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Showing posts from August, 2011

Hot & Spicy: Food, Music, Dance & More at Harbourfront Toronto Sept 2-5

From a media release: HOT & SPICY FOOD FESTIVAL   Sept. 2-5, 2011 at Harbourfront, Toronto Presented by NOW Magazine TORONTO - Hot & Spicy returns for its 14th edition as one of the premier food events in the city , packed with a full menu of culinary arts, music, film panels and dance . Highlighting culinary “Hot Spots” around the world, the rise of hot culinary neighbourhoods in the GTA and a favorite summer pastime, BBQ, expect a festival full of fiery performances for all the senses! Just some of the highlights: • Check the link for full listings, including loads of music & dance by Baby Boyz John Ellison Friday, Sept. 2, 7-8 p.m. (Redpath Stage) A tasty BBQ demonstration and musical performance by legendary Soul Brothers Six singer and songwriter John Ellison. He wrote the classic song “(She’s) Some Kind of Wonderful.” To date, more than 42 million copies of the song have been sold, and it has been recorded by 58 different artists. In addition to his c

Guarco: Latin CD Release & Brand New Facebook Download App

From a media release: Milkshakes and Brimstone: Guarco’s Afro-Uruguayan Beats, Raw Rock, and Searing Irony Brings Fresh Edge to Latin Sounds Don’t get Guarco wrong: he’s crashing on the couch to plot a revolution . He’s seen the world end in a carnival flourish, and watched life continue despite it all. He may wink at The Pixies, Lee “Scratch” Perry, and Caetano Veloso, but his heart beats with Afro-Uruguayan Candombe. The Brooklyn-based singer-songwrite r’s long-simmering debut Fiebre (“Fever,” ; August 9, 2011) bursts with these tensions. It moves frenetically between pissed-off revolutionary and blasé hipster, between worldly sarcasm and magical realism, between Spanish and English. It shakes, questions, and burns, with help from producer, engineer, and friend Ben Kane (D’Angelo, The Roots, Blitz the Ambassador). Fiebre will be offered via Guarco’s Facebook band page to fans, the first use of the social networking platform’s apps for independent commercial mus

Electronica Release: D. Gookin's Spiral Style

From a media release: D. GOOKIN - SPIRAL STYLE OUT ON MOODGADGET RECORDS ON AUGUST 23, 20111 New Haven beatsmith and solo artist D. Gookin , a.k.a. Mike Birnbaum, is on a mission. Think of it as retaliation against a recession both economic and emotional. While his peers delve ever deeper into moodiness and sonic murk, Gookin flips life's unsavory bits into maxed-out, genuinely uplifting music . Combining the adventurousness of modern electronic innovators like Tobacco and Daedelus with the playfulness of '90s pop usurpers like Soul Coughing and Len, his sound is as propulsive as it is melodic, as freewheeling as it is meticulously orchestrated, and as blown-out bright as it is endlessly detailed. Raised by journalists in the wooded suburbs of Maryland, Gookin found his way to music at a young age. He began piano at 5, encouraged by his family, and later an unhealthy obsession with Nirvana's In Utero left him fiending for guitar lessons. By 9, he'd assembled

Chasing Madoff Canadian Release

From a media release: eOne Films presents CHASING MADOFF A Documentary Film by Jeff Prosserman * Screened at the Toronto Jewish Film Festival 2011 Film opened in Toronto and Vancouver on Friday, August 26, 2011 The untold true story of the team that uncovered the Bernard Madoff scandal. CHASING MADOFF is the compelling true story of Harry Markopolos and his team’s ten-year struggle to expose the harrowing truth behind the infamous Madoff scandal. Throughout the decade long investigation, Markopolos (pictured left) pieced together a chain of white-collar predators, consisting of financial fraudsters, lieutenants, and henchmen, all linked to the devastating Ponzi scheme. With risk and danger apparent, Markopolos and his loyal team, known as the “The Foxhounds”, relentlessly continued to pursue the frightening truth. Finding himself trapped in a web of epic deceit, the once unassuming Boston securities analyst turned vigilante investigator now feared for his life and the s

