Page 1

FOOD Who wants delicious, mouthwatering pies?

Gay & Lesbian Cit y Living


TRAVEL love, life & light in Provincetown

APRIL 2011


Rufus Wainwright joins Hope Rising gala kd lang strikes gold

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Sitges The Catalan coast village is a charming town with cobblestone streets, Sitges is just 35 kilometres from Barcelona or a 30-minute train ride. The train station is conveniently located in the centre of town and within walking distance to many hotels and apartments located across from the beach. It’s one of the friendliest gay havens where rainbow flags are prominently unfurled along the main gay beach of La Playa De La Bossa Rodona just opposite Hotel Calipolis. The nightlife picks up after 3am where the dance clubs play familiar tunes and free pour your cocktail of choice. If wine is your guilty pleasure a tour of the Bodegas Torres winery includes wine tasting and private scenic drives through the countryside. A good time to visit Sitges is during the Barcelona Circuit Festival which takes place August 4th through the 14th and during Sitges 2nd Annual Gay Pride with celebrations starting July 8th through July 13th (Parade is Saturday, July 9th). A must-destination on any bucket list.

- Armando Mendonça GLBT Travel Expert, VoX International Inc.

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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.



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Paul Gallant, Krishna Rau CONTRIBUTORS

Nicola Betts, Jim Brosseau, Christopher Butcher, Mary Dickie, Derek Dotto, Marty Galin, Peter Knegt, Serafin LaRiviere, Keith Loukes, Corey Pierce, Michael Pihach, Adam Segal, Pam Shime, Annemarie Shrouder, Richard Silver, Michael Thorner, Chris Tyrell, Lulu Wei ON the cover

Photograph by Nathalie Arefieva TM

Trademark owned by VIA Rail Canada Inc.

In Toronto magazine presents


issue 12

views | living & health | insight | listings | Art & design | sex







Art, dogs & entertaining Open House with Noah Cowan & Nathan Smith by Gordon Bowness


Contact life Dianne Davis on her photography show Impervious


Waawaate Fobister Agokwe’s triumphant return to the stage by Gordon Bowness

8 Rufus Wainwright on AIDS in Africa 9 Leanne Iskander on GSAs in Catholic schools 16 Summerhill neighbourhood by Richard Silver 17

Jane’s Walk with Julia Perez & Javi Cacheiro

20 Enchanting Provincetown by Jim Brosseau 23 Thai massage meets yoga by Serafin LaRiviere 25 Relationship advice with Adam Segal 26

Community acupuncture by Annemarie Shrouder

28 Dsqaured2’s Dean & Dan Caten by Paul Gallant 30 The Tories’ anti-gay code by Krishna Rau 34

Cool menswear at the Bay by Derek Dotto

35 The Pie Shack by Pam Shime 38

We Were Here at the film fests by Peter Knegt

43 The graphic arts of sex by Christopher Butcher 46

kd lang & her new band by Mary Dickie

49 Sex & Health with Dr Keith 50

Caught in the Act by Michael Pihach & Derek Dotto


We are looking for photographs and stories that illustrate why Toronto is a great city to be gay, lesbian, bi or trans. Check out the submissions so far on In Toronto’s Facebook page. The winner will be published in the pages of In Toronto magazine and receive two round-trip tickets to Lisbon, Portugal (care of Accord Tours).


Contest runs until Wed, May 18 (at 11:59pm). Email your photo to For complete contest rules go to

toronto talk exchange

VIEW FINDER → dark diva Indie musician Katie Stelmanis’s fab new band Austra has a dark, synth pop sound with infectious, retro rhythms. Fresh from a successful European tour, Stelmanis, Maya Postepski, Dorian Wolf, Romy and Sari Lightman return to Toronto to launch the band’s new CD, Feel it Break, with its dancefloor anthem “Beat and the Pulse,” at Lee’s Palace (529 Bloor St W) on Thu, May 19. One of the tracks, “Young and Gay” is a tribute to the late Will Munro, the queer community booster and party promoter extraordinaire who died last year.

In their own words Rufus Wainwright

→ “As

I evolve as a gay man, I focus on the crisis points of the AIDS epidemic — and right now the crisis point is in Africa.” → “As a gay man of 37 years, I’ve experienced the AIDS epidemic in a severe way, ever since puberty, really. I was affected right off the bat.” Singer/songwriter Rufus Wainwright spoke with In Toronto about his involvement with the Stephen Lewis Foundation (, a small but highly effective and respected organization that supports grassroots groups tackling the AIDS pandemic in sub-Saharan Africa. “I think it’s important to have gay men, who have lived through this epidemic in North America — and are still living with it — to get involved in Africa. It’s easy to forget the horror.” Wainwright joins a stellar lineup that includes Alicia Keys, K’naan, Angelique Kidjo and Jully Black for Hope Rising, a gala concert in Toronto on Tue, May 3 to raise money for the foundation. Tickets start at $75, and go up to $2,500, which includes a spot at the exclusive roundtable discussion with Harry Belafonte, Stephen Lewis and frontline workers.

HOPE RISING 8pm. Tue, May 3. Sony Centre. 1 Front St E. 1 (855) 872-7669.


May 2011

toronto talk exchange Sound off GSAs in Catholic schools

pride bytes The City & QuAIA

Last March, 16-year-old student Leanne Iskander, of St Joseph’s Catholic Secondary School in Mississauga, asked her school to recognize the gaystraight alliance (GSA) she started as an official school club. The school refused, 3. taking issue with the word “gay” in the group’s name. Three stakeholders weigh in on the growing debate over the degree of autonomy awarded to Catholic schools funded with taxpayers’ money. →

“It’s important our group is called a gay-straight alliance because people have to know what it is and what it does. The names [suggested by the school board] were too generic. It wouldn’t have reached out to the people who need it. GSAs provide a sense of community for queer kids. Having one would improve the school climate. People would know that our school doesn’t tolerate homophobia.”

Leanne Iskander, student, St Joseph’s Catholic Secondary School

GSAs should be allowed if students want them. It’s an exercise of freedom of association — that is, people in Canada can organize groups, meet, and give it the name they want. Unless there is a harm. At this stage, the Catholic district school board has not articulated the harm in choosing [the name gaystraight alliance]. They simply said you could do an equity group, but that’s not the name the students have chosen.

Nathalie DesRosiers, general counsel, Canadian Civil Liberties Association

“The church doesn’t favour same-sex activity. In a postmodern world, it does seem odd. At the same time, the church teaches us that homophobia is absolutely wrong. We have to work under authority of the bishops. [Their] thinking is that by forming groups [like GSAs], students would be defining themselves by sexuality. There are different ways of approaching homophobia. We have groups that may come to discuss social justice issues. We may not call it a gay-straight alliance. Do we want to be aligned with a gay organization? Not necessarily. There is a notion of competing rights. There are religious families who would see homosexuality activity as sinful. Are their rights being honoured? Those are just tricky questions.”

Patrick Keyes, Superintendent of Equity and Inclusive Education, Toronto District Catholic School Board

→ After spending much of last year fighting for its right to march in Toronto’s Pride parade, the political group Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (QuAIA) has announced that it will not participate in this year’s parade and, instead, will host a community event devoted to raising awareness of Israeli policies. The move is solely for the purpose of challenging Toronto mayor Rod Ford. “By holding our Pride events outside of the parade, we are forcing him to make a choice: fund Pride or have your real homophobic, right-wing agenda exposed,” stated Elle Flanders in a QuAIA press release. Ford has previously stated that he would cut more than $100,000 in city tourism funding for Pride Toronto if QuAIA marched in the Parade. The question of whether or not QuAIA’s name and message represented a form of hate speech was debated last year. Pride Toronto succumbed to city pressure and banned QuAIA from marching in the parade, but later reversed its decision. City of Toronto officials released a report Apr 13 stating that the term “Israeli apartheid” does not violate the city’s antidiscrimination policy. Even so, one idea being proposed by councillors is to withhold any funding until after Pride, to make sure QuAIA doesn’t participate in any way. Last year, the City of Toronto gave Pride Toronto $123,807 and $245,000 in city services, such as garbage cleanup and policing. City council is scheduled to vote on the issue mid-May. Continued on page 10


toronto talk exchange How Tweet It Is Is the customer the message?

pride bytes Continued from page 9

by Michael Thorner

Provincial funding → Pride Toronto is getting a $400,000 grant from the Ontario government. The provincial funding, called the Celebrate Ontario Grant, is designed to enhance festivals and events in Ontario. “It’s quite a relief that we’ve received it,” says Pride’s fundraising director Ryan Lester. The grant, $100,000 higher compared to previous years, is one of the largest issued to the festival, followed by the City of Toronto’s Major Cultural Organizations Grant Program. It arrived after Pride Toronto released a damaging financial audit revealing a $431,808 deficit from last year’s festival.


→ Pride Toronto has appointed Glen Brown interim executive director to replace former ED Tracey Sandilands, who abruptly left her post Jan 28. Brown, a former senior manager at the Canadian AIDS Treatment Information Exchange (CATIE), has more than 20 years experience in the not-for-profit sector and has worked closely with organizations such as the AIDS Committee of Toronto, AIDS Action Now, the Wellesley Institute and more. “I’m excited to play a role in helping Pride Toronto be fierce and fabulous in 2011,” stated Brown in a press release. Pride has also issued a call for volunteers to help mount this year’s event. The 11-day festival kicks off Fri, June 24 with the Pride Parade falling on Sun, July 3. For more info go to

Michael Pihach


May 2011

becoming necessary — even crucial — that businesses

and brands have a strategic plan on how they interact with their customer base and clientele. Gone are the days of top-down plans with brands controlling the messaging. More and more, consumers around the world now expect to have transparent access to their favourite businesses and brands from which they can develop an ongoing, interactive personal dialogue. Democratized interaction is the expectation.


In the fall of 2010, the Gap unveiled its new logo, to much derision cism

New face

n today’s world economy, it is










and it

asked social network users for other logo design ideas. But that request via crowdsourcing also backfired — designers don’t want

Facebook fans and 79 percent of

to work for a major corporation for

Twitter followers of a brand are

free. So the Gap quickly reverted

more likely to recommend the

back to their original logo. It was

brand’s product to a friend, while

a case study of how things are

51 percent of Facebook fans and


changing rapidly for businesses

67 percent of Twitter followers

base. Moffitt and Dover write that

in the social media age.

are apt to purchase the brands

the new social media environ-

they follow or “fan.”

ment “has become a bit like the

In January 2011, Starbucks took

→ CASE S T UDY The Gap and Starbucks used very different approaches when unveiling their new logos.




cues from the very public drubbing

Sean Moffitt and Mike Dover

the Gap received. Anticipating

have written a wonderful new

“Collaboration with brands is a

both positive and negative feed-

book for businesses looking to

core trait of the Net Generation,”

back, Starbucks provided more



they write. It’s true. The land-

reasoning for the change up front,

ize within this new landscape of

scape has changed, and it is the

with contextual visuals showcas-

pull not push marketing, called

interactive customer experience

ing the brand’s evolution over the



shared visibly to a global audience

years, and with accompanying

Company in a Customer-Driven

that is going to shape or reshape a

homey YouTube interview clips

Marketplace (from McGraw Hill).

brand’s evolution.

with chairman and CEO Howard

It’s a comprehensive how-to for

Schultz. Reviews were mixed, but

companies and individuals who

Starbucks held its ground without

run businesses to work with the

too much turmoil.

new social tools and technologi-




According to a 2010 study of

cal platforms, and to effectively

1,500 consumers, 60 percent of

recognize and nurture their rela-

Wild West.”

