A weekend-long horror convention, a pair of film fests and seven other things to do this week
A scream-worthy horror convention
The two-day Horror-Rama fest has all the usual convention fare—vendors, panels and screenings (plus all sorts of Halloween costume ideas)—but what sets it apart is a rare public appearance by Dyanne Thorne, star of Ilsa: She-Wolf of the S.S. If that’s not enough, you’ll also be able to rub shoulders with Tovah Feldshuh (The Walking Dead), William Lustig (Maniac Cop), Art Hindle (The Brood) and David DeCoteau (A Talking Cat?!?). Saturday, October 15 and Sunday, October 16. $25–$45. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St., horrorramacanada.com.
The feisty piano chops of Yuja Wang
Fiery Beijing pianist Yuja Wang brings her keyboard virtuosity to the Toronto Symphony Orchestra to tackle Bela Bartók’s final, lyrical piano concerto. Conductor Krzysztof Urbański will also lead the orchestra through Dvořák’s powerful “From the New World” symphony and a selection from Grieg’s Peer Gynt. Thursday, October 13 and Saturday, October 15. $39.75–$154. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St., tso.ca.
The weird and wacky films of Toronto After Dark
If TIFF’s Midnight Madness program didn’t sate your appetite for disreputable cinema, Toronto’s other annual celebration of horror, sci-fi, fantasy and thrillers—which returns for an 11th year—ought to hit the spot. This year’s highlights include the Sundance hit Under the Shadow, the Mel Gibson comeback vehicle Blood Father, Takashi Miike’s latest provocation As the Gods Will and local production The Void. Thursday, October 13 to 21. $13. Scotiabank Theatre, 259 Richmond St. W., torontoafterdark.com.
A post-Thanksgiving feast
This Friday, the Canadian Cancer Society is bringing out a team of local chefs and breweries to host OktoberFEAST, a gluttonous supper for a good cause: all of the evening’s proceeds will go towards cancer research and patient support services. (Thinking about staying home because the Jays game is on? They’ll be playing it in the lounge, so no excuses.) Friday, October 14. $25–$45. Airship37, 37 Parliament St., eventbrite.ca.
All But Gone, a Beckett rhapsody
The dense, jagged dialogue of Samuel Beckett already feels somewhat musical, so it’s only natural that several of his shorter plays have been reinterpreted into song. The creative team behind Canadian Stage’s 2012 production Beckett: Feck It! return for this Beckett rhapsody, featuring performer Jonathon Young and opera singers Shannon Mercer and Krisztina Szabó. Tuesday, October 11 to November 6. $35.10–$69. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley St., canadianstage.com.
A bigger, better Reelworld Film Festival
The 16th edition of this four-day festival features 30 films from around the world, about everything from climate change to the refugee crisis. In its first year at Harbourfront, the festival is dabbling in virtual reality and gaming and adding a Toronto Poetry Slam Showcase and Art Battle night. Wednesday, October 12 to Sunday, October 16. $12–$150. Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay W., reelworld.ca.
An art show that proves even fossils can fake it till they make it
Tangier-based artist Yto Barrada playfully dissects Morocco’s booming fossil and mineral trade with her colourful collection of both real and artificial artifacts. Faux Guide explores fossilized traces of the country’s long-extinct species and how that preserved history is adapted (sometimes fraudulently) for the marketplace. The exhibition includes a screening of Faux Départ, a kind of guide to the making and distribution of fake fossils. Saturday, October 15 to Monday, January 2. The Power Plant, 231 Queens Quay W., thepowerplant.org.
An eye-opening Roger Ballen retrospective
Blurring the lines between photography, painting, drawing, performance and installation, South African photographer Roger Ballen aspires to mimic the primal, mystical power of cave paintings. This career-spanning retrospective includes such famous works as his iconic photos Old man Ottoshoop, Show Off and Twirling, plus images from his collaboration with rule-bending duo Die Antwoord. Thursday, October 13 to Saturday, November 19. Izzy Gallery, 1255 Bay St., izzygallery.com.
An exhibition that one-ups the Poäng chair
The Scandinavian aesthetic has influenced Canadian designers since the 1930s, when it first landed in our museum exhibitions, boutiques and style magazines. This retrospective, True Nordic, explores over 70 years of Norse influence on Canadian furniture, ceramics, textiles, and glass and metal art, interrogating how émigrés from Denmark introduced Danish modern principles into the North American marketplace. The show features work by Carl Poul Petersen, Janis Kravis, John Stene, Karen Bulow, and more. Thursday, October 13 to Sunday, January 8. Gardiner Museum, 111 Queens Park, gardinermuseum.on.ca.