Page 1

FILM TORNADO JAMES FRANCO

GAY & LESBIAN CITY

MARRIAGE

THE SUPREME COURT’S COMMON-LAW DEBACLE THE BIG WHITE DRESS? BRAD WILSON & RON WHITE

WEDDING

BEAUS

STAGE TOKYO & DANIEL MACIVOR


c e l e b r a te yo u r we d d i n g d ay a t p a rk hya t t e a r n f re e n i g h t s fo r yo u r h o n ey m o o n

Now when you celebrate your special day at Park Hyatt ® , you can earn free honeymoon nights on us. Whichever honeymoon destination you choose, you’ll make memories that will last a lifetime. Simply book and hold your wedding or commitment ceremony at a par ticipating Park Hyatt hotel by December 31, 2014, and you will earn Hyatt Gold Passpor t ® bonus points redeemable for free nights with no blackout dates at any Hyatt ® hotel or resor t worldwide. To b e g i n p l a n n i n g t h e e v e n t o f y o u r d r e a m s a n d a h o n e y m o o n y o u ’ l l n e v e r f o r g e t c o n t a c t a P a r k H y a t t We d d i n g S p e c i a l i s t o r v i s i t h y a t t w e d d i n g s . c o m a n d r e q u e s t o f f e r c o d e H M O O N .H y a t t .


intorontomag.com PUBLISHER Patricia Salib EDITOR Gordon Bowness SENIOR ACCOUNT DIRECTOR

Need money now? It’s quick and easy! Apply online or find a location near you!

cashstore.ca Serving the LGBT community with pride.

Ryan Lester ART DIRECTOR Nicolás Tallarico

OUR MISSION Inspire gay men and lesbians to live life to the fullest. Expand the gay and lesbian community by valuing diversity and individual choice. Celebrate Toronto.Provide readers with compelling news, information and entertainment.

ADVERTISING & OTHER INQUIRIES (416) 800-4449 ext 100 • info@intorontomag.com EDITORIAL INQUIRIES (416) 800-4449 ext 201 • editorial@intorontomag.com PRODUCTION ads@intorontomag.com In Toronto is published by The Mint Media Group all rights reserved. 182 Davenport Rd, #300, Toronto, ON, M5R 1J2

THE MINT MEDIA GROUP PRESIDENT Patricia Salib DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS Reggie Lanuza

EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY

SENIOR ACCOUNT DIRECTOR Ryan Lester

The Mint Media Group, publisher of In Toronto and Outlooks magazines, is looking for a full-time Account Manager/Sales Representative. THIS ISSUE

The right candidate will be responsible for managing retail sales accounts.

CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Paul Gallant, Krishna Rau CONTRIBUTORS Mary Dickie, Derek Dotto, Peter Knegt, Serafin LaRiviere, Pamela Meredith,

Position is available immediately. All interested candidates please forward your resume to mint@themintmediagroup.com.

Sarah Clayton Nesbitt, Michael Pihach, Adam Segal, Matthew Stevenson Margaret Webb, John Webster, Andrea Zanin ON THE COVER Photograph by Anthony Manieri of 5ive15ifteen Photo Company


CONTENTS

ISSUE 34

VIEWS | LIVING & DESIGN | INSIGHT | LISTINGS | ART & ENTERTAINMENT | SEX

7

sex is easy to find 9

26 17

7

PRINCESS FOR A DAY? Lesbians sound off on the big white wedding dress by Gordon Bowness & Michael Pihach

9

STAR-STUDDED & FUN-FILLED Brad Wilson & Ron White marry at Casa Loma by Gordon Bowness

26 41

41

A TRAFFIC JAM OF LESBIANS On the road to Palm Springs by Margaret Webb CALL ME TOTO James Franco is a sex-positive tornado by Peter Knegt

6

BRENT HAWKES’ BULLETPROOF VEST

18

THE SMITH/PATRICK WEDDING by Gordon Bowness

25

DEFEATING FEAR & ANXIETY with Adam Segal

30

THE SUPREME COURT’S UNCOMMON LAW by Gordon Bowness

34

MARCH EVENTS CALENDAR

36

A CATERED AFFAIR by Derek Dotto

38

SARAH ANNE JOHNSON’S ARTY BANK HEIST by Pamela Meredith

44

RISING SUN DANIEL MACIVOR by Serafin LaRiviere

47

TEGAN & SARA REVIEWED by Mary Dickie

49

REALISM IN SEX TOYS with Andrea Zanin

50

CAUGHT IN THE ACT by Sarah Clayton Nesbitt & Matthew Stevenson

love isn’t.

The dilemma: You are a successful professional living a fulfilled life. You are active, dynamic, intelligent, and financially stable. Your friends and family say that you are a catch. Then why is it that sincere love is so hard to find? The soluTion: A boutique networking agency specializing in personalized matchmaking will save time and energy. Their service is designed for busy, successful professionals who cherish the idea of a loving, faithful relationship once they find the right partner. The clienTs: Preferred Partners clients value the prospect of meeting like-minded individuals who are also tired of the internet and bar scene. Typically, they are successful professionals living full and active lives who work hard and love to play, too. Preferred ParTners canada’s exclusive Gay maTchmakinG aGency

Call us today for a free Consultation

1 866-467-5252

www.preferredpartners.ca www.preferredpartners.ca


TORONTO TALK EXCHANGE

VIEW FINDER

Jeremy Mimnagh

→ RISE UP Spring weather never arrives fast enough but you can put a spring in your step with the verdant variety of dance productions this month. The National Ballet of Canada has three programs including the ever-fascinating Four Seasons by James Kudelka — one of his best works. Twinned with Emergence by Crystal Pite and you have the perfect program for anyone new to ballet (opening Mar 20). The National also premieres Nijinsky (Mar 2), a full-length by John Neumeier exploring the life of the legendary Russian dancer and lover of Ballets Russes impresario Sergei Diaghilev. WorldStage presents Everyday Anthems (pictured) with Toronto Dance Theatre (Mar 6), a commission from indie choreographer Heidi Strauss that looks at how anthems help us overcome obstacles — perhaps like never-ending cold and slush? DanceWorks, Moonhorse Dance Theatre… there’s much more. See dance listings on page 34. Move to the warmth.

Marc Lostracco cc-by-sa-2.0

IN THEIR OWN WORDS BRENT HAWKES

6

March 2013

→ “We had a special service to mark the 10th anniversary of

the first same-sex marriages in the world. At one point I pulled out the bulletproof vest I had worn during that first wedding, held it up and said that this was the symbol of where we were 10 years ago. Then I pointed to my Order of Canada pin and said this is the symbol of where we are now.” While 2013 marks the 10th anniversary of same-sex marriage in Ontario, the first legal same-sex marriages in the province — and, in fact, the world — were held on Jan 14, 2001 at the Metropolitan Community Church of Toronto with Rev Brent Hawkes officiating. He married Elaine Vautour and Anne Vautour and Joe Varnell and Kevin Bourassa after Kathleen Lahey, a law professor at Queen’s University, discovered a loophole in provincial legislation, an ancient tradition called reading the banns which didn’t reference gender but was considered a legal alternative to a marriage license. Hawkes read the banns over three weeks, resulting in huge publicity leading up to the wedding. “The day before, I got a call from the police saying there were legitimate concerns for my safety,” says Hawkes. “The next morning 12 bodyguards showed up at my door. They were the toughest looking lesbians you can imagine,” says

Hawkes, laughing, “and one gay guy coordinating everything. They were volunteers, just concerned members of the community.” One thousand people attended the wedding along with 80 media outlets and four camera crews. “It only became scary to me when I walked from my office into the sanctuary,” says Hawkes. “The hallway was lined on either side with police, there were 50 more in the basement and a number of undercover police. “When we entered, everyone stood up and applauded. I think I was feeling equal parts excitement and terror.” Despite trouble at a regular service earlier in the day, everything went smoothly. “I won’t say same-sex marriage has become ordinary: It is and it isn’t. I officiate at lots of straight weddings and same-sex weddings are just not the same. There’s still this sense of making history.”


TORONTO TALK EXCHANGE SOUND OFF THE BIG WHITE WEDDING DRESS → For, against or indifferent? We asked lesbians why they did — or didn’t — wear a white wedding dress

Kelly Prizel Photography

Seanna Kreager

Rima Dib/Parasol Photo

Eric Spurrel/ Multy Media Memories

on their big day.

Julie & Angela Burnett Married July 17, 2010

Nikki & Jazz Married Aug 5, 2012

“Choosing to wear a white dress came naturally to me. I didn’t consider wearing anything else,” says Julie. “I gave this question some thought, and the answer was simply: I wore a white dress because it was my wedding day!” says Angela. “Julie asking me to marry her was a dream come true. I wanted Julie to look at me on our wedding day and think I was the most beautiful woman she had ever seen. In my opinion, my wife is strikingly beautiful, and I loved seeing her in her wedding dress. With my mom being part of a design team, I grew up with strong fashion influences and I was really proud to be wearing something that day that she had a hand in making.”

“We believe in fluidity in everything, even what we wear,” says Jazz. “Our wedding was inspired by peacock feathers. In my culture peacocks are proud animals and often compared to a person who flaunts their colours without shame. Kind of like being queer. My partner wore a silver suit and I wore a backless flowing forest green and black summer dress. We wanted to wear something we felt sexy in without being attached to a ‘look’ or emulating some sort of gender binary traditions that too often gets tied into weddings.”

Heather Claridge & Natalie Strang Married Sep 23, 2011 “We are totally for the wedding dress! We both wore white princess-style dresses,” says Heather. “For us, the wedding dress symbolizes a piece of history and culture colliding with diversity and empowerment for same-sex rights. We wouldn’t have had it any other way. We got married in Iceland, and loved our dresses so much we wore them for the next 10 days after the wedding as our photographer followed us around taking photos of us at waterfalls, geysers, beaches and the glacier lagoon that was in the James Bond movie Die Another Day!”

Ange & Robin Beever Married June 17, 2004

Mandy & Bekah McNeil Married May 29, 2010

“We felt like we had a unique opportunity to do what we wanted, so we felt free to reject a lot of wedding stuff we didn’t care about,” says Robin. “We were already engaged when same-sex marriage became legal, and nobody could really tell us what our wedding was supposed to be like. The white dress is such a loaded symbol — I certainly spent time in my childhood dressing my Barbies in wedding gowns I made! I understand its allure but our whole wedding was so arty and DIY. Ange had a linen suit made and I wore a custom dress from Peach Berserk. Owner Kingi Carpenter created a collage of personal stuff (photos, notes, invitations) and screenprinted it onto silk, then sewed the dress and dip-dyed it.”

“We got married at city hall with no guests and I didn’t wear a white dress,” says Mandy. “A year later we had a big wedding ceremony and reception with all our friends and family, and that time I ended up wearing a white dress. At first I was opposed to the idea; I didn’t feel it fit my queerness and I wanted to reject its hetero-patriarchal associations. But I fell in love with a dress that was perfect — except it only came in white. I did some hard thinking about why I was resisting it in order to have positive associations with the dress on the day. Bekah wore a men’s three-piece suit, but she had her own struggles in deciding what to wear to our wedding.” [Read the full version of Mandy McNeil’s response at intorontomag.com.]

intorontomag.com

7


Dear mortgage, I’m taking time off to play peekaboo.

