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TORONTO, Canada’s largest city, offers . . . dependable public transit; a walkable downtown; most extensive streetcar network in the Americas; Canada’s busiest airport; a city population of 2,790,000; a metropolitan (GTA) population of 6,000,000; a stock exchange 8th in terms of market value worldwide; architecture from the sublime to ridiculous; 4 major universities, 4 daily newspapers, 6 concert halls, 3 arts districts; 4 Chinatowns, 30+ live theatres, 9 neighbourhood rep cinemas, 70 downtown movie screens, 2 pandas . . .


. . . vibrant neighbourhoods; second largest international film festival in the world (TIFF); major league basketball, hockey & baseball; an indie music scene; Canada’s only purpose-built opera house; National Ballet of Canada; National Ballet School; Canadian Opera Company; Art Gallery of Ontario; Royal Ontario Museum


. . . a large foodie scene; size: 4th largest city in North America; languages spoken: 163+; population: 50% born outside the country; North America’s highrise construction capital; capital city of the province of Ontario . . . etc. Enjoy the Big Smoke! DAVID MOORE

TORONTO SAVVY is now on the UK-based website ‘Walked Thru’ –


TORONTO SAVVY’s photo albums are on Facebook at


What’s on in Toronto – April, May/2014 (click on websites & print the list)


- April 23 – May 9 – previews, opens May 10 – Cabaret, Festival Theatre, 10 Queen’s Parade, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario,
- April 23 – May 10 – Hedwig and the Angry Inch, a classic rock opera, Lower Ossington Theatre, 100A Ossington Avenue, or 416-703-5488
- April 23 – May 11 – Arrabal, tango rock opera from Buenos Aires, Panasonic Theatre, 651 Yonge Street,
- April 23 – May 26 – previews, opens May 27 – Crazy For You by George Gershwin, Festival Theatre, Stratford, Ontario, 55 Queen Street,
- April 23 – Mardi Gras, New Orleans Jazz, Byron Stripling trumpet & vocalist, Bobby Floyd organ, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe Street,
- April 23-26 – Kickstart, 6 choreographers pushing boundaries, Dancemakers Centre, 9 Trinity Street, Studio 313, Distillery District,
- April 24 – Boy George, Danforth Music Hall, 147 Danforth Avenue,
- April 24-27 – De Idas Y Vueltas, flamenco artists from Canada and Spain, Fleck Dance Theatre, Harbourfront Centre, 207 Queens Quay West, or
- April 25 – Aretha Franklin, Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe Street, 8pm,
- April 26 – Brad Mehldau Trio, Massey Hall, 178 Victoria Street, 8pm,
- Until April 30 – Hercules, Canadian Opera Company, Four Seasons Centre, 145 Queen Street West,
- May 6-10 – Canadian Music Week, for concerts and venues
- May 21-25 – Twenty-first Century Music Festival, 8 concerts, 5 nights, 20 premieres, Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor Street West,
- Ongoing – every Monday, ‘Singular Sensation: A Musical Theatre Open Mic’, sing showtunes with a live band, free, 10pm, Statler’s, 487 Church Street, 416-922-0487
- June 6-15 – Toronto’s annual Luminato Festival, music, dance, theatre, various venues,

- April 23-27 – Cock, a good relationship is worth a good fight, Studio 180 (of Normal Heart, Clybourne Park), The Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen Street West opposite the Drake Hotel,
- April 30 – John Ralston Saul discusses three founding myths about Canada, Church of the Redeemer, 162 Bloor Street West at Avenue Road, 7pm, free,
- April 23 – May 4 – Belleville by Amy Herzog, presented by Company Theatre and Canadian Stage, Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley Street, 416-368-3110,
- April 23 – May 10 – Trudeau and the FLQ, from VideoCabaret, Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane, or 416-866-8666
- April 23 – May 11 – Beatrice and Virgil, relationship between a writer and a taxidermist, Factory Theatre, 125 Bathurst Street,
- April 23 – May 3 – Abigail’s Party, hostess from hell humiliates and dominates her guests at a dinner party in 70’s suburban England, Theatre Passe Muraille, 16 Ryerson Avenue,
- April 23 – May 4 – Vinegar Tom, a dark comedy, The Downstage, 798 Danforth Avenue,
- April 23 – Stratford Festival Forum, debate and music, Shakespeare Slam, Paul Gross, Steven Page, Hawksley Workman, Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor Street West,
- Until June 30 – The Best of Second City, greatest hits from 1959 to the present day, Second City, 51 Mercer Street,
- Ongoing – Sixteen Scandals, the weather, the mayor, the urban/suburban split, Second City, 51 Mercer Street, or 416-343-0011

