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Textile Museum of Canada

Weekend Roundup, April 8th to 10th

Friday: Marvel at the Harlem Globetrotters' amazing basketball skills

Friday, April 8
For more than 84 years, the Harlem Globetrotters have dazzled fans of sports and showmanship around the world, even presidents and popes. This weekend, they’re dusting off their best moves for three shows at the Rogers Centre: tonight at 7:30 p.m., and tomorrow (April 9) at 2 and 7 p.m.

Kicking off another spring is the Total Health Convention and Exhibition, taking place this weekend at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre and featuring more than 200 exhibitors. Attendees can also hear from 60-plus speakers on topics like “The Ancient Healing Art of Ayurvedic” or “Health Effects of Genetically Modified Foods.” Don’t miss the gourmet organic café or the spa oasis!

Learn about and celebrate the traditions of First Nations peoples at Survival of the Indigenous Spirit. The fundraiser will take place at the University of Toronto’s Innis Town Hall offers talks by Anishnabe spiritual leader Dave Courchene and Survivorman Les Stroud. Proceeds support the Vision Quest & Makoose Ka Win project.

Saturday: Kids will enjoy seeing Bugs "conduct" the orchestra

Saturday, April 9
Bring the kids to a classical concert they may actually enjoy, as the Sony Centre and Warner Bros. presents Bugs Bunny at the Symphony. Two showings (at 2 and 7 p.m.) feature the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony performing live while Bugs Bunny at the Symphony and other classic cartoons are projected on the big screen.

Massey Hall welcomes a Canadian music legend tonight, as iconic singer-songwriter Bruce Cockburn plays songs from his latest studio album, Small Source of Comfort, and, possibly such past hits as “Lovers in a Dangerous Time.”

Starting today, Veggielicious takes place at more than 20 restaurants and bakeries across Toronto. Specials on vegan dishes or prix fixe menus are on offer at establishments such as Bunner’s Bake Shop—where you can get a Veggielicious Snack Pack for $7.50—and Live Organic Food Bar, where for $25 you can experience a three-course 100 per cent vegan meal.

Sunday: Colborne Lodge offers family Fun (photo by Bobolink)

Sunday, April 10
Get a head start on all the family fun at Easter Traditions at Colborne Lodge, taking place from noon to 4 p.m. Kids and families can tour High Park’s historic Colborne Lodge while they learn and participate in 19th-century Easter traditions like dyeing and hunting for eggs.

For old and young alike, stamp collectors will enjoy spending the day at the National Postage Stamp Show at Exhibition Place’s Queen Elizabeth Building. Check out the North Toronto Stamp Club’s annual show, meet with dealers from across Canada, the United Kingdom, and the U.S., and participate in prize draws.

Three exciting Asian-inspired exhibitions beckon visitors to the Textile Museum of Canada: Beauty Born of Use: Natural Rainwear from China and Japan showcases the historical use of natural elements like straw, bark, vines, and seaweed to create waterproof and eco-friendly clothing; artist Kai Chan’s A Spider’s Logic brings together common household items reminiscent of his Chinese upbringing to create nature-inspired elements; and, new to the museum, Silk Oasis on the Silk Road: Bukhara displays a collection of ikats and silks from Central Asia’s textile- and history-rich Silk Road.

Weekend Roundup, October 15 to 17

Scream, laugh, marvel and applaud! There are many performances to see this weekend!

Friday: Applaud for Aida (photo by Michael Cooper)

Friday, October 15
Be afraid, be very afraid; The Halloween tradition Screemers returns to Exhibition Place! With  terrifying attractions like the Haunted House and Maniac Maze—plus a licensed Vampire Lounge—even the bravest are sure to feel chills!

The Canadian Opera Company’s Aida continues to engage audiences at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. This new production of Verdi’s masterpiece tells the tale of forbidden love between an Egyptian king and an Ethiopian slave, as war and a jealous Egyptian princess tear the two apart. In the title role, soprano Sondra Radvanovsky gives a stunning performance.

