Ten things to do in Toronto this weekend: November 18 to 20
Alfred Hitchcock’s heartwarming story of a boy and his mother is one of the most legendary shockers of all time. Screening is part of Icy Fire: The Hitchcock Blonde series, at tiff. “Both worshipped and victimized, the cool, aloof blonde was one of Hitchcock’s key obsessions. Explore the Master’s fair-haired fixation in such suspense classics as Rear Window, Vertigo and Psycho.” Psycho screens Saturday, November 19, 2011. 5:00pm. The series runs until December 11.
CHAGALL’S MUSICAL WORLD
Koffler Chamber Orchestra. The kick-off concert of the Koffler Chamber Orchestra season is inspired by the Art Gallery of Ontario’s stunning fall exhibition of Marc Chagall and the Russian modernist artists. The program features Chagall’s favourite composers, Mozart and Tchaikovsky in addition to composers who share the painter’s Russian Jewish background. Chagall often depicted klezmer musicians and the milieu of Eastern European Jewish culture, reflected in the original composition – Klezmer Dance Suite – created especially for the Koffler Chamber Orchestra by Toronto clarinetist, Martin van de Ven. Like Chagall, Alfred Schnittke draws upon both tradition and modernity. Schnittke’s Piano Concerto is reprised by Russian-born Toronto musician Andrew Burashko who gave its Canadian premiere. Sunday, November 20, 2011, 3:00PM.
Art Gallery of Ontario, Walker Court, 317 Dundas St. W. FREE with admission to the AGO.
LANG LANG PLAYS BEETHOVEN 5
Lang Lang’s series of Beethoven concerti Lang Lang’s Beethoven series reaches a towering climax with the sweeping “Emperor” Concerto. The buoyant rhythms and poignant gravity of Symphony No. 7, and a vigorous dance inspired by the music of Tibet, especially chosen by Lang Lang, complete the programme. Sat. Nov. 19, 2011 at 8:00PM. Roy Thomson Hall.
ROMEO AND JULIET
National Ballet of Canada. Shakespeare’s tender, tragic and enduring evocation of youthful passion undone by familial and societal discord, Romeo and Juliet has exerted its incomparable emotional power over generations of ballet audiences throughout the world. Created by the internationally celebrated choreographer Alexei Ratmansky, this world premiere is a totally fresh, brilliantly imagined interpretation of Shakespeare’s play. Building on and finding wonderfully inventive possibilities in Prokofiev’s inimitable and touching score, Ratmansky blends the elegance and stateliness of a classical vocabulary with the intense emotional edge of the modern to create an unforgettable version of one of the greatest dance dramas ever. To November 27, 2011. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts.
SONGBOOK WITH STEVEN PAGE
Art of Time Ensemble. Art of Time is once again commissioning beautiful, complex and sometimes crazy arrangements of popular songs, this time by Harry Nilsson, Scott Walker, Randy Newman, Elvis Costello, Dan Mangan and others, with the interpretations that only the inimitable singer/songwriter Steven Page can give them. Steven Page, Singer; Andrew Burashko, Piano; Stephen Sitarski, Violin; Rachel Mercer, Cello; Andrew Downing, Bass; John Johnson, Sax; Rob Piltch Guitar. November 18-19, 2011. Enwave Theatre, Harbourfront Centre.
As fans of Rent, Wicked and even (sometimes) Glee, we’re exactly the target audience for this two-nights-only concert. Idina Menzel belts out her own songs and some Broadway hits, accompanied by the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony. It might even be our big break, since the shows will be filmed for a PBS special. November 17 and 18. $49–$125. Koerner Hall, The Royal Conservatory, 273 Bloor St. W., 416-408-0208.
GEMS OLD AND NEW
Sinfonia Toronto. Ratmir Martinovic, Pianist, Jeff Reilly, Bass Clarinet. Toronto premiere of Teheran’s Zephyr; world premiere of Hatzis’ Extreme Unction; Mozart Piano Concerto No. 12; Beethoven Quartet op 18, no. 4. November 18, 8:00pm. Glenn Gould Studio, 250 Front Street West.
IMPROVISATIONS AND ALTERNATIVES
Array ensemble. Works by Ann Southam, Martin Arnold and Udo Casements with a video installation by Mani Mazinani. Array New Music Centre exists to provide composers with an environment in which they are free to take risks, challenge themselves, and push the traditional boundaries of musical expression. By finding audiences and suitable venues for performance, we help them reach a wider group of people, and, in turn, expose a greater portion of the general public to the rich diversity of contemporary music. Saturday Nov.19, 8pm (7:15 roundtable). The Music Gallery, 197 John St., Toronto 416.204.1080. 416-532-3019. $25 / seniors and students $20.
SANTA CLAUS PARADE
It’s that time of year again. The Santa Claus Parade is back for its 107th year. Try and grab a front row position, or know what streets to avoid, depending on your needs. This year’s route starts at Christie Pits, heads west to Avenue, south along University (and circles on the east side of Queen’s Park, FYI), down to Wellington, and ends at the St. Lawrence Market. Sunday, November 20, 12:30 pm.
SAINT OF BLEECKER STREET
Opera by Request presents Menotti’s Saint of Bleecker Street. Annina: Deena Nicklefork, soprano; Michele: Avery Krisman, tenor; Maria Corona: Marie Franceschini, soprano; Carmela: Tammy Short, soprano; Assunta: Karen Bojti, mezzo-soprano; Desideria: Monica Zerbe, mezzo-soprano; Don Marco: Andrew Tam, bass-baritone; Salvatore: Domenico Sanfilippo, baritone. Wednesday, November 23, 2011, University of Toronto, Scarborough Campus, 7:00 pm. Saturday, November 26, 2011, Trinity Presbyterian York Mills, 2737 Bayview Avenue (at Hwy 401), 7:30 pm. Tickets $20, discount for UTSC students. Phone 416 455-2365 for reservations and information.