Canadian World Music Online Launch

From a release: Canadian World Music is now on-line! We are excited to announce the launch of , the first web-based catalogue of Canadian world musicians. The site features 23 Ontario-based, market-ready Canadian world music artists and groups that can be searched by genre, name and city. The website aims to raise the international profile of Canada as a country rich in musical diversity and high-calibre world music acts. The catalogue will be promoted at national and international markets and sent to a vast contact list with the hope of facilitating a greater diversity in the bands being selected by presenters across the country. About Us was created by Tridha Arts Association, in association with Lula Music and Arts Centre and with financial assistance from FACTOR. Our primary objective is to enhance the artistic opportunities, both nationally and internationally, for market-ready Canadian world music artists and groups. T

My PC Has A Virus!

Art & Culture Lovers, My beloved PC has come down with a virus - some horrible Trojan thingie that is proving tough to pin down and eliminate. While my son the computer genius (all the young 'uns is computer genius', aren't they?) tries to find a fix, I'm left with my laptop and a few problems: a) All the my posts are queued up by date in a lovely, organized file that's now languishing on my sick hard drive, b) I'm now about two days behind in my regular work from all the fiddling around (in vain so far), and c) that last l fact is preventing me from piecing my posts back together from email. I will be back up and running in the next couple of days, but since it looks like I'll be cobbling from emails - and my inbox gets very full, very fast - I'll apologize in advance for those that get left behind, or fall between the cracks. Things should be back to something like normal soon! - Anya

Alt Rocker Anna Rose Covers Arcade Fire's My Body is a Cage

From a media release: SOULFUL ALT-ROCKER ANNA ROSE BREAKS OUT WITH COVER OF ARCADE FIRE’S “MY BODY IS A CAGE” CURRENTLY IN THE STUDIO RECORDING FOLLOW-UP TO 2010 DEBUT ALBUM NOMAD • CHECK OUT ANNA’S VERSION OF “MY BODY IS A CAGE” “ Choosing this song to cover came about quite organically. It's actually the only song that was arranged in the studio, rather than in the rehearsals prior to recording. I really love Arcade Fire and this is a song I had been tinkering around with for a while. Kevin Salem, the producer for this session, had heard me messing around and suggested we get a recording of it. There are some truly inspiring artists out there and it's an honor to do my own version of My Body Is A Cage .” - ANNA ROSE Velvet-voiced songstress Anna Rose is back in the studio , announcing her presence with the release of a sultry, soulful cover of the Arcade Fire’s “My Body Is A Cage.” The daughter of composer Alan Menken and a ballet dancer, the 26-year old singer,

Battle of the Beatmakers - Canada's Official Producer Competition August 25-28 in Toronto

From a release: Battle of the Beatmakers Canada's Official Producer Competition Toronto, Ontario August 25 - 28, 2011 Toronto, Canada – Grammy award winning and nominated producers , T-Minus, Boi-1da, 9th Wonder and Maybach Music Group Recording Artist Stalley will be joining aspiring producers in Toronto, Canada for the nations official producer competition and retreat.  BBM Producer Retreat is a three-day, ten-event series. •  Check the link for full details on all the events Grammy nominated and platinum-selling producer, T-Minus is taking time to show his love for the event that gave him his initial push as a producer.  T-Minus was crowned champion at the 2005 installment of the competition.  “It’s an honour to come back and be a part of what was a big influence on my career, says T-Minus. “It was a pivotal moment in my life ; it really showed that I had the talent to make it in the industry.”  Since his win at BBM, T-Minus has gone on to earn a Grammy nominatio

Tiken Jah, Meta, Los Rakas - Central Park Summerstage August 20 2011

Central Park Summerstage on August 20, 2011 Los Rakas, Meta and the Cornerstones & Tiken Jah Fakoly It was a whirlwind trip, but I couldn't resist checking out Central Park Summerstage last Saturday - along with a big crowd with a big West African presence. I'd never heard of Los Rakas before, but their infectious Latin hip hop with an occasional reggae flavour had me hooked. They're based in Oakland, California with members from Panama and the U.S.   Meta is from Senegal, the Cornerstones hail from all over, and his sunny style of reggae was perfect for a hot, hot afternoon in the sun. They've played before thousands in Paris and seem like they're on the way up. He's only been in New York City for a few years but is obviously making his mark. I caught Tiken Jah Fakoly in Toronto in March and welcomed the chance to see him again on a bigger stage outdoors. He gave a generous hour and a half performance peppered with his typically insigh

