Our weekly round-up of Toronto’s top happenings.
Thursday: Blood Ties, a new dark comedy musical
The Annex Theatre, 736 Bathurst St. Two shows: 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. $20; $15 for students at the door. Ticket reservations via e-mail.
For one night only, get a sneak peek at Blood Ties, an audience favourite from last year’s SummerWorks fest that will be touring this summer to Edinburgh Fringe. Written and starring Anika Johnson and Barbara Johnston (also two of the gals behind the fabulous Wannabe Spice Girls tribute band, the production is billed as a “dark comedy” (with singing!) “based on a true story about a bachelorette weekend gone horribly wrong.” Let’s just say there’s going to be a wedding and a funeral, or two—you never know! Of the debut performance, Torontoist wrote, “[it's] the funniest show of the festival…rewarded with the most rousing standing ovation of the festival.” It’s one-night only with two performances—and all tickets proceeds go to fund the European production.
Friday: Love is Lust/Lust is Love Presents: The Lab Magazine Issue #7 Launch
House of Moments, 386 Carlaw Ave. Doors at 8 p.m. $15 advance tickets online, $20 at the door.
One of the best things going for the city’s east end is House of Moments, the Japanese fusion joint that features stellar dishes (lobster tempura!) and wicked musical throw-downs amid a maze of rooms and decor. On Friday, they’re hosting the launch party for the newest edition of The Lab Magazine, a cult-y pub with “intimate and uncensored artist-to-artist conversations, conceptual photo shoots, and vibrant fashion features.” For the big night, there will be an art exhibit, free issues for the first 60 people and a DJ set from Diamond Rings and others. Find out more here, and check out this video the mag produced below.
Friday: Strange Brew, a craft beer & music celebration
Metropolis Factory, 50 Edwin Ave. Doors at 8 p.m. $20 at the door.
A few weeks ago, we explored Metropolis Factory, the under-the-radar Junction Triangle party palace that doubles as an antiques heaven, housed inside a converted power plant. Well, now is your chance to visit. On Friday, Mill Street Brewery will take over Metropolis for “a celebration of craft beer, rock n’ roll, and the unusual” as part of Ontario Craft Beer Week. The space will blow your mind with musical performances by Dwayne Gretzky, The Golden Dogs, and Jumple. Plus: a bearded lady, a contortionist, and street food—oh, and tons of beer! Advance tickets are sold out, so try your luck at the door. Complete deets here.
Friday: The House of Nuance presents The Bizarre Ball
Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander St. Doors at 9:30 p.m. $10.
‘Tis the season—to twerk! In case you forgot, Toronto’s drag ballroom culture (born out of ’80s New York) is still on fire, especially with the arrival of The House of Nuance, a new group of fierce catwalkers and posers. They’ll even give the clueless a primer: “Don’t know what the fuck a ball is? Then come watch the demonstration at 9 p.m. so we can help you figure it all out before we get going.” Basically, guests can choose to compete (“walk”) in one of several skilled categories, like runway walk, hairography, or hands. (Twirl that shit.) Get prepped here, and take a look at the last Nuance ball below.
Saturday: The Beaverton Live, a comedy special
The Lot Stand Up Comedy Club, 100 Ossington Ave. $10, available online or at the door.
You guys like The Grid’s new Funny People feature that profiles Toronto’s comedic geniuses-at-large, yes? Well, this one’s for your funny bone. Launched in 2010, The Beaverton is a newspaper (think The Onion) from a Toronto-based collective of hilarious writers that want to bring back the art of satire. (Most recently, a feature on spaceman Chris Hadfield’s million-dollar Rogers bill went viral.) Well, the Beavs are celebrating the birth of their newest issue with a big live show of sketch and stand-up acts, as well as the live premiere of their news broadcast, the Beaverton News Network. Get the full line-up here.
#PROTIP: She Does The City Presents…Destiny’s Child ft. Bad B*tches, a dance party.
Measure, 296 Brunswick Ave. $5 at the door, 10 p.m.
If you feel like bumpin’ and grindin’ this Saturday night instead of LOL-ing, head to Measure, the Annex’s newest live music venue with a big back patio, for a night of DC3 hits, Beyonce classics, and all the bad b*tches in between, from Mariah to Missy, Rihanna to Aalyiah and beyond. Find out more here.