Don’t miss Out of Context—For Pina—after garnering rave reviews in Europe, this innovative contemporary dance production makes its Toronto debut at Harbourfront Centre. Choreographer Alain Platel uses body language to communicate emotion; the result is raw and deeply moving.

Saturday: Be moved by Joseph Ziegler in Death of a Salesman (photo by Bruce Zinger)

Saturday, October 16
Head to the Drake Hotel for its annual Fall Market! With unique vintage items, handmade knitwear, fresh flowers, baked goods and free gifts, there’s definitely something for everyone.

The Planet in Focus International Environmental Film and Video Festival continues through the weekend, with a slate of films that strive to enlighten audiences about eco-issues and encourage discussion on the state of the environment. Catch such anticipated films as Land of Destiny in various theatres across the city.

Arthur Miller’s classic play Death of a Salesman opens tonight at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts. Talented Soulpepper Theatre founders Joseph Ziegler and Nancy Palk take to the stage as Willy and Linda Loman. Don’t miss this production of this masterpiece of America theatre!

Sunday: Find a brunch-time seat at the Roosevelt Room

Sunday, October 17
Gather at the Roosevelt Room this morning for “The Breakfast Club,” the swanky venue’s monthly brunch party! Featuring a filling prix fixe menu, beats by DJ Jacques Dumas and plenty of champagne to go around, it’s breakfast done decadently right.

Yuk it up at the Best of Canadian Comedy Awards, part of the Canada’s Walk of Fame Festival! See top Canadian comedians like Mary Walsh, Colin Mochrie, Members of the Royal Canadian Air Farce and more perform at the beautiful Winter Garden Theatre.

It’s your last chance to see the Textile Museum of Canada’s intriguing Person Place Thing exhibition. The works of three contemporary textile artists test the boundaries of their medium: Lia Cook examines faces in her large weavings, David R. Harper embroiders portraits on animal skins, and Stephen Schofield creates huge patchwork figures.

Hot Art: Curated Cloth

A taxidermied horse embellished by David R. Harper

ON NOW Add a bit of diversity to your art intake with a visit to the Textile Museum of Canada. In addition to displays drawn from its permanent collection of traditional fabrics, garments and more—as in its Fashionably Wrapped exhibition of Kashmiri shawls—the museum also showcases varied works by contemporary textile artists. Such is the case with Person Place Thing, a three-pronged showcase of large-scale, tactile installations that examine relationships amongst, well, people, places and things. Featuring wall-sized weavings of the faces of children and dolls by Lia Cook, taxidermied animal sculptures by David R. Harper and massive patchwork figures that map out the human body by Stephen Schofield, this exhibit demonstrates the medium’s ability to craft narratives and shape modern identity.

Weekend roundup, May 28 to 30

It’s getting hot, hot, hot! Cool down this weekend with Bajan cuisine along the waterfront before checking out what Toronto has in store for you.

Friday: Pick up yarn, fabric and more at the Textile Museum (photo by Mr. T in DC)

Friday, May 28
Warm weather knocks at your door in true island fashion with Barbados on the Water. Head over to the Harbourfront Centre today and tomorrow for Bajan cuisine, fashion, theatre and live music by Barbadian artists.

Slide on up to Hemingways to celebrate the Yorkville institution’s 30th anniversary. Steak frites are on the menu tonight, or arrive at 2:30 p.m. in order to fill up on corn on the cob, barbecue fare, bar snacks and beer. The festivities culminate with an evening of live entertainment and prizes.

Get your bargaining skills ready because the Textile Museum of Canada’s More Than Just a Yardage Sale is an opportunity too good to pass up. Today and tomorrow, dig up goodies like patterns, yarns, quilt fabrics and other useful craft materials while doing your part to support the museum.

Grab a cold pint at C’est What?. Tonight’s special: sample from a selection of more than 14 cask beers and 30 draughts as part of the brew pub’s annual Spring Festival of Craft Breweries.

Saturday: Browse Old City Hall and many other buildings as part of Doors Open.

Saturday, May 29
Admire architecture and satisfy your curiosity as Doors Open Toronto enables visitors to explore 150 historic and cultural buildings, including Canada’s National Ballet School, Toronto’s Old City Hall, Black Creek Pioneer Village, and the Casa Loma stables and plotting shed.

