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film

Get Set for Summer: Culture Vultures

THERE’S A LOT TO DO IN THE CITY THIS SUMMER. BELOW ARE SOME SUGGESTIONS FOR THE CULTURALLY-MINDED VISITOR

ThongSandals-2016-OilOnCanvas-48x60inches

Thong Sandals. Oil on canvas by Marco Sassone.

The Second City  returns with The Best of Second City, a rousing combination of some of the funniest sketches from the company’s past 50 years. Families can enjoy Superdude and Doctor Rude, a superhero story with a twist based on audience participation. Matilda the Musical is another family-friendly production, which opens July 5, while Shakespeare in High Park presents Hamlet and All’s Well That Ends Well on alternating nights in scenic High Park.

For centuries, plants—particularly flowers—have been the inspiration behind the creation of beautiful textile designs. Bliss: Gardens Real and Imagined, on now at the Textile Museum of Canada, highlights the pervasive use of floral motifs across cultures, from intricate Persian carpets to handmade quilts. The Bata Shoe Museum commemorates Italian heritage month with a selection of oil paintings by American-Italian painter Marco Sassone. His Boots and Other Works illustrate the artist’s love of fashion and footwear, from worn out boots to party shoes.

Film buffs won’t want to miss the Hitchcock/Truffaut: Magnificent Obsessions double retrospective at TIFF Bell Lightbox, which starts July 7. Featuring more than a dozen films by each director, the series highlights their similarities and includes Alfred Hitchcock classics like The Birds, and Vertigo, alongside François Truffaut films like Jules et Jim and The 400 Blows.

EAT Experience the flavours of the Middle East, North and South Asia with Mark McEwan’s flavourful menu at Diwan, while taking in the gorgeous grounds of the Aga Khan Museum. After working up appetite at the Frank Gehry-designed Art Gallery of Ontario, visit Frank for a bistro-inspired menu amidst installations by Frank Stella. Moviegoers can dine at Luma, located at the TIFF Bell Lightbox. —Karen Stevens

 

Discover GIRAF: A World of Independent Animation

Don't miss The Congress on Sat, Nov 9. Photo: Courtesy GIRAF

Don’t miss The Congress on Sat, Nov 9. Photo: Courtesy GIRAF

With a moniker as long as a certain spotted African animal’s neck, Giant Incandescent Resonating Animation Festival, Calgary’s very cool animation event goes by GIRAF for short. Quickdraw Animation Society presents dozens of new films by the world’s top animators, November 6 – 10. The festival includes six short film packages, four feature-length movies, two visiting artists and several workshops for burgeoning animators of any skill level.

The fest’s engrossing gala screening features Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Ari Folman’s live-action-meets-cartoon mashup The Congress. In his follow-up to Waltz with Bashir, Folman delivers a scathing critique of Hollywood via innovative animation. Actress Robin Wright (playing herself) agrees to have her body and voice scanned to be reanimated time and time again in future Hollywood productions, including commercial projects she had previously turned down. The film also stars Harvey Keitel, John Hamm and Paul Giamatti. The Congress screens at The Globe Cinema on Wednesday, November 6 at 7 pm.

For children of all ages, don’t miss the charming Ernest et Celestine. Based on the children’s book series by Belgian author Gabrielle Vincent, the film follows the unlikely friendship between a bear living on the fringes of bear society and an orphaned mouse he welcomes into his home. Presented in French with English subtitles, the film delighted audiences at Cannes and the Toronto International Film Festival. Ernest et Celestine screens at The Globe Cinema on Saturday, November 9 at 3 pm.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.giraffest.ca

Your Guide to the Calgary Underground Film Festival

Two aliens form a band in Brooklyn in The History of Future Folk. Photo courtesy CUFF.

Two aliens form a band in Brooklyn in The History of Future Folk. Photo courtesy CUFF.

The Calgary Underground Film Festival runs April 15 to 21 at the Globe Cinema. Film genres include documentary, animation to horror. Festival producer Brenda Lieberman shares her top five festival selections, which she describes as “shocking, funny and all definitely worth seeing.”

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Hot Date: Our Picks for CIFF This Weekend

The Calgary International Film Festival (CIFF) kicks off tonight with a gala screening of Deepa Mehta’s film Midnight’s Children at the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium. The festival runs September 20 to 30 and includes a curated collection of Canadian and international features, a variety of shorts programs, a youth cinema competition and much more. With every genre covered and several gala events, there’s a lot to see. This weekend, Where recommends: 

Friday, September 21 This is the first year that CIFF will feature 3D films. The Battle of Warsaw: 1920 is both a military epic and Poland’s first 3D film. The story follows a couple torn apart by the war to keep the Soviet Army at bay. 7:15 pm at Eau Claire Market Cineplex, 200 Barclay Parade.

Meet The Fokkens. Photo: Courtesy of CIFF.

