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Review: The Canadian Opera Company’s “Arabella” (October 5 – 28, 2017)

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Toronto – The Canadian Opera Company opens its 2017/2018 season with the lush orchestration and soaring vocal lines of Richard Strauss’ lyrical comedy about love, money and sex, Arabella. Never before presented by the COC, Arabella has its company premiere with a glamorous opulent staging conceived by acclaimed Toronto resident director Tim Albery, starring two of the finest sopranos on the world stage today: Canadians Erin Wall and Jane Archibald. Arabella runs for seven performances on October 5, 10, 14, 18, 20, 22, 28, 2017 at Toronto’s Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts.

German Patrick Lange, the new general music director for the Wiesbaden State Theatre and one of the most exciting maestros of his generation, returns to the COC to conduct Arabella’s beautiful and charming score in a staging that shows audiences “how seductive and insightful Strauss can be when offered a production as gracefully nuanced as this one” (Santa Fe Reporter). A COC co-production with Minnesota Opera and Santa Fe Opera, this new presentation of Arabella was praised by The New York Times as “smart and tasteful,” singling out how Albery “honors the work’s period setting in a sensitively detailed production” with sets and costumes by Tobias Hoheisel and lighting design by David Finn.

At the core of Strauss’ opera is the relationship between two sisters of a financially ruined noble family who are trying to find their way amidst the changing world of turn-of-the-century Vienna. Inspired by this backdrop of age old contrasts and a yearning for something more, Albery situates the action of Strauss’ opera in Vienna on the eve of the First World War. The staging suggests a time of hedonistic triviality with the looming cataclysm of the war that would destroy all the certainties of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The result is “an extravagant, visually appealing (Gustav Klimt-style) glamour that suits the characters and their situations” (Opera News).

World-renowned Canadian Erin Wall brings her “lovely, sympathetic Arabella” (New York Times) and “radiant soprano caressing Strauss’ sinuous, soaring lines” (Dallas Morning News) to the COC to sing the title role.

Making her role debut as Zdenka, Arabella’s sister who is forced to pass for a boy, is acclaimed Canadian Jane Archibald, the COC’s 2017/2017 Artist-in-Residence and an “extraordinary coloratura soprano” (Globe and Mail) who “whether it be her projection, tone, intensity, breath or agility, as a soloist or in the many ensembles, her voice radiates and surprises at every moment” (ClassiqueNews.com).

Poland’s Tomasz Konieczny, a bass-baritone praised as “full of light, radiance, power and immeasurable generosity,” (Frankfurter Allgemeine), makes his Canadian debut as Mandryka, Arabella’s suitor. American tenor Michael Brandenburg brings “his natural acting and clear, attractive tenor” (Metro Weekly) to his company and role debut as Matteo, the penniless officer who loves Arabella and is secretly loved by Zdenka.
Distinguished Canadian baritone, and COC Ensemble Studio graduate, John Fanning is Count Waldner, Arabella and Zdenka’s gambling father, and German mezzo-soprano Gundula Hintz makes her Canadian debut as their mother, Adelaide.

Arabella’s trio of suitors are portrayed by three rising operatic talents: American tenor Corey Bix makes his COC debut as Count Elemer, American baritone Craig Irvin sings Count Dominik and COC Ensemble Studio baritone Bruno Roy is Count Lamoral. COC Ensemble Studio graduate coloratura soprano Claire de Sévigné is the belle of the ball, Fiakermilli. Canadian mezzo-soprano Megan Latham is the Fortune Teller.

Strauss’ Arabella was first performed in 1933 at the Dresden Sächsisches Staatstheater. It is the final collaboration between the composer and his long-time librettist Hugo von Hofmannsthal, who had previously worked together on Elektra, Der Rosenkavalier, Ariadne auf Naxos, Die Frau ohne Schatten and Die ägyptische Helena. While written in the late 1920s, the libretto of Arabella is based on a short story written by Hofmannsthal in 1910, Lucidor, Characters for an Unwritten Comedy, where the focus was not on Arabella but her tomboy sister, Lucile (the quasitrouser role of Zdenka in the opera), and published before the First World War.

Arabella is Strauss’ best-loved stage work from the 1920s and ’30s and contains some of the composer’s most beautiful music for orchestra and soprano voice. Performed with greater frequency among European opera houses than in North America, the COC premiere of Arabella may also mark the opera’s Canadian debut.
All performances of the COC’s production of Arabella feature the COC Orchestra and Chorus. Arabella is sung in German and presented by the COC with English SURTITLESTM.