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The arts of living well TIFF Bell Lightbox artistic director Noah Cowan and artist Nathan Smith apply three basic principles to their 1886 duplex in lower Cabbagetown: art, dogs and entertaining


Story Gordon Bowness | Photography Lulu Wei


May 2011


This place is very welcoming. You’ve kept much of the old charm. NS: The ethos of the house is slow. NC: It’s not like we are ever going to have a finished showpiece home. It’s a work in progress. It’s about living a life with the house. I love shared history — like our wedding rings, they are made of gold from little India that get dinged up over time. Same with the house. It feels like people live full lives here — and have fun. NS: What’s the line? There is a certain luxury in being able to relax. We’ve had probably 1,500 people through this house. We’ve broken some coffee tables; there are water rings on everything. What else needs to be done? NS: The house is always in flux, we’re always rotating the art or hauling in different pieces of furniture. But we need a pair of matching armchairs. We really do.

You kept the old maple subfloor where you could and put down fancy porcelain tile in the hallway and the new kitchen/painting studio area. NS: As an American, I wanted to make a stand against the oppressive shoe culture of Canada. People shouldn’t have to take their shoes off when they come into your home. Plus we wanted flooring hardy enough to handle the dogs. And why would you want to walk around in your socks picking up all the dog hair? Some rooms aren’t what you expect them to be. NS: We never bothered pulling together the dining room. When friends are over and Noah gets going with his record collection we Continued on page 15

You’ve got original 19th-century details, faux bois doors left over from the 1930s/’40s, family heirlooms, mid-century modern pieces, lots of contemporary art…. NC: I grew up in a home where nothing matched. I love that feeling. NS: I was never in a home where the chest of drawers didn’t match the bed.

→ EAS Y CHARM The living room (opposite page), with old leather couch, an Ebay find, hide throws from Argentina and a ’70s Murano chandelier, shows off the original ceiling moulding and an archway from a 1930s/’40s reno. Noah Cowan and Nathan Smith (this page, top) are seen with the home’s true owners Munchie and Ruckus. The open concept kitchen (middle right) with its porcelain tile floor opens onto Smith’s huge painting studio (bottom left), which often doubles as a dining room for parties. “We kept it small,” says Cowan of the second-floor bathroom (middle left). “We’re never up at the same time.”


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Continued from page 13

NS: So I came to this house with a

prefer to roll up the carpet in there

lot of energy.

and dance. So we often put the

NC: I think in my professional

dining table in my studio. Friends

career I can say that I have very

enjoying themselves at a dinner

strong opinions that are easily

party, surrounded by my art —

changed. Nathan is someone that

I love it.

knows what he’s talking about. I trust his judgment.

What were the first renovations

NS: It’s more a matter of solving

you did?

problems and having fun.

NS: We put a bathroom on the main floor. We didn’t want our

You two met in New York, so you

drunk friends trying to manage the

bought this home at the same

stairs up to the second floor.

time as you moved to Toronto.

NC: No, the first thing we did was

NC: We met in 2002. And I moved

tear down the eight-foot fence

back in 2004 when I became co-

around the front. There used to

director of the film festival. Nathan

be a brothel in the neighbouring

had only been here once before for

duplex and the previous owner of

a few days.

this place didn’t want to see the

NS: When we were moving, we

ladies who used to sunbathe top-

came for a weekend and must have

less out front.

looked at 30 houses. I cried when we walked into this place. I knew it

You did some major work in the

was the one. I loved all the original


details, the old maple staircase, the

NC: We tore down the crappy

old floor. They hadn’t ruined it yet.

kitchen and added Nathan’s paint-

Everyone said don’t live so close to

ing studio with its cathedral ceil-

Regent Park, it’s the worst slum in

ing — the light is so important.

Canada. But we lived on Avenue B

Plus, there’s a small office on the

in New York. Regent Park is a pet-

second floor.

ting zoo compared to Alphabet City.






Noah, are you excited that Inside


Out, the LGBT film fest, is moving

NC: This is Cabbagetown, where

into TIFF Bell Lightbox in May?

competitive gardening is incredi-

NC: As excited as Liza with her first

bly tough…

cigarette of the day! It’s going to be

NS: …it’s a blood sport.

wild. I’m delighted that the gays

NC: So the neighbours were very

are taking over TIFF Bell Lightbox,

dubious about the small stone wall

our new cultural hub needs the

that we built out front. They’ve

community’s energy and great

come around since. We only have

hair. •

one burst of gardening — our rhododendron is perfect in May, June. Then we sit out the rest of the season. NS: “Perfect” is a little bold, don’t you think? NC: No, our rhododendron rules the street. How did reno negotiations go between you? NC: Nathan was a finishing contractor in New York. He also planned major events.

→ MIX I T UP The upstairs hallway (top) leads to the master bedroom (bottom), with a Danish mid-century modern bed and Smith’s vibrant off-kilter art. The main floor “dining room” (second from the top), with Wassily chairs by Marcel Breuer and Joe Colombo chest of drawers, is where the dancing happens, once Cowan gets at his extensive record collection (above left), stored in a custom cabinet. The living room (above right) is packed with art from Dennis Oppenheim, Chris Curreri, FastwÜrms, Nestor Kruger and others.




t ge S Yon

in focus

l rhil




— Yonge Street corridor by Richard Silver

Scott Steeves

Bloor on the south, St Clair on the north, Yonge on the east and Avenue Rd on the west — as they say in real

→ T EMPLE OF BOOZE The Summerhill LCBO is a grand landmark for an amazing neighbouhood.

estate parlance, “Location, location,

Petit Gourmet (1064 Yonge St), a


long-time Toronto landmark, and

Centrally situated, this neigh-

one of my faves, Patachou (1120

bourhood includes grand Victorian

Yonge St), for great salads, bowl-size

and Edwardian detached and semi-

lattes, amazing desserts and breads.



Wine lovers can enjoy the premier

streets accessible to the subway and

LCBO, with its great selection of

great shopping. The shops include

wines, cooking classes and Saturday

the legendary “Five Thieves,” the

wine tastings, all housed in a grand,

name given by locals to the spe-

renovated railway station.



cialty food stores just south of the Summerhill LCBO. As the name sug-


gests, make sure you bring a charge

There are no housing bargains.

card with no limits — your wildest

Prices start over the $1-million

requests will be met.

mark. And there is a railway that at

dissects the neighbourhood. The

Summerhill you will find one of

trains are noisy to newcomers but

the strongest condominiums in

most residents will look askance

the downtown condo market. They

when you mention it then tell you

are built by Crestwood, designed

that you get used to it.





by Brian Gluckstein and named after long-time politician Margaret


Scrivener. The suites are well fin-

If you want convenience in the

ished and in keeping with the high-

downtown core you can do no bet-

end level of the neighbourhood.

ter... as long as you can afford the tariff!

THE GOOD NEWS Great shopping, restaurants and take-out food abound, like All the Best Fine Foods (1101 Yonge St), Le

RICHARD SILVER is a salesperson with Bosley Real Estate and blogs at


Home Turf Church/Wellesley with Julia Perez & Javi Cacheiro As part of the urban exploration festival Jane’s Walk, Julia Perez and Javi Cacheiro, members of the queer immigrant and refugee youth group SOY Express, will lead a tour through the Church/Wellesley neighbourhood, giving their personal take on the experiences of young newcomers. Here are some highlights

“We start at the Starbucks in the Bloor/Yonge concourse (2 Bloor St E),” says Julia Perez. “That’s where I first began to consciously question my sexuality. Back when I was very feminine — long hair, makeup, high heels, nails — a cute guy came into the store. He looked like he was going to soccer practice. Then, when he spoke, I was like, ‘Oh, my God. It’s a woman.’ Immediately I felt a rush of adrenaline, that emotional and physical rush. I started flirting! I gave her a free coffee and kept waiting to see her again for weeks.” “Then we go down to Glad Day Bookshop (598A Yonge St),” says Javi Cacheiro. “I was just coming out two years ago and my best friend wanted to meet me

there. I was terrified to go in. It’s on Yonge St. I thought everyone will know I’m gay. I passed by the door so many times. That paranoia is so common when you are a newcomer. And then when I got up there, it was so amazing. There were even books on Latin American gay people; being gay was something we never talked about back home in Venezuela.” “We also stop at The 519 Community Centre (519 Church St),” says Perez. “This place offers so many amazing programs for immigrants. It helped me find my gender-queer identity. Now, I wear men’s clothes, I have real short hair and I am happier than ever before. It was the first place I felt at home.”

“By talking about how — and where — our feelings came from, I hope other queer immigrants recognize similar experiences in their own lives and feel comfortable sharing their own stories,” says Perez. “These places, this city, it’s theirs. You take ownership when you attach your stories to them, you belong. For queer immigrants belonging is a challenging concept because they’ve never belonged before.” “We end at the botanical gardens in Allan Gardens, across from the Sherbourne Health Centre (333 Sherbourne St),” says Perez. “When our group met to figure out our walk, we didn’t even know they were there. Including them felt like a good way to celebrate

→ t ouchs t ones Allan Gardens, Glad Day Bookshop and Sherbourne Health Centre.

the spirit of exploration that’s so much a part of Jane’s Walk. So we decided to attach them to our queerness.” “Oh, and there’s one more myth that I feel we need to challenge,” says Perez, laughing. “that butches only like femmes.”

Jane’s Walk Church & Wellesley: Through the Eyes of Queer Newcomer Youth. Free. 1pm. Sun, May 8. Starts at Bloor and Yonge, northeast corner. SOY Express 6pm. Tuesdays. Sherbourne Health Centre. 333 Sherbourne St, second floor. (416) 324-5080.


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Sandalwood watch by Tense

Maple Frames by Spectacle Eyeworks

Origami plugs by Omerica Organic

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SRX is Seeking:

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Provincetown Tourism Office



Whale of a time → The

abundant life and light of Provincetown Story Jim Brosseau


holiday in Provincetown,

the natural environment. Jutting

the close-by Herring Cove than a

rivals the best of Sea World — and


confidently into the Atlantic Ocean,

few miles away at Race Point. For a

this is the real sea.


Provincetown is blessed with miles

quiet picnic on the beach, take the

strings hookup to a full-fledged

of soft, sandy beaches, crystalline

five-minute water-taxi ride to Long

100-year-old Pilgrim

romance. You’d expect nothing

air and the sort of light that has

Point. This spit of sand can also be

( Plymouth,

less of a gay Mecca as iconic as

attracted painters to its shores for

accessed by the more hardy via a

Massachusetts lays claim to the

Fire Island or Palm Springs. But a

more than a century. The wind-

hike on the rocky breakwater lead-

pilgrims’ landing spot, but his-

P’town stay need not be a matter

swept dunes and wild vegetation

ing to Wood End.


of notches on guesthouse head-

surrounding them are easily acces-

boards. If you’d like to retract your gaydar, you’ll still find a dynamic












marine life (steady, now, not mer-

Mangia in Siena, the 252-foot-high

many spots lead directly to the sea.

chant marine), whale-watching is

granite tower can be seen for miles

mix of amusements on the tip of

Your wheels can be had from one

a P’town must. These creatures,

on a clear day. And if you’re game

Cape Cod. From people-watching

of several bike-rental shops along

that experts say have never know-

to climb its 116 steps to the top,

to whale-watching, there’s plenty

the city’s two main thoroughfares,

ingly harmed any humans, dem-

you’ll be rewarded with Cape Cod

of life on either side of the tea

Commercial and Bradford streets.

onstrate that size and elegance are

views normally the province of pip-

To speak of a gay beach in

not mutually exclusive. Passengers

ing plovers or Piper Cubs.

Provincetown is redundant. The

on the deck of a Dolphin Fleet boat

scene is likely to be more social at

( get a show that

May 2011



sible, with biking trails that in

That abundant life springs from



edge. Patterned after the Torre del




dance at the Boatslip (boatslipres-








plenty of right-brain exercise to


be had sampling the town’s art

back bargains to rare editions of

galleries, mostly clustered in the

classics. Speaking of books, it’s

East End. Some feature works by

worth dropping into the majes-

the area’s most beloved painters.

tic Provincetown Public Library

They include the Albert Merola

( to see a stunning

(, dealer

replica of a 66-foot schooner on

for the late abstract expressionist

display in the very centre of its

Fritz Bultman, and William-Scott

upper floors.

