OUR TOWN: Music master Paul Hoffert and sidekick Bruce Cassidy host a jazz salon this Sunday afternoon at Musideum on Richmond Street west …
LIGHTSTONE: new showecase
30 Rock scene-stealer Tracy Morgan brings his special brand of funny to the Sony Centre tonight … Marilyn Lightstone premieres her latest art showcase, New Directions, on April 12 at Latitude 44 … more than 60 chefs will gather at the Royal Ontario Museum on June 3 to showcase their finest creations in support of Second Harvest. Tickets are $250 with a tax receipt issued for $125. You may think that sounds a bit pricey, but be warned: Tickets to last year’s Toronto Taste sold out in record time. To purchase yours, click here … and Natalie Cole is set for this year’s TD Toronto Jazz Festival with a June 25 concert at the Sony Centre.
PENMANSHIP: Additional marquee bait set for the third annual Toronto Screenwriters Conference at the Ted Rogers School Of Management next weekend (March 31-April 1) include ex-Toronto types Graham Yost (Speed,
CLOONEY: Sunshine boy
Justified) and Robin Gurney (Arrested Development, Parenthood) and Skype participants Abi Morgan (Shame, The Iron Lady) and Michael Hirst (The Tudors.) Closing speaker at this year’s creative clambake will be Lee Aronsohn (Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory.) Sounds like a pretty lively weekend … say what you will about the politics of the Toronto Sun, the headline writers at the Little Paper That Grew are still the best (and consistently most irreverent) in the country. The Sun’s front page pic of George Clooney in handcuffs last Saturday was captioned You Have The Right To Remain Handsome. Now that’s funny … by the way, Sun co-founder and columnist Peter Worthington, still typing up a storm, is now 85 (!!!) And Worthington’s latest boss, Quebecor emperor Pierre Karl Péladeau, recently announced new annual Sun Media awards for his newspapers outside of Quebec. Will there be a prize for CBC-slagging? Just askin’ … and here’s one for your calendars: The 9th annual gala fundraiser for Pierre Berton’s writers’ retreat in the Klondike will celebrate the Canuck victory of 1812 with a festive June 5 bash at old Fort York. Berton House clambakes are always a blast, and this one should be no exception … and speaking of good writing, the justifiably-lauded screen version of Mordecai Richler’s Barney’s Version premieres Sunday night on CBC, and the much-anticipated fifth season of Mad Men kicks off Sunday on AMC. That is, if you can tear yourself away from Canada’s Got Talent on Citytv. And the beat goes on.
CALENDAR JOTTINGS: Next big award show on our horizon is the 2012 Tony Awards. Nominees will be announced May 1
live on TonyAwards.com and CBS will host the three-hour 66thAnnual Tony Awards telecast on Sunday
GERVAIS: will he be back?
June 10 … the 27th Annual Gemini Awards’ Industry Galas are set for Tuesday August 28 and Wednesday August 29. CBC will host the Broadcast Gala on Wednesday September 5, the night before the 37th annual Toronto International Film Festival begins its time-honoured 10-day movie marathon on Thursday September 6 … 2012 Emmy nominees will be announced July 29, with ABC hosting the 64th annual PrimeTime Emmy Awards on Sunday September 23 … and before you know it we do it all over again in 2013, starting with the 70th annual Golden Globes, with or without Ricky Gervais, on Sunday January 20 on NBC, the Screen Actors Guild Awards on Sunday January 27, the Directors Guild Awards on Tuesday February 5, and the 85th annual Academy Awards, with or without Billy Crystal, on Sunday February 24 on ABC.