Take time off from your mortgage payment. Our TD flexible mortgage feature comes with life in mind. You have the option to save up, then take a payment vacation for up to 4 months. How you spend your payment vacation, well that’s up to you.1

For more information visit a branch or tdcanadatrust.com/paymentvacation or call 1-866-492-4938 today.

1 Some conditions apply and subject to approval.

®/The TD logo and other trade-marks are the property of The Toronto-Dominion Bank or a wholly-owned subsidiary, in Canada and/or other countries.


WE D D I N G S

‘LOVE & LAUGHTER’ →

Brad Wilson and Ron White’s star-studded, fun-filled ceremony Story Gordon Bowness | Photography 5ive15ifteen Photo Company

intorontomag.com

9


E AT, DRINK & BE M A R R I E D.

DA N I E L E T DA N I E L .C A 4 1 6 .9 6 8 .9 2 7 5


T

he proposal — romantic, stylish and surprising — set the benchmarks for the wedding to follow. When entrepreneur Brad Wilson, who owns PostNet, a printing store in Etobicoke, proposed to shoe designer Ron White, CEO and creative director of Ron White Shoes, he pulled out all the stops. “Ron was in Florence, Italy on business,” says Wilson, “and I wanted to surprise him. Not only did I get to Italy without him knowing, I made a reservation at our favourite restaurant and got him there without knowing I would be there waiting — no small feat. When he arrived and recovered from the shock I presented him with a Tiffany ring and proposed. I also had purchased a ring for myself. They’re now our wedding bands.” The couple had first met in 2008 at a film festival party at Casa Loma and they returned to the faux-gothic mansion to get married on Sep 29, 2012. The service was held in the conservatory which was transformed into a European-style chapel. The reception started with cocktails at sunset on the terrace with its stunning views of the city. Dinner was in the library which was converted into a “Great Gatsby meets South Beach chic” wonderland. Afterwards live drummers led the 200 guests into the Great Hall for dancing late into the evening. The star-studded affair featured performances by The Tenors, Sean Jones and Alana Bridgewater. The grooms wore Giorgio Armani Black Label and custom shoes from Ron White, of course. The look was classic black; the mood was anything but. “Just after our immediate family com→ A FIT TING STAGE Ron White and Brad Wilson got married at Casa Loma (bottom left); the ceremony was in the conservatory (bottom right). The wedding party (top) consisted of Glenn Dixon, Vanja Petkovic, Billie Holiday, Doug Young, Jovana MacDonald, Jeffrey Latimer, Marla Switzer and Libell Geddes. The engagment rings from Tiffany’s doubled as wedding bands (lower left).

pleted their processional walk,” says White, “the music suddenly changed and our surprise, fullychoreographed dance number started with the wedding party, us included, performing a dance number down the aisle. Everyone rose to their feet, clapping and cheering. It immediately set the tone we planned for — an evening full of love and laughter.” Officiating was Justice Gloria Epstein who, back in 1996, ruled in the famous M v H case when it was before the Ontario Court of Justice. Later affirmed by the Supreme Court in 1999, M v H was one of the landmark rulings that paved the way to the legalization of same-sex marriage across Canada. “We feel blessed and honoured that we live in a country where our political leadership put forth and passed laws to legalize gay marriage,” says White. “And we felt very fortunate to have Madame Justice Epstein there, not to mention Canada’s first lady, Mrs Harper, among the guests.” Any advice to engaged couples about weddings? “Invest in a wedding planner,” says Wilson. “There are more things to decide and cover than you imagine, and emotions run high. Start early.” “Tara O’Grady from Bliss was our event planner,” says White. “Without her expertise our dream wedding would never have come together and flowed so seamlessly. Tara is truly a gem. We’ve utilized her services previously for the White Knight Gala, the fundraiser for my human rights foundation, and a number of other events. All were great.” Were there any moments earlier on when you thought you’d chuck it all and elope? “Any time something became stressful, overwhelming or drama-filled,” says Wilson, “Tara swooped in confidently and firmly looked us in the eye and said ‘I’ll look after it.’ And she did.”

5IVE15IFTEEN PHOTO COMPANY 5ive15ifteen.com. intorontomag.com

11


12

March 2013


intorontomag.com

13


→ BOLD FACE NAMES Guests included Laureen Harper, Suzanne Rogers, Glenn Dixon and David Dixon (top), Jeanne Beker (bottom left), Kim Kelly, Sean Jones and Alana Bridgewater (middle right), Storey Badger and Monika Schnarre (bottom middle) and John Rider, Billie Holiday and Karim Karsan (bottom right). Justice Gloria Epstein officiated (following page). intorontomag.com

15


16

March 2013


WE D D I N G S

THE PERSONAL TOUCH →

Michael Smith and Patrick David’s weekend-long celebration of their marriage was designed to forge a community from the couple’s family and friends Story Gordon Bowness | Photography 5ive15ifteen Photo Company

18

March 2013


→ WELL-CHOREOGRAPHED Michael Smith and Patrick David got married at Mazzoleni Hall (lower left), with the reception at the Carlu (lower right). Among the wedding party are the couple’s parents Gloria David, Roger David and Goldie Smith (left). The mothers walked their sons down the aisle.

T

here was the dinner for outof-town guests at the Rectory Café on Toronto Island, the ceremony at the historic Mazzoleni Hall at the Royal Conservatory of Music, the reception in the iconic Round Room at The Carlu and the goodbye brunch on their rooftop patio at the Merchandise Lofts. And Patrick David and Michael Smith planned it all themselves. “Visions of this wedding had been talked about for years,” says Smith. “Patrick had it all figured out.” When the stress of planning such an ambitious event started to get to them, they designed a system of regular weekly meetings at their favourite restaurant with an agenda and notes and assigned duties for the week. “From there on out, we

loved every moment,” says Smith. “Monday nights were our time to come together with great news or challenges ahead. Our wedding was ours to shape and plan together the way we wanted to.” “We’d do it again in a heartbeat,” says David. David is a former executive search consultant and Smith was previously a finance executive and spin instructor. The couple moved to Barcelona last year where David is pursuing an MBA. Smith now works for Worldreader, a non-profit organization that promotes literacy in Africa through eReaders. Their big day was June 25, 2011. The night prior featured a dinner on Toronto Island. “The ferry ride was so much fun,” says David, “hugs

and smiles, pictures and the beautiful Toronto skyline. It really set the tone for the weekend. My fondest memory is of my mother giving her first speech — there wasn’t a dry eye to be found.” “We are lucky with a gay wedding,” says Smith, “we don’t have to follow any conventions.” Because of David’s passion for theatre, they wanted the ceremony on a stage. And they came up with the novel idea of an onstage interview, where they discussed everything from their childhoods to how they met. “We really wanted to draw our audience in, to know both of us as individuals and as a couple,” says Smith. “Having told our story to the entire congregation, it was time for them to watch our happy ending,

the civil ceremony. It was our personal community coming together.” “It was especially touching that our mothers walked us down the aisle,” says David. “On both sides, it was not an easy process of coming out and acceptance took time. This beautiful moment really represented their full acceptance of their gay sons and our partners. “I went from a young boy who never thought that it could be possible, to someone who is happily married,” says David. “Having lived abroad this last year you realize how progressive Canada is.” “Not a day goes by where I don’t reflect on how lucky we are to come from a country that is so accepting,” says Smith. •

intorontomag.com

19


FLOWER POWER

The Dare to Wear Love Gala Closing Night - Toronto Fashion Week March 22, 2013 Buy Tickets now at www.daretowearlove.com

25 Fashion Designers 6 yards of African Fabric One Great Party! Using the Power of Fashion for Good Canadian Fashion Designers in support of the Stephen Lewis Foundation

jbgraphics The Stephen Lewis Foundation supports community-based organizations that are turning the tide of the AIDS pandemic in Africa. In subSaharan Africa, an estimated 1,360,000 pregnant women were living with HIV in 2010. Only 42% received HIV counselling and testing. in addition, of the 16.6 million children worldwide (aged 0–17) who have lost one or both parents to AIDS, 14.8 million are in sub-Saharan Africa.


→ THE WORLD’S A STAGE The wedding ceremony featured an onstage interview, plus music by friend Scott Christian (middle left). Daniel Brereton officiated (top). At the reception, Derritt Mason (middle) spoke of how David and Smith first met — at Fly nightclub. The couple’s first dance was a fullon choreographed performance (bottom right). The cake is by Bobbette and Belle (middle right).

intorontomag.com

21


intorontomag.com

23


THE OFFICIAL TORONTO

PRIDE GUIDE 2013

Join the biggest party of the year Advertising inquiries: advertise@pridetoronto.com


LIVING & DESIGN

RELATIONSHIP ADVICE

— with Adam Segal “I grew up in a religious home that was very shaming of anything sexual — never mind homosexuality. When my parents discovered my stash of gay porn when I was 17, they sent me to a psychiatrist who tried to ‘fix’ me. I fortunately woke up and found some gay-positive friends and have been living as an out gay man for 15 years. I feel mostly free from my past but I have lingering anxieties about HIV. No matter how safe I am, I feel like I will inevitably become HIV-positive and can’t shake the feeling that my world would then fall completely apart. I get tested so often that the health clinic has often turned me away for not warranting a test. How do I let this fear go?” →

Alexander Congratulations on finding your way out of a repressive situation. You’ve been brave to defy the culture that surrounded you as you were developing. While you’ve made great strides toward self-acceptance, your HIV obsession could be reminding you that there’s some additional work to be done. I hate to drizzle on your Pride parade but this could be an opportunity to eradicate any lingering shame. Some fear of HIV is healthy — it could propel you to exercise good sexual self-care. Your preoccupation, however, likely reflects a fear of punishment for being the gay man that you are. To be repeatedly sent a message that you are inherently bad would undoubtedly spur some deep wounds. While the adult part of you clearly accepts yourself, maybe a younger part wrestles with feelings of unworthiness and is just waiting for the other shoe to drop. Sometimes it can be helpful to think of shame as anger with the self — so getting in touch with the anger and directing it at the real sources of that shame could be a fitting antidote. Another possibility is that your fear of HIV could be a placeholder

for other fears. You have a horrific view of HIV that might also highlight a fear of ultimately losing control. An HIV diagnosis would certainly be challenging and upsetting, but very unlikely to be the utter catastrophe that your grey matter is conjuring up. Your anxiety can be understood as a sort of hyper-vigilance: “If I’m constantly thinking about what might go wrong in the future, I’ll be prepared.” You haven’t mentioned any other obsessions but it might be good to consider whether you have a general tendency to fixate or worry (on health-related or other matters). If so, talking to a therapist who works with anxiety or obsessive thinking would be a step in the right direction.

sex is easy to find

love isn’t.

The dilemma: You are a successful professional living a fulfilled life. You are active, dynamic, intelligent, and financially stable. Your friends and family say that you are a catch. Then why is it that sincere love is so hard to find? The soluTion: A boutique networking agency specializing in personalized matchmaking will save time and energy. Their service is designed for busy, successful professionals who cherish the idea of a loving, faithful relationship once they find the right partner. The clienTs: Preferred Partners clients value the prospect of meeting like-minded individuals who are also tired of the internet and bar scene. Typically, they are successful professionals living full and active lives who work hard and love to play, too. Preferred ParTners canada’s exclusive Gay maTchmakinG aGency

ADAM SEGAL The writer and therapist works in private practice in downtown Toronto. Ask him your relationship or mental health question at relationship@intorontomag.com.