Gallery (,

On a rainy day, there’s always a

featuring the Hopperesque scenes

first-run movie at Whalers Wharf

of John Dowd. (An invitation to

Cinema (

the handsome Dowd’s home for an evening of song around the piano is always a hot ticket in Provincetown). Whole days, meanwhile, can be






shops, mostly concentrated on Commercial. Ruby’s







Refreshingly, when it’s show time,

for engagement rings among the

the featured picture begins sans



10 minutes of coming attractions.

is one of the handful of states

P’town takes movies seriously, as

where same-sex marriage is legal).

witnessed by the growing prestige

Wa ( offers a

of the Provincetown International

smartly edited, sprawling selec-

Film Festival (this year from Wed,

tion of household furnishings and

June 15 to 19;

antiques from Asia. For the more




A P’town stay need not be a matter of notches on guesthouse headboards.






Swinton, Quentin Tarantino, Jane

(212 Commercial St) a few doors

Lynch and the idiosyncratic film-

away is an emporium of scarves,

maker John Waters, a summer res-

boxes, fans and other afford-

ident who can be spotted almost

able finds from Nepal and China.

daily whizzing along on his bike.


Wardrobe (113 Commercial St)

If any community still had that

covers the waterfront when it

relic known as a “gay restaurant,”

comes to dresses and accesso-

you might think P’town was it. Not

ries for women — and the men

so. Indeed, the local dining scene

who dress like them. (Owner

is on the upswing, led by recent

Steve Carey is famous locally for

arrival Ten Tables (

his spot-on imitation of com-

Following the success of her two

edy legend Phyllis Diller.) Along

other establishments in Boston,



Krista Kranyak has brought her

Commercial, the wares of ubiq-

passion for locally sourced prod-

uitous T-shirt vendors occasion-

ucts — including oysters from

ally bear a fresh zinger among the

nearby Wellfleet — to the rustic

standard-issue sloganeering.

yet chic setting she’s created in a


For a beach read, new books

restored Victorian home. If a big-

are available from a few purvey-

city sensibility also prevails at the

ors on the main drag. But biblio-

sleek Victor’s (,

philes will lose themselves to the

Continued on page 22

stuffed shelves of Tim’s Used Books


books), set back from the tourist hubbub. Its dusty volumes include everything from $1 paper-

→ crys talline moment s The harbour (opposite page) with the Pilgrim Monument visible in the middle, Race Point Beach (top right) and great whale-watching (bottom right).


L I V I N G & H EA LT H Continued from page 21

ture for decades. And the seat-

own lists, at least) gays of Boston,

ing pods on the beachside deck

New York and the rest of the

of Aqua Bar (

Eastern Seaboard have made it

engender that rare holiday pur-

their canteen of choice. But the

suit: conversation.

haughtiness charging the air in no

The best antidote to a night on

way diminishes the lush flavours

P’town can be a guesthouse where

of its tapas.

the only howling you hear in


Imaging solutions that click

Wetherbee, a summertime fix-

it’s because the A-list (on their


your room comes from the wind.

cuisine, the work of an authen-

Among the largely tasteful selec-

tic Mexican American, owner-

tion of places to stay is the White

chef Lorraine Najar, is always reli-


ably fresh at Lorraine’s Café (133


Commercial St). Tequila or san-


gria get the evening off to a good

hordes can be viewed from its

start in a setting that’s by turns

massive front porch. Like the Key

Laurentian ski lodge and Mojave

West version, the Brass Key in

roadhouse. The volume rises mer-

P’town ( combines

rily as petite Najar emerges from

refinement and cool without miss-

the kitchen to see that custom-

ing a beat. The Land’s End (land-

ers are enjoying her carnitas (who

wouldn’t) or paella (always a hit).

look easy, and its hilltop loca-



(, home







A similar lack of pretentiousness

tion assures the area’s best pan-

pervades Sal’s (salsplaceofprov-

oramic views. And on a quiet side, a waterside eatery

street, the pleasant mix of guests

that looks one strong windstorm

bond over morning coffee and

away from a woodpile. As the

homemade scones at the charm-

Cape’s celebrated multi-hued sun-

ing Ampersand (ampersandguest-

sets close the day, the briny scents

of the waters at your feet meld

If you awake craving a full break-

with the garlic and other spices

fast, the circuit-boy set will be

of the restaurant’s Italian seafood

queuing up at Café Heaven (199

At Vistek, we’ve known for more than 30 years that certain things just go hand in hand: great service, incredible selection and friendly expertise.

dishes. When the laughter of fam-

Commercial St). The merely hun-

ily gatherings here echoes over

gry will be fine with the heavenly

the harbour, it’s enough to turn

views of Bayside Betsy’s (bay-

a young man’s fancy away from or the earthy,

And we didn’t become Canada’s largest, professional one-stop photo, video and digital imaging store by accident. As the choice of pros & hobbyists, alike, Vistek has long been a store you can comfortably go back to time and time again, knowing that you’ll receive the best products, largest selection, and quality advice from the industry’s most knowledgeable experts.

the circulation-threatening black

attitude-free Tips for Tops’n (31

Levis worn by Sal’s waiters.

Bradford St). When our moth-

With the widest selection of digital SLR cameras, plus a huge array of compacts, camcorders, printers, computers, scanners, lighting, tripods, stands and more, Vistek can always find the ideal mix of products to meet your specific needs – a solution that clicks. Because, at Vistek, we know that it’s all about the image.

Post-dinner activity includes the

ers told us that a good breakfast

predictable assortment of discos,

is essential to a good day, they

like the Atlantic House, or A House,

probably weren’t thinking about

as it’s known locally (ahouse.

a summer day in Provincetown.

com), and cruise bars, such as

The demands of such a day can



be minimal. How tough is it to

with its low lighting, or the Vault

choose between hours of idle peo-

( with even

ple-watching from the terrace of

lower lighting. But there are tamer

Joe Coffee and Café (joecoffeecafe.

pastimes, as well, such as a drink

com) or, quite literally, a day at

in the upstairs open-air bar at the

the beach? If there’s nothing par-

Waterford (,

ticularly gay about those choices,


that’s the point. See you at the tea




played at the grand. In the Central

dance — or not.

House of the Crown and Anchor (part of a complex that includes the Vault), cabaret workhorses PHOTO | VIDEO | DIGITAL | SALES | RENTALS | SERVICE

TORONTO • 496 Queen St. East • (416) 365-1777 • • 5840 Mavis Rd. • (905) 593-1777 • 22MISSISSAUGA May 2011 OTTAWA • CALGARY • EDMONTON

It’s all about the image


are dutifully cranked out by Bobby



Wellne s s

Can’t stomach yoga? Try FOGA → Therapist

Hyun Chol Lee has combined yoga stretches with massage Story Serafin LaRiviere | Photography Lulu Wei


o some the term “Thai massage” can come across as seedy, evoking vague notions of “happy endings.” So it was with some trepidation that I arrived at my first appointment with Thai massage therapist Hyun Chol Lee. Two hours later I was dragging my relaxed but invigorated body down the street, marvelling at the workout I had just received. Over the course of 90 minutes, Lee had stretched, pulled and pushed my muscles in what can best be described as a yoga workout while lying down. The tension in my shoulders and back was completely absent. And instead of feeling sedate and sleepy as I usually

“My body is a whole universe.” do post-massage, I felt filled with energy — much the same as after a medium-intensity yoga workout. Lee designed his specialized sessions after several years of study in Thailand, incorporating the techniques he learned there with his previous yoga training. He had the idea of combining the two after

unsuccessfully trying to get his boyfriend to try yoga. “My boyfriend was dealing with some posture issues,” says Lee. “But so many people just do not want to go to a yoga class. So I came up with FOGA.” FOGA, or “Forget Yoga,” is Lee’s solution to some clients’ phobia of yoga. He understands it can be daunting to huff and grunt for two hours while the hippy next to you breezily places both feet behind his head with no exertion. Lee’s sessions are intense, challenging and completely personalized to each client. “I can tell when someone walks through the door what issues they’re facing,” Lee says. “I check his posture while he’s walking. If you’re walking while sticking out your butt, you’re going to end up stooped over like Mr Magoo.” Like yoga, breath work is at the centre of Lee’s health philosophy. Over time, he helps his clients relearn how to nourish their body with deep breathing, eschewing the shallow breaths that so many of us have become accustomed to. Lee also offers counselling in nutrition and self-healing, and even dabbles in fortune telling

based on the energy he perceives during the session. It’s all part of a whole-mind/whole-body perspective that he hopes to expand as his clientele grows. “My body is a whole universe,” he says. “And at the same time I am part of the larger universe outside myself. My job is to take care of both.”

→ WHOLE-MIND/ WHOLE-BODY Foga, developed by Hyun Chol Lee, can best be described as a yoga workout while lying down.

HYUN CHOL LEE By appointment at the Centering Space. 59 Cambridge Ave. (416) 844-5938.



Savour the city — with Marty Galin

The family unit is always changing. Today families are diverse, presenting different variations of love and commitment. The Masellis have owned and operated their family grocery store since 1959. Check it out. →


Bubble Gum Blonde (Made with Chewed Bubble Gum)


FREE PARKING contact Gallery to reserve parking spot. MON - SAT 10AM - 6PM SUN 11AM - 5PM

Oil on canvas | 30 x 40 in

Leonardo Masellis came here with $10 in his pocket. Now he, his wife Benedetta and their three lov-

→ SING FOR YOUR SUPPER One taste of Massellis sausage and you will start to sing Italian opera.

ing sons are proud owners of this

are envious of how great they are.

local institution. Nothing is too

Sauces and pastas are flown in

difficult or impossible with this

from different parts of Italy. There

family. They are always growing

is a full meat and grocery area.

the stock and adding new items.

You must try their tarallis, baked

My mother told me: Eat a sand-

perfectly crisp.

wich when you are depressed. Masellis makes one of the best in the city. Starting at $3, it is fan-

COOKING TIP Here’s a great way to serve up

tastic. You choose all the meats,


cheese, Italian bread and condi-

sauce with the homemade sau-

ments. It’s almost too big to eat.

sage, when in season. Cook sau-

It’s almost a love affair.

sages on mild heat. Add one jar



They have their own homemade

of Masellis sauce, a little garlic oil,

sausages. There’s a huge choice

garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and

of pork, spicy or sweet, and yes,

oregano. Let simmer on stove for

chicken. One taste and you will

25 minutes. It is a masterpiece.

start to sing an Italian opera. The

This family is so loving and it

hamburgers are vacuum-packed

shows to everyone. The welcome

and ready to jump on the grill.

mat is waiting for you.

The souvlaki are seasoned with Momma Masellis’ secret ingredients, marinated, and ready to take home. Many Greek neighbours

MASELLIS SUPERMARKET 906 Danforth Ave. (416) 465-7901.