- April 23- July 20 – Francis Bacon and Henry Moore, ‘Terror and Beauty’, Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas Street West,
- April 23-27 – Ron Thom and the Allied Arts, pieces from the architect’s personal collection, ceramics he commissioned for his iconic buildings. Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Arts, 111 Queen’s Park,
- April 23-27 – Hard Twist: This is Personal, 8th annual juried exhibition celebrating the relationship between people and textiles, large and small works, Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen Street West,
- April 23-27 – Mary Pratt, McMichael Collection of Canadian Art, 10,365 Islington Avenue, Kleinburg, Ontario,
- April 26 – The Motorcycle in Art, lecture, Robin Peck, The Power Plant, Harbourfront Centre, 231 Queens Quay West, 7:30pm,
- Until May 4 – Shauna Born, Katharine Mulherin Gallery, 1086 Queen Street West,
- Until May 5 – Sesame Street Presents: The Body, Ontario Science Centre, 770 Don Mills Road,
- May 10,11 – Toronto Comic Arts Festival, over 300 creators from 15 countries, Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street,
- Until May 11 – From Geisha to Diva: The Kimonos of Ichimaru, Textile Museum of Canada, 55 Centre Street,
- Until May 18 – This is not a toy: The Urban Vinyl Phenomenon, Design Exchange, 234 Bay Street, 416-363-6121,
- Until May 31 – Life on the Grid, 100 years of street photography, City of Toronto Archives, 255 Spadina Avenue, 416-397-0778,
- Until June 1 – Changing Tides, contemporary art from Newfoundland and Labrador, including David Blackwood and Scott Walden, McMichael Gallery, 10,365 Islington Avenue, Kleinburg,
- Until September 1 – The Forbidden City: Inside the Court of China’s Emperors is at the Royal Ontario Museum, Queens Park at Bloor Street West,
- Until October 1 – The Matchbox Gallery: A Retrospective, Museum of Inuit Art, 207 Queens Quay West,
- Ongoing – Saturdays and Sundays, Meet the Austins: A Toronto Family Between The Wars, guided tour of their estate, Spadina House Museum, 285 Spadina Road, 416-392-6910
- Ongoing – Nine Rivers City, Toronto’s extraordinary waterways, 72 photographs, Exhibition Common at Harbourfront, http://www/
- Ongoing – Black Creek Pioneer Village, the way life used to be, 1000 Murray Ross Parkway, 416-736-1733,

GLBTQ (gay, lesbian, bi, transgendered, queer, etc.)
- April 23 – Rae Spoon and Ivan Coyote, gender outlaws, great storytellers, launch their new book “Gender Failures”, Gladstone Hotel, 7pm,
- April 29 – The Case Against 8, Hot Docs Festival, panel + film, Bloor Hot Docs Cinema, 506 Bloor Street West,
- June 20-29 – Toronto hosts World Pride/2014, sign up to volunteer @
- Until June 28 – Generations of Queer, in honour of World Pride/2014, Ontario College of Art and Design University (OCADU), 230 Richmond Street West, free,
- Ongoing – Out and Out LGBTQ outdoors club,
- Ongoing – Righteously Outrageous Twirling Corps of Toronto (ROTC), colour guard, band, drum corps, baton, dance,
- Ongoing – Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), 115 Simpson Avenue at Howard Street,
- Ongoing – Xtra magazine, gay community news in Toronto, Ottawa and Vancouver,
- Ongoing – The Pink Pages, gay, lesbian, trans, bi, leather, queer directory for Toronto, Ottawa, Kingston, Hamilton and Niagara/St. Catharines,
- Ongoing – (CLGA) Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives, second largest in the world, research centre, art gallery, 34 Isabella Street,

- April 23 – A Taste For Life, Toronto restaurants donate % of sales to the fight against HIV, for list go to
- April 24 – Fine Wine Auction, Canadian Opera Company, Design Exchange, 234 Bay Street, 6pm, 416-363-8231
- April 24 – signup night for the High Park Bicycle Club, upcoming summer activities, Lithuanian Hall, 1573 Bloor Street West, 7-9pm,
- April 25,26,27 – Toronto Spring Psychic Fair, readers, mediums, healers, Queen Elizabeth Building, Exhibition Place,
- April 25,26,27 – Community Clean-up Days, a couple of days of cleaning up the ‘hood – streets, sidewalks and parks,
- April 24 – May 4 – Canadian International Documentary Festival, biggest in North America, films, tickets, schedules at
- May 3 – Toronto Global Marijuana March, Queen’s Park North, gathering at noon, march at 2pm,
- May 8,9,10 – Digifest, leading speakers at the forefront of digital creativity, design, data, games, play, digital culture, live demos, innovation, Corus Quay at Sherbourne Street,
- May 27 – Shoreline Cleanup, Tommy Thompson Park, foot of Leslie Street, 10am, free
- Until June 6 – Books on Film, with CBC’s Eleanor Wachtel, guests discuss the challenges of adapting, TIFF Bell Lightbox, 350 King Street West,
- Ongoing – ride the ferry to Ward’s Island & have lunch at the Rectory Cafe (only open restaurant on the Islands), 101 Lakeshore Avenue, 416-203-2152,
- Ongoing – Medieval Times, dinner and jousting tournaments, Exhibition Place, foot of Dufferin Street, or 888-we-joust
- Ongoing – every Thursday – Thursday Night Socials, 1850’s style, Gibson House Museum, 5172 Yonge Street, 416-395-7432, pwyc,
- Ongoing – Farmer’s Market, Saturdays year ’round, 9 am-1 pm, Evergreen Brickworks, 550 Bayview Avenue (Don Valley),
- Ongoing – Edgewalk, CN Tower, walk around the edge of our tallest free-standing structure,
- Ongoing – Graham Spry Theatre, CBC Broadcast Centre, free screenings daily, 250 Front Street West
- Ongoing – Sunday Antique Market, free, Jarvis Street south of King
- Ongoing – Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada, now open, 288 Bremner Boulevard, next to the CN Tower,

Check NOW, GRID, Xtra, and the daily newspapers for additional listings.