Call us today for a free Consultation

1 866-467-5252

www.preferredpartners.ca intorontomag.com www.preferredpartners.ca

25


Photos courtesy of Palm Springs Tourist Board

LIVING & DESIGN

T R AV E L

DOWN-HOME FRIENDLY → Whether it’s hikes and bikes or Marlene and Bing, there’s something for everyone among the deserts,

mountains, culture and history of Palm Springs — and you don’t even have to golf Story Margaret Webb

A

Palm Springs traffic jam is the best. My first visit to the Dinah Shore Weekend (see page 28) featured bumper-to-bumper roadster convertibles from Los Angeles — two stunning lesbians in every glittering Beemer, Mercedes and Jag — as some 20,000 women converged on the desert city for a weekend lesbian smorgasbord of concerts, dances and pool parties.

26

March 2013

That was just over 10 years ago. Now it seems that the gay and lesbian set who have been coming to this desert oasis to party over the years — like the young Hollywood celebrities in the 1940s, ’50s and ’60s — decided to make this city home. After the 2008 economic meltdown knocked the stuffing out of real estate prices here, young gay retirees and middle-aged career chang-

ers have been snapping up gorgeous desert modernist bungalows built by Old Hollywood stars, opening funky restaurants, art galleries and boutiques. They’ve made this little city of 45,000 one of the gayfriendliest towns in the US of A or, dare I say, on the planet. Palm Springs doesn’t just embrace queer folk with big warm hugs (though they do), it’s that the

gays themselves are down-home friendly. Every clothing store, yogurt joint or bike rental shop seems to be run by a queer brother or sister who all greet my partner and I like we’re long lost cousins returned home for a family reunion. Another traffic jam, this one of stretch limos and Hummers dropping stars off at the first night of the Palm Springs International Film


LIVING & DESIGN

bers of the LGBT Front Runners and Walkers (psfr.org), which have Tom Brewster

chapters in just about every major North

American

city.

Weekday

mornings, close to 100 people gather to walk; on weekends, the

→ ONE OF THE GAY-FRIENDLIEST TOWNS ON THE PLANET If you’re stuck a traffic jam of lesbians, you must be in Palm Springs. That’s Palm Canyon Drive (opposite page), Andreas Canyon (left), the view atop the tramway (top right) and the White Party (lower right).

runners meet up for a 15-kilomeFestival (see page 28), which was

to catch a glimpse of the stars walk-

tre jog to Indian Canyons. Joining

grapefruits off trees growing by our

founded by the late great Sonny

ing the red carpet — ah, the lot of

them is a fantastic way to get the

backyard swimming pool) as well as

Bono. One of the largest in North

the writer, write them a role then

low-down on real estate and good

soak up the old Hollywood vibe.

America, it swells the size of Palm

watch them stroll (from afar).

restaurants, make instant friends

Las Palmas is adjacent to the

Springs by some 145,000 people.

Still, it’s an exuberant crowd and

and maybe even score invites to

defunct Racquet Club where stars

That’s why my partner and I are

a pretty prime area for stargazing.

BBQs and pool parties. By the end of

such as Marlene Dietrich, Bing

here. I have co-written the feature

Fans let out screams of “Sally, Sally”

our jog along the base of the snow-

Crosby, Joan Crawford, Rudy Vallee,

Margarita, which won the audi-

when Field arrives, and they cheer

covered San Jacinto Mountains,

Judy Garland, the Gabor sisters and,

ence award at Toronto’s Inside Out

others onto the red carpet as if at

my new gay pals are all coming

of course, Dinah Shore came to play

Festival and is getting a gala screen-

a football game, everybody that is

to see our film, and my new best

tennis, party and make the club’s

ing here. (There’s another screen-

except for the jaded spawn of het-

pal, Kathi, a retired pharmaceuti-

New Year’s Eve parties legendary.

ing in Toronto on Wed, Mar 13.)

erosexuals standing beside me, a girl,

cal exec in her early 50s, who splits

Now, this hood is a prime stop on

Ahead of us, two film execs in tux-

maybe nine. When she spots a star-

seasons between here and Seattle,

architectural tours, with its mix

edoes stroll to the red carpet, hand

let emerging from a limo, she scoffs

offers to take me on a tour of celeb-

of old Spanish Revival houses and

in hand, followed by dyke co-direc-

loudly: “That girl in the red dress?

rity houses for our next run.

modernist butterfly and A frames

tors Laurie Colbert and Dominique

She’s nobody!” I cannot help trying to

Cardona, who get to attend the fes-

brighten her outlook with a little fairy

Palmas

where

we jog our way up and down palm-

tival kick-off awards dinner with

dusting. “Oh, honey,” I say, “We’re all

we’re actually staying for the week.

tree lined streets, Kathi points out

the likes of Richard Gere, Sally Field

somebodies, even you.”

The directors have rented a house

Barry Manilow’s pad, Elvis’ former

That takes us through the Las neighbourhood

built by the Alexander brothers. As

and Helen Mirren. Alas, my partner

The next morning, I meet up with

in the hood which, by the way, is a

house (with a sculptural outline of

Nancy and I are relegated to stand-

people who are soon to be my new

fantastic way to get a taste of living

his face on the chimney) and the

ing outside with townsfolk hoping

best friends in Palm Springs, mem-

here (mornings, I pick lemons and

Continued on page 28

intorontomag.com

27


LIVING & DESIGN Continued from page 27

pile where he spent his secret hon-

plus two mineral pools fed by hot

eymoon with Priscilla, “The House

springs), we head inside at sunset

of Tomorrow,” or such as it was in

(which comes early in this moun-

the 1960s with its Jetson-style fur-

tain-ringed

niture, lava rock wall and electronic

The hotel spa was built over the

controls that manipulated indoor

ancient healing waters where the

climate, outside lights and auto-

Caliente had established an early

matic rain.

Americana bathhouse — a wooden

valley,

about

5pm).

On another day, Kathi takes

changehouse beside a steaming,

me for a trail run through Indian

spring-filled oasis pond. Now the

Canyons (where we get lost —

resort has an elaborate process of

though, thankfully, not for long —

tripping from steam sauna to hot

on its more than 100 miles of trails

sauna (which, oddly, is packed with

winding

palm

a gaggle of church ladies and their

groves,

through canyons

ancient

mountain

female pastor) to mineral bath and

ridges of the ancestral homeland of

and

then, finally, to a tranquility room

the Agua Caliente Chauilla Indians.)

to sleep off all that relaxation.

PALM SPRINGS WHEN TO GO Jeffrey Sankers White Party. Fri,

Mar 29-Apr 1. jeffreysanker.com. Dinah Shore Weekend. Celebrities such as Katy Perry, The Pussycat Dolls, Chely Wright and even Lady Gaga have all made appearances. Fri, Apr 5-7. dinahshoreweekend. com.

2-3. spride.org.

friendly resort in Palm Springs is still going strong with comfy affordable rooms with full kitchens surrounding a pool. queenofheartsps.com.

Palm Springs Leather Pride. Nov 7-10. desertleatherpride.com.

GOOD EATS

tival. Sept 19-23. cinemadiverse.org. Palm Springs Pride Festival. Nov

All that spa decadence primes us

Tahquitz Canyon, which is a 5K

for the traffic jams that I like best:

hiking trail that leads to a water-

The film festival lineups. Filmgoers

fall plunging from the peaks of the

here take their films seriously.

San Jacinto Mountains. And on yet

Rather than screening Hollywood

another day, my partner and I ride

blockbusters, the fest offers an

Palm Springs International Film Festival. Jan 3-14, 2014. psfilm-

the aerial tramway (pstramway.-

impressive slate of indie and for-

fest.org.

com) some 8,500 feet up to the top

eign films, and it seems everyone in

of the San Jacinto range where we

town attends. Gossip in the shops

hike over snow-covered trails to

for that week is about who’s seen

outlooks that offer stunning views

what not who’s seen who. It’s the

of Palm Springs and the entire

friendliest fest I’ve ever been to.

Coachella Valley below. All the hik-

Our film does really well, sold-out screenings and overflow crowds. It’s

and easy to get to.

a huge rush. One line-up stretches

WHERE TO STAY House rentals. Many with back-

yard pools. vrbo.com/vacation-rentals/usa/california/deserts/palm-springs/central/ old-las-palmas.

The Atomic Dog. 100 percent beef

dogs, a cheap treat to enjoy during Villagefest, when main street closes down Thursday nights to arts vendors. facebook.com/ theatomicdog. Cheeky’s. Has the best brunch and lunch in town, with a healthy twist on Mexican and southwestern faves. cheekysps.com. Workshop Kitchen and Bar. A bit

Our days are packed like this,

around the block, and it’s packed

enjoying the active outdoorsy des-

with golf-loving lesbians, art-loving

Hotel Avanti. Offers 10 luxuri-

ert lifestyle, hiking, cycling around

gay guys, partying wives of Calgary

town (the wide flat boulevards away

oil executives, straight folks who

from the main drags are pretty

look like former Hollywood studio

ous rooms in a boutique-like setting with touches of Old Hollywood. avantihotelps.com.

quiet), and walking the main street

execs, and really cool, liberal retir-

lined with boutiques and cafés. On

ees. The film’s themes of immigra-

one stroll, we stop into the Palm

tion, gay marriage and downsiz-

Springs Art Museum (psmuseum.-

ing after the housing crash strike

org) and, for a couple of hours, lose

a chord here in cash-strapped

ourselves amidst its impressive col-

California. I recognize quite a few

lection of contemporary, Western

faces, new friends I’ve met during

and Native American art. It’s part of

the week, and they introduce me to

the unique delight of Palm Springs

pals they’ve brought along. Truly, it

— for a small town, it packs some

feels like a gala in my hometown of

big city culture and entertainment

Toronto, full of family and friends

with its queer circuit party week-

and, damn it, I wish that little star-

ends, film festival, modernist week,

dissing girl was here to see what the

music festivals and on and on.

magic of films is really about, these

The next traffic jam we hit is in

Casitas Laquita. Luxurious rooms with full kitchens that surround a pool, making this a fave lesbian getaway for extended stays. casitaslaquita.com. Queen of Hearts. The first lesbian-

Cinema Diverse. The LGBT film fes-

Another run takes me through the

ing venues are on the edge of town

Bearfoot Inn. The latest addition to many gay men’s resorts, located in historic Movie Colony district. bearfootinn.com.

of New York sophistication in both setting and food. workshoppalmsprings.com. Blue Coyote Bar and Grill. The

Colony Palms Hotel. The former

playground of celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra and Howard Hughes. colonypalmshotel.com.

happening meet-and-greet spot, serving wicked margaritas and southwestern/Mexican fare. bluecoyotegrill.com. •

connections.

the spa of the Spa Resort Casino (sparesortcasino.com). After spending the afternoon drinking margaritas by the pools (a regular one 28

March 2013

MARGARITA Inside Out screening with directors in attendance. $10. 7:30pm. Wed, Mar 13. TIFF Bell Lightbox. 350 King St W. insideout.ca.