TICKET INFORMATION

Single tickets for Arabella range from $35 – $225 and box seats, when available, are $350. Tickets are now on sale, available online at coc.ca, by calling 416-363-8231, or in person at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts Box Office (145 Queen St. W.). For more information on specially priced tickets available to young people under the age of 15, standing room, Opera Under 30 presented by TD Bank Group, student groups and rush seating, visit coc.ca.

http://www.coc.ca

Review:

The Canadian Opera Company’s season-opening production of Arabella from German composer Richard Strauss is not only a beautiful warm up to opera season but a meditative journey into one of Strauss’ finest work. The athleticism of the artists on stage and in the orchestra pit will strengthen your heart and ease your mind. Arabella is not your typical opera night out.

Hardly Kardashian in financial stature and prestige for the time, instead we see opulence with a deep sense of loss within a family unit. Ballroom scenes, waiting for Mr. Right and chameleonic themes is flooded with the melding of humour and a darkness that lurks in the stairwells and deep crevices of the character’s evolving emotional mindsets.

As you immerse yourself in Hugo von Hofmannsthal’s libretto – it is important to play close attention. Within the joviality, luxe colour and fabrics, stone architecture and giddy moments of cheekiness for the audience’s favour we see a transformation that slowly begins to sweep the stage. Perhaps echoing our own family of origin during different times in our own lives.

Soprano Erin Wall not only dazzles the audience as Arabella but teaches us the value of a true modern day musician. In true form on Saturday night, Wall charged the stage at every turn in her creamy gown with lashings of song that made the audience swoon and also smile in unison.

Jane Archibald, soprano voice, plays Arabella’s sister and provided us with the balance in the production. Down home, realistic and yet full of romantic exuberance.

Baritone, Tomasz Konieczny, was dynamic as Mandryka and provided the audience with some cringe worthy exchanges and a sex appeal that only illuminated the piece.

German conductor Patrick Lange indeed had a huge task of bringing Strauss’ music to life but adding a new breath to this piece that easily left you walking out of the Four Seasons for the Performing Arts with a spring in your step.

A wonderful evening out with Strauss and Co. Bravo to the Canadian Opera Company for bringing this complex but timely piece to Canadian audiences.

 

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Review: Red Sky Performance & The Toronto Symphony Orchestra’s: ‘Adizokan’ (October 7, 2017)

NelsonTagoona,GaryKulesha(@JagGundu)

Photo Credit: Jag Gundu.

In Anishinaabemowin, Adizokan means “a spiritual being that carries wisdom and knowledge”. It is not necessarily ‘the human’ who possesses wisdom. For Indigenous Peoples, human life is limited and we can experience only a tiny slice of the spiritual experience. There is so much more knowledge and wisdom that does not necessarily live in human form, but resides in animals, rocks, trees, water, and the stars. We respect all life forms and all life forms have a spirit. It is a worldview that is critical for a profound renewal of transformation in this era of great upheaval.

Tonight’s Adizokan is a celebration of connected threads of information that weave across the universe, linking the biological, technological and cosmological forces though human experience. From the quiet sense of infinity that comes from a star filled sky, to the sense of wonder that results from looking at one’s own DNA sequence on a cellphone. All of these experiences bind across time. Our universe is pulsing with densely packed and expansive seas of information, flowing with messages, stories, meaning, and ways of knowing whether it be human, hoofed or winged.

Adizokan is divided into seven sections as there are seven layers of the universe for Indigenous peoples. In this music composition, these seven layers trace Indigenous experience of information beginning with our evocative “Origins” and the intensely primal “Fundamental Forces”, and culminating in the epic energy of “Future Skies”. These movements are interspersed with electroacoustic / throatboxing interludes featuring Nelson Tagoona’s unique integration of throat singing and beatboxing. Each section relies on computer assisted compositional techniques to seek out, shape and emphasize threads of connection between orchestral, vocal, Indigenous and throatboxing sound worlds.

Seven Movements

  1. Origins
  2. Fundamental Forces

–              Electro-Throatbox Interlude – A

III.           Earth Stories

–              Electro-Throatbox Interlude – B

  1. Hoof and Bone (Hoof Stories)

–              Electro-Throatbox Interlude – C

–              IVb Bone and Hoof

–              Electro-Throatbox Interlude – D

  1. Star Stories
  2. Wind Stories

VII.         Epic Future Skies

Adizokan_TSO(@JagGundu)

Photo Credit: Jag Gundu.

