The Weekender: Rogers Cup, Caribbean Carnival and five other items on our to-do list
1. SCOTIABANK CARIBBEAN CARNIVAL
Technically, this Caribbean cultural extravaganza runs for over three weeks, but everyone knows the best parts happen this weekend: the crowning of the fest’s King and Queen (Thursday); Pan Alive, the steel pan competition and concert (Friday); and, most importantly, the parade (Saturday). We also like to think of this weekend as one of the few days that skimpy outfits, feather headdresses and sequins are perfectly acceptable day wear. To August 12. Ticket prices vary. Parade travels along Lake Shore to Parkside, 416-391-5608, torontocaribbeancarnival.com.
2. ROGERS CUP
The pros are back in town for this annual tourney, battling it out for fame, glory and $3 million in prize money. This year, hometown hero Milos Raonic makes the jump from the commentary box (he provided commentary on last year’s tournament after withdrawing due to a hip injury) to the court, where we hope he kicks some serious butt. August 4–12. $25–$415. Rexall Centre, York University, 1 Shoreham Dr., 1-877-283-6647, rogerscup.com.
3. THE ROYAL COMEDIANS
It looks like Soulpepper’s current season is heavy on the allegories. Like Arthur Millers’ The Crucible, another major addition to this season’s lineup, Mikhail Bulgakov’s The Royal Comedians takes a despotic leader—Stalin, this time around—to task under the guise of a historical tale. Here, Bulgakov’s criticism of Stalin’s policies regarding artistic repression are hidden in the biographical details of French playwright Molière. To September 21. $32–$68. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane, Distillery Historic District, 416-866-8666, youngcentre.ca.
4. PLYWOOD GRAFFITI EXHIBIT (FREE!)
Some of the city’s most recognizable taggers—like Skam, Art Child, Spazz and Rcade—have taken blank pieces of plywood and transformed them into art for this exhibit. To September 30. Admission is free. Spin Toronto, 461 King St. W., 416-599-7746, toronto.spingalactic.com.
5. DUSK DANCES 2012
This spatially-specific dance festival makes stops in parks across the province, including several in Toronto this summer—Neilson Park, Earlscourt Park and, this weekend, Withrow Park to name a few. The program features choreography by Zata Omm Dance Projects, the 605 Collective and Lua Shayenne and Co. July 31–August 5. PWYC; suggested donation $10. Withrow Park, Pape and Danforth, duskdances.ca.
6. 60 YEARS OF DESIGNING THE BALLET
Curated by Caroline O’Brien, the former resident designer and wardrobe supervisor at the National Ballet School, this exhibit has tons of insider info about past National Ballet productions, including Romeo and Juliet and The Nutcracker. Displays include sketches, set displays, photos, video and, of course, costumes from the past six decades of the company’s productions. To September 2. $10. Design Exchange, 234 Bay St., 416-363-6121, dx.org.
7. RULE BRITANNIA!
The Gardiner Museum is taking advantage of mainstream Brit enthusiasm (people are still talking about Will and Kate, the Olympics and the Spice Girls reunion) with this four-century-spanning retrospective of British ceramics, including all the Royal-related memorabilia anyone could possibly want. To September 16. $12. Gardiner Museum, 111 Queen’s Park Cres., 416-586-8080, gardinermuseum.on.ca.