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Neil Young

Luminato, To-Do Day Six

Reinvigorate yourself mid-week with more entertaining options courtesy of Luminato.

Pierre Brault channels guitarist Lenny Breau in 5 O'Clock Bells (photo by Christina Riley).

Pierre Brault channels guitarist Lenny Breau in 5 O'Clock Bells (photo by Christina Riley).

Wednesday, June 10

5 O’Clock Bells
Lenny Breau might have been a man of few words but his cultural impact continues to this day. On Monday the NFB screened a documentary about him, and today you’ll be able to catch Pierre Brault’s one-man show inspired by the jazz guitarist’s short and tragic life. The show, directed by Brian Quirt, wowed audiences during a sold-out run in Ottawa; expect a similar reaction when it premieres in Toronto tonight.
Berkeley Street Theatre (26 Berkeley St.), 7:30 p.m., $35.

Gothic Toronto—Writing the City Macabre
We always knew there was something ominous about the CN Tower; now we have our proof. Luminato and Diaspora Dialogues commissioned six Toronto writers, including Michelle Wan, Ann-Marie MacDonald and Andrew Pyper, to write short stories about the city. But there’s a twist: each one falls within the realm of gothic literature, so expect a spook or two. Bring a friend along because after a night of spine-tingling tales you probably won’t feel like heading home (or back to your hotel) by yourself. And be sure to pick up one of the limited-edition “chapbooks” compiling all the stories before they disappear into the ether.
The Music Gallery (197 John St.), 7:30 p.m., free.

The Canadian Songbook—A Tribute to Neil Young’s Live at Massey Hall
It’s hard to imagine Neil Young as an upstart musician still trying to prove his worth as a singer-songwriter. Yet that’s exactly what he was when he took the stage at Massey Hall on January 19, 1971, and played his soon-to-be-iconic songs including “Helpless” and “Old Man.” As part of Luminato’s music programming (particular those events celebrating the guitar), an assemblage of such top Canadian musicians as the Cowboy Junkies, Holly Cole, Steven Page and Carole Pope come together to recreate Young’s landmark performance.
Massey Hall (178 Victoria St.), 8 p.m., $59.50 to $79.50.

Luminato To-Do, Day Two

Luminato’s opening weekend continues with music, dance, art and much more.

Jacob Abrahamse as Stephen, the holy child, in <i>The Children's Crusade</i> (photo by Steve Wilkie).

Jacob Abrahamse as Stephen, the holy child, in The Children's Crusade (photo by Steve Wilkie).


The Children’s Crusade
Marvel at the world premiere of a Luminato-commissioned opera renowned composer R. Murray Schafer. Based on a horrific (and historically disputed) 13th-century escapade when thousands of children are said to have joined an ill-fated journey to the Holy Land, the show features a cast of more than 100, including many members of the Canadian Children’s Opera Company. Performed before a standing audience in a warehouse “theatre,” this is a musical crusade you won’t want to miss.
153 Dufferin St., 8 p.m., $40.

Family Dance Party
Are there any budding guitarists in your family? Why not take them to Yonge-Dundas Square for the Family Dance Party, a free event celebrating guitar music. Show off your shredding skills during air guitar lessons, or partake in some guitar-inspired craftmaking. Rock on!
Yonge-Dundas Square, 11 a.m., free.

Tony Oursler
One of North America’s preeminent multimedia artists, Tony Oursler, has taken over Grange Park with a fascinating—and potentially disturbing—installation. His latest public piece deals with modes of communication and the ways in which we connect through mass culture, among other things.
Grange Park (McCaul & Dundas streets, just south of the Art Gallery of Ontario), for the duration of Luminato, free.

The Great Canadian Tune
Visit the festival’s hub to witness—or better yet, be a part of—Guiness World Record history. Here, guitarists from far and wide are invited to assemble and strum Neil Young’s classic “Helpless,” in what may turn out to be the world’s biggest jam session; only 1,803 players are needed to beat the current record-holder, Leinfelden-Echterdingen, Germany. Win or lose, it’s bound to be a great time.
Yonge-Dundas Square, 2 p.m., free.