Review:

The Adizokan performance at The Toronto Symphony Orchestra was an evening brimming with a meld of excitement and deep emotion. The Toronto Symphony Orchestra got it right with their invited guests, Red Sky Performance, to their Roy Thomson Hall stage for a one night only performance.

Internationally renowned, Red Sky Performance is a leading company of contemporary Indigenous performance in Canada and worldwide. A multi-award winning company was founded in 2000 by Artistic Director Sandra Laronde of the Teme-Augama-Anishinaabe (People of the Deep Water).

Red Sky Performance’s mandate is to create inspiring experiences of contemporary Indigenous arts and culture. We create, produce and disseminate new creations and events that illuminate themes, aesthetics and values of importance to Indigenous peoples.

Touring since 2003, Red Sky Performance has delivered over 2,253 performances across Canada and international performances in 12 countries on four continents, including two Cultural Olympiads (Beijing and Vancouver), and opened for Canada at World Expo in Shanghai. They are the recipient of five Dora Mavor Moore awards and nominations, two Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards, the Smithsonian Expressive Award, among other recognitions.

The visuals on the screens amplified the symphonic score and dance being disseminated by the performers on stage. Speaking to Toronto (a Mohawk word ‘tkaronto’ which means “where there are trees standing in the water”) and Lake Ontario (from the Iroquoian language meaning “lake of shining waters”) we the audience were given a wonderful foundation early in the evening to slip into.  The pace was slow, introspective and revealing as it connected the audience to our home town.

We were gently reminded that we as inhabitants live on land that is not ours but by peoples who long lived, managed and enhanced the earth with their spirituality, ethnicity and connection to one another. Through the performance art of the Red Sky troupe we were injected with a mild meditation of their truths and that of their ancestors in the over an hour and a half performance.

The evening was beautifully curated with music that elevated the modern dance that transpired on the stage. Dance that was emblematic of streams, waterfalls, wild life, hills and valleys.  The audience were taken on a visual tour of sorts while our heart strings tightened and clenched with exhilaration and grief.

Nelson Tagoona’s throat boxing left the audience ‘slayed’. Dark, foreboding and emblematic of the Fall season.  His work was a wonderful treat and window into an art form that needs to be heard by all Canadians.  The audience felt a chill in the air as the symphony only amplified the mood with their edgy and modernly customized musical score.

I encourage you to check out the Toronto Symphony Orchestra monthly collaborations before the season ends in December 2018.

https://www.tso.ca/

http://www.redskyperformance.com/

HOT Ticket Giveaway: #FNLROM Friday October 20, 2017: Senses

The Royal Ontario Museum’s (ROM) Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) series, presented by Ford Motor Company of Canada, Ltd., delivers Toronto’s best Friday night destination with the hottest DJs, live performances, food and drink, and an opportunity to experience the Museum like never before. On Friday, October 6 catch Thanks Canada at #FNLROM!

#FNLROM Friday, October 20, 2017: Senses: Performances

World Dance

Highlighting Toronto’s best dance and musical entertainment, exemplifying how music and dance from around the globe brings us together, teaching us how similar we really are.

DJ Sean Caff

What started as playing a grade eight party for his friends with a double-cassette deck has turned into a profession of Djing across the globe. Sean Caff mixes a wide variety of genres from classics to contemporary. Catch Sean smiling from the booth as his plays music videos to make you move.

DJ Law

Award winning DJ Law is one of the best kept secrets on the East Coast. He’s opened for superstars like Ice Cube and 50 Cent. Check him out as he plays music videos that will bring you way back.

U of T Faculty of Music

Featuring stars of the University of Toronto jazz music program.

GALLERY ACTIVATIONS

Out of the Vaults: Sense of Smell

Does this smell ring any bells? Learn about how the brain associates smells with memories and emotions, with special specimens from ROM collections.

FOOD VENDORS

Rachel’s Gourmet Gone Wild

All-natural, fresh, & delicious! A wide range of nutritional artisan entrées. (Vegetarian and vegan options available).

Me.n.u

Asian fusion, bringing the taste of travel to the streets of Toronto.(Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options available).

Curbside Bliss Cupcakes

Canada’s first mobile dessert kitchen bringing baked-from-scratch sweetness to you! (Vegan and gluten-free options available).