Where your dreams are our vision


— with Adam Segal My boyfriend and I have been together for five months and things started really well. Lately, I’ve been getting really annoyed by his jealousy. We are in a monogamous relationship. I’ve never cheated, or even flirted for that matter. Yet lately he’s constantly quizzing me about where I’ve been after work or throwing tantrums when I spend time with guy friends without him. He seems irritated with me a lot and makes jokes that make me look bad in front of friends. When I gently try to speak with him about his short fuse, he apologizes profusely and promises to change. There are so many things I love about this guy, but I’ve been feeling so self-conscious around him. Is there hope for us? Darrell

While I hear that there is good in

be aware if you’re making excuses

your relationship, it has tell-tale

for him or blaming yourself for his

signs of emotional abuse. Your guy


61 Alex Ave, Woodbridge ON Phone: 905-850-2681 Cell: 647-926-8220 Exclusive offer to Designer Professionals.

sounds kinda scary and controlling

Second, get help too. Join a sup-

— anyone would feel like they are

port group or see a therapist to

about to step on a landmine with

ensure your self-esteem recovers.

him around. His cycle of blow-ups

Abusive relationships drain our

followed by on-his-knees apologiz-

self-respect and you need a full vision-cabinetry.indd

ing reflects a common abuse pat-

supply to either commit to assert-

tern — the aggressiveness makes

ing yourself with him or end the

the victim (that’s you!) feel small,

relationship altogether.

so that when the sorrys come it’s

Third, don’t feel responsible for

easy to cling to his regret with a

changing him or for hurting him

false sense of hope.

should you decide to leave. There’s

For your relationship to really

a chance that he could become

have a shot, your BF has to do more

manipulative if he notices you pull-

than simply apologize. He needs to

ing away — if he acts threatening

sit himself down in front of a pro-

in any way (“I’ll fall apart if you

fessional to gain an understand-

leave”), that’s another red flag.

ing of where his rage comes from

And lastly, don’t be fooled into

and how he can find ways of deal-

thinking that drama is a replace-

ing. Not only is this crucial for your

ment for love. If you need to take

safety and wellbeing, but your

some distance just to make sure

honey can’t be enjoying life too

you’re seeing the relationship for

much if he’s always on the verge of

what it is, do it. It’s amazing what

boiling over. He has every right to

kind of horrible stuff we can get

feel jealous or threatened occasion-

used to just because it’s all we’re

ally, but he certainly needs to learn

seeing. Good luck!

summertheatreSeason 2011 1

While most of the work here some things you need to do to. First, you have to be clear with your BF about what you are and are not willing to put up with. Try to

Adam Segal is a writer and therapist who works in private practice in downtown Toronto. Ask him your relationship or mental health question at relationship@


A Chorus Line

Directed by Robert Woodcock Musical Direction by Rosalind Mills Choreography by Melissa Jane Shaw

July 22 – 30 In an empty theatre seventeen dancers audition for the chance of a lifetime. The longestrunning American Broadway musical ever, A Chorus Line is about putting it all on the line to follow a dream.

how to stop mindlessly acting out. really rests with him, there are

Rose TheaTRe PResenTs 15/04/2011

also on

Stage Subscribe


The 39 Steps July 8 – 30 The Drawer Boy August 5 – 27 Cabaret August 19 – 27




health & b u s ine s s

Let the qi flow → Community

acupuncture is built on access, group healing and mutual support Story Annemarie Shrouder | Photography Michael Grills


cupuncture is more than 5,000 years old. The premise is simple: Every living thing has energy (called qi, pronounced chee) flowing through its body. When this energy is blocked, disease occurs. Poking a fine needle into specific points in the body helps to stimulate the flow of energy and promote healing. Six Degrees owners Susanda Yee and Lamia Gibson found acupuncture through different paths, but they are both committed to helping people get well, and making acupuncture accessible. Yee began her career doing community and social work, giving anti-oppression workshops with the Status of Women. A chronic condition led her to discover massage and eventually acupuncture — as a patient and then as a practitioner. After an internship in a New York hospital-turned-community acupuncture clinic, Yee saw acupuncture as the perfect fit for working with community through individuals. She opened Six Degrees, the first community acupuncture clinic in Canada, with Matt Sedo in 2007. Gibson studied acupuncture to expand her practice to include something more well-known and financially accessible for clients. As an activist, she saw a lot of people burn out, and wanted to provide a tangible tool for self-care. She initially rented a private room at Six Degrees offering shiatsu, and then joined Yee and Sedo in 2009 when she completed her acupuncture training. Yee and Gibson have been run-


May 2011

ning Six Degrees as a team since 2010. “To own a business, having a partner is essential,” says Yee, citing shared stress and mutual support. Complementary skills add another layer of effectiveness: Yee sees the big picture, Gibson is more detail-oriented. This makes for a partnership of vision and detailed execution, with equal measures of determination thrown in. Although a friendship has evolved, Gibson says that not knowing each other before “really allowed us to meet each other as business people and allowed us to be frank with each other.” The community model has many benefits. Clients are shared among the owners and two other practitioners, and challenging cases can be discussed — benefiting clients and the practitioners. “There are different styles, different points, so having different viewpoints is actually very natural for this process,” says Yee. Acupuncture diagnosis is about observation; treating the whole person, not just the symptoms. Pain and sleep patterns, for example, are interconnected in ways that Western medicine often overlooks. While pain can disturb sleep, going to bed late also limits the body’s ability to heal itself. Yee and Gibson look at the big picture when it comes to healing; they also apply their understanding of the impact of oppression, economic issues, and environmental stressors. All of this might still be possible in a traditional one-to-one setting, but community acupuncture is about accessibility and the power

of healing in groups. Having everyone in the same room “encourages more movement of qi, which is ultimately the basis of acupuncture,” Gibson says. The practitioner on duty sees up to four people per hour, which makes it possible to offer a sliding scale so clients can afford to receive regular treatments over a longer period of time. Volume is crucial in this model, and Six Degrees does about 160 treatments a month with about 85 active clients. Still, volume isn’t everything. The standard for community acupuncture is six clients an hour. At Six Degrees the number has been capped at four, so there are “less people in the room, and more time with each one” says Gibson. Community acupuncture in a relaxed environment is what Six Degrees is all about. There are no gowns, white lab coats or hard tables. You leave your shoes in the

→ CALM VIBE Practitioners, like Lamia Gibson, and patients benefit from the community model spearheaded by Six Degrees.

hallway, turn off your cell phone, and walk into an oasis of calm and quiet. There are plants, art and softly playing music. Everyone whispers, so not to disturb clients who are receiving treatment. After you check in, you walk through the frosted glass doors, choose your favourite La-Z-Boy chair, and settle in. Safety standards and professionalism without the clinical feel create a welcoming atmosphere where you can literally pull up a chair, and stay awhile… if you don’t mind the needles.

SIX DEGREES ACUPUNCTURE 192 Spadina Ave #512. (416) 866-8484.


stylin' with chris tyrell A self-professed style junkie, lifestyle writer Milena Canizares is forever on the hunt for what’s new, next and exciting. Accessories play a major role in her everyday look. The creative services manager for is currently mad at work on her first book. →


What are you wearing?

Shorts by Michael Kors (the photo was taken on the Amalfi coast), shirt from Forever 21, earrings from a market in Sorento, Aldo sunglasses, a bracelet I got on the side of the road in NYC and a vintage purse from an old thrift shop on the Danforth.

Who had the most influence on your sense of style? My grandmother. To this day, she can still combine a zebra print with gold accessories and dark lips and look completely pulled together. It was very disappointing when I stopped fitting into her clothes at an early age.

Your first fashion memory? When I was four, I discovered my

Located in Vancouver’s colourful West End, The Coast Plaza Hotel & Suites is near the world famous Stanley Park & the beaches of English Bay. • • • • • • •

stepmother’s sapphire earrings alongside half-eaten carrots. Apparently the Easter bunny had been trying them on while munching. I tried them on myself, and became immediately hooked on the sparkle that jewels bring.

What should every guy/girl go for this season?

case — and the unexpected mix of vibrant jewel-tone colours makes Rio seem dulled down.

Fave designers? Locally, Joseph Mimran. His lines for both Club Monaco and Joe Fresh are clean, modern and very relatable to the North American rush-and-go lifestyle. His shapes are also classic and don’t cater to each season’s “it” shape. Internationally, probably Missoni and Diane Von Furstenberg. Their interpretations of vibrant colours and patterns embody the bold and expressive nature of fashion and stand out as unique pieces of art.

Primary colour blocking. The ’80s are P1711 makingRL a revised comebackIn Toronto 3/23/11 1:33 PM Page 1 In Toronto:RL MILENA CANIZARES — as always seems to be the

Y ou’ll run out of places before we run out of selection

269 guestrooms & suites Panoramic views fo the city, mountains, & local waterways Indoor swimming pool, whirlpool, and sauna 24 hour room service Denman fitness centre Brasserie Bistro & Comox Long Bar & Grill Denman Place Mall

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1549 Avenue Rd. (N. of Lawrence) 416•782•1129 Sun: 12-5pm; Mon, Tues, Wed, Fri, Sat: 9:30-6 pm; Thurs: 9:30-9 pm



Putting Canada on the map → Dean

and Dan Caten of Dsquared2 bring uniquely Canadian attributes to the cut-throat world of fashion, like courtesy and humour Story Paul Gallant | Photography Ron Meijer


May 2011



an Caten figures he and his

The Catens have wanted to do one

“Suddenly we had a situation in

do, whether it’s bringing a life-size

brother Dean spend about

since they saw Donatella Versace’s

the middle of a major fashion city.

stick puppet with them onto the

30 days a year at their

in 2005; finally the timing was right.

It was this solid thing with walls.

Juno Awards red carpet or post-

apartment in Milan, where their

“I don’t know if I can tell you

It was like, we’re in the big leagues

ing a YouTube video of themselves

booming fashion empire Dsquared2

much,” says Dan Caten. “This year

now,” says Caten. The risk paid off.

doing a shirtless workout to prepare

is based. This is one of those days.

the theme is air, so it’s about flight

The two boutiques in China will

for carrying the 2010 Olympic torch.

Just back from Michael Bublé’s wed-

and wings and angels. They’ve

bring them up to 13 stores world-

Like the best celebrities, the surface

ding in Argentina (“Normally I don’t

invited celebrities so maybe we’ll

wide in less than four years. They’re

mystique doesn’t hide bitchiness, it

like weddings but this one was non-

have some things on the celebrities

currently looking for a New York

hides folksiness.

stop dancing,” says Caten, “I love it

that might pop through. I’ve said

City location, considering design-

Still, there are moments talking to

when he sings to her”) and about

too much!”

ing a line of home décor products

Caten that it seems like he and his

to head off to China to open new

Designing together since the 1980s,

and possibly launching a second

brother’s lives are little more than a

Dsquared2 boutiques in Beijing and

the twins’ especially cosy relation-

line of clothing that’s more casual

list of place names. Their globetrot-

Shanghai, the 46-year-old twins are

ship with celebrities dates back

and affordable. This last idea comes

ting does not interrupt their creative

crashing at the small penthouse

to their time wrangling Madonna

at a time when the Dsquared2 look

process, it’s essential to their cre-

apartment. They’ve designed it to

through the cowboy-inspired fash-

has matured as the twins have

ative process. They endure airport

look like a hotel room, since that’s

ion of her 2002 Drowned World

matured. “We’re always designing

lounges, hotel rooms and transat-

where they seem to spend most of

tour. Since then, they’ve dressed

for ourselves,” says Caten.

lantic flights side by side, working

their time, anyway. Their current

Lil’ ole Canada is not yet in the

together every step of the way. So it

motto, “Born in Canada, living in

expansion plans. But their home

comes as a surprise to discover that

country remains in their hearts

there are things they do separately,

and on their sleeves (even their

like having boyfriends. For the last

YouTube channel is emblazoned

year and a half, Dan has been see-

with the maple leaf). In an indus-

ing a Russian guy he met in Miami,

try built as much on fuss and fret-

who lives in Spain. Dean has been

ting as it is on diva-tude, their

in a relationship for two and a half

Willowdale, Ontario, roots have

years with a French Moroccan guy

given the twins a few things their

he met in Mexico, who lives in

competitors lack, like courtesy,


London, made in Italy,” would seem a little precious if it were not such an understatement. “We thought we’d like to design a hotel room some day, so we used the concept on our own place,” says Caten, known as the chattier of the twins. “We did the whole place very black and white, with photographs and fur and white marble.”

“Suddenly we had a situation in the middle of a major fashion city. It was this solid thing with walls. It was like, we’re in the big leagues now.”

Much more colourful will be their

honesty and kindness.

“Both our boyfriends are cool and

“We know how to treat people

understand we have chaotic lives,”

upcoming fashion show at Vienna’s

Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake

right. I can go into the sewing room

says Dan Caten. “When we do get

Life Ball, Europe’s biggest charity

and Ricky Martin in their play-

and get one of the sewing ladies to

together, we enjoy each other. It’s

event for people living with HIV/

ful and sophisticated designs, and

sew anything for me. Some design-

not, like, heavy stress that we’re

AIDS, slated for Sat, May 21. The

even appeared in the Black Eyed

ers won’t even go into the sewing

never home. Yes, okay, we’re going

event takes over the whole city with

Peas’ famed “I Gotta Feeling” video,

room,” says Caten.

to China, but let’s take a few days

its over-the-top fantasy sensibility.

dancing joyfully behind Fergie. The

The twins also know how to have

after to meet in Thailand and that’s

Life Ball fashion shows of the past

buzz created by Madge’s blessings

a good time. If you only go by the

our reward for being away and

have featured everyone from John

also helped launch them into wom-

paparazzi photos, the brothers’

working so hard.”

