Johanna Nutter’s My Pregnant Brother is a highlight of the Summerworks Performance Festival (photo by Pam Price)
AUGUST 9 TO 19 The season’s “dog days” get a dramatic boost with the return of the SummerWorks Performance Festival. Over 11 days, Canada’s largest juried theatre event offers 40 provocative productions, including I, Animal by top playwright Daniel MacIvor, My Pregnant Brother—Johanna Nutter’s true tale of her transgendered sibling’s pregnancy—and Barrel Crank, which tells of the first person to survive going over Niagara Falls in a barrel—a timely story, considering Nik Wallenda’s recent high-wire walk. In addition, the festival’s popular music offerings are expanded this year, too, with performances by the likes of Hawksley Workman and Buck 65. Various venues, $15 per show; call 416-628-8216 or click here for further details.
Sarah Harmer is just one of the major musicians slated to perform at the Huntsville Festival of the Arts
JULY 2 TO AUGUST 22 Muskoka’s concert calendar is once again packed to the brim thanks to the ever-popular Huntsville Festival of the Arts. Canadian rock band Lighthouse kicks off this summer’s schedule on July 2. The excitement continues with returning artists Hawksley Workman on July 17 and John McDermott on August 17, plus fiddle and step-dance masters Leahy on July 10 and rootsy singer Sarah Harmer on August 22. Fans of improvised music won’t want to miss the weekend-long Huntsville Jazz Festival—from July 29 to August 1—which features performances from jazz-pop specialist Alex Cuba, rising jazz singer and pianist Laila Biali, and many others. Most performances at Algonquin Theatre, $25 to $45; call 705-789-4975 or click here for a complete schedule and to purchase tickets.
July 3 to August 26: The Huntsville Festival of the Arts packs an eclectic punch of musical entertainment over six fun-filled weeks. Headlining musicians include returning favourites Hawksley Workman on August 12 and Jim Cuddy on August 25 and 26, as well as folksy singer and songwriter Serena Ryder on July 9 and a tribute evening to country music singer Patsy Cline on July 25. Don’t miss the annual homage to Dixieland at the Huntsville Jazz Festival, from July 30 to August 1. This fest-within-a-fest features vibraphone specialist Peter Appleyard. Most performances at Algonquin Theatre, tickets $25 to $45; call 705-789-4975 to purchase.