Liko’s Hawaiian Barbecue

Local Hawaiian grindz – we bring da islandz to you!

Ice Volcano Ice Cream

Freshly made ice cream using liquid nitrogen with smoking Ice Volcano presentation.

Pars Kebab

Delicious homemade Middle Eastern food. (Vegetarian and halal options available).

Delight Bite

The best fresh Mexican food. (Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options available).

Gushi Chicken

Delicious Japanese fried chicken on a stick.

Mnandi Pies

Hand crafted Zimbabwean-style pies made with fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. (Vegetarian options available).

Young Animal

Trinidadian-inspired food prepared using traditional French and Italian techniques. (Vegetarian options available).

Tita Flips

Elevated Filipino street food. (Gluten-free options available).

Dolled Up Desserts

An award-winning gluten-free and vegan bakery that empowers everyone to eat classic and unique treats.

What are the rules when entering the Thirty Four Flavours and Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) Ticket Giveaway?

Simple! Please sign up to Thirty Four Flavours Facebook https://www.facebook.com/thirtyfourflavours, Twitter https://twitter.com/34flavours, or email subscription to enter the draw. When you have signed up please send me a Facebook message, a tweet or email (thirtyfourflavours@gmail.com) telling me what you are excited to see at the #FNLROM Friday, October 20, 2017: Senses edition of Friday Night Live (#FNLROM).

Deadline for the Thirty Four Flavours and Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) Ticket Giveaway is Wednesday October 18, 2017.

https://www.rom.on.ca/en/whats-on/rom-friday-night-live#/gallery/recent

HOT Ticket Giveaway: #FNLROM Friday October 13, 2017: Rock On

The Royal Ontario Museum’s (ROM) Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) series, presented by Ford Motor Company of Canada, Ltd., delivers Toronto’s best Friday night destination with the hottest DJs, live performances, food and drink, and an opportunity to experience the Museum like never before. On Friday, October 6 catch Thanks Canada at #FNLROM!

#FNLROM Friday, October 13, 2017: Rock On: Performances

The Blue Stones

Hailing from Windsor, Ontario, The Blue Stones consist of Tarek Jafar (lead vocals, guitar) and Justin Tessier (drums, backing vocals) – a tandem that have been syncing their sounds since early high school in 2008. By producing such a massive and dynamic sound, these guys have set themselves apart and constantly leave people wondering how there are only two of them. The Blue Stones have performed shows with Fitz and the Tantrums, The Stone Foxes, Justin Nozuka & others all throughout Canada and the Detroit area. In April 2016, they released their debut full-length album internationally, Black Holes. This record features a darker and more dynamic side of the group, showing listeners their progression into the alternative/blues-blended sound they possess today.

DJ Simon Jain

Simon Jain has always held a certain presence in a room. His demeanor and persona often replicate in detail his music style; wild, brooding, seemingly out of control, yet subtly contained in the right places. He can quickly back up his antics with savvy programming and a keen ear and eye for the dance floor. Simon will be playing a mix of classic and current rock with a splash of dance music.

DJ CRSB

He might be one of the most restless club DJs you’ve ever seen or heard. From hosting his own events in some of the most distinct spots in Toronto to sharing the stage with the industry’s biggest headliners to airing a dominant weekly radio show, the man knows little about taking it easy. Shaine Crosbie, or more popularly referred to in Toronto’s underground club scene as CRSB, has certified himself as a go-to in his city’s music scene for mixing the newest and freshest songs from a diverse range of genres.

The Johnnys

An Ontario-based rock’n’roll band founded in 2003 by spouses Veronica Johnny (lead vocals) and Dave Johnny (drums). The duo’s early recordings are punk influenced, characterized by fun, up-tempo songs while later releases have a classic-rock feel. Veronica’s Cree heritage is reflected in some of the band’s lyrics, with indigenous influences on topics such as the environment, social justice and political change. They’ve shared stages with Geordie Johnson (Big Sugar), Bif Naked, Stevie Salas & Keith Secola.

U of T Faculty of Music

Featuring stars of the University of Toronto jazz music program.

GALLERY ACTIVATIONS

In Conversation: Meteorite or Meteor-Wrong?

Thousands of meteorites land on Earth each year, but could you spot one? Touch real meteorites and test your planetary science skills with geologist Tanya Kizovski!