Galliano and Jean-Paul Gaultier

en’s wear in 2007, a much bigger,

Hollywood good looks and seri-

to Calvin Klein and Kenneth Cole.

more lucrative and more cut-throat

ous poses suggest they’re too cool

→ T ORON T O , LONDON , MIL AN , SHANGHAI Dean and Dan Caten travel the globe, working side by side in airport lounges, hotel rooms and transatlantic flights.

arena than the menswear that put

for school. But that’s not what

them on the map. The same year

gets them onto the most desirable

they opened their first mono-brand

guest lists. Their impish humour

boutique in Milan.

spills over into everything they




Election 20 1 1

The secret campaign → Are

Conservatives wooing anti-gay votes among Canada’s diverse communities? Story Krishna Rau | Illustration Corey Pierce

O 30

ne of the most hotly contested battles in

tion following the previous year’s passage of the

promise when he won, although Parliament voted

the federal election has been the fight for

same-sex marriage bill, homophobia played a def-

to keep same-sex marriage.

the so-called “ethnic vote,” the diverse

inite role. On the very first day of that campaign,

This campaign has been much less blatant in its

communities of racial and religious minorities,

Stephen Harper — who would become prime min-

approach to gay issues in those communities. But

especially those in the Toronto area, whose sup-

ister following that race — promised he would

that doesn’t mean that it’s stopped being an issue

port may be the key to who wins those ridings.

re-open the issue of same-sex marriage and put

politicians are seeking to exploit.

And while none of those communities are a

it to a free vote. And he continued to hammer at

According to Asma Amanat, a reporter with

monolithic bloc, all the major parties are vying for

the issue throughout the campaign, especially in

South Asian Generation Next, a Mississauga-based

those votes. In the past, especially in the 2006 elec-

churches, synagogues and mosques. He kept his

magazine targetted at young Indo-Canadians, the

May 2011


issue of same-sex marriage still fes-

this?” says one person. “I am Tamil.

code for gay issues or not. “They talk

ters with many in the community.

We have a religion and culture. Take

about so-called ‘family values’ and

The discontent has just become

Rob Ford: His wife is a woman.”

‘We have the same concerns you

quieter. “It has been a factor, but it’s been

There’s no way of measuring the effect of the ads on the race.

do.’” The bottom line, he says, may be

very hush-hush,” she says. “Even



that gay issues won’t be the primary

when there’s small groups of people

Ford, condemned them. Bob Rae,

concern of voters. The Tories may

who all know each other, it tends to

the Liberal incumbent for Toronto

just be doing a better job of reaching

be hush-hush.

Centre, doesn’t think the ads had

out to minority voters, despite their

“But Conservatives have been visit-

any real effect. “In the mayoral race,

cutbacks on immigration.

ing these ridings. A lot of people are

it may have played a part, although

very angry at some of the Liberal MPs

I don’t know how much,” says Rae.

in Brampton who voted for gay mar-

“My own opinion is it wasn’t a deci-

riage. Whether they’re Sikh, Muslim

sive issue. A federal election is very

or Hindu, [some are] anti-gay. And

different. A mayoral race is inevita-

Conservative values are sort of anti-

bly very different, you’re electing a

gay, anti-abortion.”




El-Farouk Khaki, a gay immigration

Rae says he doesn’t feel that gay

lawyer who has run federally for the

issues have been a factor in the fed-

NDP against Liberal heavyweight Bob

eral campaigns in any communities.

Rae in Toronto Centre, agrees the

“My sense is we are moving beyond

Conservatives are still targetting that

it. There are a lot of other issues

vote. But he says it now tends to be

that are driving votes. It’s about the

couched in a code.

economy and leadership, not what I

“They’re trying to reach out to the so-called ethnic voters on this plat-

would call lifestyle issues.” Rae,




form of ‘family values’ and how ‘We

to speak to In Toronto by Rob

represent people just like you,’” he

Oliphant’s campaign. Oliphant is the

says. “I don’t think that positioning

openly gay United Church minister

has changed.”

appointed the Liberal critic for mul-

“A lot of people are very angry at some of the Liberal MPs in Brampton who voted for gay marriage. Whether they’re Sikh, Muslim or Hindu, [some are] anti-gay. And Conservative values are sort of anti-gay, antiabortion.”

Nobody from the Conservative

ticulturalism. He’s been the Liberal

party responded to requests for an

point man, countering inroads made

diverse caucus of any party in the







by Jason Kenney, the Conservative

house and I don’t think the other

This campaign has seen none of the

minister of citizenship and immi-

parties are doing a very good job of

overt homophobia that has plagued

gration. Oliphant’s campaign man-

putting forward how much people

recent campaigns, like the 2006 fed-

ager initially said he would try to get

have been affected by their policies.”

eral race, or the Toronto mayoral

Oliphant to do an interview. He later

Amanat, too, thinks gay issues are

race last year. In that race, George

had an assistant refer questions to

not going to be the key factor for

Smitherman, the openly gay former

Rae’s campaign manager.

most South Asians. Certainly, she

provincial Liberal cabinet minister,

Oliphant is in a tight race in Don

says, not everybody in those com-

found himself the target of homo-

Valley West, representing a riding

munities is anti-gay. “There’s a lot

phobic signs and ads. Signs were

with a sizeable minority popula-

of people who think [about gays],

put along the Danforth near Victoria

tion. Rae, the Liberal foreign affairs

‘They’re still human beings, they

Park, saying Muslims should not vote

critic, represents a safe riding which

don’t have a problem with me wear-

for Smitherman. “Should Muslim

includes the country’s largest gay

ing a turban, I shouldn’t have a prob-

vote for him who married a man?”


lem with them.’ I don’t think it’s

asked one sign, which included a





going to swing the ridings one way or

photo of Smitherman and his hus-

Media Strategy,” developed in the

band and a copy of an article about

office of Jason Kenney — and leaked

What may, she says, is that Tory

their adoption of a child.

to the media — contains a script for

big shots are regularly in those rid-


Ads also popped up online and on

proposed ads which includes such

ings wooing the Asian vote. “Harper

the Canadian Tamil Broadcasting

lines as, “The Conservatives fight for

swinging a cricket bat, that stuff is

Corporation radio station featuring

our values.”

working. People are new to democ-

two people talking about the may-

That language is working, says

oral race. “What kind of question is

El-Khaki, whether it’s intended as

racy. They’re not used to having ministers visit.” •

The Dorson Colection



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Tue, May 31. Koerner Hall. 273 Bloor of Weill, Brel, Porter, Cohen, Björk, Toronto’s vibrant punk scene of the Harvey and others. $25-$59. 8pm. 1970s. Slide show, interview and live St W. Tue, May 24 & 25. Enwave Theatre. performance by The Ugly. Also on• The quietest Bose® has ever produced POP & BROADWAY $ 23599Queen’s Quay W. (416) 973-4000. the bill: Mike Belitsky, Sean Dean • Soft-cushioned around-the-ear fit and Dallas Good of The Sadies; The Story Begins For its first guest appearances include Martin CLASSICAL & JAZZ concert, Theatre 20 presents an Farkas (Career Suicide), Chris evening of songs from story-driven Colohan (Burning Love), Damian musicals. Featuring Colm Wilkinson, Adrianne Pieczonka Canadian Abraham (Fucked Up) and the soprano gives a concert recital of Louise Pitre, Ma-Anne Dionisio, legendary Caroline Azar (Fifth S Eliza-Jane I N C E 1 9 works 4 6 by Schubert, Richard Strauss Tamara Bernier Evans, Column). $8 (free with book and Wagner, accompanied by Brian Scott, Carly MA N UStreet, L I F EJoe CMatheson, ENTRE, purchase). 8pm. Wed, May 4. The Zeger on the piano. $20-$65. 8pm. Sterling Jarvis, Jeff Madden, Gavin Garrison. 1197 Dundas St W. B AY S T. S O U T H O F B L O O R Sat, May 7. Koerner Hall. 273 Bloor Hope, Sharron Matthews, George 416-967-1122 St W. (416) 408-0208. Masswohl, Kevin Dennis, Adrienne Toronto Comic Arts Festival ww w . b a y b l o o r r a d i o . c o m Talisker Players The voice and Dennis, Robyn Hutton and Jake Sat, May 7 & 8. Epstein. Directed by Tracey Flye. $59 chamber ensemble presents See page 43. Façade, William Walton’s musical & $69. 8pm. Mon, May 9. Panasonic The Griffin Trust Shortlist


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Continued on page 34 bay-bloor may.indd 1

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l i s t i n g s & ev e n t s

Continued from page 33

in spot

Contemporary Designers/The Bay Story Derek Dotto

setting of poems by Edith Sitwell and the premiere of Alexander Rapoport’s Jabberwocky. Plus Harry Freedman’s Pan and Alex Eddington’s Poems of Dennis Lee. With soprano Xin Wang, tenor James McLennan and actor Graham Abbey. $30. 8pm. Tue, May 3 & 4. Trinity St Paul’s Centre. 427 Bloor St W. (416) 978-8849. Toronto Mendelssohn Choir Noel Edison

conducts the 150-voice choir and Festival Orchestra in the Great Mass in C Minor and other works by Mozart, with soloists Gillian Keith, Anita Krause and Thomas Goerz. $43-$73. 7:30pm. Wed, May 11. Koerner Hall. 273 Bloor St W. (416) 408-0208. Toronto Symphony Orchestra Highlights

With labels that are more likely to be found in Yorkville or Queen West boutiques, Canada’s oldest retailer is making a big push to capture a trendier, more image-conscious customer. Its latest move: the men’s Contemporary Designers area. Located on the second floor of the Bay’s flagship Queen Street store, the space offers high-end clothing for the fashion-forward man. “The contemporary menswear market is very exciting right now,” says fashion director Suzanne Timmins. “We knew the demand in the marketplace outweighed the supply. We had to participate.” The space itself is minimalist. White walls and simple fixtures let the garments do the talking. Predistressed pieces from CP Company, lightweight denim from Spurr, and crisp tailoring from Filippa K would be welcome additions to the discerning man’s spring wardrobe. Other labels include Band of Outsiders, Robert Geller Seconds and Converse by John Varvatos. Many are secondary lines started by design houses to provide a more affordable alternative to their primary lines — though many shoppers will still gasp at the $300 price tag hanging from a Drkshdw by Rick Owens T-shirt. 34

May 2011

→ “ WANT & COVET ” Fashion-forward labels like Spurr and Filippa K are now featured at the Bay.

Buyers left room on the racks for homegrown talent including Toronto label Klaxon Howl. Timmins says Canadians will have even more of a presence in coming seasons. “For fall, we are happy to add Burkman Bros, Kin, and Arc’teryx Veilance to our stable of designers.” Like the relaunch of The Room and The White Space women’s departments, also located at the flagship, the new men’s area puts the Bay in direct competition with Holt Renfrew and other luxury retailers. While Contemporary Designers is likely to lure in a new batch of label-conscious shoppers, Timmins says it was the Bay’s current clients who inspired the move. “We find that customers know and appreciate these brands already. We knew they have always been shopping with us, now it’s nice to be able to offer something they ‘want and covet’ rather than ‘need.’” More men will be able to covet the goods come fall when Contemporary Designers expands to the Bay Yorkdale. THE BAY 176 Yonge St. (416) 861-9111.

this month include sexsational soprano Karita Mattila and cellist Anssi Karttunen performing Mirage, a piece composed for them by Kaija Saariaho. Plus works by Sibelius and Ravel. Hannu Lintu conducts. $32-$141 8pm. Thu, May 5 & 7. Star pianist Emanuel Ax plays Mozart’s Piano Concerto No 17, plus more Mozart and Strauss; Sir Andrew Davis conducts. $32-$148. 8pm. Wed, May 11. 2pm. May 12. Then incomparable violinist Itzhak Perlman plays and conducts a program of Mozart and Dvořák. $49-$189. 8pm. Sat, May 21. Roy Thomson Hall. 60 Simcoe St. (416) 593-4828.


