A final documentary from Rob Stewart, a night with Florence and the Machine and six other things to see, hear and do in Toronto this week
A final masterpiece from Rob Stewart
1Canada mourned the loss of one of its most celebrated documentary makers last January when Rob Stewart drowned in a scuba-diving accident off the coast of Florida. A committed conservationist, he spent most of his life trying to save the world’s shark population. Before his death, Stewart was working on an ambitious sequel to his acclaimed 2006 documentary, Sharkwater, which shows him on the tails of businessmen, poachers and politicians to expose how companies profit from shark hunting. The new film, Sharkwater Extinction, promises to be a dramatic piece of cinema-journalism and a final dispatch from Stewart. In theatres Monday, October 19.
An evening of high hopes with Florence and the Machine
2Florence and the Machine’s new album High as Hope takes a less-is-more approach, letting lead singer Florence Welch’s huge voice shine over minimalist production. She shifts fluidly between soft, intimate songs and soaring power ballads, incorporating themes of love, fame, addiction and loneliness to tell the story about her days as a hard-partying, self-destructive star searching for redemption (briefly detouring for an ode to one of her heroes, Patti Smith). Playing off the success of the release, her performance is sure to be equal parts dramatic, energetic and vulnerable. Tuesday, October 16. $81–$424. Scotiabank Arena.
A real-time magazine
3Pop-Up Magazine is tossing aside the notion that print is just for reading. What began in a small San Fransisco theatre has since grown into a full-scale travelling multimedia production, with writers, photographers, filmmakers, artists and radio producers coming together to create a live magazine. Each story is told in a different way, combining readings with vivid illustration, animation, shadow theatre and an original score performed by a live orchestra. The Toronto show features This American Life producer Stephanie Foo, Toronto-based writer Katherine Laidlaw, filmmakers Veena Rao and Meg Smaker, BuzzFeed crime reporter Albert Samaha and others. Tuesday, October 16. $39. Koerner Hall.
4Fresh from the success of their two-woman tour of Mouthpiece—the multi-award-winning play-turned-film that Jodie Foster liked so much she brought it to L.A.—writers Amy Nostbakken and Norah Sadava are taking another shot at a feminist-focused script with Now You See Her. For their newest show, co-produced by Nightwood and Why Not Theatre, the pair join forces with four Toronto-based theatre artists to tell the stories of six characters—including a scientist, an Indigenous woman and a pop star—who have faded from society. Opens Tuesday, October 16. Pay what you can ($10, $25, $40 or $75). Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.
A free art party at the Power Plant
5The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery is celebrating its new lineup of exhibits with a free party. On display: multidisciplinary sculptor Karla Black’s first Canadian solo exhibition, featuring a massive, site-specific installation; Guatemala-based painter Vivian Suter’s vividly colourful, mud- and rain-soaked canvases; and Toronto-based artist Beth Stuart’s delicate new series of paintings about the Victorian-era bathing suit. Friday, October 19. Free. The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery.
A night with pop’s newest sensation
6In just a few years, South African–born Australian singer Troye Sivan has gone from being a low-key YouTuber to a chart-topping performer. Soon after the January release of his catchy anthem “My My My!,” he landed a performance on Saturday Night Live and a collaboration with Ariana Grande. His stop in Toronto follows the release of his second album, Bloom, a celebration of queer longing and love. It flows from grounded, acoustic tracks to synth-backed hits, balancing Sivan’s laid-back early style with his newfound identity as a pop star. Monday, October 15. $83–$498. Sony Centre for the Performing Arts.
A festival of authors and ideas
7From the page to the stage, the Toronto International Festival of Authors gives readers a chance to hear from some of the world’s greatest writers and thinkers. The 11-day festival features almost 200 authors, artists, activists and poets, including legendary musician and activist Buffy Sainte-Marie, who will be interviewed alongside the author of her upcoming biography, Andrea Warner, beloved crime writer Ian Rankin, Room author Emma Donoghue and award-winning writer Miriam Toews. Thursday, October 18 to Sunday, October 28. Various prices. Harbourfront Centre.
A savoury soup festival
8The weather may be getting colder, but things are warming up at Toronto Soup Festival. From chicken noodle to chowder, there will be plenty on offer from local chefs and restaurateurs, plus live entertainment and cooking demonstrations. Saturday, October 20 and Sunday, October 21. $22. Garrison Common.