Next Stage 2014: The Full Lineup, Reviewed
The Next Stage Theatre Festival is back with a diverse and compelling slate of ten plays, all by artists who’ve previously contributed to the Fringe Festival. While a few of these shows have been produced at the Fringe, a number of them are brand new, and you have until January 19 to check out as many as you can.
Road to Rio
There’s no question about it: we could all benefit from a little heat these days. If you can’t escape to the tropics, come out for the Canadian Opera Company’s free presentation of Road to Rio. Pianist and composer Gordon Sheard will conjure thoughts of warmer climates with the help of his students—the Humber Brazilian Jazz Ensemble.
How to Be an Entrepreneur
If your New Year’s resolution was to stop working for other people, or to finally follow through on your great idea for a product or service, listen up! The Toronto Public Library has organized a How to Be an Entrepreneur workshop for people like you who have questions and fears about taking the plunge. Two local business owners will be present to share their own experiences with starting a company and making it successful.
Warming Winter Salads Taster
After the indulgence of the holidays, wouldn’t it be nice to incorporate some healthy foods into your diet? Learn to make four delicious and wholesome dishes at the Warming Winter Salads Taster. Instructor and nutritionist Marni Wasserman will demonstrate how to make one of the chosen recipes, before helping the group prepare (and sample) three others. What’s on the menu? Rice, noodles, quinoa, and more—all in salad form!
Can Can Cardio
The Toronto School of Burlesque has added some new sexy classes to its schedule, and want to give you a free sneak peek into what’s coming. Join St. Stella, the bendy buxom blonde herself, for a Can Can Cardio class. Learn the basic moves, a simple choreography, some stretches, and a bit of dance history, all while working off that dreaded winter weight. All you need to bring is a big loose skirt, and a lot of energy!
TIFF 2014 Scenes: Tuesday–Thursday Nights, Featuring Good Kill, Maps to the Stars, The Imitation Game, Jauja, Laggies, and More
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.
The Guggenheim Comes to the AGO
Virginia Woolf once remarked that “on or about December 1910, human character changed.” Whether it actually did is debatable, but the curators of “The Great Upheaval: Masterpieces from the Guggenheim Collection 1910–1918” use that year to start their exhibition of works from a tumultuous decade of innovation in European fine art.
Ali Eisner: “Favourite Things”
Ali Eisner is already known for being a puppeteer, composer, and performer. Now she adds another line to her resumé with her debut photography exhibit, “Favourite Things.” As one might expect, each photo in the show depicts a cherished moment, person, or item in her life—you’ll find shots of everything from travelling and architecture, to puppets and musicians such as Kathleen Edwards, Ron Sexsmith, and Serena Ryder.
Go Hear the People Sing in Les Misérables
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.
Unintentionally Depressing Children’s Tales
Playwright Erin Fleck has spent the past month in residence at Videofag, (super-heroic runners-up in our Heroes of 2013 poll), and the result is a short workshop run of Unintentionally Depressing Children’s Tales, a shadow puppet performance of adult fairy tales. The show’s not for children, but adults attending may feel they’ve regressed a bit: the storefront venue’s being turned into a “blanket fort” for the performances, with mostly floor seating (be prepared to get cozy with other audience members).
The Ugly One Plays Both Faces Well
German theatre has gone over really well in Toronto in recent years. Playwright Roland Schimmelpfennig’s contribution to Volcano Theatre’s Africa project was widely praised, and twinwerks//zwillingswerk’s production of Felicia Zeller’s Kaspar and the Sea of Houses earned the company an outstanding production award at the 2011 SummerWorks (and a trip back to 2012′s festival). Now, Theatre Smash returns with Marius von Mayenburg’s The Ugly One, a clever slice of absurdism that works well on several levels. There’s light humour when the titular character discovers that everyone finds his face repugnant, and darker tones when his new, beautiful face becomes coveted obsessively by those around him.