Opened in 1927 as the BELSIZE, it became The CREST in 1953, and in 1971 the REGENT.The CREST Theatre Company was founded in 1953, and a year later opened its first eleven-play season. This was the beginning of indigenous, commercial theatre in TORONTO. Up until then there had been mostly touring productions from the West End and the US.Many of TORONTO’s (and Canada’s) best-known actors and actresses performed at The Crest. These included Kate Reid, Richard Monette, Jackie Burroughs, Frances Hyland, Eric House and Martha Henry. Most went on to Stratford, the Shaw, television and movie careers.Among the directors – Douglas Campbell, Barry Morse, Mavor Moore, Leon Major, John Hirsch, Herbert Whittaker and Allan Lund.The CREST closed its doors on April 30, 1966 after mounting 140 productions. This was the beginning of commercially viable home-grown theatre in TORONTO. Soon after, the Crest became the Regent, and began showing movies.  Recently it functioned as a sound mixing studio by day, and a cinema at night.


We’ve had so many cancellations, it’s wonderful to know that the seventh annual Winter Stations project will actually happen. The winning designs have been revealed alongside new partnerships with The Distillery District and the Beach BIA. Once lockdown restrictions are lifted, the exhibit’s timetable will be released. This year, four designs were selected by the jury, from a record-breaking amount of 400+ submissions from around the world. Winning installations responded to the theme of “Refuge” – a theme that reflects the ongoing pandemic and its meaning – a shelter, place of comfort, security, and a sanctuary.

The 2021 Winter Station winners are: <ARc de Blob by Aleksandra Belitskaja, Ben James and Shaun McCallum, Austria/United Kingdom . . . ARc de Blob is a colourful landmark in the Woodbine Beach landscape: a point of orientation, interaction and refuge.><From Small Beginnings by Jack Leather and Charlie Leather, United Kingdom. Only upon entering the seating and standing areas of the installation the brighter interior is revealed; symbolic of the opportunities that rise from challenging periods, such as the year gone by.><The Epitonium by M. Yengiabad – Shahed M. Yengiabad, Elaheh M. Yengiabad, Alemeh M. Yengiabad and Mojtaba Anoosha, Iran. Nature is the source of inspiration for architects, artists, investors and scientists. Nature is our origin and destination – not only the external environments such as clouds, trees, sea, mountains and animals, but also buildings, components and building materials.><Embrace by Colin Laplante, Grace Im, Ziyu Li, Brayden Popke, Nicole Ruiz, Reem Yunis, Bachelor of Craft and Design Program, Sheridan College.  This year, we all need a hug. Embrace represents that universal desire, providing a refuge from the real and imagined winds that buffet our beings.><THROBBER by Heidundgriess – Alexandra Grieß and Jorel Heid, Germany. The walk-in installation consists of 10 small shelters, trapezoidal rooms, they form the colour spectrum of a rainbow. The colours are reduced to grey inside the installation. From an aerial view, the shelters form the shape of a “throbber”. Anyone who has used computer programs or digital devices (often know of this icon. They force you to wait, because there is a superior action.>


TORONTO’s response, according to The Star, was “overwhelming and inspirational.” The art work is part of a children’s contest called ‘A Big Picture’, which will reward the top three contestants and donate money to a charity of their choice, to help people in dire need during the pandemic. The top prize winner would be posted on a billboard at 1140 Yonge Street.<Above – ‘Stay Safe, Wash Your Hands’ by Marco B., age 4. “Spread love, not germs.”><‘The Rainbow Sunset’ by Emma K., age 7><‘We’re Always Connected By Our Hearts’ by Marlow R., age 8>


*Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley Street,
*Bluma Appel Theatre, 27 Front Street East,
*CAA (formerly Panasonic) Theatre, 651 Yonge St.,
*Elgin Theatre, 189 Yonge Street,
*Fleck Dance Theatre, 207 Queens Quay W.,
*Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts (Opera House), 145 Queen St. W.,
*Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King St. W.,
*Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King St. W.,
*Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, 1 Front St. E.,
*Streetcar Crow’s Theatre, 345 Carlaw Av.,
*St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, 27 Front St. E.,
*Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge St.,
*Winter Garden Theatre, 189 Yonge Street,
*Young Centre for the Performing Arts, Distillery District,
*Young People’s Theatre, 165 Front Street East, THEATRES
*Alumnae Theatre, 70 Berkeley Street,
*Bad Dog Comedy Theatre, 875 Bloor Street West,
*Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander St.,
*Cahoots Theatre Company, staging diversity, 388 Queen St. E.,
*Coal Mine Theatre, 1454 Danforth Av.,
*Factory Theatre, 125 Bathurst Street,
*Hart House Theatre, 7 Hart House Circle, University of Toronto,
*Lower Ossington Theatre, 100a Ossington Ave.,
*MacMillan Theatre, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto,
*National Ballet of Canada, Four Seasons Centre, 145 Queen Street West,
*Red Sandcastle Theatre, 922 Queen St. E.,
*Rose Theatre, 1 Theatre Lane, Brampton, Ontario,
*Second City, sketch comedy theatre that’s launched many careers, 51 Mercer Street,
*Shaw Festival Theatres, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario,
*Stratford Festival Theatres, Stratford, Ontario,
*Storefront Theatre, 955 Bloor Street West, pushes creative boundaries, an original,
*Tarragon Theatre, 30 Bridgman Ave.,
*Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen St. W.,
*Theatre Passe Muraille, 16 Ryerson Avenue,
*Toronto Dance Theatre, 80 Winchester St., Cabbagetown,
*Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club, 224 Richmond St. West, HALLS
*Danforth Music Hall, 147 Danforth Av.,
*George Weston Recital Hall, 5040 Yonge Street,
*Glenn Gould Studio, CBC Broadcasting Centre, 250 Front St. W.,
*Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West,
*Hugh’s Room, 2261 Dundas St. W.,
*Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor Street West,
*Massey Hall, 178 Victoria Street,
*Opera House, 735 Queen St. East,
*Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe Street,
*Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre, 427 Bloor St. W., http://www.trinitystpauls.caCENTRAL CITY CINEMAS
*Carlton, 9 screens, fully licensed, $5 Tuesdays, 20 Carlton Street,
*Grand Gerrard Theatre, 1035 Gerrard St. East, independent, film screenings, live music, comedy, performance art, one of Toronto’s oldest cinemas,
*Hot Docs Ted Rogers, specializing in documentaries and films seldom shown in the multiplex, 506 Bloor Street West,
*Market Square, 80 Front Street East, several screens,
*Mount Pleasant, 675 Mount Pleasant Road, big screen, 2nd run features, some European films, etc.,
*Ontario Science Centre Omnimax,770 Don Mills Road,
*Paradise Cinema, 1006 Bloor Street West, newly restored, independent, an outstanding schedule of films old and new,
*Regent, 551 Mount Pleasant Road, 2nd run features, big screen,
*Revue, 400 Roncesvalles Avenue, neighbourhood cinema, second-run, documentary & foreign features,
*Royal, documentaries, festivals, foreign, second-run features, 608 College Street,
*Scotiabank Toronto Imax (Cineplex), 259 Richmond Street West, multiplex & IMAX, 14 screens,
*TIFF Bell Lightbox, 5 screens, movies that don’t play in the multiplex, for times and schedule go to
*Varsity Cinemas (Cineplex), Manulife Centre, 55 Bloor Street West, 12 screens,
*Yonge-Dundas Cinemas (Cineplex), multiplex & IMAX, 26 screens, 10 Dundas Street East,
******Complete movie times, Toronto cinemas, reviews, from NOW Magazine, a handy address – IN & AROUND TORONTO
*Aga Khan Museum, 77 Wynford Drive,
*Art Gallery of Hamilton, 123 King St. West, Hamilton,
*Art Gallery of Mississauga,
*Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas Street West,
*Bata Shoe Museum, only two in the world, 327 Bloor St. West,
*Black Creek Pioneer Village, heritage museum, partly outdoors, 1000 Murray Ross Parkway,
*Casa Loma, 1 Austin Terrace, Toronto’s castle,
*Fort York National Historic Site, 250 Fort York Boulevard,
*Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Arts, 111 Queen’s Park,
*Hockey Hall of Fame, 30 Yonge Street,
*Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, University of Toronto, 7 Hart House Circle,
*Mackenzie House Museum, 82 Bond Street, interprets Victorian life of the 1860’s, 416-302-6915
*McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Kleinburg,
*Metropolitan Toronto Police Museum & Discovery Centre, 40 College St.,
*MZTV Museum of Television, 64 Jefferson Ave., Liberty Village,
*Ontario Science Centre, 770 Don Mills Road,
*Power Plant, Harbourfront Centre, 231 Queens Quay West, free,
*Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada Museum & Archives,
*Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queens Park,
*Ryerson Image Centre (RIC), 33 Gould Street, large photography gallery, free admission,
*Spadina House Museum and gardens, 235 Spadina Rd., 416-392-6910,
*Textile Museum of Canada, 55 Centre Street,
*Varley Art Gallery of Markham, 216 Main Street, Markham, http://www.varleygallery.caCITY CENTRE ART GALLERIES
*A Space, established contemporary, 401 Richmond St. West,
*Barbara Edwards Contemporary, 1069 Bathurst Street,
*Bay of Spirits, 156 Front St. West, First Nations art,
*Canadian Sculpture Centre, 500 Church Street,
*Christopher Cutts, 21 Morrow Avenue,
*Clint Roenisch, 190 St. Helens Avenue, contemporary, avant-garde,
*Corkin Gallery, 7 Tank House Lane, Distillery District,
*Daniel Faria, contemporary, converted warehouse, 188 St. Helens Avenue,
*Diaz Contemporary, 100 Niagara Street,
*Koffler Gallery, Artscape Youngplace, 180 Shaw Street,
*Mercer Union, contemporary art, 1286 Bloor St. West,
*Mira Godard, 22 Hazelton Avenue, long-established, Canadian & international artists,
*Olga Korper, 17 Morrow Avenue, long-established,
*Propeller Centre for the Visual Arts, 30 Abell Street, founded in 1996,
*Sandra Ainsley, 100 Sunrise Avenue #150, leading dealer in contemporary glass,
*Stephen Bulger, 1356 Dundas St. West, long-established photography gallery,
*Thompson Landry Gallery, 32 Distillery Lane, Distillery District, specializes in Quebec art, both contemporary & the masters, http://www.thompsonlandry.comLGBTQ COMMUNITY INFO
*(ArQuives), formerly the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives, 2nd largest in the world, 34 Isabella Street,
*Legit, 2nd Thursday monthly, immigration legal counsel, 519 Centre, 519 Church Street,
*Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), 115 Simpson Avenue, just above Gerrard St. East,
*Out and Out, LGBTQ outdoors club,
*Pink Pages, gay, lesbian, trans, bi, leather, queer directory,
*ProudFM 103.9, Toronto’s LGBTQ radio station,
*Rainbow Railroad, a charity which helps individuals in countries where being LGBTQ invites violence, imprisonment or even death,
*Righteously Outrageous Twirling Corps,
*Xtra magazine, gay news from Toronto, Vancouver & Ottawa,


