The Weekender: Earth Hour Sing-A-Long, Prom at the ROM and five other items on our to-do list
1. EARTH HOUR SING-A-LONG CONCERT (FREE!)
This Earth Hour, instead of staying home, join the crowd at this environmentally friendly sing-a-long concert. Bring your candles, flashlight, lantern or other light-maker of choice and get down to the “official rally cry,” written by local new media composer/YouTube sensation Andrew Huang, and performed with the help of grown-up glee club Choir! Choir! Choir! Also on the lineup is Aussie artist Jerrem Lynch, who will be projecting art onto a wall at a nearby building. Bonus: you won’t be sitting in the dark solo. March 31. Trinity Square, The Distillery Historic District, 55 Mill St., earthhour.wwf.ca.
2. PROM: CIRCUS
Generally speaking, museum benefits tend to be a little stuffy. This one? Not so much. The annual fundraising event of the ROM’s Young Patrons’ Circle, Prom at the ROM is more of a super-fashionable bash that attracts a who’s who of the city’s young and fabulous. This year’s big-top motif means illusionists, a midway and as much cotton candy as any one person could reasonably eat—plus, with any luck, totally over-the-top outfits. Proceeds from the evening fund programming, acquisitions and research at the ROM. March 31. $125–$300. Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queen’s Park, 416-586-5772, rom.on.ca/prom.
3. ONE OF A KIND SPRING SHOW
This seasonal showcase of handicrafts, art, décor, clothing and various other accoutrements features the work of over 450 Canadian artisans. The Direct Energy Centre has been divided into five neighbourhoods: Flavours, which features tasty eats; Fashion, for stylish togs; Rising Stars, a showcase for up-and-coming design talent; and Green, for eco-friendly buys and outdoor goods. And that’s on top of handy seminars, DIY workshops and fun-to-watch fashion shows. To April 1. $14. Direct Energy Centre, Exhibition Place, 100 Princes’ Blvd., 416-960-4515, oneofakindshow.com.
4. SONGS IN THE KEY OF STEPHEN
For the musical theatre crowd, there are two Stephens of note: Mr. Sondheim, the composer/lyricist behind classics like West Side Story and Sweeney Todd, and Mr. Schwartz, whose credits include Wicked and Godspell. This musical tribute honours the two legends, both of whom have also branched out into the big and small screens (Disney for Schwartz, Hollywood for Sondheim). Expect selections from each Stephen’s vast repertoire—“Defying Gravity,” anyone? March 31 & April 1. $35–$45. George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge St., 416-733-9388, tocentre.com.
5. BENOIT AQUIN: HAITI (FREE!)
Montreal-based photographer Benoit Aquin arrived in Haiti four days after the earthquake that devastated the country in January 2010. He was there to volunteer with the Canadian Centre for International Studies and Cooperation and to take photos—lots of them. This exhibit, Aquin’s second at Bulger, is the result of two years and five trips to Haiti and documents the devastation, the people and, eventually, the process of rebuilding. March 31–April 28. Stephen Bulger Gallery, 1026 Queen St. W., bulgergallery.com.
6. STRIP SEARCH!
Amateur burlesque beauties take the stage during this bi-annual competition which pits up-and-comers against one another in a bid for bragging rights, prizes and a chance to compete in the first ever international burlesque competition at this year’s Toronto Burlesque Festival, held at the Gladstone in July. In addition to performances by the competitors, members of several high-profile troupes—like Boylesque T.O., Skin Tight Outta Sight and Great Canadian Burlesque—will take the stage. April 1. $25. Revival, 783 College St., torontoburlesquefestival.com.
7. FROM RENAISSANCE TO RODIN: CELEBRATING THE TANENBAUM GIFT
Philanthropic couple—and serious art collectors—Joey and Toby Tanenbaum have been contributing to Toronto cultural institutions like the ROM, the COC and the AGO for years. This exhibit features some of the Tanenbaums’ most interesting contributions to the AGO over the past four decades, including two Rodin sculptures, Eustache de Saint-Pierre and Andrieux d’Andres Vetu, and 28 paintings by Old Masters like Luca Giordano, Antoine Coypel and Jean-Baptiste Jouvenet. To February 2013. $20. Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas St. W., 416-979-6648, ago.net.