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].
Jeff Jones’s one-man musical, This is the Thing, opens tonight at the Theatre Passe Muraille.
Today, the International Festival of Poetry Resistance fights through words, a talk with filmmakers Ken Loach and Paul Laverty, a plethora of author appearances, and Jeff Jones remounts his Fringe hit.
WORDS: Poetry has been an outlet for political and social activism for hundreds of years, from the socialist chants of William Morris to the civil rights lyrics of Maya Angelou to the anti-war songs of Bob Dylan. The International Poetry Festival of Resistance, running from today until September 20, celebrates the poetry of protest, with writers like Monica Rosas and Arnold Itwaru participating. The festival honours the Cuban Five, five Cuban intelligence officers who have been political prisoners in the States since 1998, as well as two other political prisoners, Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu-Jamal. New Horizons Auditorium (1140 Bloor Street West), 5 p.m., FREE.
FILM: Sure, TIFF is on everyone’s lips and stars are in their eyes, but the Toronto film scene doesn’t end when TIFF does. The Toronto Palestine Film Festival is coming to town in early October, and in the meantime, the festival is hosting a discussion with filmmaker Ken Loach and screenwriter Paul Laverty. The pair have first-hand experience making films about the Middle East—Route Irish, an upcoming film directed by Loach and written by Laverty (and screening at TIFF) explores the ramifications of serving in the Iraq War for a group of Liverpool private security contractors. Loach and Laverty will speak tonight with TPFF coordinator Rafeef Ziadah about the challenges of filmmaking in such a highly politicized climate. U of T’s Sanford Fleming Building, room 1105 (10 King’s College Circle); 5:30 p.m., doors at 5 p.m.; $5 or PWYC.
WORDS: Book events abound tonight, with no less than three author appearances that should be on your radar. First up is Rheostatics founder and author Dave Bidini, who launches his ninth book tonight. The memoir, Home and Away, recounts Bidini’s travels alongside Team Canada at the Homeless World Cup in Australia in 2008. 3 Speed Bar (1163 Bloor Street West), 6:30 p.m., FREE. Next, beloved author Jane Urquhart, known for her evocative renderings of Southern Ontario, speaks tonight with novelist and critic Antanas Sileika about her new book, Sanctuary Line. Toronto Reference Library (789 Yonge Street), 7 p.m., FREE. Finally, Daniel Allen Cox will launch and read from his new novel, Krakow Melt, about a pair of Polish pyromaniacs who fight homophobia. Nathaniel G. Moore, Lisa Foad, and Derek McCormack will also read at tonight’s event. The Ossington (61 Ossington Avenue), 7:30 p.m., FREE.
THEATRE: It played to great acclaim at last year’s Toronto and Hamilton fringe festivals, and now, Jeff Jones’s cathartic solo show, This is the Thing, is enjoying a run at the Theatre Passe Muraille until September 25. Jones wrote and performed the one-man musical play about a man seeking escape from the pain and anxiety of sitting by his mother’s deathbed. The answer? An imaginary audience, to whom he performs music and recounts his history. Jones’s songs have been compared to John
Cougar Mellencamp and Johnny Cash, and the play’s subject matter recalls the witty works of Daniel MacIvor. Theatre Passe Muraille (16 Ryerson Avenue), 7:30 p.m., $20 (students $15).
FILM: TIFF’s in town! Torontoist’s complete coverage of this year’s Toronto International Film Festival is all right here.