Annual Dyke March

Photo by Dean Bradley.

  • Multiple venues
  • 1 p.m.

As part of the Toronto Pride Week festivities, the Annual Dyke March will be making its return ahead of Sunday’s Pride Parade. This march offers a voice for women and trans people to come out and take over the Toronto streets. Following the march, there will be a rally in Allan Gardens at 3 p.m. Click here for the full parade route.

Details: Annual Dyke March

True Stories, Made Up Plays

  • Comedy Bar (945 Bloor Street West)
  • 7 p.m.

True Stories, Made Up Plays isn’t your average story-telling event. Here, storytellers share their truths followed by improvisers who in turn bend them. This weekend’s instalment (which is the very last show so go out and support them!) features storytellers Zabrina Chevannes, Jess Beaulieu, and Sage Tyrtle and improvisors Bad Dog Repertory Players, Corgi in the Forest, and the All-Star Jam.

Details: True Stories, Made Up Plays

TAXI Classics Live

  • The Storefront Theatre (955 Bloor Street West)
  • 8 p.m.

Red One Collective and their friends at The Storefront Theatre are big fans of the early TV work of Tony Danza, Christopher Lloyd, Andy Kaufman, Danny DeVito, et al, obviously. Because they’re performing an episode of TAXI Classics Live with members of the theatre company. Dave Tompa, Dayle MacLeod, and David Reale will play the iconic characters of Jim, Tony, Latka, and the rest. After Saturday’s performance, a free party (for Taxi watchers and those dressed in 70’s threads) featuring a performance by the Pigott Brothers will take place.

Details: TAXI Classics Live

Double Digest

  • Black Swan Tavern (154 Danforth Avenue)
  • 10 p.m.

Beat the heat with some laughs at a comedy show called Double Digest. And for all you Archie fans out there, yes, this is a reference to the “apple-pie” comics you’ve probably come across in news and supermarket stands. The cast will be improvising a tribute to these comics, turning the stories we all know and love upside down.

Details: Double Digest


A Guide to the 2013 Toronto Jazz Festival

The Bobby Sparks Trio.

  • Multiple venues
  • All day

The 2013 Toronto Jazz Festival descends on the city on June 21 with a huge “free for all” event. That means all of Friday, June 21’s programming at every Jazz Festival venue is, yes, completely free of charge. There will be concerts from local favourites Molly Johnson and Mary Margaret O’Hara, plus a show by Smokey Robinson and Martha Reeves, who will be launching the fest from its epicentre, Nathan Phillips Square.

Here’s a rundown of some of the shows worth checking out on Friday—and during the rest of the festival, when you’ll actually have to pay.

Details: A Guide to the 2013 Toronto Jazz Festival

The Royal Ontario Museum Takes a Modern Approach to the Cradle of Civilization

  • Royal Ontario Museum (100 Queens Park)
  • All day

The name “Mesopotamia” derives from a Greek term meaning “land between the rivers.” The Royal Ontario Museum’s latest major exhibit, which opens on June 22, takes this literally, as visitors flow between painted representations of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers on the floor.

Presented by the British Museum and rounded out with pieces from institutions in Chicago, Detroit, and Philadelphia, “Mesopotamia: Inventing Our World” covers 3,000 years of human development in the cradle of urban civilization. Most of the 170 artifacts on display have never been shown in Canada.

Details: The Royal Ontario Museum Takes a Modern Approach to the Cradle of Civilization

Films “With Heart” Find A Home At ReelHeart International Film Festival

Josh Thomas and J.J. Kelley in Go Ganges!. Image courtesy of ReelHeart International Film Festival.

  • Big Picture Cinema
  • All day

While most festivals are geared towards some specific audience—like the Inside Out Festival or the Jewish Film Festival, for instance—where ReelHeart International Film Festival separates itself from the pack is by welcoming all submissions, as long as they have what the organizers deem to be “real heart.”

Details: Films “With Heart” Find A Home At ReelHeart International Film Festival

New Toronto Production of Cats Meets Expectations

Cats Ensemble. Photo by Racheal McCaig.

  • Panasonic Theatre (651 Yonge Street)
  • 1 p.m., 7:30 p.m.

Cats is a challenging musical to stage for a number of reasons. The narrative is thin and strange; the lyrics are drawn primarily from T.S. Eliot’s poetry collection Old Possum’s Book Of Practical Cats, with more borrowed from some other Eliot poems, “Rhapsody on a Windy Night” (which original director Trevor Nunn adapted into the song “Memory”) and “Moments of Happiness.” The result is not so much a story as ideas and character sketches. Old Deuteronomy, patriarch of the Jellicle Cats, calls the creatures together once a year to celebrate, and for one cat to be chosen to ascend to the Heaviside Layer (essentially, to die and be reincarnated). Most of the songs detail the adventures and virtues of a single cat in particular, essentially serving as that cat’s audition for the honour of ascension.

Details: New Toronto Production of Cats Meets Expectations

“BLK Barbie Project”

Frantz Brent-Harris' hand-sculpted dolls are the focus of Rose-Ann Marie Bailey's photo essay, "BLK Barbie Project." Photo by Rose-Ann Marie Bailey.

  • Black Artists' Network in Dialogue (1 Wiltshire Ave., Suite 134)
  • 7 p.m.

The world’s most ubiquitous doll gets a subversive makeover in Frantz Brent-Harris and Rose-Ann Marie Bailey’s “BLK Barbie Project,” a photo exhibit on the “representation of beauty and body image of black women.” The gallery is open Saturday and Sunday afternoons until 5 p.m. through July 21, with an opening reception at 7 p.m. on June 28, an artist’s talk at 5 p.m. on July 13, and a closing reception at 7 p.m. on July 21.

Details: “BLK Barbie Project”

Passion Play‘s Journey Through Time

The Director (Jordan Pettle) speaks to "J" (Andrew Kushnir) while they rehearse the crucifixion scene.

  • Eastminister Church (310 Danforth Avenue)
  • 1:30 p.m., 7 p.m.

There are a lot of chefs in the kitchen for the Canadian premiere of Sarah Ruhl’s Passion Play, a triptych set in three time periods that tells the stories of amateur actors (played by real actors) involved in staging performances of the story of Christ. Three different Toronto independent theatre companies, all with reputations for innovative staging and creation in their past work, each tackle one of the three acts. Ordinarily, such a complicated arrangement would be to a show’s detriment, but not in this case. While you need to be prepared for a marathon of theatre (the show runs four hours, incluing two intermissions), you’re certainly going to get your money’s worth.

Details: Passion Play‘s Journey Through Time