Sunday, October 31, 2010

Amazing Posts from Anna Williats Sunday List Serv...

Amazing events, workshops and calls for artists! This weekly listserv is an asset to the community! Thanks Anna! Want details on how to join, drop me a line. Free, low cost and sliding scale events! Don't let cash be a factor in missing arts and culture in the city! -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. Bend it like Beckham has a special place in my heart.... come out if you too love Gurinder Chadha. The 10th International Diaspora Film Festival Opens with a Tribute to The Green Movement of Iran Back to the Roots is the theme of the 10th anniversary of the IDFF as we pay tribute to the Iranian roots of our festival. What began in 2001 as the Iranian Diaspora Film Festival quickly evolved into the International Diaspora Film Festival. The IDFF once again uses the medium of cinema to look at the hopes of people seeking a better life in a new country, the challenges of various cross-cultural moments, and the nostalgia of going back to one's roots. The festival opens with The Twenty Days that Shook Tehran, an underground documentary with an original twist. The film looks at the final twenty days leading to the much-disputed presidential election through the eyes of an Iranian theatre group. The screening will be followed by a lively panel discussion on the Green Movement with well-known political analysts. An Iranian theatre group also features in a fictional film by Iranian-Australian filmmaker Granaz Mousavi. My Tehran for Sale , made in the streets of Tehran under perilous circumstances, presents a daring view of urban subculture and the muted rebellion of youth. From Iran we move to neighbouring Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq to present films dealing with social and political issues in these countries. These are movies with enduring themes of love and loss, laughter and redemption. Applauded at the Critic's Week of the Cannes Film Festival, Shahram Alidi's Whisper with the Wind is described by Le Monde as "one of the most contemplative films to watch today, a visual poem crammed with unbelievable landscapes, elegiac sequences impressive in their sheer majesty". Truly beautiful to watch, Whisper with the Wind, filmed on location in Iraqi Kurdistan, tells the story of an extraordinary messenger who records the voices of soldiers and refugees to deliver back to their families. We're proud to present Gurinder Chadha (Bend it Like Beckham, Bride and Prejudice) and her new killer comedy It's a Wonderful Afterlife, the story of an Indian mum in England whose match-making efforts to marry off her daughter turn deadly. In Chicas, Yasmina Reza, the luminous French playwright/filmmaker of Iranian descent, tells another "back to the roots" story of the beautifully aging Spanish Pilar (Carmen Maura) and her three grown daughters, brought up in France. The daughters are alternately catty and supportive of each other, yet unanimous in their criticism of Pilar and her new boyfriend. We find a similar theme in the short film Annie de Francia, where a Spanish mother and her two daughters embark on a road trip from France to Spain to attend the wedding of a cousin they have never met. Rising Canadian filmmaker Noah Pink from Halifax will present his Cannes 2010 hit ZedCrew. Shot on location in Zambia, Noah follows a rap group that resorts to desperate measures to get to New York. Zambian hip-hop artist Alvin Fungo delivers a breakout performance, backed by his own original music. The film is presented as a double bill with Only When I Dance, a documentary that similarly captures the dreams of two black youth from the favelas in Brazil. Despite poverty and prejudice, the two are determined to use dance as an escape from the harsh realities of daily life. In the entertaining and thought-provoking film Ayla by SuTurhan, cultural and generational clashes within the Turkish community in Germany are explored alongside a traditional