Urban Planner: April 2, 2014



Urban Planner: April 2, 2014

In today's Urban Planner: a world-spanning film festival, sexy storytelling, and a celebration of burlesque.

From Stefan Jäger's Horizon Beautiful   Image courtesy of ReelWorld

From Stefan Jäger’s Horizon Beautiful. Image courtesy of ReelWorld.

  • Film: Now in its fourteenth year, the ReelWorld Film Festival has expanded its reach. For five days in Toronto, followed by three in Markham, it’s bringing over 79 films to the screen. Diversity is the name of the game with features, shorts, webisodes, and music videos from twenty different countries on the bill. Famous Players Canada Square Cinemas (2190 Yonge Street), $10–$110. Details
  • Performing Arts: We’re willing to bet you’ve had some sexy adventures in your time (and if not, what are you waiting for?). Tell Me Something Good, a Sexy Storytelling Slam wants to hear all about them. This month’s theme is “Visuals & Voyeurs,” in honour of the Feminist Porn Awards, so come with titillating tales about making porn, watching porn, watching others watch porn, etc.—just make sure they’re true, under five minutes long, and free from any disrespectful language. Sign up at the beginning of the night, and you could be one of the 10 to 15 contestants chosen to kiss and tell.

    CORRECTION: April 2, 2014, 2:45 PM This post originally stated that the theme of this event was “Catch Me If You Can”—in fact, its theme is “Visuals & Voyeurs.”

  • Comedy: Recurring Star Trek and improv mash-up variety show Holodeck Follies this month features special guests like stand-up Zabrina Chevannes, sketch troupe the Rulers of the Universe, and Brie Watson, whose birthday wish is to appear in the show in character as Captain Kathryn Janeway. Black Swan Tavern (154 Danforth Avenue), 8 p.m., $10. Details
  • Dance: If you like keeping abreast of the goings-on in our city’s burlesque scene, you need to be at Reveal Me at the Rivoli. Orchestrated by the Toronto School of Burlesque’s Red Herring, this monthly event aims to be a fun gathering of showgirls, their adoring fans, and intrigued newcomers. Expect first-time performers, seasoned pros, drinks, sweet treats, a merch stand of shiny objects, and a ton of laughs. The Rivoli (334 Queen Street West), 9 p.m., $10. Details


