Bloor Ossington Folk Festival

Catl., shown here playing at the 2013 ALL CAPS! Music Festival, is much louder than you'd expect a two-person band to be.

Catl., shown here playing at the 2013 ALL CAPS! Music Festival, is much louder than you'd expect a two-person band to be.

  • Multiple venues
  • All day

Christie Pits and surrounding local venues will host more than 40 bands and music acts over three days during the Bloor Ossington Folk Festival, and it’s all free. Starting on Friday evening at venues like Saving Gigi and Studio 835, and expanding to all-day programming at Christie Pits on Saturday and Sunday, the festival lineup includes Julie Doiron, By Divine Right, catl., and many more (the festival’s criteria for “folk” being, more or less, local music). Local craft and food vendors and a festival beer garden will round out the experience—and again, all the bands are free.

Details: Bloor Ossington Folk Festival

Hip-Hop Karaoke 4th Annual Competition

  • Revival (783 College Street)
  • 9:30 p.m.

This is the Hip-Hop Karaoke night that really counts. For their fourth annual competition event, where 20 aspiring rappers will compete for bragging rights and prizes, the organizers have tapped DJ Paul E. Lopes, Ennis Esmer (CTV’s The Listener), Tara Chase, and old-school outfit Black Moon as judges. (Black Moon will also perform at the conclusion of the competition.)

Details: Hip-Hop Karaoke 4th Annual Competition

Ongoing…

The Royal Ontario Museum Takes a Modern Approach to the Cradle of Civilization

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While the Toronto International Film Festival may have shifted into a more relaxed mode, it’s still offering plenty of opportunities to gawk at movie stars—they’re just a little more spread out. Midweek, fans could catch the premieres of Good Kill (Ethan Hawke as a drone pilot), Maps to the Stars (David Cronenberg’s new bit of oddness), The Imitation Game (Benedict Cumberbatch as World War II cryptographer Alan Turing), Jauja (Viggo Mortensen, and we don’t know much else really), Laggies (Sam Rockwell and Keira Knightley in a comedy about people taking their sweet time to grow up), October Gale (Patricia Clarkson and Scott Speedman in a thriller/drama set in a remote cabin), Pawn Sacrifice (about the chess duels between Boris Spassky and Bobby Fischer), The Cobbler (Adam Sandler’s latest) and Escobar (Benicio Del Toro is the famous drug kingpin).


Want more TIFF coverage? Torontoist‘s film festival hub is right over here.
Details: TIFF 2014 Scenes: Tuesday–Thursday Nights, Featuring Good Kill, Maps to the Stars, The Imitation Game, Jauja, Laggies, and More

A Sampling of the Stratford Festival

Scott Wentworth as Tevye, with Jacquelyn French (Hodel), Keely Hutton (Chava) and Jennifer Stewart (Tzeitel) in Fiddler on the Roof. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann.

Scott Wentworth as Tevye, with Jacquelyn French (Hodel), Keely Hutton (Chava) and Jennifer Stewart (Tzeitel) in Fiddler on the Roof. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann.

  • Multiple venues
  • All day

If Fringe and SummerWorks aren’t enough to satisfy your summer theatre cravings, the world-renowned Stratford Festival is now only a bus ride away from downtown Toronto, thanks to the new Stratford Direct bus route (“the best thing [the Festival] has done in years” according to one usher at the Avon Theatre). Artistic Director Antoni Cimolino has put together a season to please tastes from the traditional to the extravagant. Here’s what we think about five of Stratford’s current productions.

Details: A Sampling of the Stratford Festival

Flight: A Thrilling History of an Idea

  • Toronto Reference Library (789 Yonge Street)
  • All day

Flight: A Thrilling History of an Idea is a new exhibition from the Toronto Reference Library that gathers a number of rare items that explore the theme of the possible and the impossible. Some of the highlights on display are La vingtième siècle: la vie électrique (a rare French book that shows how scientific discoveries would have affected people in 1955), Tame (a sci-fi pulp magazine), and Worldly Wisdom (watercolour that depicts a Leonardo da Vinci-like figure creating a winged flying machine). You’ll find the exhibition in the library’s TD Gallery.

Details: Flight: A Thrilling History of an Idea

BEARS IN THE STREETS *the world as I’ve seen it

Image courtesy of Jeff Blackburn.