love story. Tony Gatlif's film Freedom (Korkoro) goes beyond clash of cultures to unravel the oppression of Gypsies by the Vichy government of France during WWII. Winner of the Audience Award at the Montreal Film Festival, Tony Gatlif (Exiles, Crazy Stranger) mixes his filmmaking and musical talents to produce a bitter-sweet tale of compassion against a backdrop of power gone amok. Multi-award winning Bandhobi is the tale of a rebellious Korean teenager and her Bangladeshi emigrant friend, while Bollywood Hero follows the theme of cultural differences. When a Dutch actor witnesses a horrific accident in Mumbai where a street girl is killed, he is compelled to try to change the order of things to appease his guilt. Altiplano, the winner of Best Film and Best Environmental Awareness awards from Bangkok Film Festival, is a Dutch co-production. Shot in the high Andes of Peru and Belgium with multi-national actors, the film tells the story of a small mining village contaminated by mercury seeping from the ground. The politics of the region are artistically conveyed using the beauty of the Andes Mountains and magic realism. Here and There (Winner, Best Film, Tribeca; Jury Award, Ft. Lauderdale; Best Director, Young Jury Award, FIPRESCI, Geneva) with acclaimed actress Mirjana Karanovic (Grbavica, Underground) is the story of a down and out New York musician (David Thornton) who accepts an offer he can't refuse from his friend, Bianco. He agrees to travel to Serbia to bring Bianco's girlfriend to the US but business gets confounded with pleasure. The result is a gentle comedy about cultural differences and mid-life romance. Roots project is a compilation of works by young ethnic Canadian filmmakers using cameras to discuss their diverse backgrounds. The selection represents the best of more than one hundred films received by CBC's Roots Challenge. These films will be screened during the Diaspora In Short program, in collaboration with Radio Canada International. Screening is Free. The closing film, Miscreants of Taliwood, was a hit at the Telluride Film Festival. This mockumentary transports the audience to the forbidden tribal belt of Pakistan's Northwest Frontier to reveal the underground film industry that persists under the nose of the Taliban. George Gittoes teams up with Pashto action and comedy stars to make an over-the-top action drama, played out in what must be one of film history's most bizarre locations-a cave or two away from the reputed hiding spot of Osama Bin Laden. Light of East: A Music Concert closes this edition of the festival. This instrumental band performs music from the Near and Middle East, including traditional, folk, classical, and modern urban music of the 20th century. The captivating rhythms and melodies will take the audience on a diverse musical journey. The Light of East Ensemble was nominated for the Jack Richardson Music Award and London Music Award in 2008, 2009, and 2010. The festival runs from 2 to 7 November 2010, at Innis Town Hall, 2 Sussex Ave., Toronto M5S 1J5 (off St. George, one block south of Bloor, Subway St. George). Admission is $10/$8 students and seniors. A festival pass ($80) includes the closing concert. To reserve tickets please email (recommended) or call 416 571 2150. For complete film descriptions and schedule please visit our website -------------------------------------------------------------------- 2.One of my biggest regrets- not working with Augusto before his death.... THEATRE GAMES facilitated by: Naomi Tessler, M.A. Educational Theatre, N.Y.U. For an Evening of Laughter, an Evening of Pure Fun, Join us Wednesday, November 3rd 2010, & Wednesday, December 1st, 2010 Time: 7pm-9:30pm Location: Christie Studio, Artscape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie st. Cost: $25, Student Rate: $15 for students *sliding scale option available* And: An Introductory Workshop Series in Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed Learn to use theatre as a tool