Toronto Dance Theatre presents two new works for the company choreographed by Alban Richard, artistic director of Ensemble l’Abrupt in Paris, and Emmanuelle Vo-Dinh, artistic director of Compagnie Sui Generis in Rennes, in northwestern France. $26. 8pm. Thu, May 19-21, May 25-28. PWYC. 2pm. Sun, May 22. Winchester Street Theatre. 80 Winchester St. (416) 967-1365. La La La Human Steps

Édouard Lock presents an untitled work that fuses two tragic love stories from familiar

operas. $27-$89. Thu, May 26-June 1. Bluma Appel. 27 Front St E.

THEATRE Forests A 16-year-old girl, Loup (Vivien EndicottDouglas), journeys to discover the origin of her mother’s mysterious death, brought on by unsettling visions and prophecies, leading to Loup’s ancestors and the forest where they lived. English-language premiere from Wajdi Mouawad (whose play Incendies was adapted into the Oscar-nominated film by Denis Villeneuve). Starring Dmitry Chepovetsky, Matthew Edison, Vivien Endicott-Douglas, David Fox, Sophie Goulet, Brandon McGibbon, Alon Nashman, Liisa Repo-Martell, Jan Alexandra Smith, RH Thomson and Terry Tweed; Richard Rose directs. $23-$37. 8pm. Tue-Sat. 2:30pm. Sat & Sun. Until Sun, May 29. Tarragon Theatre. 30 Bridgman Ave. (416) 531-1827. tickets. Brown Balls fu-GEN Asian Canadian Theatre Company presents Byron Abalos’ irreverent exploration of race, gender and sex through the characters of three young men disguised as Bruce Lee, Charlie Chan and Fu Manchu. With Sean Baek, Richard Lee and David Yee; Nina Lee Aquino directs. $10-$26. 8pm. Tue-Sat. 2pm Sat & Sun. Tue, May 3-15. Factory Studio Theatre. 125 Bathurst St. (416) 5049971. Fri, May 6 performance, a fundraiser with food, silent auction and more. $50. 6pm. (416) 910-2828. Viva Cabaret The highenergy drag tribute to the divas of Broadway, Hollywood and pop served up as Russified dinner theatre. Starrying Yura (Yury Ruzhyev). No cover. 8pm. Wed, May 4. Gladstone Hotel’s Melody Bar. 1214 Queen St W. Agokwe Thu, May 5-15 Buddies in Bad Times. See page 40. Zadie’s Shoes Factory Theatre presents Adam Pettle’s 2000 hit about an

→ loose cannons The Italian feature opens the Inside Out film festival on Thu, May 19.

inveterate gambler who loses the money for his girlfriend’s cancer treatment and the desperate measures he takes to recover the money. Featuring Joe Cobden, Patricia Fagain, William MacDonald, Harry Nelken, Shannon Perrault, Geoffrey Pounsett and Lisa Ryder; Adam and Jordan Pettle direct. $30-$45. 8pm. TueSat. 2pm. Sun. Thu, May 5June 5. Factory Theatre. 125 Bathurst St. (416) 504-9971. Orfeo ed Euridice

Celebrated Canadian opera director Robert Carsen returns to the Canadian Opera Company for the first time in 19 years to direct Gluck’s bewitching tale of the power of love. Starring US countertenor Lawrence Zazzo and Canadian soprano Isabel Bayrakdarian; Harry Bicket conducts. With design by Tobias Hoheisel. $62-$281 (standing room, rush and youth tix available). Sun, May 8, 11, 14, 17, 20, 24, 26 & 28. Four Seasons Centre. 145 Queen St W. (416) 363-8231. Fronteras Americanas

Soulpepper remounts Guillermo Verdecchia’s Governor General’s Awardwinning one-man explor-

li st in g s & eve nts

ation of displacement and identity as an ArgentineCanadian. Jim Warren directs. $28-$65 ($22 for 21- to 30-year-olds at Opens Wed, May 11. Young Centre. 55 Mill St, bldg 49. (416) 866-8666. The Post Office

Pleiades Theatre presents one of the most magical plays of the 20th century. Written by Bengali poet and songwriter Rabindranath Tagore in 1911, two years before he was the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize in literature, it’s the story of sick child of boundless spirit. Starring Mina James, Patricia Marceau, Sam Moses, Dylan ScottSmith, Errol Sitahal, Sugith Varughese and Jennifer Villaverde. New translation by Julie Mehta, directed by John Van Burek, with choreography by Hari Krishnan and music by Debashis Sinha. $35. 8pm. Tue, May 10-June 4. Berkeley Street Theatre Downstairs. 26 Berkeley St. (416) 368.3110.

SPORTS & REC International Gay Bowl-Fest 150 teams

from across North America descend upon Toronto for the 31st annual event presented by the International Gay Bowling Organization

(IGBO). The 10-pin tourney takes place at Classic Bowl out in Mississauga (3055 Dundas St W) and Planet Bowl in Etobicoke (5555 Eglinton Ave W). Thu, May 26-29.

EVENTS & CAUSES Hope Rising Gala

concert to raise money for the Stephen Lewis Foundation with Alicia Keys, K’naan, Angelique Kidjo, Rufus Wainwright, Holly Cole, Jully Black and more. $150 and up. 8pm. Tue, May 3. Sony Centre. 1 Front St E. In Toronto’s firstanniversary party

Toronto’s premier LGBT magazine is one year old, so we’re putting on the glad rags. Inspired by the Life Ball in Vienna, Europe’s largest AIDS fundraiser, In Toronto hosts a glam costume party to raise money for the AIDS Committee of Toronto. Attendees have a chance to win a trip to Vienna and two tickets to this year’s Life Ball. $20 donation requested. 10:30pm. Thu, May 5. Roosevelt Room. 328 Adelaide St W. jara@ Climax A program of music and comedy to raise money for Toronto PWA, Triangle Program, Pride Toronto and Laser Eagles. With Jully Black,

Jeffery Straker, Richard Ryder, Miss Conception and more. Presented by Proud FM. $75. 1pm. Sun, May 15. Betty Oliphant. 400 Jarvis St. The Autists Works by Ed Bartram, Shary Boyle, Shayne Dark, Jérôme Fortin, Hank Willis Thomas, Charles Pachter and more auctioned off to benefit the Toronto-based Geneva Centre for Autism. With entertainment by John Alcorn, Shawn Byfield, Vito Rezza and more. $195. 5:30pm. Tue, May 17. Koerner Hall. 273 Bloor St W. Recipe for Change An evening of great food and wine to raise money for FoodShare, a Toronto non-profit fighting hunger through sustainably produced, healthy food programs that reach over 145,000 children and adults per month. Among the scores of participating chefs are Rocco Agostino (Enoteca and Libretto) Michael van den Winkel (Quince) Martin Kouprie (Pangaea), Marc Breton (the Gladstone Hotel) and Donna Dooher (Mildred’s Temple Kitchen). $100. 6pm-9pm. Thu, May 26. St Lawrence Market (North Building). 92 Front St E. (416) 363-6441, ext 272.

in spot The Pie Shack

owned gem has won a cult follow-

Then comes dessert. You can order


ing. Regulars seat themselves at

your favourite ahead of time or just

mismatched painted wood tables or

take your chances. Cherry season’s

on comfy striped couches by a plate

just starting — a definite recommen-

glass window. The pies are to die

dation. But raspberry is a must-have

for. Owner Tim McConvey’s vision,

— divine, with or without a generous

warm down-home personality and

dollop of vanilla ice cream.

Shaw Festival The first round of openings begins after Victoria Day. With Shaw’s Heartbreak House (Wed, May 25) Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (May 26), Robinson’s Drama at Inish: A Comedy (May 27) Shaw’s Candida and Lerner and Loewe’s My Fair Lady (May 28). $32-$106. Niagara-on-the-Lake. 1-800-511-SHAW. Stratford Festival

First round of openings: Shakespeare’s Merry Wives of Windsor (Mon, May 30), Lerner and Loewe’s Camelot (May 31), Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath (June 1), the bard’s Richard III (June 2), Rice and Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar (June 3). $50-$120. Stratford. 1-800-567-1600.•

Review Pam Shime | Photography Nicola Betts

The Pie Shack is the best-kept secret in the Beach. A go-to cot-

→ t o die for Sweet and savoury heaven awaits at the Pie Shack.

tage in the city, chock a block full

cious salad on the side to make you

of Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys

feel virtuous. Get one of each and

novels and childhood games like

take home left-overs. McConvey

Snakes and Ladders, Battleship,

will write your name and reheating

and Twister (I dare you), this gay-

instructions on the box.

brilliant choice of the elusive Norma as his pie chef clinch the deal. “Sometimes it’s just one conversa-

The choice is not simple. How to turn down pecan pie that tastes like the best, gooiest butter tart,

tion in here,” McConvey tells a cus-

or Wimbledon-inspired strawberry

tomer. And sure enough, one rainy

cream pie or flaky bumbleberry?

night recently the place is hopping

McConvey did 20 years downtown

and people who have never met are

in the grind. When it wasn’t fun

passing around a smartphone play-

anymore, he decided to reinvent.

ing the wacky baby YouTube video

“When it gets really busy,” he

of the moment, laughing at each

says, “I just pretend it’s my parent’s

others’ jokes, and calling out to

house — I’m helping them with a

McConvey who’s taking orders for

big party, and it’s a great day.” It

pies over the phone and filling tea-

usually is here, with McConvey dol-

pots with more hot water.

ing out delectable homemade com-

The first tough decision of your

fort just up from the beach.

visit — chicken or beef pot pie. Both are bursting with flavour inside perfect pastry. There’s a deli-

THE PIE SHACK 11am-11pm daily. 2305 Queen St E. (647) 351-1411.


A RT & D E S I G N

Ph o t o graph y

Still life → With scores of shows all over town, the Contact photo festival can be overwhelming. Two featured photographers help calm the visual clutter by discussing what they see in their own rich, thoughtful works

Dianne Davis

Osheen Harruthoonyan

ries there have been some very

“I paint with light. This image

to freeze time and our inability to

“The photograph (opposite page)

dark periods. Nagorno-Karabakh

(above) is the result of a long expo-

do so, that my images are trying to

was taken in Nagorno-Karabakh.

translates to Mountainous Black

sure. For 20 minutes I’m waving

capture things that are decaying. I



Garden, but the title also com-

around a flashlight in complete

try to keep the images on the edge

the negative by hand I wanted

ments on the fading memories,

darkness deciding what to reveal,

of disturbing and beautiful.”

to merge foreground and back-

and history of a population who

lushness emerging from the dark.

Davis’s Impervious show opens

ground to create a moody and

have consistently been at war and

If I keep my hand moving, it doesn’t

Thu, May 12 (5pm-7pm). It’s up

otherworldly space that is more

lost an incredible amount of their

register. I like that the negative is

from May 5 to June 4 at Toronto

about the memories and history

land, culture and identity.”

capturing a chunk of time. That’s

Image Works Gallery. 80 Spadina

of the place than just a photo of a

Black Garden opens Tue, May 10

always the case in photography,

Ave # 207. (416) 703-1999. toronto-

mountain. That region has a very

(5pm-7pm), up from May 5 to June 5.

but usually it’s just a tiny moment.

rich, complex and ancient his-

Lonsdale Gallery. 410 Spadina Rd.

tory, and throughout the centu-

(416) 487 8733.

