Theatre Passe Muraille and Keanu Reeves

Theatre Passe Muraille is another of TORONTO’s red brick theatres.  It’s housed in a former bakery, at 16 Ryerson Avenue in the Queen and Bathurst area.  In 1984 Keanu Reeves appeared in Brad Fraser’s play “Wolfboy” at the Passe Muraille.  The story, about a teenager with wolfish tendencies, became a cult hit – and was later made into a musical.

At about the same time, Keanu was a correspondent for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s youth magazine “Going Great”.  He now has a star on Hollywood Boulevard.

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Canoe Landing Park and Terry Fox Memorial, 2009

Canoe Landing Park, designed by Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg of Vancouver, overlooks the Gardiner Expressway, a block or so west of Spadina Avenue.

The park features several stand alone works by west coast artist and sculptor Douglas Coupland.  These include a display of large, colourful fishing bobbers and a red canoe, atop a hill built from nearby construction excavations.  That canoe has become a favourite city landmark.

Canoe Landing Park is also home to the Terry Fox Miracle Mile running track.  Twice around the track = 1 mile.

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The CARLU, College Park, Yonge at College Street

CARLU1TORONTO’s Carlu, is named after its original designer/architect, Jacques Carlu, whose most famous work is the Palais de Chaillot, near the Eiffel Tower from 1937’s Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne.  The Carlu is one of TORONTO’s finest examples of Art Moderne.

It occupies the seventh floor of College Park – formerly an Eatons department store – which was supposed to be a skyscraper, but got stunted by the Great Depression.  The Carlu is the reincarnated Eaton Auditorium, one of the few public performance venues in 1930’s TORONTO.  The Canadian Opera Company, National Ballet, Eaton Operatic Society, and celebrities of all descriptions performed on its stage.  CBC used the auditorium for live radio broadcasts; Glenn Gould regularly made recordings here.

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After years of neglect and threat of demolition, the Round Room (with its long-lost Lalique Fountain) has survived; as has the foyer designed in the style of ocean liners of the thirties; and the Clipper Rooms, renovated in 2008.

<PHOTOS  – Colin Rose, wikipedia; and <www.stipcophoto.com>

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CFZM (or AM740), Toronto’s 50,000 watt, clear-channel radio station

Radio isn’t what it used to be.

For those who long for the ‘good old days’ of big bands, comedy and drama, starlight serenades, Peggy Lee, Anne Murray, Eddie Fisher, the Supremes, Elvis, Bing Crosby, etc. – AM740 is where it’s at.  This station, which occupies a former CBC frequency, has a huge broadcast footprint – from Southern Ontario deep into the United States – and it owns one of the largest music libraries anywhere.

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Moses Znaimer, Canadian broadcast innovator, is the owner of CFZM and several other radio and television stations.  Formerly with CITYtv and its affiliated youth-oriented cable channels, Mr. Znaimer is now focusing his attention on “Zoomers” – that is, “Boomers” who believe in living life to the max.  This is reflected in all of AM740’s programming.

Moses Znaimer: “People today are not aging the way they did 20, 40, 60 years ago.  We’re not aging the way our parents did and we’re certainly not aging the way our grandparents did.”