Origins and Evolution of Goth Music

  • Bloor/Gladstone Branch, Toronto Public Library (1101 Bloor Street West)
  • 7 p.m.

Get out your black lipstick, corsets, and chokers! Liisa Ladouceur, music journalist and author of Encyclopedia Gothica and How to Kill a Vampire, presents a lecture on what she knows best: the Origins and Evolution of Goth Music. Using her Goth Band Family Tree, she’ll trace the genre’s progression and ties to industrial, 1970′s punk, metal, new wave, and even folk.

Details: Origins and Evolution of Goth Music

Provocateur

Liz Johnston, Alice Moran, Dan Jeannotte, Gavin Williams and Carmine Lucarelli star in Provocateur. Photo by Connor Low.

Liz Johnston, Alice Moran, Dan Jeannotte, Gavin Williams and Carmine Lucarelli star in Provocateur. Photo by Connor Low.

  • Comedy Bar (945 Bloor Street West)
  • 8 p.m.

Provocateur is part zombie apocalypse story, part spy thriller, and all improvised. Following an epidemic that has wiped out most of North America, the ruined Canadian and American governments find themselves facing a Soviet conspiracy. Complete with heavy Russian accents, Alice Moran, Roger Bainbridge, Adam Cawley, Conor Holler, Dan Jeannotte, Carmine Lucarelli, Lindsay Mullan, Briana Templeton, and Gavin Williams round out the cast of this witty improv comedy.

Details: Provocateur

Punk Rock Bingo

  • The Beaver (1192 Queen Street West)
  • 9 p.m.

Bingo: it’s not just for octogenarians anymore! Punk Rock Bingo is shaking things up by adding a punk soundtrack to an already stellar game. There will be great prizes, drink specials, and an appearance by punk-rock drag queen Jenna Syde. Since punks aren’t always about anarchy and destruction, proceeds from the event will be donated to a variety of local charities.

Details: Punk Rock Bingo

CineMacabre: The Lair of the White Worm

  • TIFF Bell Lightbox (350 King Street West)
  • 9 p.m.

Rue Morgue Magazine presents a special 35mm screening of Ken Russell’s The Lair of the White Worm. Celebrating its 25th anniversary, this Bram Stoker adaptation follows an archeology student on assignment in a small English village. He eventually finds himself on a quest to hunt down and slay the fabled d’Ampton “worm” in order to save the local townspeople. Naturally, strange and horrifying events ensue. Like always, audience members will be treated to a slew of prizes from a variety of sponsors.

Details: CineMacabre: The Lair of the White Worm

Ongoing…

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

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  • Royal Ontario Museum (100 Queens Park)
  • All day

The name “Mesopotamia” derives from a Greek term meaning “land between the rivers.” The Royal Ontario Museum’s latest major exhibit, which opens on June 22, takes this literally, as visitors flow between painted representations of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers on the floor.

Presented by the British Museum and rounded out with pieces from institutions in Chicago, Detroit, and Philadelphia, “Mesopotamia: Inventing Our World” covers 3,000 years of human development in the cradle of urban civilization. Most of the 170 artifacts on display have never been shown in Canada.

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

Evil Dead The Musical Returns to Toronto

Ryan Ward and Laura Tremblay in Evil Dead The Musical. Photo by David Hou.

Ryan Ward and Laura Tremblay in Evil Dead The Musical. Photo by David Hou.

  • The Randolph Theatre (736 Bathurst St.)
  • All day

Since its humble beginnings in the back room of Toronto’s Tranzac club back in 2003, Evil Dead The Musical has steadily risen in infamy as a ridiculously fun, tongue-in-cheek, gore-soaked musical experience. From those earliest shows, the musical has gone on to make an off-broadway debut, to win and be nominated for several Dora awards, and to play in dozens of cities around the world, from Montreal and Vancouver to Tokyo and Madrid. It was high time that the show make a triumphant homecoming to a stage in Toronto, and it finally has, at the Randolph Theatre.