TORONTO SAVVY is now on the UK-based website ‘Walked Thru’ –


TORONTO SAVVY’s photo albums are on Facebook at



zoo2 Over the past ten years there’ve been many new arrivals at TORONTO ZOO, located on the doorstep of Canada’s newest and largest urban national park (Rouge National Urban Park). Among them – first birth of Sumatran tiger cubs in Canada; first hatchings of Komodo Dragons in Canada; two endangered Amur (Siberian) tiger cubs born; two rare snow leopard cubs born; Hudson the polar bear born; Mstari – the 17th Masai Giraffe born at the Toronto Zoo; Ngozi, a Western lowland gorilla gave birth to a healthy female baby in January; and Luke, a zebra foal arrived last November.

TORONTO ZOO’s Gabriela Mastromonaco is the only full-time reproductive physiologist in a Canadian zoo. She works with two permanent staff and a team of wildlife organizations, governments, universities, other zoos and researchers to help conceive healthy offspring.

PHOTOS BELOW - Ngozi, a Western lowland gorilla and her newborn, January 10/2014; Luke, a zebra foal born in November/2013; feeding time for a new-born polar bear cub


Zebra Male Luke 2 - Photo Credit Toronto Zoo.jpg

It’s easy to get to TORONTO ZOO – by car, from downtown, take the 401 Eastbound to Exit 389, Meadowvale Road.  Follow the Zoo signs to 361A Old Finch Avenue.  Large parking lot.
By TTC bus, take the subway (Sheppard Line) to DON MILLS STATION.  Bus #85 leaves from here, and will drop you in front of the Zoo entrance about 45 minutes later.  Along the way, you’ll pass through suburban Don Mills and Scarborough.



JIM MENKEN is a genius with a chain saw. Once a teacher by profession with a background in landscaping, his full-time passion is carving. Home base is MONO in Dufferin County, an hour northwest of TORONTO, close to the Bruce Trail and the Hockley Valley, where he’s surrounded by nature.


A stellar example of Jim’s work has just appeared in Riverdale Park West at Carlton Street. It’s close to Riverdale Farm and a Don Valley nature reserve. To see more of Jim’s work go to





OAA7        The Ontario Association of Architects has just announced the winners of its 2014 awards of excellence. Eight of them go to projects recently completed in TORONTO, a city which is rapidly breaking out of its ‘boring box phase’.

Winner of a LIFETIME DESIGN ACHIEVEMENT AWARD for his successful Market Square development in the downtown St. Lawrence neighbourhood – architect JEROME MARKSON. <IMAGE ABOVE – Jack Landau>


Through House – Dubbeldam Architecture + Design/ image by Bob Gundu


Centennial College Athletic and Wellness Centre – Kongats Architects/ image Doublespace Photography


Centennial College Library and Academic Facility – Diamond and Schmitt Architects Incorporated


Moore Park Residence – Drew Mandel Architects/ image by BEN RAHN / A-FRAME


Victoria Park Subway Station – IBI Group Architects, Brown and Storey Architects Inc.


Bridgepoint Health, image courtesy of Diamond Schmitt Architects


Mount Dennis Library – G. Bruce Stratton Architects/ image by Stéphane Groleau


Tommy Thompson Park Pavilions – Montgomery Sisam Architects Inc. /image by Jack Landau


MAYOR ROB FORD’s campaign manager and brother, DOUG FORD, predicted “thousands and thousands” would show up, and that FORD NATION would make the campaign events held by rivals Olivia Chow and John Tory look like a “tea party. I’ve been to a lot of political events. Nothing is going to compare to this.”


Hundreds of people turned out for bobble-head dolls, decals, t-shirts, to have their picture taken with the mayor, and to cheer his 30-minute speech as he addressed Ford Nation.

But CBC reporter JAMIE STRASHIN tweeted: “Lots of chairs filled at Ford launch. Lots of empty ones too.”


<ABOVE – Mayor Rob Ford, Etobicoke Congress Centre, April 17; photo – Nathan Denette/Canadian Press>

JOHN WRIGHT, senior vice-president of IPSOS-REID, told the Globe and Mail it will be a “tough road” for Ford to win but he does have a solid base of support. “A lot of people will be there to support him. The question is whether or not they actually get out and vote.”  Wright went on to say that most polls show the mayor hovering in the mid-20’s.

“You need a 37 to 42 (percentage points) to really win in a campaign like this.”