Striving to eat well? Those with a taste for fresh, local home cookin’ are invited to stop by a farmer’s market and bring their fixin’s to Beach United Church, where Amuse chef Pat Riley offers a lesson on the fine side of cooking. Leftovers will go toward a Sunday lunch for lower-income Torontonians.

Unravel a mystery at Indigo’s Yorkdale location with Peter Lerangis and Gordon Korman, bestselling authors of the popular 39 Clues books. They let you in on some secrets and follow up the afternoon with a book signing.

Experience the unique combination of steel pan and voice in And Still We Sing…Steel Singin’, the Nathaniel Dett Chorale’s final performance in its 2010 Glenn Gould Studio series.

Sunday: See miniature diorama-like models at AWOL Gallery.

Sunday, May 30
Engage in cosplay events and game shows—or while away some hours perusing the manga library—on the final day of weekend-long festival Anime North.

Beware of side stitches at the World Cup of Comedy, a humorous tribute to the “beautiful game” and its upcoming World Cup tournament. Comedians Ahmed Ahmed, Angelo Tsarouchas, Frank Spadone and special guest Trevor Boris (“Video on Trial”) gather at the Panasonic Theatre for humorous banter, including topics such as—you guessed it—soccer.

In line with this weekend’s architectural goings on, visitors can explore the relationship between people and buildings at AWOL Gallery, where Rose Bianchini and Jason van Horne’s exhibition, titled Neighbourhood Watch, employs creative miniatures to demonstrate how space plays a powerful role in the formation of identity.

Settle into a seat at historic Massey Hall and let comedic actor Eddie Izzard entertain you with his sharp wit and inimitable sense of the absurd.

December Editor’s Picks: Art

Irish chain quilt

An Irish chain quilt

ON NOW For many people, quilts bring to mind notions of warmth and an embracing comfort. But upon viewing the array of coverlets displayed at the Textile Museum of Canada, you may find another term to be equally fitting—art. Kaleidoscope: Antique Quilts from the collection of Carole and Howard Tanenbaum, gathers 43 delicate blankets from Canada, England and the United States in a prismatic show of colour and craft, exposing the rich quilting tradition of the mid-19th to mid-20th centuries through styles including the pixel-like honeycomb pattern, the log cabin technique with its Canadiana influence, and everyone’s favourite, the “crazy quilt.” Among the most impressive examples: a double Irish chain quilt, comprising 2,965 postage stamp–sized pieces exquisitely stitched into a vibrant diagonal grid.
—Jenelle DaSilva Rupchand

Celebrate 30 years with Gallery 44.

Celebrate 30 years with Gallery 44

DECEMBER 3 TO 19 Shutterbugs have cause for celebration as unique photography centre and production facility Gallery 44 marks its 30th anniversary. Since 1979 the not-for-profit gallery has displayed the works of more than 750 Canadian and international artists in 240-plus exhibitions; this month, the gallery’s Wall to Wall show and sale collects excellent images that span its three decades of existence. Commemorate the occasion by picking up Gallery 44’s newest book, Emergence: Contemporary Canadian Photography, which examines photographic art and its ongoing evolution in this country.
Jessica Napier

Michael Snow's SSHTOORRTY

Michael Snow's SSHTOORRTY

OPENS DECEMBER 11 Art lovers and cineastes find common ground in Recent Snow: Works by Michael Snow, a survey of the Toronto-born artist’s latest video and film installations at The Power Plant. Though successful in many disciplines, Snow’s most consistently innovative efforts have been in the arena of avant-garde cinema. Experimenting with both structural and narrative techniques, these works—2005’s SSHTOORRTY and two brand new films among them—investigate the interplay between artifice and reality, rewarding the keen viewer with a multilayered cognitive and sensory experience.

ON NOW Get creative with your gift-giving this season by picking up eye-catching artwork and other visual ephemera at these unique shops and galleries.

Toronto Antiques on King

Toronto Antiques on King

>> A miscellany of paintings and works on paper is augmented by decorative pottery, sculptures, hand-crafted jewellery and even functional wood pieces at venerable Arts on King.

