The Weekender: Heart, Nature Unleashed and six other can’t-miss events
Remember when rock star sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson sent John McCain’s campaign a cease-and-desist letter after he used their hit song “Barracuda” to introduce then-running-mate Sarah Palin? That’s just one of the many reasons this stalwart band is awesome. Their Friday concert, part of the sisters’ 35th anniversary cross-country tour, will almost certainly include a 2011 take on “Barracuda,” as well as all the other hard-rock anthems and power ballads the Wilsons are known for. February 11. $65–$115. Massey Hall, 178 Victoria St., 416-872-4255, masseyhall.com.
2. THE BEAT GOES ON (FREE!)
Local arts group Diaspora Dialogues hosts this interdisciplinary performance, which features spoken word, music and drama by Andrew Moodie, Mahlikah Awe:ri and Donna-Michelle St Bernard. Inspired by the themes of historical and artistic evolutions, this event is part of the city’s Black History Month celebrations. Also on the lineup, a moderated discussion hosted by the CBC’s Garvia Bailey. February 13. Music Gallery, 197 John St., diasporadialogues.com.
3. LES COQUETTES PRESENT CANDY HEARTS
The lovely ladies and gentlemen of Toronto burlesque troupe Les Coquettes are celebrating St. Valentine, the patron saint of love, young people, happy marriages (and also beekeepers), as only they can: nearly naked, and classy all the way. February 13. $15–$30. Revival, 783 College St., lescoquettes.com.
Slovak-Canadian filmmaker Ingrid Veninger wrote, produced and directed this coming-of-age tale about two teens, Lina (played by her real-life daughter Hallie Switzer) and Leco (Alexander Gammal), who journey to small-town Slovakia during summer vacation, staying with Lina’s family in the titular town of Modra. For those who missed its premiere at TIFF last year, this screening will be followed by a Q&A with the director and cast. February 11. $10. The Royal, 608 College St., theroyal.to.
5. NATURE UNLEASHED: INSIDE NATURAL DISASTERS
Sure, last week’s snowpocalypse was a bit of a let down. But that doesn’t mean we’re any more prepared for when the big one really hits. That’s why this new Science Centre exhibit, opening on Friday, is a much needed wake-up call. A crash course on extreme weather, the exhibit explains how tornadoes, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and hurricanes happen, and even lets visitors set off their own interactive disasters. February 11 to May 1. $20. Ontario Science Centre, 770 Don Mills Rd., 416-696-1000, ontariosciencecentre.ca.
6. EAT FOR TIBET FOOD FESTIVAL
Part foodie fest, part humanitarian fundraiser, this one-day-only event sees participating restaurants in the Little Tibet—a small strip of Queen Street West smack in the middle of Parkdale—donate half of the day’s sales to Students for a Free Tibet Canada. Music and traditional dances are also on the menu. February 13. Various prices. Queen St. W. between Callender St. and Jameson Ave., sftcanada.org.
7. LES BALLETS TROCKADERO DE MONTE CARLO
Don’t get us wrong, we love us some National Ballet (Heather Ogden and Guillaume Côté in Sleeping Beauty? Breathtaking). But sometimes we crave something a little less serious. Enter Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. An all-male company that’s been around for nearly 40 years, the Trocks perform hilarious parodies of classic ballet (often in drag), such as this weekend’s performances of Le Lac des cygnies (Swan Lake, Act II) and Raymonda’s Wedding. February 10 to 12. $39–$120. Winter Garden Theatre, 189 Yonge St., 416-872-5555, ticketmaster.ca.
8. TORONTO EROTIC ARTS & CRAFTS FAIR (FREE!)
Hand-knit hickey hiders, fetish propaganda posters, vintage pin-up light switches—it must be that time again. Toronto sex shop Come As You Are hosts its fifth annual sexed-up craft fair this weekend, and we can pretty much guarantee there will be no macramé on offer. Vagina-shaped brooches, on the other hand? We’re guessing yes. February 12. Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W., eroticartsandcrafts.com.
(Images: Les Coquettes by Ryan Visima, Modra movie poster, Nancy Wilson by Danielle Scott)