Out of the Vaults: CanRock

Find out what this country is really made of with geologist Lee White.

You Guessed It! Geo-Trivia

Don’t take your earth science knowledge for granite – test yourself and your friends with the Geo-Trivia pub quiz! Will your score be gneiss, or will the result be schist?

Out of the Vaults: Touch Mars & the Moon

Check out the only place on Earth where you can touch Mars and the moon at the same time!

FOOD VENDORS

Rachel’s Gourmet Gone Wild

All-natural, fresh, & delicious! A wide range of nutritional artisan entrées. (Vegetarian and vegan options available).

Me.n.u

Asian fusion, bringing the taste of travel to the streets of Toronto.(Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options available).

Curbside Bliss Cupcakes

Canada’s first mobile dessert kitchen bringing baked-from-scratch sweetness to you! (Vegan and gluten-free options available).

Liko’s Hawaiian Barbecue

Local Hawaiian grindz – we bring da islandz to you!

Ice Volcano Ice Cream

Freshly made ice cream using liquid nitrogen with smoking Ice Volcano presentation.

Pars Kebab

Delicious homemade Middle Eastern food. (Vegetarian and halal options available).

Phancy Food

Your favourite childhood dishes dressed up with a modern twist using from-scratch recipes and locally sourced ingredients. (Vegetarian options available).

King Catering

Experience tasty Caribbean fusion cuisine. (Vegetarian, vegan, and halal options available).

My Crème Caramel

French desserts handmade from scratch. (Vegetarian and gluten-free options available).

chau

Modern asian food, inspired by traditional asian street food and home cooking. (Vegetarian and vegan options available)

Haute Eats

Eclectic world food with a modern twist. (Vegetarian options available).

What are the rules when entering the Thirty Four Flavours and Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) Ticket Giveaway?

Simple! Please sign up to Thirty Four Flavours Facebook https://www.facebook.com/thirtyfourflavours, Twitter https://twitter.com/34flavours, or email subscription to enter the draw. When you have signed up please send me a Facebook message, a tweet or email (thirtyfourflavours@gmail.com) telling me what you are excited to see at the #FNLROM Friday, October 13, 2017: Rock On edition of Friday Night Live (#FNLROM).

Deadline for the Thirty Four Flavours and Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) Ticket Giveaway is Wednesday October 11, 2017.

https://www.rom.on.ca/en/whats-on/fnlrom-rock-on#/gallery/recent

Hot Ticket Giveaway: #FNLROM Friday October 6, 2017: Thanks Canada

The Royal Ontario Museum’s (ROM) Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) series, presented by Ford Motor Company of Canada, Ltd., delivers Toronto’s best Friday night destination with the hottest DJs, live performances, food and drink, and an opportunity to experience the Museum like never before. On Friday, October 6 catch Thanks Canada at #FNLROM!

Friday, October 6: Performances

Spencer Burton

Spanning a musical life with hard-core beginnings, to the somber strings of his acoustic guitar in his country-folk infused solo project, Spencer Burton is a mainstay musical virtuoso. Releasing simply under his own name, his new album (and his third solo offering) was produced with Daniel Romano — it will come out on Dine Alone Records this fall.

DJ Conor Cutz

An open-format DJ and entrepreneur hailing from Toronto, Canada. Known for his turntablist background and ability to read any crowd, Conor redefines the role of a party DJ through style and sophistication. He currently holds residencies at some of Toronto’s most notable venues including The Four Season’s Hotel, Brooklynn, SOHO House and more.

DJ D- Smooth

Derrick., otherwise known as D-Smooth, is a Toronto, Canada, based DJ that has created an illustrious career, by spinning music at venues world wide, radio and Internet syndication.

U of T Faculty of Music

Featuring stars of the University of Toronto jazz music program.

GALLERY ACTIVATIONS

In Conversation

Hear personal accounts of cultural identity and heritage with speakers from Passages Canada, an initiative of Historica Canada.

You Guessed It!

How well do you know Canada? Test your knowledge and win prizes with Historica Canada!

Out of the Vaults: Canadian Valour

George Hewson takes a look at Canada’s rich military history through artifacts.

Heritage Minutes

Take in some Canadian historical moments, courtesy of Historica Canada.

FOOD VENDORS

Rachel’s Gourmet Gone Wild

All-natural, fresh, & delicious! A wide range of nutritional artisan entrées. (Vegetarian and vegan options available).