Meet the Fokkens (Ouwehoeren) might sound like a Dutch version of a Ben Stiller comedy, but it’s actually a documentary about two elderly twins who have been working in Amsterdam’s red light district for over 50 years. See it to believe it! 9 pm at Eau Claire Market Cineplex.

Saturday, September 22 The Youth by Youth Cinema competition includes shorts by student filmmakers. This year’s roster is a long one, but it’s big on emerging talent. An awards ceremony will be held at the Old Spaghetti Factory following the screening. 12 pm at Eau Claire Market Cineplex. (more…)

Best Stargazing Spots at TIFF, the Toronto International Film Festival

By KAREN CLEVELAND

There are better ways to spot celebs at TIFF than by waiting behind the red-carpet ropes (Photo: Christopher Harte)

Toronto is truly at its finest when it plays host to the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) each September. The streets buzz with pride as locals share their favourite haunts with an influx of visitors. And while stars are masters at surreptitiously sneaking through the streets unnoticed, frequenting some key spots just might increase the odds of finding yourself accidentally-on-purpose across the room from your most admired luminary. (more…)

Hot Date: Fellini In The Tennis Courts

Catch this Italian classic at the Calgary Cinematheque’s outdoor screening.

The Calgary Cinematheque kicks its 2012-2013 season off with a free outdoor screening of Frederico Fellini’s 1963 classic . The film will be screened in the tennis courts at the Hillhurst Sunnyside Community Centre (1320 5 Ave NW) at 9 pm on Wednesday, September 5.

Marcello Mastroianni stars as a director balancing a tumultuous science fiction production and his equally disastrous relationships with the women in his life. The plot is as chaotic as it is comedic, with deeply introspective moments. Shot in black and white and presented in Italian with English subtitles, the film is widely regarded as a masterpiece.

The Cinematheque’s 2012-2013 program focuses on post-war Italian cinema and world critics’ top Italian picks. Films will be screened bi-monthly at the Plaza Theatre in Kensington. For scheduled screenings, visit calgarycinema.org.

Before the screening, check out the Hillhurst Sunnyside Farmers’ Market, 3 pm – 7 pm. The farmers’ market runs every Wednesday until October 3.   – Adele Brunnhofer

Galas Announced For The Calgary International Film Festival

Deepa Mehta’s Midnight’s Children opens CIFF. Photo: Courtesy CIFF.

The Calgary International Film Festival has announced its opening night gala. The 11-day festival will kick off with Midnight’s Children, by Indo-Canadian director Deepa Mehta, on Thursday, September 20 at the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium.

The film is based on author Salman Rushdie’s Booker Prize winning novel and follows the lives of two children born in India during the time of partition, whose lives mirror the tumultuous transition from colonialism to an autonomous state. Rushdie scripted the film’s adaptation.

Mehta is one of Canada’s more celebrated contemporary filmmakers, her films having won several Genie awards. Her 2006 film, Water, was nominated for an Academy Award for best foreign language film. (more…)

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for March 9 to 11

Rococode from Vancouver is just one of the bands playing at Mavericks this weekend. Photo credit: Robyn Jamieson.

Friday, March 9
Start your weekend off right by partying it up with some fun indie bands at Mavericks. This is the LP release show for Anchors, the newest album from Ottawa indie rock band and show headliner Kalle Mattson. Also on the bill: Rococode, a three-boy and one-girl band from Vancouver that strives to make exciting and meaningful pop music; The Richardson Band, an Ottawa indie/folk band that just recorded its first EP; and the Ashleys, another Ottawa indie/rock band.

Get lucky at the first late night performance of Third Time Lucky, performed by Toronto-based comic storyteller Paul Hutcheson at The Gladstone. Pornography, an allergic reaction to shellfish, and orgies are just some of the topics Hutcheson covers in this solo show. Hutcheson has performed in more than 25 fringe festivals, winning awards in New York, San Francisco, Montreal, and Ottawa.  This play is part of the Black Box Set Theatre Festival, which runs until March 17.

Get in the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day a few days early with Ottawa Irish Week. The week-long festival and longstanding Ottawa tradition invites you to celebrate Ireland through music, poetry, history, dance, theatre, and sport. This Friday, get entertained and eat Irish fare at The Erin Luncheon at St. Patrick’s Home of Ottawa. Various events run from March 8 to 17.

Saturday, March 10
Laugh, cry, and support a good cause at The Vagina Monologues this Saturday. Carleton University’s own Vaginas Against Violence are once again putting on a fantastic show, which is run and performed by Carleton students. All proceeds from ticket sales go towards  the Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre and the international V-Day campaign, which supports victims of sexual violence in Haiti in an effort to end gender-based violence locally and globally. If you’ve never seen this show that serves up story after story to honour the female anatomy, you’re missing out. (more…)

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for February 3 to 5

Quinsin Nachoff is just one of the performers taking the stage at the Ottawa Winter Jazzfest.

