Radar: Culture Congress 2010, Woodstock Rising, Vitamin G, New Ideas Festival, Gerhard Richter, Monitor 6
THEATRE | Culture Congress 2010
With dozens of theatres and thousands of actors, directors and producers calling Toronto home, our city boasts a vibrant dramatic scene. Culture Congress 2010 brings all those players together for four days of talks, round-table discussions and social events aimed at fostering exchanges of ideas and skill development. Presented by the Harbourfront Centre and the Theatre Centre, the highlight of this year's program is a presentation by a group of Irish curators on trends affecting their artistic communities, which organizers hope will lead to long term ties between Canadian and Irish artists. The congress kicks off tonight with a late-night Stampede Breakfast to coincide with the Calgary Theatre Junction's production of On the Side of the Road, and the coming days will see several special events including a games night and the launch of the Harbourfront Centre's performance ecology mapping project. Runs til March 28.
Various venues and times, Free, check schedule for full details
BOOKS AND LIT/PHOTOGRAPHY | Woodstock Rising
A refugee from the Vietnam War-era draft in the United States, Iowa-born John Phillips arrived in Toronto in 1967. Once here, he began intensely documenting the community of draft resistors, activists and artists that flourished on Baldwin Street, continuing a photographic career that had begun at the civil rights marches of the mid-1960s. Sadly, Phillips passed away earlier this year, but his work lives on and tonight his partner and family present a slide show of his photographs documenting iconic moments of the free love generation and a unique period in the life of Toronto. The photo retrospective accompanies the launch of a new novel by award-winning British Columbia poet Tom Wayman called Woodstock Rising, a dark comedy set on the politically-charged campuses of the late 1960s.
This Ain't the Rosedale Library, 86 Nassau St., Free, 8 pm
PARTY | Vitamin G
Tonight the Gladstone launches a new weekly event to boost the health of Toronto's queer party scene. Vitamin G delivers a hefty dose of gay-friendly dance hits courtesy of DJs Shane MacKinnon, Cozmic Cat, and Gangbanaz, and organizers vow to give space to new and emerging DJs as well as the city's more established turntablists over the coming weeks, giving partiers a little something of the unexpected. The new weekly late night party is a perfect compliment to Granny Boots, the Gladstone's Wednesday night early entertainment evening for queer folks who have to be in bed by 11 pm.
Gladstone Hotel Melody Bar, 1214 Queen St. W., Free, 10 pm
THEATRE | New Ideas Festival: Week Three
Since 1989, the New Ideas Festival has been bringing audiences new and experimental theatre works while assuring a high standard of quality through its juried format. Presented by the non-profit Alumnae Theatre Company, the fest enters its third week of performances tonight with six new short works. Running the gamut from tragic to comic, short to long, week three features Sleeper by Anna Ross, Who is Lieserl? by Flora Stohr-Danziger, Heat by Michael J. Wilmot, Prisoners by Trina Brooks, and Buff by Catherine Frid. Saturday's program sees a staged reading of Kelsey Blair's Weightless. The names may not be familiar to you yet, but it's new, it's daring, and it's worth a look. Runs til Saturday.
Alumnae Theatre Company, 70 Berkeley St., Wednesday - Saturday $15, Saturday reading PYWC, Wednesday - Saturday 8 pm, Saturday matinee 2:30 pm, Saturday reading 12 pm
BOOKS AND LIT | Gerhard Richter - A Life in Painting
Influential German artist Gerhard Richter has always refused to provide any psychological insight into his work. According to him, his paintings are what they are and only have meaning through the perspective of their viewers. The East German Communists apparently saw something he didn't however, which is why they painted over his public work once he escaped to the West just before the Berlin Wall was erected. Richter continued his career in the West, creating a body of work that spans a remarkable range of styles and has left critics amazed and, admittedly, confused at times. A book launch at the AGO tonight commemorates the release of a biography of Richter by his former assistant Dietmar Elger, and will be accompanied by a reading and discussion of the artist's legacy.
Art Gallery of Ontario, Jackman Hall, 317 Dundas St. West, $18 general admission, $15 AGO members, $12 students, 7 pm
FILM | Monitor 6
Trinidad-born Toronto artist Richard Fung knows first-hand the unpredictable ways in which race, queer sexuality, diaspora, and family can collide. Those issues are the subjects both of his award-winning short films and his writings, which have appeared in journals across North America. Currently teaching at OCAD, tonight Fung presents a single-evening film festival of experimental South Asian films that explore gender and sexuality through the lens of personal narratives and mass culture in South Asia. Ten films will be screened over the course of the evening, showcasing work by filmmakers from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal, Canada and the United Kingdom.
NFB Mediatheque, 150 John St., $5 general admission, $2 student, 8 pm
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Photo: "Charlie Brown's Collar" by sniderscion, member of the blogTO Flickr Pool.
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