Me.n.u

Asian fusion, bringing the taste of travel to the streets of Toronto.(Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options available).

Curbside Bliss Cupcakes

Canada’s first mobile dessert kitchen bringing baked-from-scratch sweetness to you! (Vegan and gluten-free options available).

Liko’s Hawaiian Barbecue

Local Hawaiian grindz – we bring da islandz to you!

Ice Volcano Ice Cream

Freshly made ice cream using liquid nitrogen with smoking Ice Volcano presentation.

Pars Kebab

Delicious homemade Middle Eastern food. (Vegetarian and halal options available).

Phancy Food

Your favourite childhood dishes dressed up with a modern twist using from-scratch recipes and locally sourced ingredients. (Vegetarian options available).

King Catering

Experience tasty Caribbean fusion cuisine. (Vegetarian, vegan, and halal options available).

My Crème Caramel

French desserts handmade from scratch. (Vegetarian and gluten-free options available).

chau

Modern asian food, inspired by traditional asian street food and home cooking. (Vegetarian and vegan options available)

Haute Eats

Eclectic world food with a modern twist. (Vegetarian options available).What are the rules when entering the Thirty Four Flavours and Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) Ticket Giveaway?

Simple! Please sign up to Thirty Four Flavours Facebook https://www.facebook.com/thirtyfourflavours, Twitter https://twitter.com/34flavours, or email subscription to enter the draw. When you have signed up please send me a Facebook message, a tweet or email (thirtyfourflavours@gmail.com) telling me what you are excited to see at the #FNLROM Friday, Friday, October 6/17: Thanks Canada edition of Friday Night Live (#FNLROM).

Deadline for the Thirty Four Flavours and Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) Ticket Giveaway is Wednesday October 4, 2017.

https://www.rom.on.ca/en/whats-on/fnlrom-thanks-canada-0#/gallery/recent

HOT Ticket Giveaway: #FNLROM September 29/17: Fashion

The Royal Ontario Museum’s (ROM) Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) series, presented by Ford Motor Company of Canada, Ltd., delivers Toronto’s best Friday night destination with the hottest DJs, live performances, food and drink, and an opportunity to experience the Museum like never before. On Friday, September 29, 2017 catch Fashion Night at #FNLROM!

September 29: Performances

DJ Mista Jiggz

With an insatiable appetite for quality music of all genres, Mista Jiggz’ adept ability to entertain crowds has earned him high praise. Anticipate anything from current and classic hip-hop & r’n’b to pulsating house and electro, classic rock and Motown, reggae, funk, disco and any other genre fit for the audience. What separates Mista Jiggz from the rest is his knack for blending these sounds into signature remixes, many of which are done live.

DJ Gimmemar

A background in fashion styling and art direction gives Gimmemar a detailed eye and passion for tasteful visuals and aesthetic. Catch her DJing high profile gigs for brands like Nike and in-store at retailers like Holt Renfrew.

Cheri Maracle

Mohawk from the Six Nations Grand River Territory, is an actor, singer, and songwriter. She has performed in Canada and abroad for many moons. Cheri and her quartet have recently played Dundas Square in Toronto, the Brantford International Jazz Fest, and Chiefswood Park for the Solidarity Day Celebrations. You can catch Cheri’s performance as Sarah Bull in Blackstone, on Netflix, for which Cheri was Gemini nominated, or in DeGrassi, also on Netflix.

U of T Faculty of Music

Featuring stars of the University of Toronto jazz music program.

GALLERY ACTIVATIONS

ESTO Style: Northern Spirit

Catch the Canadian premiere of the best Estonian fashion and design, showcasing the most internationally recognized Estonian fashion brands. An Instagram-worthy moment, this Nordic fashion collective is a must see for any Canadian looking for cutting-edge style.

Designers include: Roberta Einer, Oksana Tandit, Monton, Baltman, Ivo Nikkolo, Sangar, Tanel Veenre Jewellery, D’Difference.

White Cashmere Collection 2017

Returning for its 14th consecutive year, the White Cashmere Collection 2017 is back this September with a national design competition in celebration of #Canada150, while kicking-off October breast cancer awareness month. More than 150 students from 11 design schools from across Canada took part in the design challenge and 16 finalists have been selected to present their breathtaking fashions – all crafted in luxuriously soft sheets of Cashmere bathroom tissue.

Program Partner: Kruger Products, maker of Cashmere bathroom tissue.

Try This!

