In this Weekend Planner: strolling around with zombies, a sketchy mayoral concession party, and the El Mocambo's last slam.
- Offbeat: It would seem that there’s no more room in hell, as the dead will be walking the earth—or at least our streets—this weekend at the Toronto Zombie Walk and Halloween Parade. Naturally, your best bet for survival would be to throw on some face paint, tear your clothes, and garnish everything with fake blood. But if you’re feeling extra immortal, go watch the procession, and try not to look like a snack. Nathan Phillips Square (100 Queen Street West), Saturday at 12 p.m., FREE. Details
- Film: While most of our knowledge of child actors revolves around their disastrous adulthoods, Canuxploitation‘s Paul Corupe and author Kier-La Janisse (House of Psychotic Women) are focused on their memorable performances. Their anthology, Kid Power, is full of interviews and essays about—and rare behind-the-scenes glimpses of—our favourite cult films and television shows. Naturally, their launch event will be rounded out with a screening of 1976’s Bad News Bears. Royal Cinema (608 College Street), Saturday at 4 p.m., $8. Details
- Performing Arts: What do you do when your hopes of winning an election are slim? You celebrate! Lunacy Cabaret is getting into a political mood with its Mayoral Masquerade. And since Toronto has finally tired of clowns and buffoons at City Hall, this event will also serve as Sketchy the Clown’s Concession Party. Join him as he laughs it off with an evening of vaudevillian circus, music, burlesque, and comedy acts. Centre of Gravity (1300 Gerrard Street East), Saturday at 8 p.m., $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Details
- Sports: The rumours are true: our beloved El Mocambo is shutting its doors forever! If you’re looking for an appropriate send-off for this iconic venue, consider Victory Commonwealth Wrestling‘s last on-site event—The Elmo’s Last Slam. Watch Chunk E Fresh defend his Commonwealth Openweight Title, Wild Buck Gunderson take on Mysterion’s Secret Weapon, and a ton of other sweaty guy-on-guy action. El Mocambo (464 Spadina Avenue), Sunday at 2 p.m., $15. Details
- Books: Scary stories will get ever so titillating at the next edition of Naked Girls Reading. Join the diabolically sexy Beaver Galore, Lisbon Maginot, Whiskey Winter, Lucy Sky Diamond, Agatha Frisky, and Red Herring as they strip down and read literature on Demons, Devils, and the Damned! ROUND Venue (152a Augusta Avenue), Sunday at 7 p.m., $20. Details
Art: Alex Colville’s paintings include some of the most recognizable works of Canadian art. Prints of his iconic Horse and Train and To Prince Edward Island hang in homes and classrooms and art shops around the world. And yet the Toronto-born artist, whose career spanned seven decades, is not often celebrated for the incredible influence he had on artists of many media.
With its new exhibition, “Alex Colville“, opening August 23, the Art Gallery of Ontario has mounted a show that not only documents the career of one of Canada’s most prolific artists, but also examines the nature of inspiration in art, literature, film, and beyond. Art Gallery of Ontario (317 Dundas Street West). Details
Performing Arts: Cirque du Soleil is magical. Across from T&T Supermarket on Cherry Street, the pop-up striped tent transforms Polson Pier into a scene of fantastical fun—it’s a better location than any Las Vegas hotel or Orlando strip mall. And when you walk into the Grand Chapiteau venue, you’re welcomed into a bizarro steampunk contortionist dream.