Details: Evil Dead The Musical Returns to Toronto

TIFF’s First Major Original Exhibition Traces David Cronenberg’s Evolution

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  • TIFF Bell Lightbox (350 King Street West)

It’s not every day that a media tour opens with the injunction not to photograph “the sex blob,” but so began TIFF’s preview of “David Cronenberg: Evolution,” the organization’s first large-scale touring exhibition (for now, it’s stationed at the TIFF Bell Lightbox’s HSBC Gallery). It’s an exhaustive, stunning look at some of the wildest, most perverse creations of a pioneer of the body-horror genre—who also happens to be Canada’s most internationally renowned filmmaker.

Details: TIFF’s First Major Original Exhibition Traces David Cronenberg’s Evolution

Go Hear the People Sing in Les Misérables

Ramin Karimloo will make you weep, or at least want to give him a hug, as Jean Valjean in Les Miserables. Photo by Matthew Murphy.

Ramin Karimloo will make you weep, or at least want to give him a hug, as Jean Valjean in Les Miserables. Photo by Matthew Murphy.

  • Princess of Wales Theatre (300 King Street West)
  • 7:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m.

Every revolution needs a leader. And though the movement to bring the classic 1980s musical Les Misérables back to Toronto is markedly different than the quest for political accountability and social equality, it has its hero just the same. After the official opening performance at the Princess of Wales Theatre, the audience likely would have followed London-based, Richmond Hill-raised performer Ramin Karimloo (as the story’s golden-hearted protagonist, Jean Valjean) anywhere he would lead.

Details: Go Hear the People Sing in Les Misérables

Pieces of Me

Shahi Teruko and Sheldon Neil star in Pieces of Me. Image courtesy of Promise Productions.

Shahi Teruko and Sheldon Neil star in Pieces of Me. Image courtesy of Promise Productions.

  • Theatre Passe Muraille Mainspace (16 Ryerson Avenue)
  • 7:30 p.m.

The old adage “appearances can be deceiving” rings true in Promise Productions’ new musical, Pieces of Me. Though Pamela and Parker seem to have a perfect marriage, trouble brews just below the surface. Parker works to solidify a happy future with his wife, not knowing that Pamela is restless, and harbouring a secret that could destroy everything. Written and directed by Deon Denton, the play stars the Shahi Teruko (Canada’s Got Talent), and recording artist Sheldon Neil.

Details: Pieces of Me

Heaven Above Heaven Below Comes Out on Top

Layne Coleman and Linda Griffiths in Heaven Above Heaven Below. Photo by Michael Cooper.

Layne Coleman and Linda Griffiths in Heaven Above Heaven Below. Photo by Michael Cooper.

  • Theatre Passe Muraille Backspace (16 Ryerson Avenue)
  • 7:30 p.m.

The world is a shockingly small place; just being in it will inevitably, repeatedly, and involuntarily bring you face to face with people you’d rather not meet more than once. In the case of Linda Griffiths’ new play Heaven Above Heaven Below, the wedding of a mutual friend reunites two nameless characters, He and She, twenty years after a short-lived fling resulted in She getting an abortion (which Griffiths detailed in her 1991 hit The Darling Family, to which this is the real-time sequel). The premise is enough to make anyone swear off large gatherings with undisclosed guest lists.

Details: Heaven Above Heaven Below Comes Out on Top

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)
  • 8 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

FireWorks

FireWorks features three pieces by local playwrights. Image courtesy of the Alumnae Theatre Company.

FireWorks features three pieces by local playwrights. Image courtesy of the Alumnae Theatre Company.

  • Alumnae Theatre (70 Berkeley Street)
  • 8 p.m.

The Alumnae Theatre Company presents its inaugural FireWorks theatre showcase. Akin to the New Ideas Festival, this series features plays created in-house by local artists. Three pieces will be staged during the three-week run: Theory by Norman Yeung, Gloria’s Guy by Joan Burrows, and Measure of the World by Shirley Barrie. For those who want more than just stage productions, there will also be several roundtable discussions and playwright talks to attend.

Details: FireWorks

Julius Caesar

  • Unit 102 Theatre (376 Dufferin Street)
  • 8 p.m.

The Unit 102 Actors Company brings Shakespeare’s tale of power and corruption to life with its production of Julius Caesar. Taking place in 44 B.C., the play follows the events surrounding Caesar’s assassination. First performed as early as 1599, many of the story’s central issues are still relevant today.