Fashion illustrator Stephanie Anne McKay captures vibrant images of FNL guests with dynamic, gestural watercolours.

Out of the Vaults: Something Old, Something New

Learn how traditional clothing influences contemporary style on the global stage. Thank you to our friends at the ROM for gifting Thirty Four Flavours with a pair of tickets to the #FNLROM Friday, September 29, 2017: Fashion edition of Friday Night Live (#FNLROM).

What are the rules when entering the Thirty Four Flavours and Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) Ticket Giveaway?

Simple! Please sign up to Thirty Four Flavours Facebook https://www.facebook.com/thirtyfourflavours, Twitter https://twitter.com/34flavours, or email subscription to enter the draw. When you have signed up please send me a Facebook message, a tweet or email (thirtyfourflavours@gmail.com) telling me what you are excited to see at the #FNLROM Friday, September 29, 2017: Fashion edition of Friday Night Live (#FNLROM).

Deadline for the Thirty Four Flavours and Friday Night Live (#FNLROM) Ticket Giveaway is Wednesday September 27, 2017.

https://www.rom.on.ca/en/whats-on/fnlrom-fashion-0#/gallery/recent

Penguin Random House Fall Preview

As the Fall is upon us, it’s time to pick up some neat books to peruse as we begin the settle down into the new chilly season.

Penguin Random House has some impeccable books to read that are worth highlighting for you or the book lover in your life! Check them out!

9780771022906

‘Brother’ By: David Chariandy

The long-awaited second novel from David Chariandy, whose debut, Soucouyant, was nominated for nearly every major literary prize in Canada and published internationally.

An intensely beautiful, searingly powerful, tightly constructed novel, Brother explores questions of masculinity, family, race, and identity as they are played out in a Scarborough housing complex during the sweltering heat and simmering violence of the summer of 1991.

With shimmering prose and mesmerizing precision, David Chariandy takes us inside the lives of Michael and Francis. They are the sons of Trinidadian immigrants, their father has disappeared and their mother works double, sometimes triple shifts so her boys might fulfill the elusive promise of their adopted home.

Coming of age in The Park, a cluster of town houses and leaning concrete towers in the disparaged outskirts of a sprawling city, Michael and Francis battle against the careless prejudices and low expectations that confront them as young men of black and brown ancestry — teachers stream them into general classes; shopkeepers see them only as thieves; and strangers quicken their pace when the brothers are behind them. Always Michael and Francis escape into the cool air of the Rouge Valley, a scar of green wilderness that cuts through their neighbourhood, where they are free to imagine better lives for themselves.

Propelled by the pulsing beats and styles of hip hop, Francis, the older of the two brothers, dreams of a future in music. Michael’s dreams are of Aisha, the smartest girl in their high school whose own eyes are firmly set on a life elsewhere. But the bright hopes of all three are violently, irrevocably thwarted by a tragic shooting, and the police crackdown and suffocating suspicion that follow.

With devastating emotional force David Chariandy, a unique and exciting voice in Canadian literature, crafts a heartbreaking and timely story about the profound love that exists between brothers and the senseless loss of lives cut short with the shot of a gun.

9780385684835

‘Bellevue Square’ By: Michael Redhill: 

From award-winning and bestselling author Michael Redhill comes a darkly comic literary thriller about a woman who fears for her sanity–and then her life–when she learns that her doppelganger has appeared in a local park.

Jean Mason has a doppelganger. At least, that’s what people tell her. Apparently it hangs out in Kensington Market, where it sometimes buys churros and shops for hats. Jean doesn’t rattle easy, not like she used to. She’s a grown woman with a husband and two kids, as well as a thriving business, and Toronto is a fresh start for the whole family. She certainly doesn’t want to get involved in anything dubious, but still . . . why would two different strangers swear up and down they’d just seen her–with shorter hair furthermore?

Jean’s curiosity quickly gets the better of her, and she visits the market, but sees no one who looks like her. The next day, she goes back to look again. And the day after that. Before she knows it, she’s spending an hour here, an afternoon there, watching, taking notes, obsessing and getting scared. With the aid of a small army of locals who hang around in the market’s only park, she expands her surveillance, making it known she’ll pay for information or sightings. A peculiar collection of drug addicts, scam artists, philanthropists, philosophers and vagrants–the regulars of Bellevue Square–are eager to contribute to Jean’s investigation. But when some of them start disappearing, it becomes apparent that her alleged double has a sinister agenda. Unless Jean stops her, she and everyone she cares about will face a fate stranger than death.

