The Weekender: Canadian Music Week, Jane Goodall and six other items on our to-do list
1. CANADIAN MUSIC WEEK
Music lovers can thank this huge, new music-focused fest for the influx of current rock stars and up-and-comers into the city this week, like Slash, I Mother Earth, Dragonette, The Sheepdogs, The Trews and so on. But CMW isn’t just about trying to go to as many shows as we have time for/can afford. In addition to the music festival, there’s a comedy festival, film fest and four conferences—a Digital Media Summit (with a keynote address by Arianna Huffington), Radio Interactive, International Music Summit and Songwriters’ Summit. March 21–25. Wristbands $35–$75. Various locations, cmw.net.
2. THE POWER PLANT SPRING PROGRAMMING (FREE!)
The Power Plant, Harbourfront’s contemporary art gallery and one-time actual power plant, is turning 25. Unlike most galleries, The Power Plant doesn’t buy or sell art—instead, it features exhibits curated around a theme and is comprised of borrowed art. The spring program features two exhibitions themed around history and memory: Kerry Tribe features an installation/screening of her newest project, There Will Be ________, accompanied by two of her older works; and German architect and writer Markus Miessen will showcase his installation “Dissenting Histories,” a collection that focuses on The Power Plant’s history (everything from VHS recordings to artist talks to slides to past invitations). The Power Plant, Harbourfront Centre, 231 Queens Quay W., 416-973-4949, thepowerplant.org
3. SNAP! 2012
Part global photography exhibit, part HIV/AIDS fundraiser, this annual auction and competition raises money (over $1.2 million over the past 11 years) for the AIDS Committee of Toronto’s outreach and education programs. Score gorgeous photos at the live and silent auctions and make the most of the snacks and drinks, and tunes by DJ Sumation—it’s for a good cause. March 25. $90. Canada’s National Ballet School, 400 Jarvis St., 416-340-9255, snap-toronto.com.
4. JANE’S JOURNEY: AN EVENING WITH DR. JANE GOODALL
One of the most beloved scientists ever—also known as former primatologist, current conservationist and UN Messenger of Peace Jane Goodall—is in town to promote a new documentary (about her), Jane’s Journey. The doc details her life story, from protege of archaeologist Louis Leakey to world-famous chimpanzee expert. Even better, Goodall will be in attendance for meeting, greeting and book signing purposes. March 23. $60–$160. Ontario Science Centre, 770 Don Mills Rd., 416-696-1000, ontariosciencecentre.ca.
5. SHREK THE MUSICAL
The delightfully misanthropic Shrek, boisterous Donkey and butt-kicking princess Fiona make the transition from screen to stage in this high-energy musical. The kids will love the spot-on costumes (Lord Farquaad!), fairy tale-worthy sets and catchy tunes. Actually, so will the parents for that matter. To April 1. $40–$135. Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge St., 416-644-3665, dancaptickets.com.
6. A MUSICAL BESTIARY
When we think of recorders, we think of sixth grade music classes—not acclaimed musicians like virtuosa Alison Melville. But that’s Melville’s instrument of choice and it totally works for her. She takes centre stage at this unique concert, which features a carefully selected program of music composed during the Renaissance era and a veritable menagerie of animals from land, sea, sky and even myth. Expect songs like “The Ape, the Monkey, and Baboon,” and “Le chant des oyseaux” by Clément Janequin. March 23 & 24. $22–$52. Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre, 427 Bloor St. W., 416-964-6337, torontoconsort.org.
7. JUNOS LIVE MUSIC LABS
Acclaimed and award-winning musicians talk songwriting at this weekend-long workshop, which, sticking with its theme “Science of Songwriting,” is perfectly situated at the Science Centre. Carly Rae Jepsen and JRDN team up to discuss confessional lyrics, Chantal Kreviazuk and Raine Maida talk process, Kardinal Offishall shares his musical journey and current nominees Down With Webster break down one of their singles. March 24 & 25. $20. Ontario Science Centre, 770 Don Mills Rd., 416-696-1000, ontariosciencecentre.ca.
8. AMA SUPERCROSS SERIES
On the extreme sports continuum, there are the slightly more tame ones (indoor climbing) and downright crazy ones (BASE jumping springs to mind). Supercross, or off-road motorcycle racing, falls somewhere in the middle—though probably closer to hurling yourself off very tall objects than climbing up a very tall wall, we’re thinking. Defending champ Ryan Villopoto defends his title at this year’s North American competition. March 24. $15–$40. Rogers Centre, 1 Blue Jays Way, 1-855-985-5000, ticketmaster.ca.