Kicking off its North American tour in Toronto, Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities is Cirque du Soleil’s latest show. The official plot explanation is abstract and boring: there’s a Seeker in his own imaginary world called Curiosistan finding inventions with robots that smell like leather. It’s confusing to even layer a narrative over the spinning, jumping, flying and balancing. No one had no idea what was going on–but everyone loved the show. Grand Chapiteau (51 Commissioners Street), $55–$150. Details
- Theatre: b current Theatre is presenting a double bill of solo shows at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre over the next two weeks, billed together as the second edition of its afteRock Plays. Veteran theatre creator Catherine Hernandez uses a playlist of music to punctuate her story of growing up as a queer woman of colour in The Femme Playlist, while Sébastien Heins performs Brotherhood: The Hip Hopera with his own rhymes, parodying rap stereotypes from the 1970s to the present day. The shows run solo (and discounted) for their first week of previews and paired together (at a combo price for both) until the end of the run; view the schedule here to pick when to see which, and in what order. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre (12 Alexander Street), $20-$50. Details
- Comedy: The third annual Big City Improv Festival runs for eight days this month, featuring improvisers from across the city and a number of special guests from across North America. Local headliners this year include The Sufferettes, Bonspiel, and a showcase hosted by Scott Thompson of The Kids in the Hall; special guests include Tim Baltz (Drunk History), Jet Eveleth & Holly Laurent (Chicago’s The Reckoning), and Vancouver’s Hip.Bang! Multiple shows happen nightly at Comedy Bar and Bad Dog Theatre, with some FREE early evening showcases and regular tickets between $10 and $15; a $60 pass gets you unlimited access to the festival. Comedy Bar (945 Bloor Street West), FREE-$60. Details
- Offbeat: The 15th-annual Everything to Do With Sex Show will feature three days of… well, everything to do with sex. That includes fetish and burlesque exhibitions, conferences, artwork, toys, seminars, and so on, and so forth. For the full schedule of what’s taking place when, visit the website. Exhibition Place (Lakeshore Boulevard and Strachan Avenue), $20–$35. Details
- Theatre: World War II has ended, and the inhabitants of Vancouver are recovering and reorganizing. In film noir style, Helen Lawrence combines theatre, live film, art, and computer-generated visuals to tell the story of a community’s power struggle that rose from the ashes of war. Bluma Appel Theatre, Saturday at 1 p.m.,8 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. Details
- Theatre: These days, vacationers flock to Australia for the outback, the Great Barrier Reef, and, of course, kangaroos. But back in 1788, the only people travelling Down Under were the thieves, murderers, and prostitutes exiled from Britain. Our Country’s Good tells the story of some eager convicts who decide to make the best of their situation by putting on a play, unintentionally humanizing themselves in the eyes of their captors. Royal Alexandra Theatre (260 King Street West), Saturday at 2 p.m.,8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m., $25–$99. Details
- Theatre: To the delight of those who fell victim to ticketing website crashes last year, The Book of Mormon is back! The brainchild of South Park‘s Trey Parker and Matt Stone, and Avenue Q co-creator Robert Lopez, this expectedly crude musical follows two 19-year-old Mormons as they travel to Uganda in hopes of converting the inhabitants of a small village. As one might imagine, hilarity ensues (with the help of some pretty catchy songs). Princess of Wales Theatre (300 King Street West), Saturday at 2 p.m.,8 p.m. and Sunday at 1:30 p.m.,7:30 p.m. Details
- Theatre: Most of us can remember a place from our childhood that our parents forbade us to visit—which only encouraged us to explore. For a bunch of suburban teens, that place is Concord Floral, a massive abandoned greenhouse. But when two friends unearth a terrible secret about the site, their discovery sends a ripple effect through the community. The Theatre Centre (1115 Queen Street West), Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m., $20, $15 youth, $15 previews. Details
- Music: As awesome as the music festivals in our city can be, the whole process is a little overwhelming thanks to radius clauses, wristband confusion, and constant debate about who does what best. TWiMFeST—curated by Two Way Monologues and The Indie Machine— has found a way to avoid all that with an intricate algorithm: four days, six venues, and a ton of great bands resulting in good times for everyone. Who said that creative kids couldn’t also be math geniuses? Multiple venues, Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 8 p.m., $14–$17 + fees. Details
Art: “Before and After the Horizon: Anishinaabe Artists of the Great Lakes“ is a collaborative effort of the AGO and the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, in New York City, where the exhibition recently wrapped up after a one-year run. The displays are organized by themes relating to Anishinaabe concepts of place and spirituality, and how they interact with the outside world. One of the most intriguing themes is “cottager colonialism,” which suggests that the colonization of indigenous land continues by way of vacationing tourists. Political statements are scattered throughout the exhibition, from Nadia Myre’s bead-covered pages of the Indian Act to the use of historical indigenous status documents in Robert Houle’s “Premises” series. Floral beaded bags and leggings, meanwhile, provide inspiration for the contemporary paintings of Christi Belcourt, an Ontario Arts Council Aboriginal Arts Award recipient. Art Gallery of Ontario (317 Dundas Street West), all day, $19.50 (included with general adult admission). Details
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.