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 [email protected].
“Shelf Life,” by Eugen Sakhnenko, is part of the Maximum Exposure opening reception tonight.
PHOTOGRAPHY: Two of the city’s favourite photography events intersect this year. Ryerson University’s student exhibition, Maximum Exposure, which holds its opening gala tonight, will be part of the Contact Photography Festival, the largest photography event in the world. One of the photographers featured in tonight’s gala is Torontoist’s own Eugen Sakhnenko, whose thesis project, “Shelf Life,” explores the various spaces we use to store—and institutionalize—traditional knowledge media (or books, in layman’s terms). The main works will be on display at the Gladstone, while other artists will show their work at the Propeller Centre, Lower Ossington Theatre, Ryerson’s LIB72, and the Revue Cinema. Gladstone Hotel (1214 Queen Street West), 7–10 p.m., FREE.
FILM: Aside from that other one, it’s fair to say that Hot Docs is the city’s most beloved film festival, and it opens tonight with a Green Gala. In addition to a cocktail mingler and gala reception, there will be a screening of the much anticipated—not to mention adorable or unnerving, depending on your tastes—Babies. The festival runs until May 11 at venues across the downtown core, and Torontoist will have lots more coverage to come. Gala: Winter Garden Theatre (189 Yonge Street), regular screenings: various venues; Gala: cocktails at 5 p.m. and screening at 6:30 p.m., regular screenings: various times; Gala: $175/gala & screening and $75/gala only, regular screenings: $12/each.
MUSIC: If you strip The D’Urbervilles frontman John O’Regan of his thick-rimmed glasses and scruffy t-shirts and substitute them with vibrant glittery eyeshadow and an ironic ’90s throwback wardrobe, you’re left with Diamond Rings, O’Regan’s synth-pop solo side project. Unlike the self-conscious pastiche rock of The D’Urbervilles, Diamond Rings is a straight-up pop act, complete with ebullient lyrics and catchy melodies. O’Regan’s alter ego—whose delightful videos are not to be missed—performs tonight with Dirtbag Journalist and Young Brain. The Savoy (1166 Queen Street West), 10 p.m., FREE.
LAUNCH: Cycling has always been a hot topic, but with all the bike news hitting the streets lately, it’s on Torontonians’ minds more than ever. Luckily, we have Dandyhorse, the city’s magazine for urban cyclists, which will hold a launch party for its latest issue tonight. Guests will get a copy of the magazine as part of admission, groove to the tunes of DJ Triple X, and have the chance to win the glorious raffle prize of a Classico bike. So hop on your bike and ride over—but don’t forget your helmet. The Canadian Corps Club (201 Niagara Street), 7 p.m.–12 a.m., $7.
WALK: Like all cities, Toronto has its share of skeletons in the closet, some of which will be exposed during tonight’s “Phantoms, Pundits, and Players” ghost tour, offered by A Taste of the World walking tours. Host Shirley Lum will lead participants through the Financial District’s most haunted hot spots, including Osgoode Hall, Old City Hall, and an eerie old vaudeville theatre where the long-dead actors may still be putting on a show. Meet on front steps of Old City Hall (60 Queen Street West); 6:30–9 p.m.; $25/regular, $18/students and seniors, $15/kids twelve and under.