>> With reasonably priced canvases from dozens of emerging artists, Art Interiors offers an affordable alternative to the more traditional gallery experience.

>> Queen West’s Magic Pony is a mecca for whimsical designer toys and limited-edition prints from the likes of Junko Mizuno and Nicholas Di Genova.

>> Find the perfect coffee-table tome for the graphic designer or (m)ad man in your life at Swipe Books.

>> Toronto Antiques on King houses under one roof a variety of quality vendors who traffic in everything from estate jewellery to Canadian historical art to unique knick-knacks.

Halloween Weekend Bonus: Fright at the Museums

This weekend, ghosts, mummies and monsters of all sorts scare up frightful fun at this city’s biggest museums.

Halloween at the Royal Ontario Museum<br>photo illustration

Historically relevant ghosts haunt the ROM this weekend.

Gab with ghosts at the
Royal Ontario Museum

Spirits come to life this Saturday to share their spooky stories with ROM visitors. Don’t be surprised if you bump into some familiar faces haunting the halls, including Dr. Charles Trick Currelly, the museum’s founder and friendly resident ghost. Brave little goblins can get up close and personal with some real-life creepy crawlies and make clip-on spider crafts to take home.

October 31. Adults $22, kids (under 14) $15, infants (under 3) free; call 416-586-5797 or click here for more information.


Run away to the circus at the Art Gallery of Ontario

To coincide with its ongoing Alexander Calder exhibit, the AGO hosts trapeze artists, jugglers, fortune tellers and many more dazzling performers from local circus troupe Lookup Theatre. Step right up and marvel at astounding acrobats and uncanny contortionists as they perform under a big top tent in the gallery’s spectacular Walker Court. Kids can make their own trapeze wire sculptures in the Off The Wall! creative space while adults sip on a festive Halloweeni Bellini cocktails at the museum’s restaurant, Frank.

October 31 and November 1.  Adults $18, youth (under 17) $10, kids (under 5) free; call 416-979-6648 or visit here for tickets.


Spot spooky shoes at the Bata Shoe Museum

Play dress up at the Bata Shoe Museum’s Costume Bonanza. There’s plenty of hands-on fun for kids—try on one-of-a-kind costumes, create scary shoe art and decorate ghost-shaped cookies with tasty icing. Afterward, take a tour around the museum to admire the frighteningly comprehensive collection of footwear.

October 31 and November 1. Adults $12, kids (under 12) $6; call 416-979-7799 ext. 242 or click here for further details and ticket information.


Celebrate the Day of the Dead at the Gardiner Museum

Don’t be scared to enjoy yourself at this morbid-sounding (but actually celebratory) traditional Mexican festival. Listen to musical performances by Jorge Lopez and his mariachi band while feasting on Mexican chocolate and pan demuerto (literally, bread of the dead). Admire remembrance altars made by local artists and let creative kids get their hands dirty sculpting clay skeletons.

November 1. Adult $12, kids (under 12) free; call 416 408 5063 or visit here for more details.


Unravel the secrets of mummies at the Textile Museum

The Textile Museum of Canada hosts Dr. Elizabeth Barber, an expert on prehistoric textiles, for a special lecture about her recent archeological expedition to Western China. Learn about the mysterious process of mummification and see photos of recently discovered ancient bodies which, although more than 3,000 years old, are astonishingly well-preserved.

November 3. Adults $12, kids (5 to 14) $6; call 416-599-5321 or click here for more information.

Frugal Faves: The Textile Museum and a Sculpture Scavenger Hunt

There’s so much to see and do in this city, but after a while, admission fees, restaurant bills and shopping sprees start to add up. Where Toronto helps you get the most out of your trip without burning a hole in your pocket. Check back each week for our thrifty tips on discounted tickets, exclusive sales, free events and more.

See colourful quilts and much more with Wednesday-evening PWYC admission at the Textile Museum.

View colourful quilts and more with Wednesday-evening PWYC admission to the Textile Museum of Canada.

