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Radar: Toronto Women's Bookstore Fundraiser, Slow Pitch, Mary Halvorson & Jessica Pavone w/ the Ghost Bees, Portraits by Laurence Nerbonne, Cinemacabre: Street Trash, tabla-CO-lab

Photo: "Winter at HTO Park" by minus33, member of the blogTO Flickr Pool.

Events on Toronto's Radar for THURSDAY FEBRUARY 18, 2010... lovingly handpicked from blogTO's events calendar.

FUNDRAISER | Comedy Fundraiser for Toronto Women's Bookstore
It's a tough time for independent bookstores in this city. Founded in 1973, the Toronto Women's Bookstore is desperately trying to avoid joining Pages and the David Mirvish Bookstore in the dustbin of history and has been appealing to the public for months for funds to allow it to continue its mission of promoting feminist and anti-oppression literature. Tonight a lineup of female comedians comes together to raise money for TWB, including Video on Trial's Dini Dimakos, Last Comic Standing's Julia Bruce, Yuk Yuk's veteran Michelle Shaughnessy, and stand-up and dramatic actor Allison Dore.
The Groundhog Pub, 401 Bloor St. East, $10, 7:30 pm

PARTY | Slow Pitch
If you're looking for a banging, high NRG party to hit up tonight, Slow Pitch is not your thing. Only the juiciest of slow jams will be playing at the Red Light, a newish bar just off the Ossington strip that is quickly becoming one of the most popular haunts in the neighbourhood. Djs Jaime Sin of the Ossington's Girls Night Out fame and Lipstick Cherry's Pammm will ease you through the evening with the best in dreamy disco and lovers rock, and promise to play nothing at all to get your fists pumping or your toes tapping. Time to take it down a notch!
The Red Light, 1185 Dundas St. W., No Cover, 10 pm

MUSIC | Mary Halvorson & Jessica Pavone w/ Ghost Bees + Not The Wind, Not The Flag
Grab a friend and head down to the Boat tonight for a bill of duos headlined by Brooklyn-based singer-songwriters Mary Halvorson and Jessica Pavone. Rocking a viola and acoustic guitar, the pair mix elements of jazz, classical and folk music to create something all of their own. Halifax's favourite twin act the Ghost Bees have been creeping up on indie stardom for the past few years and will almost certainly achieve it with their upcoming record, reportedly produced by creak-folk wunderkind Timber Timbre. Opening the night are Toronto multi-instrumentalist improvisers Not the Wind, Not the Flag.
The Boat, 158 Augusta Ave., $8, 9 pm

GALLERY | Portraits by Laurence Nerbonne
Portraiture is not generally considered the most exciting form of visual art, but 24-year old Laurence Nerbonne breathes new life into the medium by rendering each canvas with the raw emotion hidden behind her subject's faces. Mainly utilizing dark colours, Nerbonne creates stark large-scale portraits that are almost confrontational in their closeness and emotive expression. The Montreal-based painter shows talent beyond her years in her new exhibition at the Thompson Landry Gallery, Toronto's only gallery exclusively dedicated to showing work from Quebec's most exciting artists.
Thompson Landry Gallery - Distillery District, 55 Mill St., Building #5, Tuesday - Saturday 11 am - 6 pm, Sunday 12 pm - 5 pm

FILM | Cinemacabre presents: Street Trash
Rue Morgue's Cinemacabre program screens a truly twisted film tonight in 1987's Street Trash.
You could charitably describe J. Michael Muro's comedic horror film as a cautionary tale about the dangers of alcoholism, but it might be more apt to call it a masterpiece of hobo-sploitation. A New York liquor store owner finds a crate of ancient booze in his basement and decides to sell it to the local derelicts, unaware that anyone who drinks it melts, explodes, and combusts in a most gory, 1980s special-effect fashion. The film will be preceded by a reel of classic campy movie trailers and (no kidding) a hobo burlesque.
The Bloor Cinema, 506 Bloor St. W., $10, 9:30 pm

PARTY | tabla-Co-lab
Friday marks the start of the winter program for Masala! Mendi! Masti!, North America's largest South Asian arts festival. Taking place at Harbourfront over the weekend, the winter program includes dozens of free events celebrating the film, dance, poetry, and culture of South Asia. Things get kick started tonight with tabla-CO-lab, the M!M!M!'s official pre-party brought to you by TablaHYPE. Gurpreet "the Tabla Guy" Chana will be joined for a night of soulful, spicy tunes by singer-songwriter Usra Leedham, bellydancer extraordinaire Andrea Lucarelli, and djs Version Xcursion.
Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W., Free, 10 pm

For full listings, head on over to our events calendar.
Have an event you'd like to plug? Submit your own listing to the blogTO calendar, contact us directly, or use our handy Facebook app.

For Toronto movie showtimes, view our Movie Listings section.

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