Classical Piano: Taka Kigawa at (le) poisson rouge NYC August 22

From a release: Taka Kigawa at (le) poisson rouge August 22, 2011 - New York City Critically acclaimed pianist Taka Kigawa has earned outstanding international recognition as a recitalist, soloist, and chamber music artist since winning First Prize in the prestigious 1990 Japan Music F oundation Piano Competition in Tokyo , and the Diploma Prize at the 1990 Concurs Internacional Maria Canals De Barcelona in Spain. He's earned such accolades from The New York Times as “Mr. Kigawa’s feat deserves the highest praise, especially since it was combined with such alacrity and sensitivity to the musical material ... brilliantly done … a careful and serious-minded musician, quietly poetic and considerate” and from The New Yorker “Unbelievably challenging program. Kigawa is a young artist of stature .” Taka Kigawa, piano with the music of Stockhausen, Saariaho, and Boulez Mon., August 22, 2011 ADVANCE: $25 DAY OF SHOW: $30 All Ages Doors Open: 6:30 PM Show Time: 7:30 PM Th

Drama and Debauchery: the Canadian Opera Company's Rigoletto Sept 29 to Oct 22

From a media release: drama and debauchery wrapped in a musical masterpiece with coc’s rigoletto at the Four Seasons Centre, Toronto September 29 to October 22, 2011 Toronto – A tragedy of Shakespearean dimensions is brought to life by some of opera’s most passionate and memorable music in the COC’s fall production of Rigoletto by Giuseppe Verdi.   The story of the tragic jester, Rigoletto, who vows to avenge his cruelly seduced daughter but ends up losing everything he loves, comes alive in a new production by the innovative team of COC Music Director Johannes Debus, American director Christopher Alden and award-winning Canadian designer Michael Levine.  • Sung in Italian with English SURTITLES™, Rigoletto runs for 12 performances at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts on Sept. 29, 30 and Oct. 2, 5, 8, 13, 14, 16, 17, 18, 20, 22, 2011. Coming together to perform Verdi’s perennial favourite are up-and-coming opera stars as well as established voices from the oper

From A-Z Films: Sarah's Key - Canadian Release Dates

From a media release: A-Z FILMS presents SARAH'S KEY Directed by Gilles Paquet-Brenner Starring: Kristin Scott Thomas, Aidan Quinn, Niels Arestrup **Opening in Toronto at Cineplex Odeon Varsity and Cineplex Odeon Sheppard August 19** (Toronto)   Following its critical acclaim at last year's Toronto International Film Festival, and a brand new edit, Sarah's Key, directed by Gilles Paquet-Brenner, will open in Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa and Vancouver beginning  July 29. In the U.S., Weinstein Co., opened the film July 22. Opening in Canada: • July 29 - Montreal • August 19 - Toronto • August 19 - Ottawa • August 26 - Vancouver Based on Tatiana de Rosnay's book, Elle s'appelait Sarah (which spent many weeks on the New York Times best seller list and sold well over 2 million copies worldwide) it follows the story of an American journalist in Paris, Julia Jarmond (Kristin Scott Thomas) researching an article about the Vel' d'Hiv Roundup in 1942 i

