Friday, 17 October 2008

Arts for Everyone

The Federal election may be over, but I hope you haven't forgotten the round table discussion I had a few weeks back about cuts to the Arts. My guests for that October 4th show were Claire Hopkinson (Executive Director of the Toronto Arts Council), Kelsey Matheson (Eastern Regional Director of First Weekend Club), Bobby Del Rio (actor/producer and founder of INCLUDE, Canada's largest multicultural entertainment industry network), and Kirk Cooper (publicist and founder of Film Market Access). All pointed out the economic benefits of the Arts & Culture sector from providing employment to millions of Canadians to the trickle down effect of businesses (hotels, restaurants, shops) who benefit from people attending events such as film festivals, stage shows, concerts etc.

That the Arts are for everyone, something Canadian conductor, Kerry Stratton and I agree upon wholeheartedly. Stratton will be conducting the Orchestra Internazionale d'Italia at Roy Thomson Hall on November 3rd, as part of Gala Italia. He is also taking the OIDI to such places as Milton and Welland and several other Ontario cities. Stratton loves to take classical music to underserved communities and unusual venues (he recently took a classical violinist to the Bovine Sex Club--it's not what you think!), and enjoys showing visiting musicians a bit of Ontario.
Gala Italia
Nov. 3rd, 8:00 pm
featuring L’Orchestra Internazionale d’Italia
Roy Thomson Hall
$35.00 ($25.00 students/seniors)
416-872-4255 or
click here


Planet in Focus International Environmental Film and Video Festival (October 22nd - 26th)Yes, there are films about climate changes and the dangers of food, but there are over 100 films in this international festival about other issues. Canadian filmmaker/producer Tina Hahn's documentary Tales of a Yellow Bike deals with sustainable transportation. Hahn traveled to such places as China, Paris, and Amsterdam to see how those places were able to launch and maintain programs when Toronto's own award-winning, Bike Share Program had to fold. Imagine 3 million people going out for a nighttime bike ride with their families. Well, it happens in Columbia.
Tales of a Yello Bike
Sat. Oct. 25th, 11:00 am
Innes Town Hall
2 Sussex Avenue
Tickets: 416-967-1528, or Box Office at 55 Bloor Street West (Manulife Building, north entrance). Tickets are also available at the door of each venue.

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