Urban Planner: March 15, 2009
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Urban Planner: March 15, 2009

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Photo of Sean Ling and Yuichiro Inoue in Chiasmata by David Hou, courtesy of Toronto Dance Theatre.

DANCE: Christopher House’s Chiasmata returns for a limited engagement at the Toronto Dance Theatre. What began as improvised movement is now a stylized showcase of twelve dancers who communicate through unexpected gestures such as shudders, hiccups, and twitches. A 2007 Dora Award nominee for Outstanding Choreography, Chiasma lost the award to another work by House, 2006’s Timecode Break. The performance features original music from Gemini Award–winning sound designer Phil Strong. Winchester Street Theatre (80 Winchester Street), 2 p.m., P.W.Y.C.
MUSIC: Bloomsday is more than three months away, but James Joyce aficionados can celebrate the Irish bard in advance. Stephen Ralls and Bruce Ubukata, artistic directors of the Aldeburgh Connection, offer “A James Joyce Songbook” with music inspired by Joyce. The concert is part of the Aldeburgh Connection’s Sunday Series, where each program is set around a literary, musical, or historical theme. Musical selections are woven around interesting readings from letters, diaries, newspaper clippings, and poetry. Walter Hall, University of Toronto (80 Queen’s Park Crescent), 2:30 p.m., $12–$50.
ART:Counter Offer,” an overview of works in video, photography, text, and performance by U.K.-based artist Carey Young, continues at the Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery. Young’s repertoire explores themes of global commerce, legal culture, and capitalism through conceptual art. Today, she will collaborate with the international public speaking club Toastmasters and produce a live performance piece called “Speechcraft.” Young will suggest specific topics that each speaker will respond to with an impromptu speech. Members of the public are invited to watch, give feedback, as well as participate. Brigantine Room, Harbourfront Centre (235 Queens Quay West), 4 p.m., FREE
CRAFTS: Freedom Clothing is hosting a “Craft Swap Party” this afternoon, just in time for spring cleaning. Items such as fabrics, crafts supplies, and both completed and half-finished craft projects, are welcome for exchange. Demonstrations and workshops will also be offered throughout the afternoon. Everything left at the end of the swap will be donated to the Christie Ossington Neighbourhood Centre for their children’s and seniors’ programs. Freedom Clothing (939 Bloor Street West), 4–8 p.m., FREE.
COMEDY: The fourth annual Yuk Yuk’s Great Canadian Laugh Off takes place in May, but the deadline to register is today. The event gives amateur and professional comedians, local or international, the chance to win $25,000. The show will be taped and aired on the Comedy Network later in the year. Competing in groups of eight, sixty-four contestants will be systematically eliminated to eight remaining finalists over eight days. Forty-eight of these spots will be randomly drawn from those who register. See Yuk Yuk’s website for details, registration FREE.

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