East African Famine Benefit: Msaada at Lula Lounge Toronto August 25

From a media release: Batuki Music Society presents:  MSAADA A Fundraiser for East Africa Relief. Lula Lounge, Toronto August 25, 2011 Toronto - Batuki Music Society invites you to Msaada, the East Africa Relief concert to benefit the Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders Horn of Africa Crisis campaign taking place at the Lula Lounge on Thursday August 25th at 8 pm . Msaada means help in the Kiswahili language , widely spoken in East Africa. The concert features a lineup of some of Toronto's popular African artists :  Henok Abebe, Kooshin, Faduma Nakruma, Daniel Nebiat, Donne Roberts, Kemer Yousef, Njacko Backo and Val, Sonia Aimy, Ijovudu Dance, Hussein Adani, Yared Tesfaye, DJ Apollo and more. Many of the musicians performing hail from the countries severely affected by the famine (Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya) and are joining hands with Batuki Music Society to raise funds and public awareness. • 100% of proceeds of the Msaada concert to benefit the M

Masala! Mehndi! Masti! - South Asian Culture Fest at Harbourfront Toronto August 19 to 21

From a media release: Masala! Mehndi! Masti! South Asian Culture Fest at Harbourfront, Toronto August 19 to 21, 2011 A three-day festival connecting the diverse elements of South Asian culture TORONTO, ON  – Harbourfront Centre, along with its lead summer partner The Toronto Port Authority, presents Masala! Mehndi! Masti! created and co-produced by Satya Arts Association , Aug. 19-21. The Masala! Mehndi! Masti! Festival, part of ‘Hot Spot Summer’ on downtown Toronto’s waterfront, is a celebration of incredibly diverse South Asian and South Asian-inspired culture. As a “Dor/Dhaga/Thread”, Masala! Mehndi! Masti! ties and binds diverse parts of the culture together, connecting and creating continuity, while not compromising the uniqueness of each part. It pulls and draws each element closer to the other or creates a link between them all. Sacred Threads abound in the day-to-day life of South Asians, and this festival weaves cultural threads that are just as powerful and imp

Little Girl Blue: Lady Dove at the New York Fringe Fest August 19 to 21

From a release: Little Girl Blue: Dove Culture Lady Dove at the New York Fringe Festival at the Bowery Poetry Club, New York City August 19 - 21, 2011 Part of the NY Fringe Festival A Woman's Journey to Self-Love Written and performed by Pheralyn Dove aka Lady Dove Music composed and performed by bassist Warren Oree A worker with words and an artist with a life-long passion for arts, entertainment, fashion and culture. Lady Dove also feels a passion for honoring our dearly departed from places close to the heart - my native Philadelphia, Haiti and New Orleans/Gulf Coast. Journey to self-love. From the abyss to triumphant transformation. Laugh and cry as Philadelphia's Lady Dove portrays 17 characters in this raw, searing Black woman's urban odyssey. Bassist Warren Oree accompanies Lady Dove during performances. Experience one woman's transformation from tragedy to triumph! Performances: Friday August 19 @ 4:15pm; Saturday, August 20 at 12noon &

Mark Morris Dance Group at the Mostly Mozart Festival - August 18-20 in New York City

From a release: Mark Morris Dance Group August 18 - 20, 2011 Rose Theater at Lincoln Center, New York City Part of the Mostly Mozart Festival Mark Morris returns to MMF with the NY premiere of Renard paired with Socrates and the exceptional new Festival Dance in a program unusually broad in its musical and stylistic scope. Renard, with sets by Illustrator Maira Kalman, is Morris' most recent work and these performances will be its New York Premiere . With scenic design by illustrator Maira Kalman and set to Stravinsky's short opera of the same name, it had its world premiere recently at the Tanglewood Music Fesitval, where MMDG has performed since 2004 and remains the only dance company to ever be invited to that music festival. Festival Dance, Morris' 150th work in his professional career and created for the company's 30th anniversary performances at the Mark Morris Dance Center in March, was called "Simply exhilarating" by The New York Times. Mo

Arts for Peace Salon at (le) poisson rouge NYC August 19 2011

From a release: Arts for Peace Salon with Jourdan Urbach , The Phantoms and Sima Cunningham at (le) poisson rouge, New York City Fri., August 19, 2011 An evening of music, art, and conversation. Jourdan Urbach Concert Violinist and recording artist trained at Juilliard and Yale University; headline performer to sold-out houses at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and Jazz at Lincoln Center ; featured on Steve Martin’s Grammy winning album, The Crow; Composer of Elah & The Moon (Tribeca and Cannes Film Festivals, 2009/2010); profiled extensively in the press (NY Times, NY Post, US News, Daily News, Forbes, Newsday) and featured on CBS Sunday Morning, Good Morning America, The Today Show, and MTV for his music and philanthropic work; founder of 2 international philanthropic organizations: Children Helping Children and International Coalition of College Philanthropists, Jourdan has raised $4.7 million for medical causes; winner of the 2010 World of Children Nobel Prize for Gl