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‘Lightfoot’ By:  Nicholas Jennings: 

Gordon Lightfoot’s name is synonymous with timeless songs about trains and shipwrecks, rivers and highways, lovers and loneliness. His music defined the folk-pop sound of the 1960s and ‘70s, topped charts and sold millions. He is unquestionably Canada’s greatest songwriter, and an international star who has performed on the world’s biggest stages.

While Lightfoot’s songs are well known, the man behind them is elusive. He’s never allowed his life to be chronicled in a book—until now.

Biographer Nick Jennings has had unprecedented access to the notoriously reticent musician. Lightfoot takes us deep inside the artist’s world, from his idyllic childhood in Orillia, the wild sixties, and his canoe trips into Canada’s North to his heady times atop the music world. Jennings explores the toll that success took on his personal life—including his troubled relationships, his battle with alcohol and his near-death experiences—and the extraordinary drive and tenacity that pulled him through it all.

Rich in voices from fellow musicians, close friends, Lightfoot’s family and the singer’s own reminiscences, the biography tells the stories behind some of his best-known love songs, including “Beautiful” and “Song for a Winter’s Night,” as well as the infidelity and divorce that resulted in classics like “Sundown” and “If You Could Read My Mind.” Kris Kristofferson has called Lightfoot’s songs “some of the most beautiful and lasting music of our time.”

Lightfoot is an unforgettable portrait of a treasured singer-songwriter, an artist whose work has been covered by everyone from Joni Mitchell, Barbra Streisand and Nico to Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley and Gord Downie. Revealing and insightful, Lightfoot is both an inspiring story of redemption and an exhilarating read.

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‘The Golden House’: By: Salman Rushdie: 

When powerful real-estate tycoon Nero Golden immigrates to the States under mysterious circumstances, he and his three adult children assume new identities, reinventing themselves as emperors living in a lavish house in downtown Manhattan. Arriving shortly after the inauguration of Barack Obama, he and his sons, each extraordinary in his own right, quickly establish themselves at the apex of New York society, even as Nero Golden continues to raise huge buildings carrying his name in gold letters.

The story of the powerful Golden family is told from the point of view of their Manhattanite neighbour and confidant, René, an aspiring filmmaker who finds in the Goldens the perfect subject. René chronicles the undoing of the house of Golden: the high life of money, of art and fashion, a sibling quarrel, an unexpected metamorphosis, the arrival of a beautiful former model, betrayal and murder, and far away, in their abandoned homeland, some decent intelligence work that could ruin Nero Golden forever.

Invoking literature, pop culture and the cinema, Rushdie spins the story of the American zeitgeist over the last eight years, hitting every beat: the rise of the birther movement, the Tea Party, and identity politics; Gamergate; the backlash against political correctness; the ascendancy of Superman and Batwoman and the superhero movie; and, of course, the insurgence of a ruthlessly ambitious, narcissistic villain with painted skin and coloured hair.

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‘Farm to Chef’ By: Lynn Crawford: 

There’s nothing more satisfying than going to a farmer’s market, picking out the freshest produce and creating vibrant recipes to showcase those ingredients. Farm to Chef comes to life with Lynn Crawford’s passion for seasonal cooking and takes readers on a year-long journey with 140 original recipes, organized by season. You’ll discover how easy it is to prepare fresh market ingredients, with a range of the chef’s favourite fruits and vegetables: peas and rhubarb in the spring, summer berries and corn, leeks and pears in the fall, and parsnips and squash in the winter months.

Whether you’re braising, roasting, baking or preserving an abundance of produce, these recipes will offer immediate inspiration. Lynn shares her go-to favourites, like Harvest Apple Pie, Primavera Pizza with Ramp Pesto and Zucchini Bread with Walnut-Honey Butter, and new takes on the classics, including Butter Chicken with Rutabaga, Morel Mushroom Panzanella Salad, and Fennel Gratin with Feta and Dill. In the autumn, curl up with a warm bowl of Carrot Lemongrass Soup with Ginger Pork Dumplings, but when the weather heats up, enjoy Grilled Flank Steak with Charred Beefsteak Tomatoes and Blue Cheese. With something for everyone and beautiful photography throughout, Farm to Chef celebrates the bounty of the seasons and will become a mainstay in your kitchen.

http://penguinrandomhouse.ca/