Amped up: seven must-see fall concerts
K’naan and Shad
Forget Drake (just for a moment). No other artist has been as successful at popularizing Canadian hip hop as these two dynamos. A joint tour is more than fitting: both are having a huge year, with triumphs on the national scale (Shad earned a Polaris Music Prize nod for his awesomely daffy third disc, TSOL) and the international (thanks to Coke and the World Cup, K’naan’s “Wavin’ Flag” has been heard in every nook of the globe).
Oct. 1. Kool Haus.
Belle and Sebastian
During their decade and a half together, these Glaswegians have cultivated a rabid following for their delicate pop. This is the group’s first Toronto appearance since the release of the hit soundtrack to Juno, which introduced legions of new listeners to their melancholy charms.
Oct. 12. Massey Hall.
At this stage in his career, Yo-Yo Ma doesn’t sweat selling out large venues. But after hearing colleagues wax rhapsodic about Koerner Hall since its opening last fall, the superstar cellist wanted to try out the intimate space for himself. So, get this, he asked the Royal Conservatory’s thrilled executive director to book him a spot. Ma officially launches the hall’s second season with pieces by Schubert, Shostakovich and Piazzolla.
Oct. 14. Koerner Hall.
Torquil Campbell and Amy Millan have been crooning their lovelorn hearts out for 10 years now. Despite the myriad romantic woes that get dissected in their lyrics—pick up this year’s Five Ghosts to hear the latest round—the results are somehow always more magical than morose.
Oct. 23. Massey Hall.
Florence and the Machine
Florence Welch, with her flaming red tresses and unbridled energy, would attract attention even if she didn’t front one of the U.K.’s biggest new acts. The vividly imaginative pop on the band’s 2009 debut album, Lungs, is even more vibrant live, as proven at an ecstatic, barn-burning Kool Haus show last April. And with a new album in the works, this Machine is set to keep raging.
Nov. 3. Sound Academy.
The big-haired, big-voiced soprano with the even bigger personality kicks off Roy Thomson Hall’s quartet of International Vocal Recitals. Taking centre stage is music from Night and Dreams, Brueggergosman’s stunning collection of lieder by Schubert, Strauss and Liszt, as well as art songs and cabaret classics.
Nov. 3. Roy Thomson Hall.
The Verdi pro finally takes on Aida—and the COC. For all its reputation as an elephant-heavy spectacle, the Egyptian extravaganza is also an intimate quartet about patriotism, homeland, love and jealousy. There isn’t a more Italian combo than that. Read our Q&A with Radvanosky >>
Oct. 2 to Nov. 5. Four Seasons Centre.
Best of Fall 2010 articles:
- Nine fall fashion faves
- Eight must-read books of the season
- Most anticipated runway show
- Seven must-see performances
- Six must-see art exhibits
- Six can’t-miss flicks