Details: Julius Caesar

Play Reading Week

  • Tarragon Theatre, Near Studio (30 Bridgman Avenue)
  • 8 p.m.

Tarragon Theatre presents ten days of innovative onstage creations as part of Play Reading Week. The showcase will debut new works from members of the 2013 Playwrights Unit, and many of the plays will go on to be developed further in Tarragon’s WorkSpace program and mounted as full productions in future seasons. A different burgeoning playwright will find him or herself in the spotlight each night. On the roster are Kate Cayley, Anna Chatterton, Jordi Mand, Amy Lee Lavoie, Maria Milisavljevic, Jessica Anderson, Adam Paolozza, Diane Flacks, Marilo Nuñez, and Gord Rand.

Details: Play Reading Week

Director Chris Abraham Talks Winners and Losers

Chris Abraham. Photo courtesy of Red Eye Media.

Chris Abraham. Photo courtesy of Red Eye Media.

  • Berkeley Street Theatre (26 Berkeley Street)
  • 8 p.m., 1:30 p.m.

Winners and Losers is a play by Marcus Youssef and James Long based on a game of the same name the two theatre artists sometimes play. They pick a person, place, or thing, and debate whether it’s a “winner” or a “loser.” But it probably wouldn’t be fair to pick their director (and Crow’s Theatre artistic director) Chris Abraham as a topic, particularly since he was recently declared the winner of the Siminovitch Prize, Canadian theatre’s most prestigious (not to mention lucrative) honour.

Details: Director Chris Abraham Talks Winners and Losers

The Valley Could Dive Deeper

Ian Lake and Colin Mercer in The Valley. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann.

Ian Lake and Colin Mercer in The Valley. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann.

  • Tarragon Theatre (30 Bridgman Avenue)
  • 8 p.m.

The plot of Joan MacLeod’s The Valley, on now at Tarragon Theatre, is unfortunately all too familiar: an 18-year-old recent college drop-out experiences his first psychotic episode on Vancouver’s SkyTrain. The exhausted police officer called to the scene arrests him for causing a public disturbance, spurring debate over whether or not he used excessive force in the process. A Toronto audience only has to think of Sammy Yatim’s shooting this August to be reminded how common these situations are. A perceived threat to public safety coupled with the absence of a solid understanding of mental illness can—and often does—lead to violence.

Details: The Valley Could Dive Deeper

Heaving Bosoms and Sharp Class Critique in After Miss Julie

Amy Keating, Christopher Morris, and Claire Armstrong star in Red One Theatre's After Miss Julie. Photo by Jonas Widdifield.

Amy Keating, Christopher Morris, and Claire Armstrong star in Red One Theatre's After Miss Julie. Photo by Jonas Widdifield.

  • The Storefront Theatre (955 Bloor Street West)
  • 8 p.m.

Toronto theatre audiences have seen a number of adaptations of Strindberg’s Miss Julie in the past few years. The original now seems dated, but Miss Julie: She’Mah, a Canadian-targeted adaptation by playwright Tara Beagan, ratcheted up the tension by giving Miss Julie residential-school-educated servants. Canadian Stage’s somewhat less effective Miss Julie: Freedom Summer used American race politics. But British playwright Patrick Marber’s 2003 adaptation, After Miss Julie, zeroes in on sexual politics and baseline class separations, all against the backdrop of a British country home at the close of World War II. Red One Theatre’s Canadian premiere plays up the danger and slow-burning tension expertly, with three experienced cast members: Claire Armstrong in the title role, and Christopher Morris and Amy Keating as Julie’s father’s servants.

Details: Heaving Bosoms and Sharp Class Critique in After Miss Julie

Sunparlour Players Residency

See the Sunparlour Players every Wednesday night in October and November at Dakota Tavern. Photo by Simon Willms.

See the Sunparlour Players every Wednesday night in October and November at Dakota Tavern. Photo by Simon Willms.

  • Dakota Tavern (249 Ossington Avenue)
  • 9 p.m.

Sunparlour Players, a Torontonian folk-rock institution, is taking over the Dakota Tavern every Wednesday in October and November to debut some new songs and bring new life to the older ones. To keep things fresh, they’ll be joined onstage by a different guest act every week.

Details: Sunparlour Players Residency