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Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival Toronto

Summer Sizzles at the Toronto Caribbean Carnival Grand Parade

THE SCOTIABANK TORONTO CARIBBEAN CARNIVAL AND ISLAND SOUL FESTIVAL ADD SOME SPIRIT TO SUMMER IN THE CITY

Toronto-Caribbean-Carnival-2015-Grand-Parade-Bahamanian-Junkanoo-band

The Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival is always a lively affair (photo: Andrew Weir)

Dance in the Streets
The always colourful Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival—affectionately known as Caribana—is one of summer’s liveliest street parties. More than 15,000 people are expected to take part in the August 1 parade, which wends its westerly way along Lake Shore Boulevard from Exhibition Place. Donning extravagant, and yes, sometimes barely-there costumes, revelers march and dance to the sounds of steel drums and Calypso singers. This year, in the spirit of the Pan Am Games, a number of floats celebrate the cultural heritage of such nations as the Bahamas, Cuba, Jamaica and Trinidad.

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Hot Date: The Caribbean Carnival Parade

AUGUST 4  Don your most colourful outfit for the summer’s hottest cultural celebration—the 45th annual Caribbean Carnival parade. Starting at the Exhibition Place grounds and heading west, a 3.5-kilometre stretch of Lake Shore Boulevard erupts with a vibrant procession of elaborate costumes and calypso, steel pan and chutney bands, plus tens of thousands of spectators dancing on the sidelines. The revelry continues on August 5 at Ontario Place, which hosts Beyond de Lime, a noon-to-night party with island-inspired food and concerts. Call 416-391-5608 or navigate here for further details.

Weekend Roundup: July 20 to 22

Friday: Speed-the-Plow satirizes the movie industry (photo by Cylla von Tiedemann)

Friday, July 20
Expect cracking dialogue and fierce satire this evening as Soulpepper Theatre Company performs David Mamet’s Speed-The-Plow. The play examines the lives of two American film producers while dissecting the relationship between art and commerce.

The Toronto Summer Music Festival returned earlier in the week and brought with it a full slate of concerts, master classes and lectures for classical music lovers. Tonight, the acclaimed Borodin Quartet presents Music of Russia, a program of string quartets by Russian composers, including Borodin, Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky.

Once again the Harbourfront Centre becomes of a cultural smorgasbord of music, dance, international fare and more as the Hot & Spicy Food Festival occupies the downtown waterfront. The festival kicks it up a notch with exciting competitions like tonight’s Taco Takedown—where you decide which taco reigns supreme—and the annual Iron Chef competition, held over the weekend and concluding Sunday afternoon. (more…)

Hot Date: Flamboyant Caribbean Fun

JULY 17 TO AUGUST 5 Don your most colourful costume and limber up to dance to the infectious calypso and soca rhythms of the Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival Toronto. The countdown to the famous parade (taking place August 4) begins on July 17 when Nathan Phillips Square hosts the festival’s official launch party, featuring island-inspired food, art displays, and live music and dance. July 21 has two events to enjoy—the junior carnival at Downsview Park and a Canada-versus-Jamaica rugby match at Lamport Stadium—while July 31 brings a calypso all-stars showcase to Harbourfront Centre. Various venues; call 416-391-5608 or click here for more information.