PWYC Admission to the Textile Museum
The Textile Museum of Canada showcases more than 1,200 cloth-based artifacts and works of art from around the world, from traditional East Asian garments and Danish tablecloths to feminist embroidery and evocative tapestries. General museum admission ($12) won’t break the bank, but frugal types will want to visit on Wednesday evenings, when you pay-what-you-can to get in. Check out Kaleidoscope: Antique Quilts from the collection of Carole and Howard Tanenbaum, examine South American fabric fragments in In Touch: Connecting Cloth, Culture + Art, and try different kinds of looms in the fibrespace hands-on gallery, all on the cheap.

Pay-What-You-Can admission at the Textile Museum is in effect every Wednesday between 5 and 8 p.m.

Track down Toronto's many bronze businessmen (photo by Jenelle DaSilva-Rupchand).

Track down Toronto's many bronze businessmen (photo by Jenelle DaSilva-Rupchand).

See “Businessman” Sculptures for Free
If you’re an art fan but your PWYC budget is closer to $0? Then go on a cost-free sculpture scavenger hunt to find the Businessman. Renowned sculptor William Hodd McElcheran created a number of bronze sculptures of a portly man in an overcoat, tie and fedora. A selection of these famed pieces from the 1980s were placed around Toronto, some fittingly located in the Financial District. Find the Businessman at Brookfield Place standing tall with hat and portfolio in hand, in mid-stride in the Commerce Court East building, bareback on a horse between Brennan Hall and Emsley Hall on the University of Toronto campus, and at other spots. A variety of works by McElcheran are also available for purchase at Yorkville’s Kinsman Robinson Galleries.

Weekend Roundup, August 21 to 23

Friday: Be a thrill-seeker at the CNE.

Friday: Be a thrill-seeker at the CNE.

Friday, August 21
It’s opening day of the Canadian National Exhibition, and in celebration of Toronto’s 175th anniversary, CNE admission today is just $1.75! Ride a roller coaster, play some midway games, then catch Canadian figure skating star Elvis Stojko and his comrades in a movie-themed ice show at Ricoh Coliseum.

Take in a traditional Tibetan dance amidst the vibrant hues of saris and the aroma of cooking curries at the Festival of South Asia in Little India.

Follow the rise of the stereobike crew—a group of Trinidadians in Queens, New York who rig full-size stereo systems onto BMX bikes—in Made in Queens, screening at the Bicycle Film Festival at The Royal cinema.

Saturday: Head to Chinatown for some East Asian revelry (photo by John Vetterli).

Saturday: Head to Chinatown for some East Asian revelry (photo by John Vetterli).

Saturday, August 22
Discover hidden vintage in the city by participating in the Textile Museum of Canada’s day-long thrift store bus tour, hosted by local artist Andrew Harwood and curator Allyson Mitchell.

Savour the Thai curry–braised lamb on the affordable Susurlicious prix fixe menu at Lee, one of the Toronto restaurants of globally renowed chef Susur Lee.

Bite into a Hong Kong–style egg puff while watching the Lion Dance troupe open the Toronto Chinatown Festival, an East Asian extravaganza featuring cuisine, crafts, music, dancing, games, kung-fu demonstrations and more.

Sunday: The curtain falls on The Harder They Come (photo by Robert Day).

Sunday: The curtain falls on The Harder They Come (photo by Robert Day).

Sunday August 23
Spread out in the Toronto Music Garden for an afternoon session of Summer Music in the Garden.
Today, four virtuoso accordionists play a wide-range of music, including tunes accompanied by singers and dancers.

Sit on the edge of your seat at the Rexall Centre to witness the world’s best female tennis players compete for the singles and doubles championships of the Rogers Cup.

Sing along to “Many Rivers to Cross” and other reggae favourites at the last Toronto performance of the hit musical The Harder They Come. Based on the 1972 film of the same name, the stage show follows a poor country boy trying to make it in Jamaica’s music industry.

Theatre Preview: The Harder They Come

The story of a dreamer-turned-outlaw gets a lively retelling in an acclaimed stage show featuring some of Jamaican music’s best-known songs. —By Lindsay Hope

Performers in <em>The Harder They Come</em> (photo by Robert Day).