STREISAND: Queen of Columbia
SHARPS ‘N’ FLATS: Soprano-turned-director Catherine Malfitano and world-renowned conductor Sir Andrew Davis are joining forces for the Canadian premiere of Alexander Zemlinsky’s A Florentine Tragedy and the return of Giacomo Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi, an extravagant double-bill opening April 26 for eight performances at the Four Seasons Centre. Since both one-act operas are set in Florence, expect some eye-catching cityscapes from set designer Wilson Chin, costume designer Terese Wadden and lighting designer David Martin Jacques… first headliners announced for the 46th edition of the
Montreux Jazz Festival are Noel Gallagher’s High-Flying Birds, who are now set for a July 4 gig at Auditorium Stravinski. Gallagher says he and his band will perform songs from their first CD as well as some favourites from his previous band, Oasis … when they were the fast-drivin’, rubber-burnin’ Dukes Of Hazzard, who knew they could sing? But three decades later John Schneider and Tom Wopat are still warbling and obviously not superstitious. They’re set to play Fallsview Casino showroom on Thursday April 12 and – wait for it — Friday April 13 … in celebration of the company’s 60th anniversary season, The National Ballet of
GALLAGHER: High-Flying gig
Canada Orchestra will make their concert debut at Koerner Hall on Tuesday April 3. Colm Feore will host the event, and the Orchestra will perform select works that highlight each decade in the company’s 60-year history … and how many of us made deals that last for half a century? Barbra Streisand is celebrating her upcoming 50th year with Columbia Records – her one and only label – by signing a new contract with the Sony-owned label. Only Tony Bennett has been on the label longer. Columbia will celebrate her signing by releasing a 12-set DVD which promises unprecedented access into Streisand’s professional and personal life, including never before seen footage directly from her archives. Streisand’s most recent Grammy nominated album, What Matters Most, was her 31st to reach the Top Ten.
AND NOW, THE WEEKEND WEATHER FORECAST:
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Posted in Actors, Authors, Comedy, Gossip, Movies, Music, Opera, SHOW BUSINESS, Showbuzz, Stars, Television
Tagged A Florentine Tragedy, ABC, Abi Morgan, Academy Awards, Alexander Zemlinsky, AMC, Andrew Davis, Arrested Development, Barbra Streisand, Barney's Version, Berton House, Billy Crystal, Bruce Cassidy, Canada's Got Talent, Canadian Opera Company, Catherine Malfitano, CBC, CBS, Christine Baranski, citytv, COLM FEORE, Columbia Records, David Martin Jacques, Directors Guild, Dukes Of Hazzard, Emmy Awards, Fallsview Casino, Fort York, Four Seasons Centre For the Performing Arts, Gemini Awards, GEORGE CLOONEY, Giacomo Puccini, Gianni Schicchi, Golden Globes, Graham Yost, Grammy, John Schneider, Justified, Koerner Hall, Latitude 44, Lee Aronsohn, Mad Men, MARILYN LIGHTSTONE, Michael Hirst, Montreux Jazz Festival, Mordecai Richler, Musideium, Natalie Cole, National Ballet of Canada Orchestra, NBC, Noel Gallagher, Noel Gallagher's High-Flying Birds, Oasis, Parenthood, Paul Hoffert, Peter Worthington, Pierre Berton, Pierre Karl Péladeau, Quebecor, RICKY GERVAIS, Robin Gurney, Royal Ontario Museum, Screen Actors Guild, Shame, Sony, Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, Speed, TD Toronto Jazz Festival, Terese Wadden, The Big Bang Theory, The Iron Lady, The Tudors, TIFF, Tom Wopat, Tony Awards, TONY BENNETT, Toronto International Film Festival, TORONTO SUN, Toronto Taste, Tracy Morgan, Two And A Half Men, What Matters Most, Wilson Chin
NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE: Stratford scene-stealer Geraint Wyn-Davies, currently winning raves for his joyful performance as Bottom in
FOX: on The Hour
Midsummer Night’s Dream, will take his next play out of town before opening in Stratford next summer. He plans to test his one-man show Do Not Go Gentle, by Leon Pownall, about the life of Dylan Thomas, in New York, where he’ll open a limited run this winter … Google, who continue to be two steps ahead of all other search engines, have reportedly snapped up esteemed Toronto Star alumnus Jim Bawden to cover the Canadian television scene. Smart move, guys! But then, that’s what makes Google Google … George Stroumboulopoulos kicks off his sixth
McLACHLAN: Dragon lady
season of The Hour with a 60-minute one-on-one with Michael J. Fox … and yes, that was Sarah McLachlan looking lovely at the CBC Fall Launch. She showed up to cheer on her current squeeze, Dragons’ Den panelist Brett Wilson.