for social change! Fall Series Dates: Wednesday, November 10th, 2010 Wednesday, November 17th, 2010 Wednesday, November 24th, 2010 Time: 7pm-9:30pm Location: Christie Studio, Artscape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie St. To Register and for more info, contact Naomi at: 416-910-4972 Cost: $110 for fall series, Individual Workshop: $40 Student Rate: $80 for fall series, Individual Workshop: $30 *sliding scale option available* ------------------------------------------------------------- 3. Latin-Afro South Asian Festival 05 November at 8:00 pm Gladstone Hotel Ballroom 1214 Queen Street West Toronto, ON The Gladstone Hotel is thrilled to be hosting the final night of the Latin-Afro South Asian Festival! Join us for a night of music, video and dance. LOTS of dance!!!! Presented by the Latino Canadian Cultural Association. Performers: Toronto Tabla Ensemble (South Asian Music) Red Slam (Hip Hop) MataDanze (Latin American-Canadian Contemporary Dance and Theater Collective) LAL (electronic) La Bomba and Amasonica Sound Force (Funk/Hip Hop) Cover $5 Latino Canadian Cultural Association: Festival Artistic Director: Alejandro Freeland Festival Administrative Director: Jacques Yamdjie South Asian Artists’ Coordinator: Rosina Kazi Thanks to the Ontario Arts council and the Toronto Arts Council. ---------------------------------------------------------------- 4. “ART FOR PEACE IN OUR AMERICAS” First multi-disciplinary FESTIVAL BY “CASA MAIZ” November 5 & 6, 2010 Opening Ceremony: Friday, November 5th from 7:30 to 9:30 pm. Saturday, November 6th from 2:00 pm. to 10:00 pm. Trinity St. Paul Centre for Justice, Faith and the Arts. 427 Bloor Street West, Toronto. Bloor & Spadina FREE ADMISSION The artistic collectives that currently participate in Casa Maíz- Crisálida, Teatro Libre, Pinceles Latinos, Ojos del Alma, New Tradition Music, Voces Poéticas, Grupo de Danza Llajwas de Bolivia, Grupo de Danza Colombiana- are pleased to present the first multi-disciplinary festival “Art for Peace in our Americas”. Supported by the Toronto Arts Council and a number of Latin American organizations in Toronto, our festival is presented as an exhibition and appreciation of Latin American artists, while contributing to multiculturalism in Toronto. We will hold various art performances for two days including visual arts, music, dance, theatre, poetry, activities for children, youth, seniors, crafts and delicious Latin American foods. We invite you not to miss the artistic event of the year! This event seeks to promote our roots, traditions, crafts, art, culture, dreams, visions and joys as a contribution toward justice and peace in Latin America. Come and enjoy the greatness our culture and our contribution to the Canadian mosaic, all of this in just one event! ¡Les esperamos amigos! For more information: (416) 671-9130, or visit us at: ----------------------------------------------------- 5. The People's History of Toronto 08 November ·8:00 - 11:00 pm Lula Lounge 1585 Dundas Street West Toronto, ON Performances of the extraordinary history of ordinary people. Speeches, poems, letters, and songs from the social movements of Toronto presented by: Afua Cooper, Amai Kuda, Avvy Go, David Kidd, Gaetan Heroux, George Elliott Clarke, Guy Ewing, Karen Connelly, Marilo Nunez, Phil Cote, Richard Fung, Rosina Kazi, Tim Groves, Tine Edan, and Victoria Freeman. Plus cuban music from the Max Metrault Trio Hosted by CBC Radio's Garvia Bailey Tickets - Suggested Donation $5-$20 All proceeds to Parkdale Project Read For more info call Josh Bloch 416-562-0982, ---------------------------------------------------------------- 6. CALL OUT FOR QUEER & TRANS PERFORMERS: Disco burlesque! 