Performers in The Harder They Come (photo by Robert Day).

The infectious rhythms and memorable melodies of the latest musical to hit Toronto come by way of a recent London stage sensation and a 1970s cult-classic film. This month, Mirvish Productions brings The Harder They Come to the Canon Theatre for its much-anticipated North American premiere.

Faithfully based on the 1972 movie of the same name—its co-writer and director, the late Perry Henzell, also penned the musical—this stage version was first performed in 2006 by the Theatre Royal Stratford East and has since garnered rave reviews over a number of sell-out runs in the U.K. The Toronto production features much of the original’s vibrant, youthful cast, not to mention a live reggae band with a groove so energetic, it rouses audience members to dance in their seats. Among the British stars are Joanna Francis as the God-fearing Elsa, and Rolan Bell, who hits all the right notes as the show’s tragic hero, Ivanhoe Martin. A poor Jamaican farm boy with stars in his eyes and a dream in his heart, Ivan heads to Kingston with ambitions to become a reggae hit-maker. Soon enough he is faced with the harsh realities of the music industry and veers sharply down the path of drugs, crime and vengeance, earning infamy for his exploits as an outlaw just as his musical star begins to rise.

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Weekend Roundup, May 29 to 31

The weekend arrives once again. Enjoy it!

Friday: Embrujo Flamenco's paella festival

Friday: Embrujo Flamenco's paella festival

Friday, May 29
Explore how the shape of a garment communicates cultural beliefs and outlooks in The Cutting Edge, a feature exhibition at the Textile Museum of Canada.

Savour the exotic flavours of Embrujo Flamenco’s paella festival, featuring various takes on the filling, authentically Spanish dish. A gazpacho starter, one of four daily paellas like the arroz negro—black rice and seafood cooked in squid ink—and dessert are just $49.

Sing along to the roots-rock hits of eclectic British band Gomez as they storm the Pheonix Concert Theatre stage.

Saturday: Sommelier Taylor Thompson offers wine expertise at Reds (photo by Daniel Shipp).

Saturday: Sommelier Taylor Thompson offers wine expertise at Reds (photo by Daniel Shipp).

Saturday, May 30
Spend the day discovering the art of food-and-wine pairing by participating in historic Campbell House Museum’s Global Wine Tour: Fundamentals of Food and Wine course.

Combine food and fashion while celebrating South-Asian music and culture at DesiFest.

Marvel at the poise of performers from the Canadian Children’s Opera Company as they stage Hansel and Gretel Go Into the Woods: A Fairy Tale.

Choose your favourite tipple from more than 90 wines available by the glass at Reds Bistro & Wine Bar—or, seek the advice of Taylor Thompson, the restaurant’s expert sommelier.

Tuck into brunch at the Drake Hotel's eclectic Corner Café

Sunday: Tuck into brunch at the Drake Hotel's eclectic Corner Café

Sunday, May 31
Relax at The Rex with enough jazz, blues and beer to keep you occupied between lunch and dinner.

Take in the Drake Hotel’s trendy ambience as you chomp down on a hearty breakfast burrito from its lauded brunch menu.

Catch the Toronto Blue Jays and Boston Red Sox—or perhaps even a foul ball—as these Major League Baseball rivals do battle at Rogers Centre.

May Editor’s Picks: Art

09-05-hotarttextile

The Creation by Judy Chicago, woven by Audrey Cowan (Image © Donald Woodman).

ON NOW The practice of needlepoint—for centuries seen as an innocuous domestic hobby for women—takes on profound political, cultural and artistic implications in When Women Rule the World: Judy Chicago in Thread, the latest exhibition at the Textile Museum of Canada. Numerous striking works produced cooperatively by the American artist and volunteer textile makers hang from the museum’s walls and enshrine female iconography in a sphere historically dominated by masculine viewpoints. Spanning Chicago’s four-decade career, the survey offers a distinct feminist perspective with such pieces as The Creation, a large-scale tapestry from the 1980 to ‘85 Birth Project, which explores the physical, emotional and spiritual experiences shared by women through childbirth.

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