In this photo by NICK IWANYSHY/University of Toronto, we’re looking down on the rooftop of 114-year-old Convocation Hall. A new glass skylight was being installed by a crane parked over King’s College Circle. It was hoisting the skylight’s superstructure into place. The installation of the new skylight, or oculus, is part of a broader refurbishment of the heritage building, which serves as the university’s biggest classroom and the site of its annual convocation ceremonies.– RAHUL KALVAPALLE – University of Toronto Magazine.


Professor ARNE KISLENKO writes “We can draw on history for an understanding of how previous generations survived pandemics. The 1918 ‘Spanish Flu’ was amongst the deadliest in history, killing an estimated 50 to 100-million worldwide, including nearly 55,000 Canadians.”<ABOVE – Telephone company women in Calgary have masked up while taking a break outside.>Just as in 2020, marginalized populations were ravaged. Indigenous communities faced a mortality rate five times the national average.Connaught Laboratories in TORONTO developed a vaccine by late 1918, but offered no guarantee if it would work. . . . When the virus dissipated, Canada emerged a different country. A federal Department of Health was created. Some communities were destroyed, or changed forever.<photo – children at Victoria Park Forest School in Toronto practice blowing their noses, 1913; City of Toronto Archives> In 1918 there was no public health insurance, diets were poorer, and sanitation standards were lower. . . . . Anti-viral drugs and other front-line technologies used today were non-existent.   We’ve learned that only patient and concerted action can manage the historical realities of pandemics.” <from the Ryerson University Magazine, Winter/2021>From the TORONTO STAR, 1918 – ‘WEAR A MASK OR GO TO JAIL’ – “A family of six had all been infected with this strange new disease. The father, mother and four children were recovering. But the dad had been laid off for weeks. A terrible hole had been made in the resources of this little family.


Born in SARNIA, Ontario in 1959, former Royal Canadian Air Force fighter pilot, CHRIS HADFIELD, circled the globe aboard the International Space Station.  His images appeared in newspapers and other media around the world. As the Space Station passed over the largest country in the world – Canada – Chris took pictures of our landscapes,  and some cities and towns.  PHOTOS BY CHRIS HADFIELD BELOW – 1)  TORONTO by day.  2) MONTREAL by day. 3) TORONTO (left), MONTREAL (right), 350 miles in between. 4) WINNIPEG, Manitoba.5) QUEBEC CITY at night.6) DETROIT (top), WINDSOR, Ontario (bottom) by night.7) CALGARY. Alberta.8) VANCOUVER, British Columbia