Image courtesy of Jeff Blackburn.

  • Gallery 431 (431 Roncesvalles Avenue)
  • All day

BEARS IN THE STREETS *the world as I’ve seen it is a solo art exhibition by Jeff Blackburn featuring works that involve bears, which act as guides through various cityscapes (see above for example). Visitors will have the chance to see different public spaces from around the world (with bears!). The opening reception will be held on September 1st and will start at 7 p.m.

Details: BEARS IN THE STREETS *the world as I’ve seen it

A Look Ahead to Toronto Beer Week 2013

Lining up in front of Bar Volo. Photo by markosaar, from the Torontoist Flickr Pool.

Lining up in front of Bar Volo. Photo by markosaar, from the Torontoist Flickr Pool.

  • Multiple venues
  • All day

There are plenty of weeks that involve the consumption of beer in Toronto, but there’s only one true Toronto Beer Week. As craft beer’s popularity continues to grow along with the roster of brewers in this city, Toronto Beer Week is a good opportunity to take the pulse of a thriving scene—or, just to knock back a few good brews and have some fun. Whichever you prefer. Here are a few events to look out for.

Details: A Look Ahead to Toronto Beer Week 2013

Torontonians Hold a Benefit Concert to Support LGBT Rights in Uganda

Residents of a GEHO safe house, sending their love back to Toronto. Photo courtesy of A Luta Continua.

Residents of a GEHO safe house, sending their love back to Toronto. Photo courtesy of A Luta Continua.

  • The Steady (1051 Bloor Street West)

For Lauryn Kronick and Jacqie Lucas, their upcoming benefit concert, A Luta Continua, isn’t just a way to raise money for LGBT safe-house programs in Uganda—it’s also a way for Toronto’s queer community to show solidarity with one half a world away. The proceeds will benefit Gender Equality and Health Organization Uganda, a group that provides safe houses for gay Ugandans who have been driven out of their communities.

LGBT people in Uganda face extreme discrimination. Homosexuality is punishable by life in jail, and violence is a constant threat.

“GEHO provides a place for about 180 LGBT Ugandans who’ve been kicked out of their homes and communities for their sexual orientation,” says Kronick. “Lately, they’ve been getting requests for more and more help. They run three safe houses, and they’re going to be holding pride celebrations later on this month.”

Details: Torontonians Hold a Benefit Concert to Support LGBT Rights in Uganda

Just For Laughs 42: A Festival Preview

Headliner Aziz Ansari. Photo courtesy of JFL42.

Headliner Aziz Ansari. Photo courtesy of JFL42.

  • Multiple venues
  • All day

The planners behind Just For Laughs 42 sure do have a good sense of humour. For starters, the name is a little bit of a joke. Anyone thinking that the “42″ refers to the number of years the comedy festival has been in operation would be sorely mistaken—it actually denotes the number of events taking place during the ten days of the festival’s run.

This year’s JFL42 will feature three headline events: appearances by Sarah Silverman and Aziz Ansari, and a live reading of an episode of Family Guy—complete with cast members and a 40-piece orchestra. But there’s plenty more worth checking out. Our overview of this year’s festival is below.

Details: Just For Laughs 42: A Festival Preview

The Manifesto Festival Celebrates Its Evolution

Eternia will be performing at Manifesto's Live at the Square concert. Photo by Jason Rodriguez.

Eternia will be performing at Manifesto's Live at the Square concert. Photo by Jason Rodriguez.

  • Multiple venues

For their event’s seventh anniversary, the minds behind the Manifesto Festival of Community and Culture did some thinking on the theme of evolution.

“The number seven is a very sacred number, and really tied into the idea of regeneration,” says Manifesto chair Che Kothari. “Every seven years, every cell in the human body regenerates itself, and we’re kind of born again, and right now we’re kind of going through that as an organization.”

Details: The Manifesto Festival Celebrates Its Evolution

The World According to “Ai Weiwei: According to What?”

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  • Art Gallery of Ontario (317 Dundas Street West)
  • 10 a.m.