Stella Chiweshe - the Queen of the Mbira - Plays Toronto's Lula Lounge August 21

From a media release: Batuki Music Society presents the ‘Queen of Mbira’ Ambuya Stella Chiweshe and the Chivanhu Band Sunday August 21st 2011 at Lula Lounge The remarkable Stella Rambisai Chiweshe, known worldwide as the ‘Queen of Mbira’ is an acclaimed virtuoso of the mbira, a sacred instrument central to Zimbabwean Shona culture . The original mbira consists of 22 metal keys but nowadays mbira players have added a few more to 28 keys fixed on a small wooden board made from a special healing tree. Originally, for resonance the instrument was wedged with a stick from a special mind cleansing tree . The keys are played with the right forefinger and the two thumbs. Chiweshe is one of the few musicians in Zimbabwe and Southern Africa who have worked for over 35 years in the role of mbira musician, dancer, instructor, and traditional spiritual advisor. Born in Mujumhi, a village in Mhondoro Zimbabwe, the woman now known by her people as ‘Ambuya Chinyakare’ (Grandmother of Tradit

Air Canada's enRoute Film Festival 2011 - Jury Announced

From a media release: Celebrating its fifth anniversary, Air Canada’s enRoute Film Festival announces 2011 jury                      Canadian short films showcased in-flight Toronto, ON – Air Canada’s enRoute Film Festival announced it is showcasing emerging Canadian short film talent on Air Canada flights around the world until Wednesday, November 30 . All 21 selected shorts will compete to win the prize for Best Short Film, Achievement in Direction, Achievement in Cinematography, and Achievement in Animation. Millions of Air Canada passengers around the world will be able to view the selected short films on their personal entertainment system with 8.9-inch wide digital in-seat monitors and touch-screen controls offering hours of audio and video on demand programming at every seat. Once again, a star-studded jury will select the winners, who will each receive an all-inclusive trip for two to the Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival in France courtesy of Ai

2011 Gemini Awards: The NFB Dominates Digital Media Category

From a media release: NFB receives special Gemini Award for digital media & dominates digital media category in upcoming Geminis Montreal, August 2011 – The National Film Board of Canada is receiving new recognition for its achievement in the field of digital distribution , in the form of a Special Gemini Award for Outstanding Technical Achievement in Digital Media, which will be presented to the NFB by the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television on August 30, 2011. In addition to this special recognition, NFB productions and co-productions are nominated in five categories, and the public producer dominates the category of Best Original Program or Series produced for Digital Media – Non-Fiction, receiving six out of six nominations. About the NFB Canada’s public film producer and distributor, the National Film Board of Canada creates social-issue documentaries, auteur animation, alternative drama and digital content that provide the world with a unique Canadian pe

Honens International Piano Competition Adds Five CDs to its Catalogue

From a media release: CD Releases and Launch of Honens Sessions Live digital series by Canada's Honens International Piano Competition The competition takes place October 17 to 26, 2012 in Calgary, Alberta CALGARY, AB, August 2011 - Canada's Honens International Piano Competition has added four discs to its catalogue of studio Laureate recordings - the Honens Laureate Series -  and has introduced a new live-performance digital series named Honens Sessions Live . The release of these recordings coincided with the birthday of Andrew Raeburn , Artistic Director of Honens International Piano Competition from 1993 to 2004. Raeburn passed away last summer at age 77. Minsoo Sohn's Goldberg Variations was the last recording Raeburn produced after a long career as musician, arts administrator and record producer. Sohn's disc is dedicated to him . With Sohn's CD, Honens and The Banff Centre expand their commitment to past Laureates of the Honens Competition by