FILMFEST FOLLIES: Now that we’re getting close to the finish line, hot titles emerging from this year’s Toronto International Film Festival include Atom Egoyan’s Chloe, Bruce Beresford’s Mao’s Last Dancer, Rodrigo Garcia’s Mother & Child, Lee Daniels’ Precious,
BONO: at TIFF
Ruba Nadda’s Cairo Time, Tom Ford’s A Single Man, Lone Sherfig’s An Education, Jason Reitman’s Up In The Air, Joel & Ethan Coen’s A Serious Man, and Brigitte Berman’s controversial celluloid portrait of Hugh Hefner. Should be interesting to see who finishes in the money when TIFF prize-winners are announced tomorrow afternoon … stars continue to shine where and when you least expect them to. My spies tell me Jason Reitman devotee Aaron Eckhart slipped in to see Up In The Air last weekend.’Bono showed up for his pal Colin Farrell at the unveiling of Neil Jordan’s Ondine. Geoffrey Rush
came out to cheer for Michael Sheen in Tom Hooper’s The Damned United. And Sam Neill was among the eager onlookers who raised hands to ask questions when Harry Brown hero Michael Caine participated in a 90-minute on-stage Conversation with Seamus O’Regan … and at the initial screening of Lars Von Trier’s AntiChrist, which premiered the first night of the festival, my spies report that midway through the film “someone actually fainted and caused a bit of a scene when they toppled onto the row in front of them, totally alarming those people. Talk about a perfect way to start a film festival!!”
SMITH: great quotes
QUOTABLE QUOTES: “A lot of things have disappeared as I have grown older and a lot of wrinkles and flab have suddenly appeared. But whatever I’ve lost, I still have great legs. As the late actress Kitty Carlisle Hart used to say as she showed her gams at age 90, ‘The legs are the last to go.’ Kitty had a good life motto. She looked at herself every morning in the mirror and said, ‘Kitty, I forgive you!’”
The speaker? Liz Smith, who just keeps wowing us with her wit ‘n’ wisdom on wowOwow.com.
TOGETHER AGAIN (ALMOST): It’s been years since they co-starred at the then Pantages in Phantom Of The Opera, but Colm Wilkinson and Rebecca
Caine continue to brighten stage and screens. Wilkinson was here this week to promote The Tudors at CBC’s elegant mid-week Fall Launch. In the new season he plays an antagonist who Henry VIII summarily executes. “But they must have liked what I did, because they’ve asked me return as a ghost!” Meanwhile, the glory-voiced Ms Caine is set to headline her own concert show, Raising Caine, next Sunday Sept. 27 at the new Conservatory Theatre … and speaking of dynamic duos, Twin Peaks alumni Kyle MacLachlan and Joan Chen are only two of the reasons why TIFF showstopper Mao’s Last Dancer is such a riveting film. Credit director Bruce Beresford for hiring Bruce Greenwood to play the U.S. choreographer with his own agenda. Greenwood, who delivers a brilliantly nuanced performance, is spectacularly good. But then, so is the movie. Don’t miss it.
Posted in Actors, Ballet, Gossip, Movies, Music, SHOW BUSINESS, Showbuzz, Stars, Television, Theatre
Tagged Aaron Eckhart, Atom Egoyan’s Chloe, Bono, Brett Wilson, BRIGITTE BERMAN, BRUCE BERESFORD, Bruce Beresford’s Mao's Last Dancer, BRUCE GREENWOOD, CBC Television, COLIN FARRELL, COLM WILKINSON, Conservatory Theatre, Do Not Go Gentle, Dragons’ Den, Dylan Thomas, GEOFFREY RUSH, GEORGE STROUMBOULOPOULOS, GERAINT WYN-DAVIES, Google, Harry Brown, HUGH HEFNER, Jason Reitman’s Up In The Air, Jim Bawden, Joan Chen, Joel & Ethan Coen’s A Serious Man, Kitty Carlisle Hart, Kyle MacLachlan, Lars Von Trier’s AntiChrist, Lee Daniels’ Precious, Leon Pownall, LIZ SMITH, Lone Sherfig’s An Education, Michael Caine, MICHAEL J. FOX, Michael Sheen, Neil Jordan’s Ondine, Phantom Of The Opera, Raising Caine, Rebecca Caine, Rodrigo Garcia’s Mother & Child, Ruba Nadda’s Cairo Time, Sam Neill, Sarah McLachlan, SEAMUS O'REGAN, The Tudors, Tom Ford’s A Single Man, Tom Hooper’s The Damned United, TORONTO STAR, Twin Peaks