This week in Toronto: A Canadian film giant gets his ballet debut
Watch this for: A horns-up retirement party for the lords of satanic rock.
If you’ve reason to be down by the lakefront on Tuesday evening consider yourself warned: love ’em or hate ’em, the blasphemic brutalists of thrash metal are down to their last few crushing riffs on their final tour. And it’s not like they’re showing up without a posse, either. Fuelled by the sense of occasion, fellow heavyweights Lamb of God, Anthrax, Behemoth and Testament have been tearing it up on previous stops, making this show the headbanger’s event of the entire year. (Budweiser Stage, 909 Lake Shore Blvd. W., 5 p.m.)
Keep the Change at the ReelAbilities Film Festival
Watch this if: You’re open to being charmed by an unconventional movie romance.
Now in its third year, ReelAbilities strives to make the movie-going experience as inclusive and accessible as possible by showcasing Canadian and international films about deaf and disability cultures, many of which are also made by people with disabilities. This year’s festival begins with Keep the Change, an unconventional American romcom whose characters’ customary meet-cute occurs at a support group for people on the autism spectrum. A prize winner at the Tribeca Film Festival last year, director Rachel Israel’s crowd pleaser launches a slate that includes many more movies alongside panels, workshops and a comedy night. (Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge St., 7:45 p.m.; festival continues until June 4)
Watch this if: You want to see if trivia kills the radio stars.
This is for the diehard Jeopardy! fan or anyone who loves talk radio, or both. The monthly Actual Jeopardy show at Bad Dog Theatre returns with a special theme. The three contestants who will face off against comedian Jan Caruana as “Alex Trebek” are Tom Power from CBC Radio’s q, Lana Gay from Indie 88 and Maurie Sherman from The Roz & Mocha Show on KISS 92.5. Watch out for the “potpourri” category, when Caruana has to come up with a trivia question on the spot based on the audience’s choice of subject. (Bad Dog Theatre, 875 Bloor St. W., 8 p.m.)
How to Talk to Girls at Parties at Inside Out
Watch this if: You want to see Nicole Kidman go punk.
The Aussie’s wild turn as a punk alien queen is most definitely one reason to see the latest by John Cameron Mitchell, the actor, playwright and filmmaker who gave Hedwig and the Angry Inch to a very grateful world. A science-fiction comedy that Mitchell and co-writer Philippa Goslett adapted from a story by Neil Gaiman, How to Talk to Girls at Parties is also one of the most anticipated films at this year’s Inside Out, which hosts the movie’s Toronto premiere. The festival presents bold and exciting LGBTQ big-screen fare all week at venues all over town. (TIFF Bell Lightbox, 350 King St. W., 7 p.m.; festival continues until June 3)
Frame by Frame
Watch this if: You want to see a coming together of three legendary Canadian artists.
Robert Lepage has been hard to miss in local arts lately: he directed The Nightingale and Other Short Fables at the Canadian Opera Company, his production of Coriolanus is coming up at the Stratford Festival and this is his first collaboration with the National Ballet of Canada. It was his idea to create a new work inspired by the career of Academy Award-winning filmmaker and animator Norman McLaren. In Frame by Frame, Lepage’s legendary abilities with stagecraft meet with the movements of choreographer Guillaume Côté for the ballet’s second-last production of the 2017/18 season. (Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W., 7:30 p.m.; on until June 10)
Watch this if: You think friendships are more fun when they’re weird.
The trio behind this animated series about three friends — leprechaun Dez, puffin Puffin and ghost girl Akiko — sounds almost as unlikely as they are. Lienne Sawatsky is described as a former chorus girl, Dan Williams as a childhood magician and John Hazlett as a reformed dry-land farmer. Lienne and Dan were making their living as animation writers and John as a comedy writer/director when they met at a party. Their first collaboration — “wishfart” is like “brainfart,” a wish with unintended consequences — has already seen its quirky charm broadcast worldwide and is finally getting its Canadian debut. (Teletoon at 10:30 a.m.)
Watch this if: You want an art lovers’ weekend staycation.
The sixth annual Field Trip festival returns to Fort York and, again, the musical stars are complemented by food truck vendors, art installations, markets, a comedy lineup, an art exhibition (featuring Canadian music photography) and a family-friendly day camp area with drag queen story time, puppet shows, big band musical acts and more. And that’s a good thing, because if you’re excited to see headliners Metric and Yeah Yeah Yeahs based on their early 2000s heyday you’re likely old enough to be bringing a litter along with you. (Historic Fort York & Garrison Common, 250 Fort York Blvd., 1 p.m.; also on June 3)
Watch this for: A true indie success story.
What a roll this Londoner’s been on since being dumped by his record label (and his girlfriend, as he’s been quick to point out). Starting in August 2016 he recorded and streamed one new sad song on each full moon. Save the lunar element there’s nothing new in that approach, but rarely has it led to such a reinvention. A Song for Every Moon, as the album compilation was called upon its release last year, struck a chord (as in over 100 million streams) and the rest has been history, including an introduction at the Drake in February, a couple of arena dates supporting Sam Smith and now this quick return to Toronto. Now, as then, it’s sold out. (Great Hall, 1087 Queen St. W., doors 8 p.m.)
Watch this if: You need more glitter and glamour on your TV screen.
As if TV producer Ryan Murphy (American Horror Story, Feud, etc.) wasn’t prolific enough he brings us this look into the world of ball culture in 1980s New York. And that’s “ball” as in the underground LGBTQ subculture. Pose, co-created with Brad Falchuk (Glee) and Steven Canals, has been heralded for having a record number of transgender cast members and LGBTQ series regular. That’s a good reason to tune in, but it also looks like a lot of fun to watch for anyone who enjoys dance, night life, fashion and drama. (FX Canada at 9 p.m.)
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