I like the play between our desire 36


May 2011


Contact sheet The sprawling photo fest runs throughout May in countless galleries and bars — nearly anywhere you can slap up an image. In addition to the work by Dianne Davis and Osheen Harruthoonyan, here’s some wheat among the chaff. Political Poetics features recent photos by Suzy Lake, a pioneer in body-based work. Opening. 7pm-9pm. Tue, May 3. Until June 25. University of Toronto Art Centre. 15 King’s College Circle. Also opening at UTAC the same night: Something, Something, Chris Curreri’s provocative and seductive collisions between the human form and found objects. Until May 31. What Isn’t There is an ongoing collaboration between filmmaker and photographer Elle Flanders and architect Tamira Sawatzky, documenting the places where Palestinian villages once stood. An image from the series is a mural outside MOCCA until August Artist talk. 11am. Sun, May 1. 952 Queen St W. (416) 395-0067. Secrets of the Flesh are dance-based works by National Ballet of Canada principal dancer turned photographer Aleksandar Antonijevic. Opening. 6pm-9pm. Thu, May 5. Until May 15. Pimlico Gallery. 789 Dupont St. (416) 538-0909. Su Rynard’s Seed Bank is an installation exploring human constructions of nature. Opening. 7pm10pm. Fri, May 6. Until June 4. Paul Petro Contemporary Art. 980 Queen St W. (416) 979-7874.

CONTACT Running throughout May at scores of locations.


A RT & D E S I G N


Horror & beauty → Surviving

the first onslaught of AIDS Story Peter Knegt


fter a warmly received world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, David Weissman’s documentary We Were Here will make its Canadian debut as part of Hot Docs, with a repeat appearance at Inside Out. A very specific depiction of the onset of AIDS in North America, the film focuses on the stories of five individuals who lived in San Francisco in the 1980s, four gay men and a woman who was a nurse in an AIDS ward. The film is unlikely to leave many dry eyes in the theatre (it certainly didn’t in Sundance, where sobbing from the audience consistently accompanied the film’s soundtrack), providing a powerful snapshot of a devastating period in the San Francisco gay community. Weissman brings an affecting sense of intimacy by focusing on just five individuals and one city instead of taking on AIDS in a more expansive context.

It’s about how we deal with living and dying. “I was trying to find a way to make a movie that was illuminating and healing for the audience,” Weissman says, “and also a process of healing for myself as well. I moved to San Francisco in 1976 and found myself in this community of gay hippy boys that are politically active and naked at the beach and taking acid. We were just enjoying this exuberant period in this emerging gay movement 38

May 2011

in this incredibly beautiful and amazing city... Then, as the epidemic came in, life changed. “It’s taken a period of time for me personally and for the community to be willing to go back and revisit what we went through, both the horrors and the beauty of it.” Weissman’s previous film was 2002’s acclaimed The Cockettes, which details the gender-bending San Francisco performance group that became a pop culture phenomenon in the 1970s. Weissman had doubts about making a follow-up film. “My life makes a lot of sense looking backwards,” he says, “much more than it does looking forward. In a way this movie is the culmination of everything I ever lived through. A younger boyfriend had heard me talk about

→ resilient COMMUNI T Y Filmmaker David Weissman watched the idyll of 1970s San Francisco succumb to AIDS. Thirty years later he wanted to tell a story of survival and compassion.

my experiences with the epidemic many times, and told me I should make a film about it. I thought it was a terrible idea at the time, but I quickly came around and realized that it was important to be done by someone who had lived through those years.” We Were Here has something universal to say. “In some ways, it’s not even just about AIDS,” Weissman says. “It’s about community. It’s about how we deal with living and dying. It’s about how we take responsibility for being part of society. And it’s about

how we deal with our emotions.” Weissman calls the story of AIDS in San Francisco essentially a “concentrated version of what happened in other places.” “Certainly every city had its own political and social context that determined the way the battles played out in those years. But the story of human compassion and the elements of homophobia pretty much played out everywhere. The role of women, for instance — in almost every community I’ve shown the film so far, there’s been an acknowledgement, particularly from gay men, thanking me for acknowledging the role of lesbians, because it was so profound, both on a personal level and with regard to the political shift it represented, which was a coming together of communities that often were at odds.” Weissman recalls one audience member, “a straight guy probably in his early 40s,” who came up to him after a screening of the film in Berlin. He said what was most powerful for him about the film was just to see five people on screen who were just so incredibly comfortable with their emotions. “It was totally separate from the content, and that made me feel really good,” Weissman says, “because in many ways for me the film is about the generosity of the human spirit, and about the capacity of that generosity to emerge in adverse circumstances.”

WE WERE HERE Hot Docs: 9:30pm. Tue, May 3. 1:45pm. May 5. Inside Out: 2pm. Sun, May 29.

A RT & D E S I G N

the inside track

What if you, or someone close to you, is told ‘You’re HIV postive’? income support support income treatment programs treatment programs foodprograms programs food healthpromotion promotion health engagement PHAPHA engagement

→ slow burn Inside Out’s closing gala, The big news from this year’s The Night Watch, stars Claire Foy and Inside Out, Toronto’s LGBT film Anna Maxwell Martin. and video festival running Thu, May 19 to 29, is its move to TIFF Bell Lightbox (350 King St W), the Ferguson, “is the opening gala, Toronto International Film Festival’s Loose Cannons (Mine Vaganti), the nifty mulitplex that opened last fall. latest from Italian director Ferzan With most of the festival happenOzpetek, who directed Saturn in ing under one roof — a venue that Opposition and Steam, and the closhouses a couple of cool drinking and ing gala The Night Watch, the lateating establishments — Inside Out est adaptation of a Sarah Waters has a chance to recapture that spenovel.” The Night Watch, directed cial community feel characterisby Richard Laxton (An Englishman tic of its earlier years. There will in New York), was adapted by Paula also be two full days of community Milne, who previously tackled Small screenings and the Outsiders experIsland and The Virgin Queen. The imental series at Buddies in Bad all-star cast includes Anna Maxwell Times Theatre (12 Alexander St). Martin, Claire Foy and Anna WilsonOn the programming side, Inside Jones. The BBC feature is part of Out’s executive director Scott Inside Out’s international focus on Ferguson is excited about the gala the UK, which also includes Daphne, screenings this year. “In terms of a BBC-produced bio-pic on author personal faves,” he says, “our Daphne DuMaurier and Christopher centrepiece gala is my favouand His Kind, another BBC prorite — Weekend by Andrew Haigh duction on Christopher Isherwood from the UK. It had its world preand his early years in Berlin. miere at the SXSW Film Festival last “We have a mini-focus on the month and won the Emerging Visions Middle East,” says Ferguson, Audience Award there. It is fantas“which includes films from Iran tic, like a gay Before Sunrise, in a (Circumstance and Offside), films good way,” he says, laughing, referabout Middle East immigrants in ring to Richard Linklater’s talky France (A Few Days of Respite) 1995 romantic drama starring Ethan and Germany (Shahada), and a Hawke and Julie Delpy. Weekend master class with Samar Habib, stars Tom Cullen as a lifeguard author of Female Homosexuality with conservative views, uncomin the Middle East: Histories fortable with his gayness, and Chris and Representations.” New, as an outgoing gay artist who eschews long-term relationships. What seems like a casual affair INSIDE OUT The program and schedule are has much deeper ramifications. out now; tickets go on sale on Thu, May 5. “Also really strong,” says

Help us continue to support people living with HIV/AIDS

Toronto People With AIDS Foundation by volunteering or making a secure online donation at 200 Gerrard Street East, 2nd floor Toronto, Ontario M5A 2E6 416-506-1400

Toronto People With AIDS Foundation Toronto People With AIDS Foundation 200 Gerrard Street East, 2nd floor Toronto, Ontario M5A 2E6 416-506-1400

ToronTo PeoPle WiTh AiDS FounDATion’S


ToronTo –MonTréAl july 24–29, 2011

As long as there’s a reason… there’s a ride. riders and Crew WAnTeD! 416-506-1400


→ Male and female, rural and urban, traditional and modern — theatre artist Waawaate Fobister reaches across the divide to find humble, human truths

T h eat re

“I know where I come from” Story Gordon Bowness Photography Tanja Tiziana



he opening night audience

a near sweep at the Dora Awards.

Agokwe’s success. Fobister lives

at Buddies in Bad Times

Agokwe nabbed eight Dora nomina-

daily with his creation; the charac-

Theatre knew they had

tions — that’s every category it was

ter of Mike, in particular, is a dis-

witnessed something very special

eligible for — winning six, including

turbing companion. He’s based on a

back in 2008 at the world premiere

best new play, production, direction

friend of Fobister’s, a young man up

of Agokwe by the then 23-year-

and performance.

north who killed himself — the day

old Waawaate Fobister. Where else

Agokwe returns to Buddies this

in the world would they see a gay

month, again directed by Ed Roy, in

“Mike was the character I was

Native love story straight from the

a new production co-produced by

most scared of,” says Fobister. “I

bush of northern Ontario told so

the National Arts Centre that has

was blocked when it came to him.

passionately and produced so intel-

toured to Vancouver and Ottawa.

His character breaks down every

ligently? Only a city like Toronto



Fobister flew back home to see him.

“I want to be a storyteller like my father and his father before him, but I want to tell my stories in a contemporary way.”


night. It’s hard. It’s the biggest chal-

me. Each of them wanted to get in

and a theatre like Buddies have the

Fobister’s life. He’s since starred in

lenge emotionally and as an actor. I

my pants.” That’s some bizarre stuff

resources and outlook to nurture a

productions across Canada, choreo-

just basically have to go there.”

to have to deal with. “They’re all so

young talent like Fobister and treat

graphed for theatre and TV, began

“Waawaate is a very gentle per-

messed up,” says Fobister. “I don’t

his story with the respect it deserves.

producing an all-Native cabaret,

son,” says director Ed Roy. “At first

have time to deal with it. I’m not

Any number of developments

has a new play in the works and

he was afraid to go into the anger

angry. It was a long time ago. I don’t

could have derailed the project. But

nabbed a commission for the 2012

of Mike’s character because he felt

want to live with that resentment.

Fobister had the talent and support,

Cultural Olympiad in London, UK.

he might not be able to control it.

I know I’m a strong person, that I

both as a writer and a performer, to

“It’s been a wild ride,” says Fobister.

Now he can.”

was fortunate enough to have a lot

deliver a complex one-man show,

“Agokwe has touched so many.

Roy has been involved in the

of older people, elders, around me

portraying six fully realized charac-

“People open their doors; they are

play from the start, first spotting

to make me strong. I let it go a long

ters while giving a crash-course in

interested in me as an artist and

Fobister as a talent to watch when

time ago.” Fobister admits, however,

Anishnabe life and cosmography,

what I have to say. And I’m just

teaching at Humber College, then

that the memory of being bashed is

including the traditional notion of

starting my career so the Doras

nurturing the script when Fobister

a pernicious one. “It’s almost impos-

agokwe (pronounced agoo-kway),

have really given me opportunities.”

attended Buddies’ Queer Youth

sible to get rid of it. I think it’s always

or two-spirited, a concept of homo-

Based on a true story, Agokwe

Arts Program. Roy’s work as drama-


sexuality that finds both male a­­nd

explores the lives of two teenage

turge and director has been key to

That’s why Fobister’s all-embrac-

female spirits residing in one body.

boys on neighbouring reserves

Agokwe’s success. He feels Fobister

ing art is so fantastic. He describes

Fobister’s story could have been

in northwestern Ontario whose

has matured greatly as a performer

an incredible scene that took

mishandled: the politics too angry,

growing attraction to one another

and writer since Agokwe first pre-

place soon after Agokwe’s first

the characterizations too earnest.

leads to tragedy. Jake, a dancer, is

miered two and half years ago.

run at Buddies. He went back up

But he crafted a wildly funny, heart-

a little more comfortable accept-

Fobister is an incredibly resilient

to Kenora to do a staged reading

wrenching play. The audience’s

ing his gayness; Mike, a star

young man. He’s been gaybashed

of the play. All he had was a chair

cheers and tears opening night pre-

hockey player, is much more con-

a couple of times up north — once

and a couple of props.

saged strong critical acclaim and

flicted. Other characters include

so severely he ended up in hospital

“It was my first all-Native audi-

two female cousins, Cheyenne

for three days. The guys who beat

ence, most of them were high

and Goose (she’s hilarious), Mike’s

him up never took ownership of

school students. And the tough

mother Betty, and Nanabush, the

what they did. But at a party some

guys were right in front with their

foul-mouthed Ojibwe trickster.

time later, they all put the moves on

→ JE T-BL ACK SUCCESS Waawaate Fobister’s tragic gay love story set on a northern reservation is a wildly funny, heart-wrenching piece of theatre.