  • Art: If The Forbidden City: Inside the Court of China’s Emperors has a mascot, it’s Emperor Yongzheng. The image of the 18th-century Chinese ruler dominates the promotional material of the exhibition, which is one of the centrepieces of the Royal Ontario Museum’s centennial year. His portrait certainly has visual appeal, but Yongzheng is also a figure associated with surprising elements of life within the former imperial palace. Royal Ontario Museum (100 Queens Park), all day, $27 adults. Details
  • Theatre: Playwright Bobby Del Rio was inspired to write The Trial of Ken Gass, a Kafkaesque look at a man’s encounter with an officious bureaucrat, by the ousting of Factory Theatre’s artistic director by its board of directors (who earned themselves a place in our Villains roster in 2012). The play is less interested in the scandal’s details, however, and more in the different ways people react when confronted by an unreasonable person who’s the gatekeeper for an uncaring system. To drive the point home, as in the original production, Del Rio has cast a different performer every night to play the title character, who’s put through the wringer by a mercurial investigator played by Jess Salguiero. Among the guest “Gasses” are playwright Matthew Edison, comedian Sandra Battaglini, and cabaret performer Ryan G. Hinds. Big Picture Cinema (1035 Gerrard Street East), 8 p.m., $15. Details
  • Fashion: If a period drama has ever inspired you to visit the past, but you couldn’t because you didn’t have access to a time machine, listen up! The Spadina Museum is taking history, television, and fashion fans alike back to the Edwardian era with its “Dressing for Downton: The Costumes of Downton Abbey” exhibit. Twenty pieces from the hit show will be on display, along with the City of Toronto’s own collection of garments from the time. Attendees will also be treated to Downton Abbey–themed tours of the century home. Spadina Museum (285 Spadina Road), all day, $25–$30 + tax. Details
  • Fashion: Ichimaru—once one of Japan’s most famous geishas—left the profession in the 1930s to pursue a career in entertainment. Never really leaving her past life, she became known for adorning herself in the traditional geisha garb when performing in concert or on television. “From Geisha to Diva: The Kimonos of Ichimaru” exhibits several decades’ worth of outfits and personal effects, shedding light on the woman behind the makeup. Textile Museum of Canada (55 Centre Avenue), 11 a.m., $6–$15. Details
  • Theatre: Great theatre comes and goes, and you either see it while it’s playing, or wait for a remount. The On Stage On Demand series is looking to change that by capturing past hit indie plays on film—and they’re opening up the performances for free to a live audience. The shows being performed and taped include past hits like Of Mice and Morro and Jasp (which is already fully reserved), Antoine Feval, and Supperfesta. Admission is free, but you’ll want to reserve your tickets before the shows hit capacity. The Great Hall (1087 Queen Street West), 7 p.m., FREE. Details
  • Dance: Told through South American music and dance, Arrabal is the story of a young girl desperate to find out what happened to her father after the Argentine military made him disappear when she was just a baby. Her search leads her to the Tango clubs of Buenos Aires, where she discovers both the truth, and herself. Panasonic Theatre (651 Yonge Street), 8 p.m., $44–$84. Details
  • Music: The Toronto Centre for the Arts is stripping away the glossy layers of the music industry with their Bare Bones and Up Front Indie Music Series. Every Wednesday for eight weeks, two local musicians will be given the chance to show off their songs and skills in an intimate setting. Some of the featured acts include Rehan Dalal (March 12), Meredith Shaw (March 26), and Lindy (April 9). Toronto Centre for the Arts (5040 Yonge Street), 8 p.m., $20. Details
  • Theatre: In line with Tarragon Theatre‘s theme for it 2013/2014 season– “Love, Loss, Wine and the Gods”—the company is currently presenting two one-act plays that document the journey of two very different romantic relationships. The first, in the Tarragon Extra Space, is Duncan MacMillan’s brilliant Lungs, which receives an equally brilliant production from director Weyni Mengesha and actors Lesley Faulkner and Brendan Gall. Lungs is a touching and entertaining portrayal of a couple in love—but above all, it’s honest. It’s that honesty that the show next door in the Tarragon Mainspace, Stephen Sondheim’s song cycle Marry Me a Little, is lacking. Tarragon Theatre (30 Bridgman Avenue), 8 p.m., $21–$53. Details
  • Theatre: Sparrowhawk Theatre knows that times are tough, which is why it’s presenting two one-act plays for the price of one! Directed by Steven Holmberg, Norm Foster’s My Narrator and The Death of Me promise to be honest, unique, and un-pretentious theatre experiences for both audience and cast. Prepare to get up close and personal with stars Penelope Corrin, Roger Doche, Laura Jabalee, Jorge Molina, and Chris O’Sullivan at this intimate venue. Unit 102 Theatre (376 Dufferin Street), 8 p.m., $16 + fees. Details
  • Comedy: If you weren’t around to see Toronto in 1974, Bad Dog Theatre can help you catch up. For three weeks, its completely improvised serial, People City, will introduce you to the characters and stories that made up our fair city during its boom years. Craig Anderson, Jess Bryson, Kyle Dooley, Colin Munch, Etan Muskat, Evany Rosen, Hannah Spear, Sean Tabares, and Anders Yates make up the population of both fictional and notorious Hogtown citizens. Comedy Bar (945 Bloor Street West), 9:30 p.m., $12, $10 students. Details

Happening soon:

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 us with all the details (including images, if you’ve got any), ideally at least a week in advance.