there will also be Design Talks (Saturday 11 a.m.–2 p.m.), an opening reception (Saturday 7 p.m.), and a Love Design Party with DJs Denise Benson and Joe Blow (Saturday 10 p.m.). Gladstone Hotel (1214 Queen Street West), Saturday 12–10 p.m., Sunday 12–5 p.m., $10.
MUSIC: Last month Bruce Peninsula frontman Neil Haverty was diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukaemia. The odds of recovery are strongly in his favour, but the financial cost is heavy, so several of Neil’s friends in the music community have decided to hold a fundraiser in his honour. C is for Cure will run all day Saturday in two segments, with The Lake Vernon Drowning, Steven McKay, The Deeep, Kith & Kin, and Snowblink making up the matinee docket, while Evening Hymns, Austra, and Timber Timbre take to the stage in the evening. Though the evening show is sold out, the matinee still has tickets available. Unable to attend, but still want to donate? Check out the handy donations page via PayPal. Music Gallery (197 John Street), Saturday 3 p.m., PWYC ($10 suggestion).
FILM: In keeping with their gloriously outside-the-box approach to running a cinema, the staff of Toronto Underground Cinema will be contributing their screen to a martial arts double bill and Mortal Kombat tournament in Throwdown 3. Contenders will face off for the blood-soaked title between screenings of Big Trouble in Little China and an as-yet-unnamed mystery film. There will be prizes for best costume, which raises the question: do you go as Goro or Motaro? FIGHT! The Underground Cinema (186 Spadina Avenue), Saturday 6:30 p.m., $8 single show, $14 double bill.
COMEDY: Comic Maria Bamford is hopping right off Variety’s Top Ten Comics to Watch list and onto the stage at Comedy Bar for four premium shows. Bamford will be teaming up with a different duo of local talent for each show, including Diana Love, Tim Gilbert, Evan Desmarais, and Sara Hennessey on Saturday night. Comedy Bar (945 Bloor Street West), Saturday 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., $20 per show.
FESTIVAL: The Weesageechak Festival has been showcasing new works from Canada’s Aboriginal community for twenty-three years now, and has launched several artists’ careers (including Drew Hayden Taylor and Tara Beagan). The festival closes Saturday with The Last Night on Earth, a multimedia show of spoken word, music, and a screening of The Red Diva Projects‘ film The Road Forward. The Theatre Centre (1087 Queen Street West), Saturday 8 p.m., $10.
WORKSHOP: Toronto has been riding a wave of board game fever after one heroic cafe opened up last year. While Snakes & Lattes offers a perfect forum for those wishing to play board games, where do you go if you wish to take your love of the format a step further? Board Game Jam, that’s where! A weekend-long crash course in board game design, this workshop provides the impetus and resources to bring your vision of tabletop gameplay to life. Unfortunately, the seminar itself is sold out, but all the finished products will be available for beta testing at a board game party Sunday night which is open to the public. Drop in, roll the dice, and see if you can’t get a few rounds in on the next big thing in board games—before everyone has heard about it. The Rhino (1249 Queen Street West), Sunday 7 p.m., FREE.
We originally wrote that the Weesageechak Festival is in its thirteenth year, inadvertently making them younger by a decade: in fact, it is their twenty-third year. Our apologies.