→ ARCHITECTURAL GEMS Palm Springs abounds in modernist bungalows.


INSIGHT

ISSUES

COMMON-LAW BREAKERS → The Supreme Court de-legitimizes the relationships of 1.2 million Quebeckers, prompting family law experts

to ask: Is the Charter of Rights and Freedoms dead? Story Gordon Bowness | Illustration John Webster

T

he legal ground is shifting violently underneath our conjugal beds. When Canada legalized samesex marriage in 2005, it was never meant to make weddings mandatory. Rather, it was simply sup30

March 2013

posed to be the final word on equality in relationships. But a recent Supreme Court ruling highlights the fact that many gay men and lesbians who have not formalized their relationships could find themselves out in the cold once

again, together with millions of unmarried women. Even more chilling, the Supreme Court’s January ruling in a family law case could have a devastating effect on the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, returning the coun-

try to a time when provinces were allowed to discriminate openly against minorities. Most Canadians wrongly assume that common-law couples — whether gay or straight — enjoy the same rights and obligations


INSIGHT

as married couples. That misper-

in her first two court appearances

discrimination clause — but that

it wrong to exclude same-sex

ception was brought into sharp

(but not at the Supreme Court).

the discrimination was allowed

couples from those protections.

focus with the Supreme Court

“Yet common-law spouses have

under

why

Common-law and same-sex rela-

ruling in a case known as Eric v

no protection in Quebec. How can

Goldwater finds Eric v Lola so dis-

tionships are linked, historically

Lola, which affirmed that com-

this be a minimal impairment?

turbing. It’s as if Vriend never

and legally.

mon-law partners in Quebec have

The Chief Justice didn’t even blink

happened. In that 1998 case the

“For the longest time, common-

no right to spousal support or to

on this point.”

Supreme Court ruled that discrim-

law relationships and same-sex

Section

1.

That’s

a share in their partner’s prop-

“The decision shows that there

ination on the basis of sexual ori-

relationships were being tested

erty when the relationship ends.

is no consensus in the court on the

entation could not be justified

in the courts and were advanc-

The ruling has outraged family

issues,” says Toronto lawyer Kelly

under Section 1 of the Charter, a

ing kind of in lockstep as discrimi-

law experts for leaving roughly

Jordan, partner at Jordan Battista.

key decision en route to securing

nated minorities, in fits and starts,

600,000 Quebec women in com-

“And only a bare majority found

same-sex marriage.

lurching

mon-law relationships with no

that the legislation discriminated

protection. One expert goes so far

against

as to say the ruling not only de-

which is surprising.”

common-law

couples,

forward,”

Goldwater

“Vriend is one of the most

says. She is uniquely positioned

important cases ever written,”

to understand that dynamic. Not

says Goldwater. “When Alberta

only is she a leading advocate for

discriminated

by

the rights of women and mothers

against

gays

legitimizes the relationships of 1.2

Goldwater worries that allow-

million Quebeckers, it threatens

ing Quebec the freedom to dis-

deliberately refusing to protect

in common-law relationships, she

the very nature of Confederation

criminate

very

them in Vriend, the Supreme

and Dubé represented Hendricks

— the fundamental relationship

heart of the Charter of Rights and

Court had a fit and blasted Alberta.

and Leboeuf in the 2002 landmark

among the provinces and the fed-

Freedoms, a precedent that could

But in Eric v Lola, where Quebec

ruling that won same-sex mar-

discriminated against common-

riage in Quebec.

strikes

at

the

eral government. The Supreme Court ruling in Eric v Lola was a split decision; the math is a little wonky. Five of the nine justices — including Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin — agreed that the Civil Code of

Quebec

toward

was

discriminatory

common-law

spouses

for not affording them the same protections as married couples; four did not. McLachlin, how-

“AS LONG AS A PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT WANTS TO DISCRIMINATE, IT NOW APPEARS TO BE FREE TO DO SO. THIS IS AN INTOLERABLE PROPOSITION.”

law couples by deliberately refus-

For observers like Goldwater

ing to protect them, the Supreme

and Jordan, now that the same-sex

Court handed them a cigar.

marriage fight has been won fed-

go way beyond this one case.

“It’s

like

throwing

constitu-

tional law back like 20 years.”

erally, it seems as if the Supreme Court is pulling up the drawbridge

Goldwater uses terms like “polit-

around the institution and leaving

icized” and Quebec “appeasement”

common-law couples and other

to criticize the Chief Justice’s rul-

non-traditional families out in the

ing. “If the Chief Justice has just

cold.

changed

constitutional

law

in

“I’m worried on a much broader

Canada as we know it, I think a

level for the Supreme Court,” says

majority of judges should say so in

Goldwater. “For lawyers interested

the grounds that the discrimina-

“It’s very, very rare for the

the next judgment. Let’s say there

in constitutional law, we have

tion was justified under Section 1

Supreme Court to save a law

has been a delicate wish to avoid

the feeling, and it’s very subjec-

of the Charter, which states that a

that’s

offending Quebec, which is some-

tive of course, that the Supreme

law may infringe on Charter rights

tory,” says Goldwater. “The Chief

thing I find unacceptable.

Court seems to be turning away

if it can be demonstrably justi-

Justice’s justification for that is

“If the Supreme Courts feels that

from the liberal tendencies it used

fied as reasonable in a free and

Quebec, being Quebec, is free to

federalism means that everybody

to have in the late ’80s and ’90s,

democratic society. The four jus-

discriminate.

has to bow to Quebec’s will, but

which was really pro-Charter liti-

ever, “saved” the legislation on

held

to

be

discrimina-

tices who found no discrimina-

“This leaves constitutional law

Quebec has no obligation to coop-

gation. We seem to be in a new era

tion didn’t find it necessary to

in an unexpected tension: As long

erate with the rest of Canada, I’m

of unexplained timidity.”

address Section 1. Somehow their

as a provincial government wants

scared for Confederation. I think

four votes on the question of dis-

to discriminate, it now appears to

the Supreme Court owes it to the

lenges in family law may be out

That

means

Charter

chal-

crimination and the Chief Justice’s

be free to do so. This is an intol-

population to say what the status

of bounds in the short to medium

one vote on Section 1 added up to

erable proposition that nobody has

of Quebec is in Confederation. Are

term. Future changes — which

a majority.

actually noticed or commented

we subject to the Charter anymore

will need to address everything

upon.”

or not? I think it’s a pretty critical

from assisted reproduction, sur-

question.”

rogacy for gay fathers and multi-

“Even if the infringement can be justified, for example, limiting

Goldwater argues that Eric v

tobacco companies from adver-

Lola turns the clock back to 1995,

The fact that the question has

ple parents to the application of

tising freely, such infringement

the year of the problematic Egan

been raised in a family law case

federal child support guidelines

must be a ‘minimal impairment’

case. That’s when the Supreme

is particularly significant for gay

— will have to originate with pro-

for the discriminated group,” says

Court ruled that denying Old Age

men and lesbians across Canada.

vincial legislatures and new stat-

Montreal

Anne-France

Security spousal benefits to a gay

One of the reasons we have

utes, not the courts. How that will

Goldwater who, along with Marie-

couple was discriminatory — the

same-sex marriage federally is

proceed is anyone’s guess. When

Hélène

at

first time that sexual orientation

that as common-law couples won

the Eric v Lola ruling came down,

Goldwater, Dubé, represented Lola

was read into the Charter’s anti-

certain protections courts found

Continued on page 32

lawyer Dubé,

her

partner

intorontomag.com

31


INSIGHT Continued from page 31

Lola lived with Eric for seven years,

in the trenches, it’s a really hard

Quebec’s justice minister Bertrand

during which time they had three

decision to swallow,” says Jordan.

“This is the standard in the rest of

St-Arnaud said the government

children. Lola wanted to get mar-

“It’s one thing on the property, but

Canada: You don’t look at whether

was open to changing the laws

ried; Eric didn’t, stating he didn’t

on the spousal support? It’s just

a couple has gone to a city hall or

to recognize the rights of com-

believe in it. They broke up in 2002.

really hard.”

a church to start their conjugal life.

mon-law spouses. But then came

Lola had custody of the children

The irony lost on no one is that

You look at the functional nature

a backlash and the government

and Eric agreed to pay child support

the ruling comes out of Quebec,

of the relationship. If it’s a conju-

seems to be backpedalling.

(and they came to their own agree-

where there are more common-

gal, familial relationship, similar to

ment on access to the family home).

law couples than anywhere else in

marriage, then you recognize it as

implica-

But Lola also claimed spousal sup-

the world. In Quebec 31.4 percent of

such,” says Goldwater.

tions of Eric v Lola remain

port and a share of Eric’s property,

all families are common-law (com-

Or as Abella, the only justice on

uncertain, the ruling immediately

filing notice of a Charter challenge

pared to 16.7 percent nationally),

the Supreme Court with a family

impacts

and the number is growing.

law background, wrote in her dis-

W

hile

the

the

wider

common-law

rela-

that argued de facto spouses (the

tionshps of 1.2 million people in

legal term for common-law cou-

“Women are in a very vulnerable

sent, “As the history of modern

Quebec. It also spotlights that com-

ples in Quebec, or conjoints de fait)

position in Quebec,” says Jordan.

family law demonstrates, fairness

mon-law couples across the coun-

should have the same rights as mar-

“It’s the only province or territory

requires that we look at the content

try — despite what they them-

ried couples when they split. The

that doesn’t have spousal support

of the relationship’s social package,

selves may think — may not hold

Quebec Superior Court denied her

for common-law couples. So they’re

not at how it is wrapped.”

the same status as their married

constitutional claims but the Quebec

really way out there. It’s antiquated.”

But in most parts of Canada,

counterparts. And for all the media

Court of Appeal allowed her claim

In her decision, Chief Justice

despite winning increasing protec-

attention heaped on same-sex mar-

McLachlin

Quebec’s

tions, common-law relationships

riage, the vast majority of gay and

“I DON’T KNOW WHY WE WOULD PROTECT VULNERABLE SPOUSES WHO ARE MARRIED AND NOT PROTECT VULNERABLE SPOUSES WHO ARE NOT MARRIED.”

legal framework was designed “to

are still not completely equivalent

promote choice and autonomy for

to marriage. In Ontario, for exam-

all Quebec spouses.

ple, the big disadvantage for com-

Critics of the decision argue that

law relationship). But only mar-

common-law and married couples

for spousal support. That’s the rul-

choice in common-law relation-

ried spouses share equally property

treated virtually the same, as well as

ing the Supreme Court overturned.

ships often resides solely with

accumulated during the marriage.

lesbian couples in Canada are common-law. StatsCan’s latest findings on families show that while the number of same-sex marriages tripled between 2006 and 2011, samesex common-law couples still outnumber same-sex married couples by more than two to one. Only in BC (as of this month), Manitoba and Saskatchewan are

wrote

that

“Those who choose to marry choose

the

protections

mon-law couples is in property

but

sharing and estates. Both married

also the responsibilities — associ-

and common-law spouses are enti-

ated with that status. Those who

tled to spousal support if the rela-

choose not to marry avoid these

tionship breaks down (though only

state-imposed responsibilities and

after the three-year time period

protections.”

required to establish a common-

in areas under federal jurisdiction,

“There are 1.2 million people liv-

the wealthier party. People often

The same holds if your partner dies.

like income tax and Old Age Security.

ing common-law in the province of

stumble into such relationships;

If you are not married, you have no

The rest is a patchwork, province to

Quebec, about one half of them are

sometimes a disadvantaged part-

automatic claim against your part-

province. Confusion reigns.

presumed to be women, more or

ner can’t insist on a marriage. As

ner’s estate, no matter how long

“There’s a lot of misinformation

less, and they’ve just been left high

Justice Rosalie Abella wrote in her

you’ve lived together or even if you

out there,” says Jordan. “A lot of

and dry by the Supreme Court. No

dissenting opinion, “The decision to

have children together.

people think they’re common-law

protection at all,” says Goldwater.

live together as unmarried spouses

If you are in a common-law rela-

after six months to a year. People

“People almost passed out when

may, for some, not in fact be a

tionship in Ontario, write a will, oth-

tend to assume that they have an

they heard the decision. Nobody,

choice at all.”

erwise you’re leaving your partner

interest in the home after they’ve

but nobody, thought that would be

been together for so long. But it’s

the judgment.”

