Radar: Panty Schmooze 2010, Frankenstein, Critical Mass: Paul Goldberger, Rower's Pub Reading Series, Potluck Festival

FUNDRAISER | Panty Schmooze 2010
Cover charges in this town can be pretty steep, so wouldn't it be awesome if you could show up to your favourite club and hand the guy at the door a pocket full of underwear? Unfortunately, skivvies aren't generally considered a form of currency, except at the Panty Schmooze - an annual event that provides much-needed products for women and children who have fled abusive households. Ten pairs of panties will gain you access to this innovative event, which supports the thousands of women who each year are forced to leave home with often little more than the clothes on their backs. The schmooze will be hosted by country singer Aaron Pritchett, with Jully Black acting as auctioneer for the night and the Great Lake Swimmers providing musical entertainment. Over the years, Panty Schmooze has raised over $20,000 and more than 6,000 pairs of undies, and this year all proceeds will go to benefit the Yorktown Women's Shelter and the Assaulted Women's Helpline.
Hot House CafĂŠ, 35 Church Street, $20 or 10 pairs of panties, 5:30 pm

THEATRE | Frankenstein
The story of Frankenstein continues to resonate with modern audiences nearly 200 years after Mary Shelley first introduced the world to her misfit monster. With one stage adaptation of the classic novel having just ended its run at the Princess of Wales Theatre, the Canadian Stage Company presents this musical version of the story. Written and directed by Edmonton-based Catalyst Theatre's Jonathan Christenson, Frankenstein has been getting rave reviews in Western Canada since it debuted in 2006, winning a slew of awards for its dark and highly stylized take on Shelley's tale. The Toronto production stars the original cast from its Edmonton production, and features a fantastic set made entirely of paper. Runs til May 29.
Bluma Appel Theatre, 27 Front Street, $20 - $64, Monday to Saturday 8 pm, Saturday matinee at 2 pm

ARCHITECTURE | Critical Mass: Paul Goldberger
As part of the Hot Docs festival's new speaker series Critical Mass, world-renowned architecture critic Paul Goldberger is coming to town tonight for a live interview with the CBC's Michael Enright. Goldberger has authored numerous books over the years, written for publications like the New York Times, and has been writing the New Yorker's "Sky Line" column since 1997. He's also won the Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Criticism, just about the highest honour a writer can get (I'm still waiting for them to introduce a "best events blogger" category). In the past few years Toronto has gained international notoriety for its horribly-designed buildings, so inviting an architecture critic to Toronto is a bit like inviting an art critic to a fourth-grade finger-painting class. Let's hope he's not too hard on us.
Al Green Theatre, Miles Nadal Centre, 750 Spadina Avenue, $12, 7 pm

BOOKS AND LIT | Rower's Pub Reading Series
The May installment of the Rower's Pub Reading Series invites you to spend an evening with veteran Toronto novelist Ursula Pflug. Originally born in Tunisia, Pflug trained as a graphic designer at OCAD before switching to writing; it proved to be a good choice, and her books Green Music and After the Fires are magnificently inventive, critically acclaimed works of fantasy that supply despair and grace in equal measure. She'll be joined by experimental poet Christian Bok and David Day, who's best known for his biographies of Lord of the Rings creator JRR Tolkien.
Harbord House, 150 Harbord Street, Free, 7:30 pm

THEATRE | Potluck Festival
Asian-Canadian theatre company Fu-Gen presents the Potluck Festival this week, the 7th annual edition of its new play development festival. The fest is central to Fu-Gen's mission of fostering new works by talented Asian-Canadian playwrights, and will feature seven full-length staged readings by emerging writers with the aim of turning rough scripts into finely-tuned productions and showcasing their work to larger theatre companies. This year for the first time Potluck will also host the GENesis Asian-Canadian Theatre Conference, a groundbreaking conference that will bring together academics and theatre artists from all over North America to discuss issues surrounding Asian-Canadian theatre. Topics to be tackled include diaspora and transnationalism, the state of Asian-Canadian theatre in Toronto and Vancouver, racialized spaces, and the hybridity of Asian-Canadian identity. Runs til May 9.
Factory Theatre, 125 Bathurst Street, check schedule for full details
Potluck Festival: $40 festival pass, $10 individual shows
GENesis Conference $40 pass, PWYC individual events

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Photo: "Parallel Universe" by DdotG, member of the blogTO Flickr Pool.

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