10 November · 5:00 - 10:30 pm Granny Boots @ The Gladstone Hotel Melody Bar 1214 Queen St. West Toronto, ON GET DOWN! GET FUNKY! Disco burrrlesque! This December 1, 2010 get ready for a special QUEER BURLESQUE themed Granny Boots that will surely warm to the cockles of your... heart. The theme is DISCO: think bell-bottom pants, jumpsuits, platform shoes, glorious divas, light-up dance floors, and pelvic thrusting to that non-stop disco beat. Yeah! Interested in performing? We want queer and trans performers who think they’re hot stuff.... Here what we’re looking for: - disco themed burlesque (i.e. disco music, disco clothes, sparkly, shiny costumes...) - performances that are in line with Granny Boots’ anti-oppressive mission - single acts, duos, group performances Please send an email to by November 10th, 2010 with the following information: 1. Name. 2. A rough description of song, theme, and costume ideas so far. 3. A bit about yourself and any performance experience. First-timers welcome! Can you dig it? Love your groovy organizers, Masti Khor, Olive-or-Oliver, and Lil’ Bean. -------------------------------------------------------------------- 7. Queer in Toronto Gallery Showing Join us for our opening event on Thursday, November 11, 2010 at the Gladstone Gallery (second floor) from 7pm-10pm. The exhibit will run from November 5 until November 24, 2010, and will showcase the outcome of eight months of portrait photography and interviews with queer-identified women and trans folk. The Queer in Toronto project started with a conversation about queer space and representations of women in the queer community and now, with support from participants all over the GTA, the 519 Community Centre, and The Gladstone Hotel, we are proud to present the portraits and stories of over 100 women and trans people, who form the backbone of this work. Come to the opening on November 11 to check out the work, enjoy music, a silent auction, cash bar and the company of Toronto queers and allies! Don’t forget to contribute to our “Community Wall” at the gallery, a space where you are encouraged to write a message about what community means to you. One of the main objectives of the Queer in Toronto project has been to encourage discussions about community and ownership of space. The “Community Wall” provides the opportunity for everyone to contribute to the project by writing about their own lived experiences. For more information about the QiT project, see our website: Keep an eye out for the event listing on the Gladstone’s Events page: Thank you to all the participants who took the plunge and told us about your lives in the name of community. Come out and celebrate yourselves! ---------------------------------------------------------- 8. Line Art Auction 2010 10 November · 7:00 - 11:00 pm The Berkeley Heritage Event Venue 315 Queen St East Toronto, ON The Lesbian Gay Bi Trans Youth Line proudly present Line Art Auction 2010 The Berkeley Heritage Event Venue will be the backdrop for the 11th Annual Line Art Auction, an evening of fabulous art, delicious cocktails and philanthropy. Our remarkable collection features over 40 works from both established and emerging artists. ... Alex Kislievich Anna Pantchev Barbara Astman Benny Nemerofsky Ramsay Chris Curreri Chris Ironside Dana Holst David Pellettier Derek Sullivan Dianne Davis Doug Guildford Ed Pein Gaye Jackson Graham Kennedy Kris Knight Maurice Vellekoop Melissa Doherty Micah Lexier Monica Alder Nicholas Pye Patrick DeCoste Rafel Ochoa Scott McEwen Stephen Andrews Suzy Lake and many more... Come out and join us, as your support will help us to continue to provide peer support and a sense of community to LGBT youth throughout Ontario Line Art Auction Wednesday November 10th Doors open: 7pm Live Auction 8-10pm *Venue is Wheelchair Accessible GUEST CURATOR: APRIL HICKOX AUCTIONEER: CHARLENE NERO Thank you to our fabulous sponsors: Xtra ( Barefoot Wines ( Steam Whistle Brewery ( Jak Creative ( Out TV ( fab magazine ( Out Adventures ( Gallery 44 ( ------------------------------------------------------ Okay, now lean back, push yourself away from your desk and leave your computer (quickly) and attend one of these events- I hope to see you there! Cheers, Michelle van Looy