“I don’t think people choose to

in a potentially awful financial and

marry or not to marry based on

emotional bind. For the immedi-

not true. I hear all kinds of things.”

“I don’t know why we would pro-

wanting to enter into a certain legal

ate future, it seems, even a Charter

The ruling in Eric v Lola brought

tect vulnerable spouses who are

set of rights and obligations,” says

challenge can’t undo that bind.

to a close an 11-year legal odys-

married and not protect vulnera-

Jordan. “They don’t even under-

LGBT activism has forced huge

sey. (There’s a publication ban in

ble spouses who are not married,”

stand the difference between com-

changes in Canadian family law.

Canada on the parties’ real names.

says Jordan. “I think as a society as

mon-law and married couples. So I

But despite the profound victory on

They’re easily found online, how-

a whole we should protect econom-

don’t buy this choice argument.”

same-sex marriage, those battles

ever; after all, how many billion-

ically disadvantaged spouses upon

Whether it was an unmarried

could be far from over. It will be fas-

aires are there in Quebec?) After

dissolution of their relationship, par-

woman living and working on her

cinating to watch how LGBT fami-

meeting in Lola’s home country of

ticularly where there are children.

male partner’s farm or a male cou-

lies might affect those changes in

Brazil when she was 17, Eric and

That’s what’s so egregious about the

ple paying into the Canada Pension

the future. •

Lola dated on and off for a few

facts in the Eric and Lola case.

Plan, case after case outside of

years. Later moving to Quebec, 32

ships as marriages in all but name.

March 2013

“For those of us who do family law

Quebec recognized these relation-


210 Wicksteed Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M4G 2C3 T. 416 759 2611 F. 416 759 3342

From tent top to table top and everything in between


LISTINGS & EVENTS

MARCH

1

WEN WEI DANCE First of two nights at the Fleck

2 NIJINSKY Opens at the National Ballet of Canada

Natasha Mytnowych

14 BRITISH TEETH Second of two nights the Toronto Sketch Comedy Festival

Art & Photography IN THE IMAGE OF Group show of young artists including Adrienne Crossman, Franco Deleo, Sholem Krishtalka, Ricky Kruger, Alfred Lam, Matthew Ratcliffe, Logan Salter, Neil Silverman, Craig Skinner and Michael Smit. 7:30pm-10pm. Tue-Thu. 11am-2pm. Fri. Until Sun, Mar 3. Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives. 34 Isabella St. (416) 777-2755. clgca.ca. SNAP Photo auction and big fundraiser for the AIDS Committee of Toronto (actoronto.org). On the block are works by James Robert Durant, Marayna Dickinson, Fausta Facciponte, Liss Platt, Alex McLeod, James Blake, April Hickox, Catherine Heard, Stev’nn Hall, Dennis Day, Alex Fischer, Richard Johnson, David Welch and many more. Preview. Free. Fri, Mar 1-3. Arta Gallery. 14 Distillery Lane. Auction. $100. 5:30pm11:30pm. Thu, Mar 7. Andrew Richard

17

20

MOSCOVITCH DOUBLE BILL Little One, with Michelle Montieth, closes

Designs. 571 Adelaide St E. snap-toronto.com. RICHARD BOULET Stitched and Drawn, quilted and cross-stitched works addressing schizophrenia and the mental health system by the Edmonton artist. $15. 11am-5pm daily (8pm, Wed; PWYC from 5pm). Until Sun, Mar 10. Textile Museum of Canada. 55 Centre Ave. (416) 599-5321. textilemuseum.ca. DANIEL HUTCHINSON Almanac, a solo exhibition of abstract paintings, metaphorical meditations on the weather. Opening. 1pm-4pm. Artist talk. 3pm. Sat, Mar 9. Noon-5pm. Wed-Sat. Until Apr 13. Angell Gallery. 12 Ossington Ave. (416) 530-0444. angellgallery.com. FRANK CHESTER/MICHAEL LIMERICK

Stamps and Scenery, comic book heroines, cube paintings and landscapes. Fri, Mar 29-31. Wychwood Community Gallery. 76 Wychwood Ave. frankchester.ca.

9

8

PETER BINGHAM CHOREOGRAPHY Opens as part of Older and Reckless

DANIEL HUTCHINSON Opens at Angell Gallery

Kevin Thomas Garcia

Steven Lemay

Hamburg Ballet © Holger Badekow

IN THE CITY

HUNTER VALENTINE Great Hall gig at Canadian Music Week

Dance WEN WEI DANCE DanceWorks presents Seventh Sense with original music by Giorgio Magnanensi. Control versus autonomy and dominance versus obedience explored thorugh our relationship to animals. $19.50-$34. 8pm. Fri, Mar 1-2. Fleck Dance Theatre. 207 Queens Quay W. danceworks.ca. NATIONAL BALLET OF CANADA It’s a monster month at the National with three different programs. First up is the Canadian premiere of Nijinsky choreographed by Hamburg Ballet director John Neumeier (who also does set, costumes and lighting). Part memoryballet and part biographical narrative it’s a highly charged exploration of the triumphant and tragic life of the legendary dancer. Guillaume Côté and corps member Skylar Campbell nab the title role along with guest artist Alexandre

22

SANDRA BERNHARD At International Canadian Comedy Festival

Riabko, principal dancer with Hamburg. The score features Chopin, Schumann, Rimsky-Korsakov and Shostakovich. 7:30pm. Sat, Mar 2, 6-8. 2pm. Mar 2, 3 & 7. Then it’s the full-length Romeo and Juliet from 2011 by Russian choreographer Alexei Ratmansky set to Prokofiev’s rich and magisterial score. 7:30pm. Mar 12-16. 2pm. Mar 16 & 17. And finally, a great double-header: The Four Seasons, James Kudelka’s endlessly fascinating interpretation of Vivaldi’s masterpiece, a tour de force evocation of the four stages of a man’s life. With Emergence, a crowd-pleaser from Crystal Pite. 7:30pm Mar 20-23. 2pm. Mar 23 & 24. $25-$239. Four Seasons Centre. 145 Queen St W. (416) 345-9595. national.ballet.ca. OLDER & RECKLESS Canadian dance icons Peter Bingham and Denise Fujiwara headline an international line-up at Moonhorse Dance Theatre’s


LISTINGS & EVENTS

OUR GUIDE TO YOUR MONTH

week.com. Returning this year is the gala fundraiser for the Stephen Lewis Foundation, Dare to Wear Love, featuring the best Toronto designers working with African prints to help fight AIDS in Africa. Afterparty at Deq Lounge at the Ritz Carlton. $75; $200 & $500 VIP. 7pm cocktails; 9pm show. Mar 22. (416) 533-9292 ext 303. daretowearlove.com.

Film & Video CLOUDBURST Thom Fitzgerald’s latest feature finally gets a theatrical run in Toronto after a popular reception at Inside Out last year and numerous festival awards and appearances. The feel-good queer road movie stars Olympia Dukakis and Brenda Fricker as an elderly couple heading from Maine to Nova Scotia to get married. On the way they meet sexy Ryan Doucette. Opening. Fri, Mar 8 (director in attendance at the 7pm & 9pm screenings). Carlton Cinemas. 20 Carlton St. cloudburstmovie.com. Go to intorontomag.com to read our interview with Fitzgerald. ALUCINE The festival of Latin film and media arts runs Thu, Mar 21 to 28, opening with La Playa DC directed by Canadian Juan A Arango. Two queer short films Na Sua Companhia and Bailao are in the Our Lives Our Stories program. Mar 30. The fest presents a retrospective of film and performance by Raul Ferrera Balanquet in a program called Afro Latino Queer Decolonial Creative Strategies. Mar 28 (at UofT). Jackman Hall. 317 Dundas St W. (416) 548-8914. alucinefestival.com.

Issues & Talks CONTEMPORARY CURRENTS IN SEXUAL DIVERSITY POLITICS UofT hosts a day-

CLOUDBURST

Thom Fitzgerald’s road move starring Olympia Dukakis and Ryan Doucette opens at the Carlton on Fri, Mar 8.

recurring series celebrating older artists. Bingham, Vancouver’s contact improv master, presents Romantic Old Horses, a duet for Daelik (Vancouver) and Kostas Gerardos (Greece), an intimate and powerful encounter between two male friends. Fujiwara presents an excerpt of Eunoia based on the 2002 Griffin Prize-winning work by poet Christian Bök. Feautring Sylvie Bouchard, Claudia Moore, Lucy Rupert, Miko Sobreira, Rebecca Hope Terry and Gerry Trentham. Also on the program are solos by Peter Chin and Nancy Latoszewski (Greyeyes). $25. 8pm. Fri, Mar 8 & 9. 2pm. Mar 10. Dancemakers Centre. 9 Trinity St, # 313. (416) 504-6429 ext 30. moonhorsedance.com TORONTO DANCE THEATRE WorldStage presents Everyday Anthems, choreographed by Heidi Strauss, along with text from playwright Brendan Gall. Explores anthems as a metaphor for

overcoming obstacles. $15-$40. 8pm. Wed, Mar 6-9. Fleck Dance Theatre. 207 Queens Quay W. harbourfrontcentre.com/worldstage. See page 6. BELINDA MCGUIRE DanceWorks presents The Heist Project, a one-woman dance event featuring the premieres of three commissioned works created by Emio Greco, Pieter C Scholten (Amsterdam), Sharon Moore (Toronto) and Idan Sharabi (Tel Aviv). $15-$30. 8pm. Thu, Mar 7-9. Enwave Theatre. 231 Queens Quay W. (416) 973-4000. harbourfrontcentre.com.

Fashion & Design TORONTO FASHION WEEK World MasterCard Fashion Week Fall 2013 Collections from Izzy Camilleri, Klaxon Howl, Pink Tartan, Duy, Mackage, Vawk, Stephen Caras and more. Mon, Mar 1822. David Pecaut Square. John and Queen St W. worldmastercardfashion-

long symposium in honour of retiring professor, administrator and LGBT activist David Rayside. Participants include Waleh Saleh, Momin Rahman, Marc Stein, Gary Kinsman, Tim McCaskell, Nadia Bellow and many more. 10am-5pm. Reception. 5pm-7:30pm. Fri, Mar 1. University College. 15 King’s College Circle. uc.utoronto.ca/sexualdiversity.ca.

