Show your Pride, listen to some jazz and eight other things to do this week
Listen to Spoon’s cultish indie rock
Ask any music nerd to name the most consistent indie band of the past two decades, and there’s a good chance you’ll hear about Spoon. The Austin outfit never shot into the mainstream, but each of its eight albums has been a quiet triumph, filled with creative production tricks and catchy choruses. Last year’s They Want My Soul was no exception—it’s a lovely late-game addition to an already exemplary track record. Tuesday, June 23 and Wednesday, June 24. $26. Phoenix Concert Theatre, 410 Sherbourne St., 416-323-1251, collectiveconcerts.com.
Let your rainbow flag fly at this year’s Pride parade
The city’s annual 10-day celebration of LGBT culture returns, with Elton John’s hubby David Furnish leading the festivities as Grand Marshal. Expect an influx of tourists, a raucous opening reception, cabaret nights, appearances by Pussy Riot and John Waters and, of course, a parade that transforms the streets of downtown Toronto into a rainbow wonderland. To Sunday, June 28. Prices and locations vary, pridetoronto.com.
Check out some caliente Cuban dance
One of the sleeper highlights on this year’s Luminato schedule is a new show from Malpaso, a contemporary dance company from Havana. Only two years old, they’re already building huge buzz for their sparkling performances. The stage will be a sea of swirling hips and snaking spines propelled by Afro-Cuban rhythms and Miami club beats. Wednesday, June 24 to Friday, June 26. From $39. Fleck Dance Theatre, 207 Queens Quay W., 416-368-4849, luminatofestival.com.
See David Byrne, St. Vincent and Nelly Furtado try out a wild new experiment
Colour guard is a cross between cheerleading and marching band, where bedazzled participants dance to music using batons, flags and rifles. Ex–Talking Heads front man David Byrne takes the form to new heights with the world premiere of Contemporary Color, which plays the ACC this week before debuting in New York. He pairs 10 colour guard teams with 10 artists—people like St. Vincent, tUnE-yArDs, Nelly Furtado and This American Life host Ira Glass—who will perform new works that sync up with the teams’ sparkly, spectacular routines. Monday, June 22 and Tuesday, June 23. From $39. Air Canada Centre, 40 Bay St., 416-368-4849, luminatofestival.com.
See a giant production of a Canadian composer’s grand opus
Apocalypsis, by the Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer, is nothing short of mega, with some 1,000 performers enacting a biblical journey from chaos to order. Among the marquee names are actor Brent Carver, dancer Denise Fujiwara, Polaris prize–winning throat singer Tanya Tagaq and avant-garde performance artist Laurie Anderson. Friday, June 26 to Sunday, June 28. $49–129. Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, 1 Front St. E., 416-368-4849, luminatofestival.com.
Watch some colourful Hollywood classics at the TIFF Bell Lightbox
The three-strip Technicolor process of the 1930s expanded Hollywood’s colour palette beyond moody blacks and whites. TIFF’s summer series features some of Technicolor’s most luminous achievements, including the jewel tones of The Wizard of Oz, the super-saturated post-war melodrama of Douglas Sirk’s All That Heaven Allows and the icy blondes and blues of Hitchcock’s Rear Window. Of special note: on Sunday, Norman Jewison will pop by the Lightbox to introduce his spirited, autumn-hued Fiddler on the Roof. To Aug. 13. $13. TIFF Bell Lightbox, 350 King St. W., 416-599-8433, tiff.net.
Say goodbye to the MOCCA’s Queen West location
Last week, the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art announced it would be moving to the Tower Automotive Building, an abandoned factory in the Junction; the new location will be up and running by early 2017. In the MOCCA’s last exhibit at its current location, local artist Dean Baldwin will transform the building into the Queen West Yacht Club, a faux marina that will host a summer’s worth of immersive events and performances from visiting artists. Thursday, June 25 to Aug. 23. FREE. Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, 952 Queen St. W., 416-395-0067, mocca.ca.
Indulge in some hot summer jazz
The name is a bit of a misnomer, but it rolls off the tongue easier than the Toronto Jazz-Funk-Soul-Blues-Hip-Hop-Salsa-Rock Festival. Among the must-see acts at this year’s Toronto Jazz Festival: the Memphis jazz icon and organist Booker T. Jones, the energetic blues guitarist Gary Clark Jr. and the irreverent Brooklyn R&B fusion band Snarky Puppy. To Monday, June 29. Prices and locations vary, torontojazz.com.
Attend a late-night concert with the TSO
Gustav Holst’s symphonic study consists of astrological interpretations of seven planets in our solar system. (It doesn’t include Pluto, which hadn’t yet been discovered when the suite was composed, or Earth, the vantage point on astrology maps.) Each is loaded with symbolism and elevated by the composer’s deft orchestration and sheer melodic gift. The TSO tackles the piece this week in their annual late-night show. Friday, June 26. $25–$45. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St., 416-593-4828, tso.ca.
Take a road trip to the Hayloft Dance Hall
The honky-tonk Dakota Tavern on Ossington has expanded to Prince Edward County, transforming a seedy barn into the Hayloft Dancehall, which serves up house-smoked barbecue and books indie acts like Elliott Brood and the Strumbellas. This week, it’s worth the drive to see the Mounties, a Canadian supergroup that includes eccentric showman Hawksley Workman and Hot Hot Heat keyboardist Steve Bays. Friday, June 26. $25. 344 Salmon Point Rd., Picton, thehayloftdancehall.com.