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Women's Networking....... Anyone have any experince with this organization that they can share? They seem pretty bio-based and didn't really seem to address transwomen in any of their material that I viewed (I searched all their materials high and low). Please let me know, what you know;0) Cheers, Michelle

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Life lessons via vomit and eye popping headaches

I’m sitting in failure, my own as always. I would never judge anyone else to the extreme measures in which I judge myself. I seem to learn the most important issues when on my back, spinning with dizziness or with my head in a toilet. Yesterday was the latter. Please tell me I'm not the only one! The artisans and artists crafts sale was yesterday. The quality and work of the vendors was beyond incredible but the turn out was lack-luster to say the least. (N.B. to self- attracting amazing artists is a strong suit). I went over in my head where I had failed- I went over all I did to promote the event from over a hundred listings on the net to local papers, a PSA on CIUT,promotion online through a website and Face Book and all other the other bits and pieces. What could I have done better, how could I have worked harder…….I worked myself sick and tired there was no more work to be done… by me. My friend Caro has the great angle on "hard work" and the work ethic that we are handed down by family and our communities. TWWAN missed our place at YIMBY. As the vomit queen I had asked my dear friend Elvia who was going to hold down the fort at YIMBY to come and help me at the sale. That feels like the biggest mistake of the year. That was the piece of exposure TWANN truly needed. I left the sale for an hour to treat myself to the luxury of my our bathroom- no offence Tranzac…And returned at the end of the event to sit on a chair try to smile and try not to barf on my very practical shoes…… I need to learn my limits! I am one person, I am Michelle I am not a network. Two hands can only do so much! The piece I missed was the artist, the community and local business! Yes I can provide a space and events but I can’t guarantee a living wage just on my own nor can I do everything on my own. Am I really re-learning this freakin' lesson again? So I have to sit with this and contemplate, but after my first cup of coffee in four days and a bit of sleep, I think there needs to be at least fivepieces implemented. 1) A call for volunteers and members- move it beyond me, I feel embarrassed saying this it’s so obvious but I need help. I’ve put the call out but not in any real way. 2)A large scale awareness of TWWAN. Christene Pensa an amazing printer from yesterday had a great low cost (no more money can be spent) idea, a flash mob craft sale! Brilliant! She made me realise that I need to take it to the streets and some stunts and media are essential right now. 3) Responsibility of the artists and artisans involved- and the funny thing is, is that this is my responsibility at first to educate folks on how to promote their work and clear requests and guidelines on what is needed from them to help support TWWAN and themselves. This is the piece that has been missing! 4)Partnering- we have succeeding with partners in the past and this time went it alone, our costs were toooo high and we were flying solo. By we, I mean me. Also to create a structure where the artists can also partner with organizations that they support, work with or would like to raise awareness. oh and finally 5) A move beyond competition into networking and sisterhood. Competition is a capitalist concept and is pretty much the death of the seeds of a community. Why do we look at women with similar work as competition rather than opportunities for collaboration or collective work? Note to self- add dismantling of capitolism to Monday's to do list. This is as far as I have gotten this morning but I think it’s solid and headed in the right direction…… Time to meet with the board of directors and my business mentors and you the community and get this off the ground. I promise to keep you tuned in! More details sooon! Michelle

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

a funny thing happened on the way to the insurance office....

Okay I so don't have time to be blogging but I had to share these questions in my applications for insurance.... Will the event have live animals will petting of those animals take place will there specifically be live horses at the event will there be fireworks at the event is a parade part of your event LOL okay maybe only I find it funny.....

Monday, October 11, 2010

Covering my ass

Hmm I think covering my ass may have been a previous blog title? 5 days till our biggest day to date- a brunch, a huge artists and artisans sale (commonly referred to as a craft sale;0), the launch of the Angel Investors- selling images of area angels for donations (see to the left for an example) and a place at YIMBY- Which stands for Yes In My Back Yard! How could I resist? This is the first time I'll have employees, I'm freaked out.... They are friends I love so it's even harder as I want to pay them what they are worth and appreciate them through cash expressions! Some much coming in but so much going out at the same time. As a non spender all this cash is making me nauseous. I'm hoping the worst case scenario is break even. My sweetest, hard ass, from a giant family, used to be an investment banker turned dancer, who could freakin well turn into any amazing thing at any moment (best to stand back folks!) friend is manging the money and doing such an incredible job of keeping it all realistic and on track. What an amazing balance to my flitting, non linear self, hell ya I'm aware! Balance- I just hope the heels of her running shoes aren't worn out by weeks end from putting on the breaks and keeping me in line. I can't imagine doing this without my amazing supports. Good, no great friends know me, really know me, my strengths and weaknesses and care to work with them and let's face it around, over and through them! The work women do constantly amazes me!My friends constantly amaze me! I'm worried I might get too busy to thank my dearest friend Di so I'll do it now.... Thank you for taking a risk on me;0) I am graced and honored. Big sloppy thanks to Elvia as well who will be the rep at YIMBY. It's so amazing that, that is so off my radar I am so unconcerned having Elvia out representing (oh goodness hope you could follow that thought!). I hope others see her and her amazing power. Elvia will take over the world some day- just wait;0) Actually she's working at it right now! Not sure if I'll get to check in before Saturday. If you can't attend, at around 12:05 on Saturday if you could duc and cover for a few minutes I would appreciate it!LOL. It's not worry, it's fun,right? Michelle