Pop & Rock CANADIAN MUSIC WEEK Runs Tue, Mar 19 to 24. Kicks off with Rihanna’s Diamonds World Tour with A$AP Rocky. $35-$165. Tue, Mar 19. Air Canada Centre. 40 Bay St. ticketmaster.ca. Then it’s Toronto’s sexational queer rockers Hunter Valentine. $15. 11pm. Mar 20. Great Hall. 1087 Queen St W. The War on Drugs’ bassist Dave Hartley brings his solo project Nightlands. $16. 9pm. Mar 21. Mod Club. 720 College St. Canadian indie rockers Two Hours Traffic and Rah Rah and others. $15. 8:30pm doors. Mar 21. Lee’s Palace. 529 Bloor St W. Toronto’s jewel of a songwriter Ron Sexsmith, with guests. $45. 8:30pm. Mar 22. Randolph Theatre. 736 Bathurst St. Fest culminates with The Indies awards gala featuring performances from nominated

artists like Metric, Diamond Rings, Yukon Blonde, The Wooden Sky, Canailles and Cadence Weapon. $57. 8pm Fri, Mar 22. Kool Haus. 132 Queens Quey E. cmw.net.

Classical & Jazz MUSICIANS IN ORDINARY Soprano Hallie Fishel and theorboist John Edwards perform baroque settings of Italian Renaissance poetry featuring compositions by Claudio Monteverdi, Giulio Caccini, Sigismondo d’India, Vincenzo Galilei (Galileio’s father) and poetry by Petrarch, Tasso, Marino and Guarini. $25. 8pm. Sat, Mar 2. Heliconian Hall. 35 Hazelton Ave. (416) 535-9956. musiciansinordinary.ca. A NIGHT IN MADRID Dancers Esmeralda Enrique and Paloma Cortés perform Spanish classical dance with the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir in a program featuring the gypsy folk-inflected music of Luigi Boccherini. With guest director and violin soloist Elizabeth Wallfisch. $36-$85. 7pm. Wed, Mar 20. 8pm. Mar 21-23. 3:30pm. Mar 24. Trinity-St Paul’s Centre. 427 Bloor St W. (416) 964-6337. tafelmusik.org. NEW CREATIONS FESTIVAL The Toronto Symphony’s celebration of contemporary music runs Sat, Mar 2 to 9 featuring world premieres by Tod Machover and Andrew Staniland. One highlight is the North American premiere of the Violin Concerto by Toronto’s Owen Pallett (aka Final Fantasy). That evening also features work by Machover and Krystof Maratka and a post-concert party with Pallett DJing. 8pm. Mar 7. $29-$145. Roy Thomson Hall. 60 Simcoe St. (416) 593-4828 tso.ca.

Stage AND SLOWLY BEAUTY… By Michel Nadeau, the artistic director of Quebec City’s Théâtre Niveau Parking; translated by Maureen Labonté. Tarragon Theatre presents this Belfry Theatre/ National Arts Centre co-production directed by Michael Shamata. It’s the story of a man going alone to see Anton Chekhov’s The Three Sisters. Heralded as a love letter to art and the poetry of life. Starring Shawn Ahmed, Mary-Colin Chisholm, Dennis Fitzgerald, Caroline Gillis, Christian Murray, Celine Stubel. $27-$53. 8pm. Tue-Sat. 2:30pm. Sun. Until Sun, Mar 31. Tarragon Theatre Mainspace. 30 Bridgman Ave. (416) 531-1827. tarragontheatre.com. BENT UofT’s Hart House Theatre presents Martin Sherman’s hard-hitting play from 1979 exploring life for a gay man imprisoned by the Nazis in the infamous Dachau concentration camp. Carter West directs. $25. 8pm. Fri, Mar 1, 2, 6-9. 2pm. Mar 9. Hart House. 7 Hart House Circle. (416) 978-8849. uofttix.ca. AFTEROCK b current presents a new festival of performance work by black women and artists of colour in fully staged workshop productions. Includes the premiere of Six and Eight by Roselyn Kelada-Sedra, directed by Taylor Marie Graham and featuring KeladaContinued on page 36


LISTINGS & EVENTS

IN SPOT DANIEL ET DANIEL Story Derek Dotto

Continued from page 35

Sedra and Kaleb Alexander with choreography by Alcina Chiu. 7:30pm. Wed, Mar 6 & 8. And the premiere of Seventh Heaven, written and performed by Naomi Abiola, directed by Rhoma Spencer. 7:30pm. Tue, Mar 5 & 7. Concludes with a reading of Harriet’s Daughter by M NourbeSe Philip. 2pm. Mar 10. $20. COBA’s Studio Theatre. Daniel’s Spectrum. 585 Dundas St E. bcurrent.ca. LEAR World Stage presents a remount of this innovative Hatch production featuring Canadian performance legend Clare Coulter in the title role of Shakespeare’s exploration of family dysfunction. Directed by Philip McKee. $15$30. 8pm. Tue-Sun. 4pm. Sat & Sun. Tue, Mar 5-10. York Quay Studio Theatre. 235 Queens Quay W. harbourfrontcentre.com/worldstage. TORONTO SKETCH COMEDY FESTIVAL

The belly-laugh-and-off-colourcringe-binge returns, running Thu, Mar 7 to 17 at Comedy Bar (945 Bloor St W), Lower Ossington Theatre (100 Ossington Ave), Randolph Theatre (736 Bathurst St) and Second City (51 Mercer St). The offerings seem to get queerer every year. Look out for TO duo British Teeth featuring Tim Sims Award-winners Allana Reoch and Filip Jeremic. 7pm. Mar 8 & 14. Comedy Bar. Hot Thespian Action is an award-winning sketch comedy troupe from Winnipeg. 8pm. Mar 8 & 9. Lower Ossington. Pink Slip is the local quartet of Alan Kliffer, Nate Callens, Nicole Elsasser and Felicity Penman. 9pm. Mar 7. And Rocket Scientists is a TO foursome featuring Ephraim Ellis and Brandon Hackett. 10pm. Mar 14. Lower Ossington. $15 most evenings; passes available. (647) 505-1050. torontosketchfest.com.

→ OFF-ROAD ADVENTURE Jon Raffman’s State Route 31 is part of Snap auction on Thu, Mar 7.. AS I LAY DYING Theatre Smith-Gilmour presents the premiere of their adaptation of the William Faulkner novel. A 40-mile funeral procession turns into an absurdly tragic journey. $15-$30. 7:30pm. Tue-Sat. PWYC. 2:30pm. Sat (& Sun Mar 31). Fri, Mar 8-31. Theatre Passe Muraille Mainspace. 16 Ryerson Ave. (416) 504-7529. artsboxoffice.ca. CANADIAN INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL This new festival runs Tue,

Mar 19 to 21 featuring comedy stars like Dave Foley, Jon Dore and Chelsea Perretti. The biggest star, and the biggest mouth, belongs to headliner Sandra Bernhard. $44.50-$54.50. 9pm. Fri, Mar 22. The Winter Garden Theatre. 189 Yonge St. candiancomedfest.com. ARIGATO, TOKYO Opens Thu, Mar 21 at Buddies. See page 43.

Causes & Events SNOWBALL Marking the 25th anniversary of specialty AIDS hospital Casey House this year’s gala, Chroma, features co-chairs Tommy Smythe, Arren Williams and Raymond Girard. With dinner by Lynn Crawford and Lora Kirk of Ruby Watchco and the team from Daniel et Daniel (see story this page). The Lounge Party features DJ Ticky Ty and Bellosound’s Daniel Buckman, and a dance choreographed by Scott Fordham. $750 dinner and party; $150 party only. 5:30pm dinner. 10pm party. Sat, Mar 23. Mattamy Athletic Centre (in the old Maple Leaf Gardens). 50 Carlton St. caseyhouse.ca. •

“We made a lot of mistakes but we worked really hard,” says Daniel Megly, recalling how he and his business partner Daniel Clairet got their catering business, Daniel et Daniel off the ground 32 years ago. “Eventually we managed to get wiser and get better at it.” Both natives of Paris, France, the pair met while working at Toronto’s Auberge Gavroche, a Yorkville dining room popular in the 1970s and ‘80s. Combining Clairet’s culinary talents with Megly’s background in luxury hotels and event planning, the two set up shop at Carlton and Parliament in 1981. “The neighbourhood endorsed us really well,” says Megly. “A lot of people have been coming here for 20 years.” The tiny storefront packs a powerful Parisian punch. It’s constantly bustling with regulars grabbing their morning cappuccino and croissant, one of the many fresh salads and sandwiches for lunch, or a dinner of lasagna or shepherd’s pie. Daniel et Daniel pride themselves on staying one step ahead of culinary currents. “We see the trend coming and say, ‘What else can we do with that?’ says company VP Russell Day. “At one point it was sushi. It’s been cupcakes. Now it’s donuts. So we’ve come up with a savory donut, a short rib beignet. It’s a little twist on that.” The company has been planning

→ A CATERED AFFAIR Daniel et Daniel is

the perfect choice for a quick bite or a sumptuous event.

same-sex weddings since before they were trendy, or even legal, for that matter. “We did commitment ceremonies 20 years ago.” says Day. “We find it’s more about the party atmosphere. They’re usually about the hors d’oeuvres, the networking. But as in most weddings, there is one point where there is something traditional that must be done, whether it’s the cake or the ring bearer and flower girl.” So there are there still bridezillas? “Oh ya,” Megly laughs. “Without answering your questions directly, there are people who are picky,” Day interjects. “It’s different in gay weddings. We haven’t been conditioned all of our lives to get married. It hasn’t been drilled into me since I was little so I’m open to a lot of things. It’s really great when you sit across from a couple that is having issues deciding, to offer them really great options.”

DANIEL ET DANIEL 248 Carlton St. (416) 968-9275. danieletdaniel.ca.


BMO Financial Group

A RT & E N T E RTA I N M E N T

VISUAL ART

HAVING A MOMENT →

Stealing a view of great art high atop a bank tower

Review Pamela Meredith | Photography Toni Hafkenscheid

38

March 2013


A RT & ENTERTAINMENT

I

n layman terms, artist Sarah

sifies

Anne Johnson is killing it. In

on real and imag-

loftier jargon, her recent proj-

ined

her

focus

places

(few

ects reflect a deepening narrative

places have cap-

complexity, growing technical facil-

tured our imagina-

ity and an ambitious shift in scale

tion more than the

that combine in incredibly pow-

Arctic).

erful, immersive ways. In other

tographs

words, her work has gone from

fully

strength to mind-blowing strength.

the vastness, sub-

in

Winnipeg,

phoCamping, 2003 © Sarah Anne Johnson / Courtesy of Stephen Bulger Gallery

Based

Her

beautidocument

Johnson

lime light and all

caught the art world’s attention

of that slowly melt-

with Tree Planting (2002-2005), her

ing ice. Onto these

Yale University thesis project. This

images,

series of photographs record her

goes to work add-

experience over three summers of

ing painted, incised

working in deforested areas in the

and

northern Manitoba wilderness. The

imagery

images capture the rugged land-

fireworks,

scape, utopian communal living,

tecture

and gritty hard work integral to

Ominous

the tree-planting ethos. In the final

clouds hover over

installation however there is a sur-

the grey sea while

prise, as there always is in Johnson’s

other more whim-

work. The more documentary pho-

sical interventions

tographs are complicated, turned

include

on their head, and juxtaposed

rendering her fellow artist-adven-

her discerning choices), Johnson

with complementary images cre-

turers as cheerleaders, replete with

ated in the studio using dioramas

painted-on pompoms and con-

was given the opportunity to produce a significant new work for

and hand-crafted, Sculpey figurines

fetti. These layered details prof-

the project space high atop a cor-

representing

fer a broad spectrum of emotion

porate tower (viewable only by

and humanity. “All my worries, all

appointment).

other

remembered

Johnson

embossed such

as

archi-

and

text. inky

cheekily

JOHNSON BRINGS THE WILDERNESS TO BAY STREET, WHICH SOME MIGHT CONSIDER A DIFFERENT KIND OF WILD.

my concerns and all my hopes and

I hesitate to reveal too much

fears of the future of this place, I

about the piece, as part of its power

can paint it right on,” Johnson has

is in the mystery of approaching a

said.

