The top weekend events in Toronto: Feb 20-23 2015
Weekend events in Toronto dare you to get out into the cold to celebrate Chinese New Year, fall in love with Toronto through art, interact with a laser maze, or dance your winter SAD away.
Here are my picks for the top events happening in Toronto February 20-23, 2015.
Yum Cha (February 21, Daniel's Spectrum)
Spotlight City Events has big plans for 2015, and it all kicks off with a fresh roster of chefs dishing up their finest dumplings, bao and spring rolls at the second annual dim sum festival at Daniel's Spectrum. General admission will be $10, but there will also be the option to buy one of 200 passports ($50) that will be good for a whole year of delicious events. LI
(Various, Sunday, February 22)
Why watch the 87th Academy Awards at home with the cat, when you can get glammed up and even win prizes? Many theatres are offering ballots, trivia, and more such as The Bloor, Innis Town Hall, the Royal, and the Revue, plus bars like the Drake, and 3030 are in on the fun. See our list for where to watch the Oscars here.
Peter Harris - Night Watch - New Paintings (Mira Godard Gallery, February 21 - March 14)
Extreme cold has us favouring Toronto, Australia, so this weekend skip the season's blockbuster art shows, for this Toronto love-in. Local artist Peter Harris' "Night Watch - New Paintings" exhibit features nighttime scenes around the city. You might remember Harris from "15 iconic paintings of Toronto."
The Artist Project (Better Living Centre, February 19-22)
The Artist Project is open at the Better Living Centre. Instead of a typical gallery curated art fair, here you'll find the artists themselves working their own booths. Check out our review of last year's show here.
Somewhere There Creative Music Festival (February 20-22, Tranzac)
While Somewhere There have regularly booked gigs around the city since losing their home, weekend-long Somewhere There Creative Music Festival is a chance for weirdo musicians from varying scenes to come together. For the festival's third year, over 60 performers and speakers include Marie LeBlanc-Flanagan (Weird Canada) and groups as diverse as Friendly Rich and the JunctQĂn Keyboard Collective.
D/P/I (February 20-21, Double Double Land/The Music Gallery)
You'll wish the venue had seat belts (or straight jackets) for this one: Healing Power Records is going all out with "Trashy microsampling from L.A. brought to you by the label at the Heart of Toronto" - D/P/I (Sun Araw, Deep Magic) play with with Craig Dunsmuir, Fleshtone Aura, DJ HVYWTR, and DJ Longhorne Grille first at a DDL dance party on Friday, then in concert at TMG on Saturday.
Swans (February 20, Phoenix)
Three decades on, no wave legends Swans are still a force to be reckoned with live. Michael Gira and co. put building codes to the test with their increasingly visceral, earth-shaking music. Sonically experimental and epically loud, it'll be quite a 180 from Ariel Pink's set the day before at the Phoenix. SK
Vector Game Art & New Media Festival (February 18-22, Interaccess, Bento Miso, Videofag)
On now, the 3rd annual multi-venue expo of Canadian and international innovation in digital games, new media art, and more will feature a huge game art centric exhibit, plus music performances, early computer animation screenings (hint: Star Wars tie-in), a new media panel, the return of workshop GlitchJam, and a live action laser maze - and many events are free or PWYC. Read more here and check out their website.
Podcamp (February 21 - 22, Ryerson)
Hailing itself as hipper than you're typical dreary conference by preferring the term "un-conference," PodCamp is a free hub for podcast makers and those who love them. Attend panels, take workshops, and discover your new favourites.
Toronto Postcard Club Show (February 22, Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre)
The 34th annual Toronto Postcard Club Show asks if postcards were an early form of Twitter - uhh - but makes up for it with a huge selection of nostalgic items for show and sale in East York.
The Peanut Butter Solution (February 21, The Royal)
Kid Power!, Toronto's only cult screening series for kids and adults, is back with a showing of The Peanut Butter Solution at The Royal. The psychedelic story winds a strange narrative of ghosts, hair loss, peanut butter, and childhood. Tickets to the matinee are $8-10.
The Holy Mountain (February 21, Ratio)
The psychedelic excuses to keep out of the cold continue Saturday night when Mystic Arts Collective and Ratio present Jodorowsky The Holy Mountain in their second floor College space. Infinite popcorn is assured.
Toronto Chinatown Chinese New Year Festival (February 21, Chinatown)
Chinese New Year fell on February 19th this year, but on Saturday Spadina will be bustling with performances, crafts, activities, and a panda mascot (even though we've entered the year of the ram... pandas are pretty cute). Opening Ceremonies begin at noon at Dragon City Mall, with a second bash at Chinatown Centre at 1pm.
THEATRE & PERFORMANCE
The Wild Party (Feb 20 - March 8, Berkeley Street Theatre)
This musical will transport you to Manhattan in the roaring '20s where the gin and jazz are flowing. You'll be in the front seats watching as the reckless relationship between a Vaudevillian clown and dancer spirals out of control. The Tony-nominated musical is produced in association with Obsidian Theatre Company who are known for their award-winning work featuring the black voice. SSZ
Rhubarb Fest (Buddies in Bad Times, February 11 - 22)
The Rhubarb Festival is a carnival ride of unconventional performance pieces. In its 36th year Rhubarb is Canada's longest-running new works festival. Every nook and cranny of Buddies in Bad Times Theatre - and I mean every little corner, including the bathroom - will be transformed to a backdrop for various music, dance, theatre and performance pieces. Check out our preview here. SSZ
The Mary-Janes of Comedy Present... The Underwear Show (February 20, Comedy Bar)
If you want to donate to charity and wait out the weirdness of Valentine's Day proper, this comedy show on the 20th featuring 'the best stand-up comedy couples in the city" is a fundraiser to purchase underwear for the Bloordale Women's Shelter.
SHOPPING & LIFESTYLE
Bellwoods Flea (February 21, Magpie)
Toronto's newest flea market is back, and even though it's frigid outside it is almost March, so maybe you can finally haggle that vintage mink stole down into your price range.
Auto Show (February 13-22, Metro Toronto Convention Centre)
While many of Toronto's nicest sets of wheels are being hoarded away over the winter in garages nicer than the average city apartment, car lovers can drool over classics and new rides for the next two weeks in the heart of downtown. Check out our review of this year's show here.
Motorcycle Show (Feb 20-22, Direct Energy Centre)
It's back! If you already saw the car-mania downtown last weekend, head down to Exhibition Place for motorcycles galore. The dream of the open and un-sleeted road is alive in your leather jacketed heart, James.
Contributions by Liora Ipsum, Ben Boles, Derek Flack, Sima Sarah Zerehi
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