Friday, Feb. 3
Jazz up your weekend by taking in the international and local talent at the first annual Ottawa Winter Jazzfest. Whether you’re a seasoned jazz enthusiast or looking to diversify your musical tastes, this festival promises to thaw that winter chill. Hop all over downtown Ottawa, from the National Arts Centre to Club SAW to the Mercury Lounge to catch the smooth sounds of artists such as Megan Jerome, Quinsin Nachoff, Remi Bolduc, and the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble of Chicago.

Experience Ottawa’s diverse architecture and examine the relationship between architecture, the arts, and politics through music with Polytectures. This sound walk was created by Montreal’s Antoine Bédard and 10 local musicians. Through a variety of musical styles, Polytectures allows visitors and locals alike to experience Ottawa’s architecture in new ways by pairing songs with local landmarks. Although the entire walk is an hour long, it has been divided into sections with warm-up breaks for Winterlude.

If you’re a film buff with a soft spot for independent cinema, then you’re going to want to Get Iced this weekend. The Independent Filmmakers Co-operative of Ottawa is presenting 10 new Super 8 short films made by local filmmakers in cooperation with Winterlude. Afterwards, unwind with drinks at the Soviet-style reception hosted by Avant-Garde Bar and Gift Shop. The party continues at the bar after 9:30pm with live music and no cover charge.

This Friday, Yamantaka //Sonic Titan and Boyhood bring the party to Babylon. Yamantaka //Sonic Titan are a psychedelic opera group that fuses noise, metal, folk, and pop music to create an east-meets-west culture clash extravaganza. Boyhood is new on the Ottawa scene, bringing catchy songs with haunting melodies. (more…)

Restored 1919 Film Gives Rare Historic Glimpse of Arctic Life in Canada

Still from 1919 film Romance of the Far Fur Country (Photo courtesy of the Hudson's Bay Company Archives)

Some of the earliest footage of northern Canada—a silent black-and-white film documenting a 1919 Hudson Bay Company expedition—has been restored to a full-length documentary. The film had been gathering dust in a London archive for 50 years but was recently restored and is being shown in select Canadian towns and cities. (See clips of the original footage.) (more…)

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for December 9 to 11

Self-portrait entitled "Julie" by Julie LaPalme, whose work will be on view at Lemonjellow.

Friday, Dec. 9
If you’re looking for a fun holiday jam with a bit of an artsy twist, Lemonjellow’s weekend pARTy “Deck the Halls” is just the thing for you. Lemonjellow Productions is an art collective that aims to display art in all different sorts of ways. This weekend, the works of nine local artists will be on display and for sale at back-to-back holiday parties. The party starts at 8pm this Friday and lasts well into the night with the help of a DJ and some Christmas tunes. Bring a present to be re-gifted in support of Pink Triangle Youth, and leave with some great art priced $50-$300. A party runs Saturday at the same time, and a tamer cookies-and-coffee party is happening on Sunday.

If you’re looking to take a break from the holiday madness, take a road trip to Gananoque (about two hours away), where you can catch Robin Hood! A Children’s Holiday Pantomime. This beloved adventure story is being performed as a “panto” – a performance with a musical-comedy twist that has men playing women… and vice-versa! Some laughs, a fun road trip, a good time with family and friends, and a unique performance style – this outing has it all. Play runs until Dec. 23.

Saturday, Dec. 10
If you’re looking to broaden your cultural horizons beyond Santa Claus, come out to Carleton University’s campus on Saturday night. No, we’re not suggesting joining the students who are studying for exams; instead, check out Kala Tarang: An Evening of Indian Dance and Music, which is a concert highlighting the work of the students of Gharana Arts. Other performers include Kasturi Mishra, who will be performing traditional Kathak Nritya, and Udit Bhide and Ravi Singh, performing Sitar and Tabla Vadhya. Whether you are familiar with this style of dance or not, you will walk away with an increased knowledge of the rich cultural traditions of Indian performing arts.

As if the holidays don’t have enough temptation, the Ottawa Locavore Artisan Food Fair (LAFF) is back for a second year. This Saturday, 25 local food artisans will be coming together to sell their delicious products, including cookies, pies, cheeses, jams, chocolates, and more. Sample some products and choose your favourites to purchase as gifts or to take home for yourself. A silent auction of select products will raise money for the School Breakfast Program that feeds 11,000 children in Ottawa daily. So head out to delight your taste buds and support a good cause, as well. (more…)

You Are Here: Old Strathcona

Image courtesy of Noel Zinger

With over 600 eclectic, independent and alternative shops and services to explore, it’s little wonder Old Strathcona is regarded as the place to experience Edmonton’s finest live theatre and music, boutique shopping, dining and nightlife. Read on for some of our top spots in this historical district and then visit www.oldstrathcona.ca for even more. (more…)