There’s a dark side to all of

Fobister. “Those guys were all over

Continued on page 42


A RT & D E S I G N

David Hawe

The Global LGBT Summit April 25 – May 1, 2011, Philadelphia

Continued from page 41

feet up on the stage, arms crossed, staring at me. It was crazy, really

Fobister is the first person in his

scary. But I thought, okay, I’m

family to finish high school, the

going to show you what I can do. I

first to move away, the first to

thought it could be either a disas-

graduate from college. His fam-

ter or a total hit.

ily has been incredibly support-

“And they loved it. All these

ive, even though his parents, both

dudes came up after to shake my

Catholics, don’t always under-


stand Fobister’s project to reclaim


Build Your Dream Home Today elegance



→ T RICKS T ER The character of Nanabush is comical, foul-mouthed and wise.

a tradition like agokwe, a concept hat a young theatre artist has

actively suppressed by European

a career in the making is news

colonizers in North America.

enough in this country, let alone a

“Some of my success they don’t

young Native artist. Fobister got

understand. Like when I called

invaluable advice while he was

my dad about winning the Doras,

still a teenager living in Grassy

he was like, ‘That’s great… I don’t

Narrows. Veteran actress and play-

know what that means but it’s

wright Monique Mojica spoke at his

great,’” says Fobister, laughing.

high school. He approached her to

“My parents are just so humble,

discuss his hopes of becoming an

’cause they’re from the bush, right.

actor. “She asked me how I wanted

They’re residential-school survi-

to be portrayed,” Fobister recalls.

vors. They have a very simple life.

“She said if I wanted a career as

“My father brought his elder

a Native actor I was going to have

brother and two sisters to see the

to write my own material. It stuck

play in Ottawa — my aunties, they

with me. I want to have a career as

took care of me when I was a little

a storyteller. I want to be a story-

kid. When I was taking my second

teller like my father and his father

curtain call they were standing

before him, but I want to tell my

right in front and I could see my

stories in a contemporary way.”

aunties just bawling their eyes out.

Does his father recognize that

I had to fight back the tears until I

Fobister is following in the fam-

could get off stage. It’s a moment

ily tradition? “I think so. He saw

I will always remember. It moved

Agokwe for the first time in Ottawa

me so much. It made me so proud.

in February — that was pretty nerve-wracking. We didn’t really






because I know where I come from.”

have a full discussion yet. I’m waiting till I go home in June. But he said, ‘When you come down I want to have a long discussion

Tel. 416.258.6642

with you and I want to pass things on to you.’”

AGOKWE $28-$33. 8pm. Tue-Sat. PWYC. 2:30pm. Sun. Thu, May 5-15. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre. 12 Alexander St. (416) 975-8555.

Richard Stark’s Parker/Darwyn Cooke


B o o ks

Blue pages → Forget

sublimated urges and Spandex-clad superheroes. Comic and graphic artists are taking an increasingly frank look at sex — from fraught to fantastical. Toronto Comic Arts Festival’s Christopher Butcher gives his spin on six artists at this year’s event Story Christopher Butcher


A RT & D E S I G N

Steve MacIsaac → Canadian gay comics creator Steve MacIsaac will be debuting the fourth issue of his series Shirtlifter, which is currently chronicling a musclebear on relationship rebound who finds himself having the best sex of his life — with a man who doesn’t identify as gay. It’s a fascinating look at the labels the LGBT community places on themselves and others, and that are placed on them. I can’t wait to see how the next chapter of this story develops.

Philippe Girard → An autobiographical tale, Philippe Gerard’s Killing Velazquez is about a very sensitive subject — childhood sexual abuse. When a priest is accused of a heinous crime, Girard is thrown back to his own youth and his relationship with the man, and how it changed his life for the worse, and the better. Translated from the French, Girard’s work has won a great deal of acclaim in Quebec (where he has produced an additional nine graphic novels to date). I think this is going to be his breakthrough book in English Canada.


May 2011

A RT & D E S I G N

Chester Brown → Creator of Louis Riel: A Comic-Strip Biography and Yummy Fur, Chester Brown is a Canadian legend. We knew that the debut of Brown’s new graphic novel — his first in nearly 10 year years — would be at the centre of this year’s proceedings. Paying For It is his intensely personal, sure-to-be-controversial account of his experiences with prostitutes in Toronto, and how those actions interact with his political beliefs. Paying For It directly addresses sex, politics and friendship, and it seems to set the tone for many of the other graphic novel debuts we’re seeing at this year’s event. (Launch: Hosted by Sasha Von Bon Bon. No cover. 7:30pm-10pm. Sun, May 1. Goodhandy’s. 120 Church St.)

Darwyn Cooke → Darwyn Cooke is a former Torontonian whose career has bounced between illustration, animation, and comics, winning praise (and awards) in each. Cooke’s current project is adapting four of the Parker novels by Richard Stark (a pseudonym of Donald Westlake). The Parker novels are hardboiled 1950s/’60s pulp fiction, filled with gangs, guns, tough guys and good lookin’ dames — previously adapted to film in Point Blank starring Lee Marvin and Payback starring Mel Gibson. Cooke’s two Parker graphic novels to date, The Hunter and The Outfit, are a helluva read for the action and intrigue Cooke depicts on the page, the gorgeous period-styling (Mad Men fans take note), and the fantastic gender politics on display (see page 43). Guest artist Marie Bérard, violin

Jess Fink → Chester 5000 is the first print work from US creator Jess Fink. It’s a fascinating book and queer in the best way possible. A delightfully smutty Steampunk romance, it’s about the relationship — and frequently displayed coitus — between a proper Victorian lady and her mechanical man. Continuing the trend of publisher Top Shelf Comics’ “literate smut” begun by V for Vendetta creator Alan Moore’s Lost Girls, Fink’s Chester 5000 will be a handsome and unassuming volume for your bookshelf, with all manner of fascinating sex and surprising heart hidden inside.

Works by Gubaidulina, Pauk, Gougeon, and Harman (world premiere)

New Wave Composers Festival May 12 - 15th Showcasing Canada’s emerging young composers Thursday May 12

CHERCHER NOISE Esprit Wild & Wired at the Drake Lounge & Underground Wallace Halladay, Saxs; Stephen Clarke, Piano;

Usamaru Furuya →

Hailing from Tokyo, Usamaru Furuya is one of my favourite comics creators in the world. We’re incredibly excited to welcome him here to Toronto for the first time, especially as he’ll be debuting the English-language edition of his original graphic novel Lychee Light Club. This comedy/horror features a group of fascistic teenage boys who form a secret club and build a terrifying robot — to help them meet girls! Of course things go horribly wrong in the goriest, taboo-breakingest ways possible.

Christopher Butcher is manager of The Beguiling bookstore. 601 Markham St. He blogs at TCAF No cover. 9am-5pm. Sat, May 7. 11am-5pm. May 8. Toronto Reference Library. 789 Yonge St.

Esprit Percussion Ensemble; Cybernetic Orchestra (MacU), David Ogborn, Director 8 pm


Friday May 13

RISING STARS CONCERT Esprit Chamber Ensemble Fleck Dance Theatre, Harbourfront Centre In collaboration with the Canadian League of Composers 8 pm Free Admission

A RT & D E S I G N

m u si c

Alt-country optimism → kd

lang’s sweet new album Sing It Loud Review Mary Dickie

© Nonesuch Records


→ siss boom bang With a new band behind her kd lang gives an inspired, spontaneous performance.

ver her nearly threedecade-long career, kd lang has worked with many different producers and songwriters, crossing back and forth between cowpunk, traditional country, pop and torch music, performing some unforgettable cover songs along the way. Her voice has always been spectacular, even if she hasn’t always had equally spectacular material to match. But she may not ever have sounded as relaxed and comfortable as she does on her 13th studio album, Sing It Loud. Lang’s inspired choice of collaborator this time was Joe Pisapia, of Guster fame, who helped her come up with a set of songs that seem to fit her personality and voice like a glove. They’re not strictly country or pop, instead mining a vein of alt-country that also produced bands like Wilco. Lang and her highly accomplished new band, Siss Boom Bang — Daniel Clarke, Fred Eltringham, Josh Grange, Lex Price and Pisapia — recorded the album in Nashville in just three days, mostly live off the floor, and the freshness and spontaneity are palpable. The opening track, “I Confess,”

starts off with some gentle piano backing before the band kicks in with a big drum sound that pays tribute to one of lang’s heroes, Roy Orbison. There’s gorgeous pedal steel and simple acoustic guitar on the country-tinged “Inglewood” and a lovely down-home take on Talking Heads’ “Heaven,” on which lang is accompanied by some beautifully laid-back guitar that provides a perfectly unobtrusive backdrop for her singing. Lang’s voice sounds languid, lush and positively intoxicated with desire on “The Water’s Edge” and “A Sleep with No Dreaming,” but she really lets it loose on the lusty “Sugar Buzz,” in which she’s “spinning like a world without its gravity” as the piano and guitar reach a crescendo and come to a dramatic stop behind her. Her positively charged outlook is summed up in the closing song, “Sorrow Nevermore,” in which she vows to walk away from her troubles, which are no more important than pebbles in her shoes. It’s a fitting finish for this sweetly optimistic album. SING IT LOUD kd lang and the Siss Boom Bang. Nonesuch/Warner. $13.




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Bottoming 101 — here’s a few tips to start.

tion, should you drink too much, while intoxicated you may cause

Patience is the key to being a bot-

injury that you are not aware of

tom. It takes a lot of relaxation

until it’s too late. Also factor in that

and getting used to the sensa-

excessive alcohol use can impair

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your judgment around safe sex

course. The more tense and appre-


hensive you are, the more you will

“Poppers” are also used by some

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ing penetration more difficult. I

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small toys at first (alone, or with

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your partner). Using lots of lubrica-

Viagra and Cialis because of possi-

tion, gradually increase the objects

ble fatal drops in blood pressure.

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Anal douching is a common prac-

ready to take something the size of

tice for gay men who bottom, usu-

your partner’s penis.

ally stemming from the desire to

Pain during anal sex can often

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tion. Men commonly use a variety

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of products for this, from female

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slow down and give yourself time

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by tube). Douching is certainly not

partner, using lots and lots of lubri-

necessary before or after anal sex,

cation, inserting small things like

and many couples don’t bother.




fingers to begin with. Build up grad-

If you want to clean up before-

ually to larger items, using discom-

hand, I recommend using an ear

fort as your guide: If it hurts, stop

syringe (a rubber bulb with a small

and try something smaller again.

spout on the end, obtainable at

Eventually you will train your body

most pharmacies for under $10).

to be able to take larger items,

Lubricate the tip well and insert

including your partner’s penis. If

into the rectum, rinsing several

it’s painful every time you put any-

times before sex.

thing in your bum then go to your

Bottoms up!

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use before

alcohol sex



intended). A drink or two may help you to relax, allowing your partner to penetrate you more easily. However, you don’t want your sex life to depend on alcohol. In addi-

Dr Keith Loukes works in emergency in a Toronto hospital. Send him your sexual health question at This column should not be viewed as medical advice; always consult your physician.



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Profile for IN Magazine

IN Toronto Magazine: May 2011  

IN Toronto Magazine: May 2011 Issue: 12 IN Toronto Magazine's May 2011 issue, featuring stories on gay and lesbian living.

IN Toronto Magazine: May 2011  

IN Toronto Magazine: May 2011 Issue: 12 IN Toronto Magazine's May 2011 issue, featuring stories on gay and lesbian living.