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].
The National Theatre of the World return with the third season of their popular improvised play series Impromptu Splendor. Photo courtesy of Naomi Snieckus.
This weekend in Toronto: an urban planning forum, a Brazilian film fest, an alt-folk CD launch, Tom Lenk visits Toronto, The Word On The Street Festival, and Impromptu Splendor returns!
FORUM: Amateur urban planners (real ones, not us punny types) will want to swing by Ryerson for an afternoon of city building, care of the citizens’ group People Plan Toronto. Their free public forum and round table workshop will feature a series of presentations by local experts on important urban issues, after which attendees will break into groups to brainstorm planning principles and community initiatives. Participants will also be invited to help create questions to pose to mayoral candidates during the coming debate on October 7. Admission is free, but registration is recommended due to limited space. Ryerson School of Urban and Regional Planning (105 Bond Street), Saturday 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m., FREE.
FILM: The Brazilian Film and Television Festival runs through the weekend, reminding us that TIFF is but one glitzy part of a crowded festival season. Bloor Cinema hosts a run of fiction, documentary, short, and animated programming from south of the equator, including Luiz Villaca’s award-winning The Story of Me Sunday afternoon. Awards will be doled out Sunday evening, before the Bloor switches over to its regular programming with a screening of cult classic The Warriors. Bloor Cinema (506 Bloor Street West), various times, $8–$10.
MUSIC: Local two-steppers The Gospel of Marmalade are releasing their first EP Saturday, filled with their eclectic blend of folk-rock and instrumental tunes. New music venue and coffee emporium Merchants of Green Coffee will play host for the Gospel’s inaugural flight into discography, where they will be joined by opening alt-folk act Antlers and Anchors. Merchants of Green Coffee (2 Matilda Street), Saturday 8 p.m., $5 or PWYC, $10 with CD.
COMEDY: Due quite literally to popular demand, actor/comedian and Buffy the Vampire Slayer alum Tom Lenk shall be gracing Toronto with his presence for a one-night only show on Saturday. Lenk was not disappointed after promising fans that he would visit if they showed enough favour, producing a resounding response on Facebook and Twitter. Now he gets to visit our world-class city, and we get to enjoy the comic stylings of a cult personality. It’s win-win! Tickets available here. Theatre Passe Muraille (16 Ryerson Avenue), Saturday 8 p.m., $15.
WORDS: Pay tribute to the printed (and digital) word this Sunday at The Word On The Street Festival, bringing together authors and publishers from across the country in one epic day of literary celebration. Headliners this year include Man Booker Prize winning Yann Martel reading from his new book Beatrice and Virgil and soon-to-be former mayor David Miller discussing his authorial debut Witness to a City. The festival offers far too many events to fit into this modest blurb, but an entertaining way to encounter as much as you’re able can be found in the Diaspora Dialogues’ Literary Scavenger Hunt, running throughout the day. Queen’s Park (111 Wellesley Street West), 11 a.m.–6 p.m., FREE.
COMEDY: After a busy summer of hosting events such as the SummerWorks Festival’s nightly Fiasco Playhouse and the Bell Lightbox opening block party, local comic superstars The National Theatre of the World are getting back to basics. Matt Baram, Naomi Snieckus, and Ron Pederson will kick off the third season of their improvised play series Impromptu Splendor. With each performance done in the style of a different playwright, this season will kick off in tribute to The Farm Show, the 1972 historic collective creation which was Theatre Passe Muraille’s first show. Special guests will include Stratford alums Raoul Bhaneja and Miles Potter, the latter of whom actually performed in The Farm Show. As if that weren’t enough, there’s also a surprise musical guest in store, as well as a play reading series preceding the show. Theatre Passe Muraille (16 Ryerson Avenue), Sunday at 7:30 p.m. for play reading, 9 p.m. for show, $12.