→ COMPOUND INTEREST Sarah Anne Johnson creates mythic tableaux from her real-life experiences in Canada’s wilderness. Her new installation Asleep in the Forest (opposite page) harkens to earlier work like the Tree Planting series of photos (above) that mix documentary images with memories and fantasies.

closed door and leaning in to peek

or sought refuge in the wilderness.

Recently the project was exploded

through a brass peephole. The

We’ve found them so quickly and

into three dimensions for Untitled

slow reveal astounds. It takes some

no wonder, hiding in the forest is

(Schooner and Fireworks), installed

moments before the eye can adjust

such a misplaced idea; we are so

at

Gallery.

to the single oculus and the dimly

exposed there. Many possible nar-

Dominated by a giant Technicolor

lit space beyond. It’s a nocturnal

ratives spring to mind, culled from

moments from those summers.

firework/cloud

hovering

setting. Behind the door is a dense

the headlines and the movies but

“The photographs of real people are

over a model schooner, like the one

forest with a small clearing lit by

balanced by so much ambiguity, all

grounded in reality,” she has said.

Johnson lived aboard for her Arctic

a flickering campfire, reminiscent

heightened by the fact that we are

“The photographs of the dolls are

residency and inhabited by carous-

of those sculptural creations from

in a bank tower in the financial dis-

more about metaphor and mem-

ing clay figurines, the installation

Johnson’s earlier Tree Planting pho-

trict. And one experiences it alone;

ory.” Together they depict a more

dramatically highlights the tension

tographs. There are forest sounds.

there is only one peephole. I can’t

fulsome, personal (and what she

between purity and mess, pleasure

Two figures — men — are present

believe my eyes.

calls “quietly political”) representa-

and guilt, doom and celebration.

by the fire, one sitting, one reclin-

the

Winnipeg

Art

hybrid

tion of place and purpose and estab-

For her latest work, Asleep in

ing, both sleeping, neither keeping

lish Johnson’s ongoing engagement

the Forest, Johnson brings the wil-

watch. Around them are bags and

with the interplay between fiction

derness to Bay Street, which some

piles of money, stacks of Canadian

and veracity.

might consider a different kind of

20s, 50s, 100s. The clincher: The

wild. Commissioned by BMO (major

figures are wearing business suits

Arctic

kudos to them for the Project Room

and ties and are relatively unrum-

Wonderland (2011) series inten-

program and curator Dawn Cain for

pled; they’ve just escaped, or run,

Half a world away in northern

Norway,

Johnson’s

ASLEEP IN THE FOREST Until Nov 29. BMO Project Room. By appointment only. asleepintheforest.com. PAMELA MEREDITH Is TD Bank Group’s senior curator. intorontomag.com

39


LIVING & DESIGN

FILM

WE’RE NOT IN KANSAS ANYMORE Sundance Institute

At the same time as starring in Oz: The Great and Powerful, multitasking James Franco travels as far from Disney as he can get Story Peter Knegt

intorontomag.com

41


A RT & E N T E RTA I N M E N T

M

big

new

ass audiences around

and Vanessa Hudgens) from jail so

tion, Franco helped bring two films

Friedkin’s

the world are likely to

they can prostitute for him. And

largely about pornography loads of

apparently cut to avoid an X rat-

flock to James Franco’s

Oz. That’s an extraordinary few

deserved attention.

ing. While that in itself is an inter-

release,

the

Disney-

produced family film Oz: The

months even by Franconian standards of multitasking.

film

Cruising

Kink, produced by Franco and

esting concept (and part of the film

directed by Christina Voros, is a

is indeed a deliciously hardcore

Great and Powerful. Franco stars

But the fact that Franco does a

look at the world inside the San

recreation), the film extends well

as the titular wizard best known

whole lot of stuff simultaneously

Francisco armory that the porn

beyond to discuss representations

as a not-quite-friend of Dorothy in

(did I mention he’s also pursuing a

production facilities of the bond-

of queer sex in both Hollywood and

the classic film The Wizard of Oz.

PhD from Yale?) is not new news.

age and SM website kink.com calls

society in general.

Set before the events of that film,

What is interesting is the content

home Though it features multiple

“As a filmmaker and a creative

Franco’s Oz is the film’s focus as he

of the latest batch of multitask-

scenes of explicit sex, Kink breaks

person I’m always interested in

stars alongside witches good and

ing. In one of his smaller contri-

through the misconceptions fac-

questioning or examining areas or

ing both BDSM in general and the

bad (played by Michelle Williams,

“I’M ALWAYS INTERESTED IN QUESTIONING OR EXAMINING AREAS OR TOPICS THAT CREATE FISSURES OR MAKE US QUESTION HOW WE ARE LIVING,”

way the porn associated with it is

topics that create fissures or make us question how we are living,”

produced.

says Franco. “Is it by choice? What

starred in, directed and/or pro-

butions to the films noted above,

ferent from what was happening

“I wanted to use real sex. But

duced four films. Add to that a film

Franco plays Hugh Hefner in Rob

behind the scenes. There it felt like

not in a pornographic way but in a

that screened at the 2012 Toronto

Epstein

everybody is on the same team and

way that helped talk about ideas or

Film Festival also hitting theatres

Linda Lovelace biopic Lovelace,

everybody is working together.”

helped tell a story.”

this

Korine’s

which screened at both Sundance

Interior. Leather Bar, meanwhile,

It might be tempting to have

Spring Breakers, which features

and Berlin. In something of a par-

is a project Franco co-directed with

these films lead into a conversa-

Franco as a drug and arms dealer

allel to Hefner, Franco became a

Travis Mathews (the man behind

tion along the lines of, “Why is

who bails out some college stu-

sort of celebrity spokesperson for

the sexually explicit I Want Your

James Franco doing all these sex

dents (including Selena Gomez

sex-positivity at both festivals,

Love, which screened at Inside

movies anyway?” Or, more likely,

though in a considerably un-Play-

Out last year). Sitting somewhere

“Is James Franco gay?” But it’s way

boy way. As the producer of the

between fact and fiction, Leather

more interesting to look at what

documentary Kink and co-director

Bar is about Franco and Mathews

Franco is doing instead of why. •

of Interior. Leather Bar, an innova-

trying to remake the 40 minutes of

tive mix of narrative and non-fic-

explicit SM material from William

Rachel Weisz and Mila Kunis, no less). But Oz is just one of many, many projects actor-director-academic-artist Franco has on tap for 2013 — the vast majority of them are as far from Disney as it gets. Between

screenings

at

the

Sundance and Berlin film festivals (held in January and February and each among the most influential film fests in the world), Franco

month,

Harmony

→ LIPS OR HIPS? One of James Franco’s current projects is a film recreating censored sex scenes from William Friedkin’s 1980 film Cruising.

42

1980

February 2013

and

Jeffrey

Friedman’s

“The subject matter of these vid-

do we believe in? Is it because

eos was pretty extreme,” says

that’s exactly how we want to

Franco. “I watch a certain kind of

live and that’s what’s making us

pornography, but this was much

happy? Or is that something that

more extreme than the kind of

is sort of handed down in various

pornography I watch. And the

ways of pop culture, school, adver-

dynamics within the video — the

tisers, everything? That’s one of

sort of sadomasochistic dynam-

main reasons I was also interested

ics within the video — were so dif-

in these subjects.


KOERNER HALL IS:

“A beautiful space for music” THE GLOBE AND MAIL SUN., APR. 7, 2013 3PM KOERNER HALL

Cameron Carpenter

At Carpenter’s performances “flamboyant presentation goes hand in hand with unquestioned virtuosity.” (The New York Times) He will perform his Scandal for organ and orchestra with the KitchenerWaterloo Symphony, as well as solo pieces and spontaneous improvisations with audience participation.

FRI., APR. 19, 2013 8PM KOERNER HALL

Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg with Anne-Marie McDermott A “breathtakingly daring and original artist” (The Washington Post), Salerno-Sonnenberg and pianist Anne-Marie McDermott present "Dark & Light," a journey that starts with Arvo Pärt’s short and hauntingly beautiful Speigel im Spiegel (Mirror in the Mirror) and connects without a break to Prokofiev’s powerful and dramatic Sonata No. 1. The second half of the performance features Franck's popular and beloved Violin Sonata in A Major.

TICKETS START AT ONLY $40! 416.408.0208 www.performance.rcmusic.ca 273 BLOOR STREET WEST (BLOOR & AVENUE RD.) TORONTO


A RT & E N T E RTA I N M E N T

STAGE

ISLANDS OF DESIRE →

In his latest play Daniel MacIvor juggles hearts and minds in a cross-cultural love triangle set in Japan Story Serafin LaRiviere | Photography Tanja-Tiziana

44

March 2013


A RT & ENTERTAINMENT

B

eing a playwright in Canada

stories. The playwright became

this

Bad Times’ artistic director Brendan

is a tricky business. Our cit-

interested in Noh while participat-

theme with the lead character Carl,

Healy who is excited to be premier-

izenry isn’t well known for

ing in a Japanese production of his

a

holiday-

ing a new work from one of his the-

play You Are Here.

ing in Tokyo. Carl (played by David

atre’s most pre-eminent alumni.

supporting live theatre, our critics

Arigato,

Tokyo

native

explores

Vancouverite

can dance the line between acerbic

“I spent a few weeks there,”

Storch) has pretty much given up

It’s their first-ever collaboration.

and downright vicious, and secur-

MacIvor says. “The play they were

on love, but finds himself pulled

“I’m so honoured that Daniel would

ing enough funding to cover food

doing was set in Toronto. I told

into the lives of his Japanese inter-

think of us, of Buddies and of me,

and rent while crafting your next

them I would be more than happy

preter Myoshi (Cara Gee), her actor

masterpiece is frequently akin to

to rewrite it to be set in Tokyo, but

to premiere new work,” says Healy. “It was a little scary at first, because

rummaging beneath the sofa cush-

they wanted it to be Japanese actors playing people in Toronto. I have to

manages to clear all three of these

admit I found that a little odd, and it

hurdles, you know you’re dealing

didn’t end up working for me in the

with someone truly special.

play, but I really liked them.”