Ai Weiwei is a 56-year-old artist confined to his home in Beijing for creating work critical of the Chinese government and Chinese culture. There are video cameras outside his house, his phone lines are tapped, his blog was deleted, his Shanghai studio was destroyed in 2010 by authorities, and his passport was confiscated in 2011. To this day, he’s unable to leave his country. Even so, Ai Weiwei has had a large presence in Toronto over the past few months.

This past June, he did a performance piece with artist Laurie Anderson during the Luminato Festival, using Skype. His Zodiac Heads have been installed, temporarily, in the reflecting pool in front of City Hall. At this year’s Nuit Blanche, a large-scale version of his sculpture of bicycles, Forever, will take over Nathan Phillips Square. And beginning August 17, the Art Gallery of Ontario is displaying “Ai Weiwei: According to What?”, a retrospective of the work he produced before and after the Chinese government’s crackdown on his activities helped him find new international acclaim.

Details: The World According to “Ai Weiwei: According to What?”

Dine Her

Bruce Hunter and Erica Wood star in Dine Her. Photo by Carinne Leduc.

Bruce Hunter and Erica Wood star in Dine Her. Photo by Carinne Leduc.

  • George Street Diner (129 George Street)
  • 7 p.m.

Bruce Hunter writes and stars in Dine Her, a zombie comedy set in the authentic George Street Diner. This undead spin on dinner theatre features a special menu by Ash Farrelly, music by Sean Fisher, and zombie dancers from One Immigrant Productions.

Details: Dine Her

Angels in America Is Worth the Marathon Running Time

An Angel (Raquel Duffy) appears to AIDS patient Prior Walter (Damien Atkins) in Angels in America. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann.

An Angel (Raquel Duffy) appears to AIDS patient Prior Walter (Damien Atkins) in Angels in America. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann.

  • Young Centre for the Performing Arts (50 Tank House Lane)
  • 7:30 p.m.

Many people now routinely consume television series in marathon benders, blowing through DVDs or Netflix downloads in a few evenings or a weekend. It’s that sort of experience—but live, of course—that awaits audiences at Soulpepper’s production of Tony Kushner’s Angels in America, which offers over six hours of impeccably staged and performed theatre either in two long evenings or over the course of one full day, with multiple intermissions and a meal break.

Details: Angels in America Is Worth the Marathon Running Time

Tapestry Briefs

Tapestry Briefs. Photo by Brian Allen Stewart.

Tapestry Briefs. Photo by Brian Allen Stewart.

  • Studio 315 (9 Trinity Street, Distillery Historic District)
  • 7:30 p.m.

Tapestry Briefs is a series of new opera scenes developed by a number of talented people, including composers Jocelyn Morlock and Chris Thornborrow, playwrights Morris Panych and Julie Tepperman, and singers Carla Huhtanen and Krisztina Szabó.

CORRECTION: September 10, 4:55 PM Previously, the listing did not include the date and time for the performance on Friday, September 20. We have now included that date in the listing.

Details: Tapestry Briefs

Look Back in Anger

The cast of Look Back in Anger. Photo courtesy of FeverGraph Theatre Company.

The cast of Look Back in Anger. Photo courtesy of FeverGraph Theatre Company.

  • Thrush Homes Empire Gallery (1093 Queen Street West)
  • 8 p.m.

FeverGraph Theatre Company wants you to get mad (and perhaps go mad) over their new stage production. Look Back in Anger focuses on four people, and the anger that cripples each of them. Rather being a study of hot tempers, the play examines our common desire to feel something deeper than what reality delivers, our sense of futility, and the anger that ensues. Directed by Anita La Selva, the piece was co-conceived by its performers: Eli Ham, Adriano Sobretodo Jr., Tosha Doiron, and Zoë Sweet.

Details: Look Back in Anger

Second City’s New Show Is a Heroic Effort

Allison Price, about to lose her patience with Stacey McGunnigle. Photo courtesy of Second City.

Allison Price, about to lose her patience with Stacey McGunnigle. Photo courtesy of Second City.

  • Second City (51 Mercer Street)
  • 7:30 p.m., 10 p.m.

You might expect a show called We Can Be Heroes to be a send-up of superhero films, but Second City’s new mainstage production is actually a celebration of minor, everyday acts of heroism ranging from giving advice to a bullied child to managing not to be a jackass at your friend’s wedding.

Details: Second City’s New Show Is a Heroic Effort