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


This event is also free! ------------------------------------------------------------------------- Dear friends of the Neighbourhood Arts Network, As we move into October, don't forget to save the dates: we have two very special events coming up on October 14th and November 18th! Read on for more details... October 14: Arts Advocacy Discussion The Neighbourhood Arts Network is pleased to invite you to a panel on Advocating for Community-Engaged Arts. Guest panelists include Robin Pacific (artist/Co-founder of Art Starts) Andrew Suri (Toronto Arts Council), Sabra Ripley (bgirl/Beautiful City Billboard Alliance Ringleader), and Nadira Pattison, (City of Toronto Arts Services). Join us on October 14th from 12pm-2pm and help shape the discussion around advocacy for community-engaged arts. This is a FREE event - please register by contacting or 416.392.6802 x212. November 18: Che Kothari Che Kothari is a Community Cultural Instigator and driving force behind Toronto's massively succesful Manifesto Festival. In addition to his work with Manifesto, Che is a freelance photographer, co-director of High Top Studios, managing director of, and a founding member of the Canadian Youth Arts Network. Che is determined to make a difference in his community in hopes that emerging artists will share and follow his lead. On November 18th, Che will be sharing his thoughts on Building a Movement for Social Change. This FREE event is taking place at 793 Pharmacy, a potential new arts hub in Scarborough. Proudly presented by the Neighbourhood Arts Network and City of Toronto Arts Services. Registration opens October 12; please contact or call 416.392.6802 x212 to register for free. to Arts Council 141 Bathurst Street Toronto, Ontario M5V 2R2 Contact Us (416) 392-6802 x212


City emerging/C: mini conference for emerging artists Time Thursday, October 14 at 3:00pm - October 15 at 7:30pm -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Location Theatre Direct's Wychwood Theatre 601 Christie St Toronto, ON -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Created By b current -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- More Info The b current rAiz'n Ensemble presents.. City emerging/C : a mini-conference for emerging artists Two days of workshops and networking opportunities for the emerging artist. Register by Friday October 8th to attend for FREE. ...--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- THURS OCTOBER 14, 3:00-7:30PM Visioning and Career- Acquire empowering tools for self-driven career creation. With Tanya Pillay. The Business of Living as a Full-Time Artist- Presented in collaboration with Aluna Theatre, Quip Take and WhyNot Theatre. With Beatriz Pizano, Adam Lazarus and Ravi Jain. Actor Training Mixer- Share experiences about actor training workshops in the city. With Marika Schwandt. FRI OCTOBER 15, 1:00-7:30PM How to Self-Promote- With Carla Albi, Lauren Brotman Grinhaus, Aviva Armour-Ostroff. Crossing Over: Producing your own work from Theatre to Television- With Ngozi Paul. Let's Talk Production!- Advice from established industry professionals Trevor Schwellnus and Thomas Payne. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- TO REGISTER FOR FREE before OCT 8: EMAIL or TELEPHONE 416.533.1500 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 416.533.1500 end_of_the_skype_highlighting Registrants are also invited to PWYC to see the rAiz'n Ensemble in RADIANCE at Theatre Direct's Wychwood Theatre, 8PM OCT 12-15.