“THERE’S A LINE THERE THAT DOESN’T REALLY GET CROSSED…. IT’S JUST UNDERSTOOD THAT YOU AS A WESTERNER COULDN’T TRULY UNDERSTAND [JAPANESE] CULTURE.”

he’s such an established writer and

ions for coins. So when one artist

Daniel MacIvor has been wowing

Entranced with the cultural reflec-

critics, pulling crowds and keeping

tion of a Japanese company on

himself in hatpins and ink for nigh

his Toronto-centric play, MacIvor

on three decades after founding the

offered to write a brand new piece

da da kamera theatre company in

for the company that would be set

1986. Since then he’s hit a slew of

in Japan. They refused.

I have such immense admiration for his work. I was like, ‘How am I going to engage in those conversations about production and rewrites that you need to have while directing?’ I mean, what do I know? He’s Daniel MacIvor! “But he’s very practical about his writing, and he’s in no way neurotic about it. It’s such a pleasure.” The feeling is mutual. “I’m thrilled

homeruns with lauded plays like

“They’re not interested in Tokyo,”

Cul de Sac, In on It, A Beautiful

says the playwright. “They’re not

View, Here Lies Henry and his sem-

interested in Japan. They want to be

inal one-man tour de force, House.

showing plays that are about people

brother Yori (Michael Dufays) and a

so beautiful and rigorous and deep.

in other places, in another world.

drag queen named Etta. Etta is the

I’m thrilled he’s directing it.”

Many of these were produced in

about

working

with

Brendan

Healy,” says MacIvor. “His work is

In a play about cross-cultural

conjunction with Buddies in Bad

“But I was very intrigued by Tokyo

star, a narrator who embodies the

Times Theatre, the historic home

and Japan generally. I went back to

play’s clash of genders and desires.

understanding,

of Canadian queer theatre and one

do some research, and made some

The role is played by Tyson James,

focusing on theatre craft is key.

of Toronto’s most enduring artis-

other kinds of discoveries about the

a stunning drag performer in his

”Something Daniel said once that

tic institutions. MacIvor returns to

culture which affected the play I

own right and a former member of

has stayed with me for years is that

Buddies with his new piece called

was planning to write, about how

Buddies’ youth program.

the theatre teaches us empathy,”

Arigato, Tokyo, premiering later

impenetrable the culture can be in

this month. The work draws inspi-

Japan.

or

lack

thereof,

Douglas

says Healy. “He has characters who

Coupland character,” says MacIvor.

are so relatable, but he doesn’t ask

“Carl’s

a

kind

of

ration from Noh theatre, a tradi-

“Everyone’s really nice. You’re

“He’s a journalist who made good,

for our pity or our sympathy. He

tional art form that incorporates

hosted to within an inch of your

got involved in fiction and non-fic-

simply asks for our empathy.”

music, movement, masks and gen-

life, but there’s a line there that

tion books and became a celebrated

der play into its stylized, dramatic

doesn’t really get crossed. It took

writer.

me two visits to figure that out.

Tokyo, viewing Japan through a

It’s not like there’s something hid-

very western lens.

→ BEHIND THE MASK Daniel MacIvor’s new play, Arigato, Tokyo, is narrated by a drag queen named Etta played by Tyson James.

den, it’s just understood that you as a westerner couldn’t truly understand their culture.”

He’s

travelling

through

“At the end of the day it’s a tragic love story.” The play is directed by Buddies in

ARIGATO, Tokyo PWYC-$37. 8pm. Tue-Sat. 2:30pm. Sun. Thu, Mar 21-Apr 14. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre. 12 Alexander St. (416) 9758555. buddiesinbadtimes.com. intorontomag.com

45


TRUE TO YOU. MEET MINT MEDIA GROUP. DEDICATED TO EXCELLENCE IN MARKETING AND PUBLISHING, TAILORED TO FIT THE GLOBAL LGBT COMMUNITY. SUPERIOR STRATEGIES, AND SOPHISTICATED MEDIA. TAP INTO A NEW MARKET, EXTEND YOUR REACH, AND GROW YOUR BUSINESS. THERE’S A WORLD OF OPPORTUNITY WAITING TO BE DISCOVERED. WE CAN HELP. CALL 416-967-7250 TODAY TO GET STARTED! WWW.THEMINTMEDIAGROUP.COM


A RT & ENTERTAINMENT

HONEY-SWEET →

MUSIC: Heartthrob by Tegan and Sara Review Mary Dickie

T

presents

a photographic art fundraiser for the

AIDS COMMITTEE of TORONTO

Toronto’s most exciting annual auction of contemporary art photography

Live and Silent Auction Gala Event Thursday March 7, 2013 The SNAP! Factory @ Andrew Richard Designs 571 Adelaide Street East at Parliament Street | Toronto Public Preview February 28 to March 3, 2013 Arta Gallery 14 Distillery Lane Distillery District | Toronto For Gala Tickets and to view the 2013 Collection www.snap-toronto.com

TICKETS ON SALE NOW! CARA BARER, Journey To Zaragoza

egan and Sara Quin have always maintained distinct lives and styles, despite being a perfectly matched set of identical twin lesbian singer/songwriters. They live on opposite sides of the continent, for one thing (though each lives in two cities: Vancouver and LA for Tegan; Montreal and New York for Sara), and they write their songs separately, only getting together to produce their albums — of which there are now seven, not including EPs and remixes. But while there has been a natural-sounding progression in their music since their days as acoustic indie-folk musicians in Calgary, with Heartthrob the now 32-yearold sisters have taken a major step toward bringing their particular streams together into the big river of mainstream, high-gloss pop. It was reportedly the experience of touring with high-profile bands like The Killers and The Black Keys that convinced Tegan and Sara they needed to up their game. Consequently, they decided to borrow a page from other pop divas’ playbooks and use several big-time producers for Heartthrob, including Greg Kurstin (Pink, Kelly Clarkson) and Mike Elizondo (Dr Dre, Nelly Furtado). They also decided to push the rock guitars down in the mix while bringing the keyboards to the forefront, and to attempt to merge their different songwriting styles by working on each other’s songs. The result is a big, honey-

sweet pop sound that has already proven itself in the marketplace, as Heartthrob debuted near the top of the charts in both the US and Canada, and Tegan and Sara have signed on to tour with the Grammy-winning band Fun this summer. This is one massive pop album studded with hits: “Closer” is super-catchy and “Now I’m All Messed Up” has their two voices playing nicely off each other (“Go if you want to”/“Please stay”). Still, the album is at times almost disconcertingly sleek, with all the rough edges smoothed out into perfectly manicured sameness. There’s still angst and heartbreak in the songs, but painful vulnerability has been replaced by mature regret and remorse. That’s fine and perhaps inevitable, but there are bound to be fans who preferred Tegan and Sara when they didn’t sound like everybody else.

HEARTTHROB Tegan and Sara. Warner Bros. $15. teganandsara.com. intorontomag.com

47


S EX s p onsored by spa excess

ASK THE SEX GEEK — with Andrea Zanin

“Why are there no good Caucasian dildos out there? I would like a silicone dildo that is coloured like a human being with my colouring.” Robin →

sighed

grown hard-on. “In an actual erec-

sive and you can use it for penetra-

Ananda DaSilva, a worker/owner

“So

would

we

all,”

tion,” says DaSilva, “there will be

tion by means of an optional flex-

at Toronto sex shop Come As

blood

blues

rod installed inside, though I wince

You Are (comeasyouare.com). “It

in the veins, reds and purples in

at the thought of the glue pulling

is really challenging for all differ-

there.” If full-on realism is your

on the tender skin underneath.

ent folks. The thing we’ve worked

aim, you need to consider the range

And be warned: The website speci-

really hard on and struggled with

of features that can make a silicone

fies they are not intended as pack-

for years is to find toys that are

cock look like it grew on a person —

and-play devices, so sexing with

good quality and that come in mul-

pores, hair, vein colouring and more

them voids the warranty.

tiple skin tones. Even if it’s a fabu-

— as well as the standard ques-

If you’re on a budget or want to

lous cock, if it only comes in one

tions of size, shape, testicles, har-

make like a bunny, and realistic

person’s skin tone, we won’t carry

ness compatibility and appropriate-

feel is important to you, opt for a

it, because we have an anti-racist

ness for daily wear or play or both.

dual-density silicone dildo, made

mandate here and want to repre-

In short: It’s complicated!

with a firmer silicone core sur-

undertones,

subtle

sent a variety. The ones that come

It’s also pricey.

rounded by a softer shell to bet-

in multiple skin tones usually have

DaSilva directs me to ReelMagik

ter approximate the feel of a flesh

a light, a medium and a dark tone,

(reelmagik.com), a Pennsylvania-

cock. Canadian company Happy

but I imagine that for companies to

based movie special effects com-

Valley

mass-make toys that are going to

pany that sells fully custom-made

Lucky,

go with a lot of different bodies is a

prosthetic penises, boasting that

and US-based Vixen Creations and

huge challenge.”

their cocks “pass the grab test with

Tantus offer them too.

makes

one

(called

“THE THING WE’VE WORKED REALLY HARD ON AND STRUGGLED WITH FOR YEARS IS TO FIND TOYS THAT ARE GOOD QUALITY AND THAT COME IN MULTIPLE SKIN TONES.”

the

happyvalleysilicone.com),

Most dildos are made with a sin-

flying colours.” They look majestic,

Still, in terms of looks, you may

gle colour of silicone, which doesn’t

but they’ll run you from just over

have to settle for what DaSilva calls

reflect the depth of tone in human

$500 to nearly a grand — ouch! If

“beigey-peachy-putty colour.” Add

flesh. No matter what our baseline

money is no object, you can pick

some mood lighting. Or maybe a

skin tone is, our actual skin shows

from 17 colours, with options for

blindfold.

a range of colours, especially when

hand-painted veining and hand-

things such as sudden increase in

punched hair. The cock is affixed

blood flow occur like in a home-

to your body with medical adhe-

ESSENTIAL NEW WEDDING INVITATION DESIGNS FROM BELLA FIGURA ANDREA ZANIN The Sex Geek blogs at sexgeek.wordpress.com.

300+ LETTERPRESS DESIGNS DAZZLING METALLICS | HAND CALLIGRAPHY | LOVE MADE WITH THE PLANET IN MIND IN SYRACUSE, NEW YORK 866.699.6040 | BELLAFIGURA.COM


O N T HE T OWN

CAUGHT IN THE ACT by Sarah Clayton Nesbitt & Matthew Stevenson

4

2

WORLD PRIDE COUNTDOWN, THE ROUNDHOUSE.

2

3

1

6

9

5

7

10

8

11

12

→ 1. Steven Banks 2. Barr Gilmore, Ange Beever, David Hawe, Robin Beever 3. Chad Simon, Kristyn Wong-Tam, Sean Hillier 4. Gaelan Love, Matty Thompson 5. Eric Kostiuk, Williams, Kelly McCray 6. Drew Bowden, Sharon Deebrah-Sarrami 7. Nicolas Tallarico, Luis Varessis 8. Patricia Salib, Rod Warren 9. Scott Mullin 10. Reggie Lanuza, Kevin Beaulieu 11. Gordon Bowness, Maurice Vellekoop 12. Brad Lochlin MacInnis, Rama Luksiarto. 50

March 2013


In Toronto Mar-2013  

gay magazine Toronto

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you