TORONTO’S MILE OF CULTURE (1.6 KM) – BAY TO BATHURST STREET, ALONG BLOOR ST. WEST

Members of the Bloor Street Culture Corridor – Japan Foundation; Gardiner Ceramics Museum; Royal Ontario Museum; Royal Conservatory of Music; Koerner Concert Hall; the Bata Shoe Museum; Istituto Italiano di Cultura; Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre; Alliance Française de Toronto; Native Canadian Centre of Toronto; University of Toronto Faculty of Music; Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir; The Toronto Consort and the Bloor Hot Docs CinemaThe Bloor Street Culture Corridor is one of several neighbourhoods in TORONTO with a healthy concentration of arts and arts-related venues and institutions.  (Some others would be the St. Lawrence Market area; West Queen West; University of Toronto; and Yorkville).And when you’ve had enough ‘culture’ Bloor Street West and its environs offer a variety of other attractions – food, drink, fine parks, architecture, sidewalk entertainment, and several blocks of intense shopping. For more info on the Bloor Culture Corridor – http://www.bloorstculturecorridor.com

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PRINCIPAL DANCER TO ARTISTIC DIRECTOR, KAREN KAIN MARKS 50 YRS. WITH THE NAT’L BALLET OF CANADA

<Spreading the news on Broadview Avenue in TORONTO>  Born in ANCASTER (a suburb of Hamilton), Ontario, KAREN KAIN began her dance career by joining the National Ballet School in TORONTO. In 1969 she made it into the Corps de Ballet of the National Ballet of Canada.

Ms. Kain was promoted to Principal Dancer in 1971 after she made a sensational debut as the Swan Queen in ‘SWAN LAKE’, Following that she began an international career with the Paris Opéra Ballet, Roland Petit’s Le Ballet de Marseilles, the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow, London Festival Ballet, The Hamburg Ballet and Vienna State Opera Ballet.<“Raising KAIN, the reluctant super star”, cover, Maclean’s Magazine, February/1981>  Among her many awards – Companion of the Order of Canada; Cartier Lifetime Achievement Award; Officer of the French Order of Arts and Letters; the Governor General’s National Arts Centre Award; and the Barbara Hamilton Memorial Award for excellence in the performing arts.<“Karen Kain: Movement Never Lies”, AMAZON>  In 1997, Ms. Kain retired from dancing and was appointed Artist-in-Residence with the National Ballet, a role expanded to Artistic Associate. In 2005, she was appointed Artistic Director of the National Ballet“KAREN KAIN has reinvigorated the company by hiring some superb dancers and courting the world’s top choreographers. She is also assembling one of the most diverse repertoires in the company’s history.” – Maclean’s Magazine/TORONTO

<KAREN KAIN and RUDOLF NUREYEV in “Sleeping Beauty”, 1974>  In a National Ballet of Canada video, KAREN KAIN comments on the company’s history and RUDOLF NUREYEV’s ‘Sleeping Beauty’, one of the most significant works in the company’s repertoire – a magnificent production staged by Ms. Kain in June/2015.  That’s followed by 5 minutes of RUDOLF NUREYEV dancing in ‘The Sleeping Beauty’, which has had about 165,000 views.    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YrulAnL_hi0

ONE OF CANADA’S OLDEST CINEMAS, DATING BACK TO 1911, HAS RE-OPENED AT 1035 GERRARD ST. E.

I’ve always believed that the best neighbourhoods have movie theatres in them. This one, in TORONTO’s East End, was brought back to life this year, and renamed The Grand Gerrard Theatre – the latest in a series of names, including the Bonita, the Athenium, the Sri Lakshmi, the Gerrard, the Wellington, and the Projection Booth.<The theatre was once used as a New & Used Auto Parts storage facility>

<The Athenium screened Greek movies><The Gerrard – equipped for Dolby Digital><Lining up for The Projection Booth><Re-opening as the Grand Gerrard Theatre in March/2019>  During its long career, the 520-seater was opened, closed and renovated several times. After recently lying dormant for three years, it’s come back yet again. The staff is currently booking special events, film screenings, live music, comedy, performance art, film/photo shoots, podcasts and more.To find out what’s happening at the Grand Gerrard Theatre go to https://www.cinemaclock.com/theatres/grand-gerrard-theatre

EVERY TIME I PASS THAT ‘CHUM’ NEON SIGN ON RICHMOND W., IT TAKES ME BACK TO COLLEGE DAYS

1050 CHUM (50,000 watts) played Top 40 Hits from the 1950’s to the 1980’s, then switched to an oldies format with music from 1989 to 2009. Next came a sports format, and in 2011 it became TSN Radio 1050, and now the format has switched to news, and the station is known as CP24 Radio 1050.

CHUM-FM at 104.5 began broadcasting on September 1, 1963. It was the first private TORONTO station to play classical music all day long. On July 1st, 1968 it switched to progressive rock. Until 2009 it was the most listened-to and influential radio station in Canada. Now, with its transmitter on top of the CN Tower, CHUM-FM features an adult contemporary format. It’s still one of TORONTO’s most popular radio stations.

There is a CHUM Memorial Blog from the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s.  You’ll find it at – http://wp1050chumto.blogspot.com/p/1050-chum-djs-of-1960s-and-70s.html

CANADA’S 2018 NATIONAL NEWSPAPER AWARDS HAVE BEEN ANNOUNCED – 63 FINALISTS IN ALL

Canadians are well served in print, despite competition from social media, television, radio and countless other outlets. It’s a rat race out there, and our papers fight hard to survive. TORONTO alone puts out four broadsheet papers six days a week, with another two on Sunday.

In the upcoming 2018 National Newspaper Awards, The Globe and Mail has been nominated for 20; Toronto Star & Montreal’s La Presse 6 each; Saltwire Network 2; Canadian Press 4, Saskatoon StarPhoenix & Waterloo Region Record 3 each; Winnipeg Free Press, St. Catharines Standard, Calgary Herald/Calgary Sun, Edmonton Journal/Edmonton Sun & Ottawa Citizen 2 each.

Full details at – http://www.nna-ccj.ca

‘WHOLE LOT OF BREAKIN’ GOIN’ ON’ – NIGEL “SUGAR POP” WALTERS, EARL HAIG COLLEGIATE, 1984

Nigel “Sugar Pop” Walters, an 18-year-old student at Earl Haig Collegiate, shows off his scissor kick during a headstand. A few days after this photo was taken by the Toronto Star, “Breakdance ’84”, TORONTO’s first ever high school street dance show was held at Riverdale Collegiate<PHOTO – Tony Bock, TORONTO Public Library collection>

24 HOURS A DAY, TORONTO PUBLIC LIBRARY’S ‘DIAL-A-STORY’ IS ON THE LINE AT 416-395-5400

TORONTO PUBLIC LIBRARY is the world’s busiest public library system. Every year, more than 16-million people borrow about 30-million items from 99 branches. One of their services is ‘Dial-A-Sory’ for children under 12.

For a multi-lingual/cultural city like this one, stories are made available in fifteen languages – including English, French, Cantonese, Gujarati, Italian, Mandarin, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Somali, Tamil and Urdu. Storytime readers have included library volunteers, Blue Jays players, actors and National Ballet dancers.

ANDREW DO says learning English as child was made easier through the ‘Dial-a-Story’ program. <(Moe Doiron – photo>  What better way for children (or adults) to learn another language or improve on the one he or she speaks. All you need is a phone. It’s free. ‘Dial-a-Story’ was created in 1989 by a consortium of libraries in Caledon, Vaughan, Brampton and North York. With amalgamation, the TORONTO Public Library took over the service in 1998.