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].
Brodie Stevenson and Molly Johnson cool off their audiences during a performance of Inner City Sirens P. II, a part of Dusk Dances. Photo courtesy of Joseph Michael Photography.
On tap this weekend: Harbourfront celebrates pan-Asian cuisine, zombies wash your car, bicycles hit the big screen, dusk brings out the dancers, and opera gets turned on its ear.
FOOD: Harbourfront Centre’s World Routes series brings the kitchen to the coast in this weekend’s Fortune Cooking Food Festival. Highlights include an Iron Chef Competition pitting some of Toronto’s top chefs against each other in culinary combat, and an expansive look at the pan-Asiatic snack in Dumplings of Desire. Once you’ve filled your belly, the festival offers plenty of digestive entertainment, including performances by comedy group Asiansploitation and a screening of The Killing of a Chinese Cookie, a documentary on the distinctly American fortune cookie. Harbourfront Centre (235 Queens Quay West), various times, FREE.
ZOMBIES: Given how ubiquitous zombies have become these days, it’s high time that someone put them to work for the betterment of society. Andrew Currie’s zombie flick Fido was a forerunner of the domesticated zombie concept, but the Toronto Zombie Walk has decided to run with it in their latest fundraising endeavour. A horde of the undead will be on hand to wash your car this weekend at the Blood N’ Suds Car Wash, with a portion of funds going toward October’s undead parade. Enjoy the spectacle, but be sure to keep your limbs inside the vehicle and doors locked. Classic Coin Car Wash (1247 College Street), Saturday 1–4 p.m., $10 for a basic wash, $15 for a “full attack.”
FILM: With Bixi coming to town and bike lanes becoming a hot topic in the mayoral race, Toronto’s love of two-wheeled transportation is more evident than ever. This weekend brings a cinematic way to celebrate cyclists at the Bicycle Film Festival, a mobile international fest originating out of New York. Saturday offers several compilations of short films at the Royal, while Sunday heralds the Canadian premiere of Empire at Cinecycle. The Royal (608 College Street West) and Cinecycle (401 Richmond Street West), various times, $10 (Empire by donation).
DANCE: Annual outdoor festival Dusk Dances is halfway through its sixteenth season, having staged performances for delighted audiences in British Columbia and Ontario throughout the summer. Co-produced by Art Starts, this weekend’s venue of choice is Earlscourt Park and features music from Persian ensemble Noubâng. Led by host Ryan Egan, the roving performance throughout the park will include new commissions by Fly Lady Di and Lua Shayenne, as well as returning favourites One Couch and Inner City Sirens P. II. If you’re especially lucky, Egan might finally deliver on his regular teasers to perform “Single Ladies.” Earlscourt Park (St Clair Avenue West and Caledonia Park Road), 7 p.m. nightly, PWYC.
OPERA: Opera Erratica and Classical Music Consort are back with the second installation of their avant-garde Underground/Opera series, an initiative designed to challenge preconceived notions of opera by opening the classical concept to modern cross-platform collaborations. Orlando/Lunaire is a mash-up of Handel’s baroque opera Orlando and Schoenberg’s atonal melodrama Pierrot Lunaire. Performed inside an industrial shed and combining early and modern classical music, video projections, and costumes by Heidi Acherman, the tale of a melancholic clown promises to be anything but traditional. Not sold yet? How about discount tickets—Opera Erratica has offered fifteen dollar tickets to Torontoist readers who cite their blog discount in an email. Don’t say we never give you anything. A storage shed (128 Sterling Road), Sunday 8 p.m., $20–$35.