Colors orange, red and gold, sounds of music, pop and classic, theatre galore, and exhibits large and small, are all part of Toronto’s fall agenda this year.
A variety of community events, and an abundance of kosher restaurants make this city a good place to meet new people, and to savor the arts.
Of the Stratford plays running this fall, into October, there are the critically acclaimed King Lear, Crazy for You, The Beau Stratagem, Alice Through the Looking Glass, and Man of La Mancha.
A wonderful opportunity to see the above plays, is made possible by the luxury bus that goes from Toronto’s downtown hotel area to Stratford. It takes patrons to a matinee, or evening, performance, or both, and brings them back to Toronto at the end of the same day. The subsidized round-trip bus fare is nominal. In addition, this trip offers a chance to view the famous fall colors in great comfort..
The Shaw Festival, in Niagara-on-the-Lake, also runs into October. Excellent productions of Arms and the Man, Hay Fever, Cabaret, The Philadelphia Story, A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur and The Philanderer, are complemented by the stunning fall colors throughout the town, and along the lakeshore.
Within Toronto there are so many plays running this fall that one could go to a different show every day of the week.
The Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company brings Bella, The Color of Love, October l5 to November 2, starring Theresa Tova. November 5 to 16 it presents Fabrik, The Legend of M. Rabinowitz. Teatron, Toronto Jewish Theatre, is showing Peace Warriors, by Doron Ben-Atar, November 5 to 16.
The Book of Mormon, winner of 9 Tony Awards, has been extended, by popular demand, until November 30. Another favorite, Jersey Boys, returns to Toronto, at the Ed Mirvish Theatre, December 17 into January.
The Best of Second City (until November 17), revisits the greatest hits since its inception in l959, to the present. Cirque du Soleil’s latest show, Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities, runs until October 19.
An Enemy of the People is at the Tarragon Theatre to October 26. The Royal Alexandra Theatre is showing Our Country’s Good until October 26. This historic play, about the founding of Australia, is about the First Fleet, a group of Royal marines and convicts who were sent to colonize the area.
Another play, back by popular demand, is Wicked, the Tony-Award winning musical. It runs until November 2. Menopause, The Musical, begins October l4 at the Randolph Theatre. The comedy Buyer & Cellar, part of the Off Mirvish, Second Stage Series, runs November 12-30 at the Panasonic Theatre.
Also at the Panasonic, to October 19, are two shows from the best of the Edinburgh Festival, Julie Madly Deeply (North American premiere), and the comedy, The Boy With Tape On His Face.
For music, the Royal Conservatory presents Idan Raichel & Vieux Farka Toure: The Toure-Raichel Collective, on November 21. Singer-songwriter, Adam Cohen, comes to the Harbourfront Centre Theatre on November 17.
Pinhas Zukerman, and the Zukerman Chamber Players will perform at the Conservatory on November 30, and vocalist Adi Braun presents Speak Low, on December 6.
That program traces the musical and personal journey of Kurt Weill and Lotte Lenya from Berlin to Broadway, in songs and words.
Among the rich offerings of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra this season there will be Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons, November 8.Stravinsky’s Petrouchka, November 26, 27, and The Best of Tchaikovsky, December 3 and 6, to name but a few. Violinist Yitzchak Perlman performs, on December 1, at Roy Thomson Hall.
When it comes to dance, the National Ballet of Canada is second to none. Its fall program includes Manon, November 8-16, Nijinsky, November 22-30, and The Nutcracker Suite, December 13.
For exhibits, Dispatch: War Photographs In Print, 1854-1008, is a major exhibition that examines how war photography has changed over the past 150 years. It is at the Ryerson Image Centre until December 7.
The exhibition, Pardes, at the Koffler Centre of the Arts, features the work of four Israeli sound and multi-media artists, until November 30.
The newly opened Aga Khan Museum aims to build bridges with its millennium-spanning collection of Islamic art and artifacts. It is housed in a light-filled structure of Brazilian granite.
Alex Coleville’s works are celebrated at the Art Gallery of Ontario until January.
A look at how technology influences rock music. How it impacts listeners and performers, is the theme of The Science of Rock and Roll, at the Science Centre, to October 26.
The Politics of Fashion and The Fashion of Politics looks at the impact that politics and fashion have on each other. At the Design Exchange, Canada’s Design Museum, until December 7, and guest curated by Jeanne Beker.
For films, the Toronto Jewish Film Society is showing My Mexican Shivah on October l9, As Seen Through These Eyes, on November 9, and A Secret, on December 7.
The Second Annual Jewish Book Festival, of Jewish authors and Jewish writing, takes place on November 9 to 16.
Other events this fall are the True Heroes Tribute Gala, on October 30, honoring the Righteous Among The Nations, under the auspices of Yad Vashem. The dinner will be at the Allstream Centre, at Exhibition Place.
For kosher dining, Toronto continues to see new openings of various establishments, most of which are located very close to Bathurst Street, or along the length of this street. The newly opened Ba-Li Laffa South, is another branch of the popular Ba-Li Laffa to the north of the city, whose specialty, among others, is the popular schwarma.
Hummus Hummus, Mediterranean Grill, to the north of the city is another new restaurant, as is The Buzz Burger Bar+Grill. Jacob’s Deli, also in the north, carries delicatessen, along with a menu that includes fish, vegetarian dishes, and gluten-free options.
In midtown there are Milk & Honey, Omni, Bistro Grande for dairy dishes, and Chicken Nest, along with other meat establishments.
For pizza try King David or Tov Li, both of which have branches in the north of the city as well.
The above is just a small sample of the arts happenings in the city, and of the diverse kosher restaurants, and other facilities that the city offers.
By Rose Kleiner