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Toronto - December 2023, The Bloor St. Culture Corridor

Native Canadian Centre of Toronto

Celebrate Indigenous culture at the NCCT 2023 Toronto Indigenous Artisan Marketplace! Visit them at the Native Canadian Centre or tune in for live-stream artist interviews, and join their daily prize giveaways in person or on their Facebook Event Page every Friday, Saturday, & Sunday at noon. Discover authentic Indigenous arts and crafts, including jewelry, moccasins, paintings, beadwork, and more, all while supporting local talent. Shop for unique holiday gifts and immerse yourself in the richness of Indigenous heritage. Visit it online at their website.

Alliance Française de Toronto

Celebrate the joyous spirit of the season with the Alliance Française this December, where a delightful array of events awaits audiences of all ages. On December 3 and 14, indulge in the magic of cinema with screenings of the beloved classics "Astérix" and the heartwarming tale of "Santa Claus." These movie nights promise enchantment for families and film enthusiasts alike. Experience the rhythmic melodies of Veranda on December 9, as the musical group graces you with a captivating concert. It's an evening of music and celebration not to be missed. Be among the first to glimpse the upcoming season of the Franco-Ontarian phenomenon, "Paris Paris," on December 12, as they present an exclusive preview of this popular series. Finally, for the intellectually curious, join them on December 2 and 13 for two insightful conferences, covering a range of engaging topics. Visit their website for more details.

VEMU Estonian Museum Canada

Join VEMU on December 6 at 7pm for the book launch party of illustrator Duchess of Lore (Ashley Lennox)'s new colouring book, "The Occult & Folklore Colouring Book". Hear about the publishing process, the stories behind the illustrations and get a signed copy for yourself! VEMU will also be hosting an online holiday game from December 21-January 1. Follow them on social media and join in over the holidays. In the new year, they will be continuing their "keelekohvik"/Estonian Language Cafés, which provide beginner speakers of Estonian a casual and focused place to practice their language skills. Their popular exhibition, ‘Why Estonia? 30 Years from the USSR to e-Estonia’ is also on display until February 29. Learn about how and why Estonia, once a nation of farmers, became a world-leading digital society. More information can be found at their website.

Women's Art Association of Canada

The Women's Art Association of Canada (WAAC) presents SMALL GEMS, the Annual Members Art Show & Sale in the Dignam Gallery and the HOLIDAY BOUTIQUE in the Ruth Upjohn Gallery. Their most anticipated annual SMALL GEMS show celebrates the talent of more than 40 WAAC Artist Members from December 9, 2023 to January 13, 2024. The Opening Reception will take place on December 9 from 1-4pm. The HOLIDAY BOUTIQUE, a one-of-a-kind shopping experience, features a curated selection of art-inspired gifts, perfect for the holiday season, from now until December 22. Please note that their two galleries will be closed from December 23 to January 2. The WAAC Fundraising Committee announces the return of the HOLIDAY COCKTAIL PARTY FUNDRAISER on December 15, from 5:30-8:30pm. The annual end-of-year party features appetizers, cash bar and door prizes to coincide with the SMALL GEMS show and the HOLIDAY BOUTIQUE. For more information, please visit their website.

Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre

The Miles Nadal JCC is your Toronto go-to for all things Chanukah (December 7-15) this year! Visit their Gallery exhibit, Passages II, by Alice Vander Vennen consisting of stunning multimedia assemblages mounted in shadow box frames, opening December 2. Join the artist Alice Vander Vennen for a textiles workshop on December 3. Learn all the Chanukah hits with Rabbi Ryan Leszner at Sing Along … It’s Chanukah! on December 3 (everyone is welcome). On December 10, come to their community-wide Families at the J Chanukah! celebration with activities for children ages 0-10, including Maccabee jungle gym, Chanukah Singalong, holiday crafts and games, face painting, photo booth, seasonal snacks, and more! Dance and mingle at Jewish Pop Rocks! – a daytime tribute concert in honour of Jewish rock songwriters, and a celebration of Chanukah, with the Jordan Klapman Quintet on December 14. Check out all of their winter programs starting in 2024 at their website.

The Japan Foundation, Toronto

Prepare for the new year with JFT’s annual Nengajo (New Year’s Cards) Making Workshop followed by a meditative screening of the acclaimed film Our Little Sister on December 2. Then, return to the centre on December 9 for a Japanese-folklore-themed day of kamishibai storytelling and an anime screening of Summer Days with Coo. The ongoing Wood-Carved Netsuke exhibition will conclude on December 16; check it out before it’s gone! Looking to learn Japanese from home? Registration is now open for Term 2 of online Japanese classes, which will start in January. JFT offers courses for various levels up to intermediate speakers (around JLPT N3 level). Please note JFT will be closed for the holidays from December 17 to January 4. For more information about both in-person and virtual events, film screenings, classes, and gatherings at JFT, please visit their website.

Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema

Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema presents an exciting December lineup featuring premiere titles like Immediate Family, a captivating journey of four musicians finding lasting success behind the scenes with iconic singers like James Taylor and Carole King; Beyond Utopia, a riveting doc intertwining two gripping tales of daring escape attempts from North Korea; and the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity 2023, showcasing the most innovative ad work from around the world. As awards season heats up, the new series The Hottest Docs invites you to experience acclaimed documentaries such as The Disappearance of Shere Hite, Kokomo City, The Eternal Memory, To Kill a Tiger, Mr. Dressup: The Magic of Make-Belief, and The Mission. Celebrate the holiday season with the Festive Favourites series, screening classics like Home Alone, Die Hard, Eyes Wide Shot, The Muppets Christmas Carol, and It's a Wonderful Life. Tickets to the Festive Favourites screenings are $5. Please bring a donation of cash or non-perishable food items to support Spadina-Fort York Community Care. Visit the Hot Docs website to view their programming schedule.


Give family and friends a year-long, all-access pass to four billion years of beauty and wonder. Members enjoy free and unlimited admission plus exclusive Member benefits. BOOK EARLY to get your tickets for this holiday season’s biggest ROM events. ROM for the Holidays returns with activities for all ages starting December 26, 2023, until January 7, 2024. Countdown to 2024 with your friends and loved ones during the one of the most popular adult (19+) ROM After Dark — New Year’s Eve at ROM. Access the Museum’s latest exhibitions and dance the night away with spectacular performances, thrilling interactives, and distinctive food and drink. Learn more and buy tickets at their website.

Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir

Nothing says Christmas like Tafelmusik’s Messiah! A moving, often joyous reflection on the life of Christ, Handel’s oratorio surges with emotion, drama, and poignancy. Directed by Ivars Taurins, catch one of three performances at Koerner Hall from December 14-16. Performed in the style and spirit of the composer’s own productions, Tafelmusik’s Messiah “radiates brilliance and energy, along with an emotional depth that fully enhances the work’s expression” (AllMusic). Messiah’s core message of good will, hope, and humanity resounds as eloquently today as it did in 1742. Another reason to shout “Hallelujah”? Tafelmusik’s treasured Sing-Along Messiah makes a triumphant return on December 17, directed by none other than Mr. Handel himself. Messiah’s stirring choruses get the surround-sound treatment with a massive audience joining our own choir, orchestra, and guest soloists. Tickets available at their website.

The Royal Conservatory

Get in the holiday spirit with The Royal Conservatory's December concerts! Canadian icon and acclaimed jazz songstress Holly Cole returns to Koerner Hall on December 8 with her legendary Christmas concert, full of much-loved standards alongside eclectic tunes, and features her impeccable band along with string players from The Royal Conservatory. Oscar nominee and six-time Grammy Award-winning trumpeter/composer Terence Blanchard and his electric ensemble are joined by the Turtle Island Quartet on December 9 to perform arrangements of Wayne Shorter’s music along with an array of original work. Additional concerts this month include two sold out shows featuring the Juno Award-winning 'eclectic Celtic' singer-songwriter Loreena McKennitt’s Under A Winter’s Moon on December 10, Royal Conservatory Orchestra Resident Conductor Joaquin Valdepeñas conducting Glenn Gould School students in a program of chamber works for winds on December 7, and more. Head to their website to learn more.


Electric Messiah stands out as a dynamic and evolving cultural event that bridges the gap between classical music and contemporary culture, bringing together diverse audiences to celebrate the spirit of the holiday season in a fresh and engaging way. Join Soundstreams for Toronto's newest holiday tradition, now in its 8th year, debuting at the historic Theatre Passe Muraille. Directed by Chelsea Dab Hilke, the production stars soprano Midori Marsh, mezzo-sopranos Rebecca Cuddy and Elizabeth Shepherd, counter-tenor Daniel Cabena and baritone Korin Thomas-Smith. Accompanying this stellar cast are electric cellist Amahl Arulanandam, harpsichordist Wesley Shen, guitarist Luan Phung, and keyboardist Joel Visentin, whose collective creativity and genius ensure an immersive and electrifying experience. Never the same, always Electric Messiah! Audiences can secure their tickets now for an unforgettable experience that blends the contemporary with the timeless. Electric Messiah runs December 14 to 17, 2023 at Theatre Passe Muraille! Visit their website for tickets.

Bata Shoe Museum

How well do you know the 1980s? On December 5, The Bata Shoe Museum will be hosting their first 80s-themed Trivia Night! From movie, music, fashion, celebrity, food and iconic cultural moments, get ready to show off your knowledge about this truly outrageous decade as you compete for some super rad prizes. Join them as they kick-off their 1980s-inspired movie screening series starting with the action-packed holiday cult classic, DIE HARD on December 14. Start your holiday planning and take a trip to The Bata Shoe Museum for Winter Break from December 27 to January 7. Celebrate the holiday season with their shoe-themed games and crafts for kids and families. Create your own mini shoebox skating rink, learn about their hands-on collection, play 80s-themed shoebox bingo and so much more! Don’t forget, they offer FREE admission every Sunday. There’s always something new at the Bata Shoe Museum ~ check out their website for updates!

Istituto Italiano di Cultura

If you missed the sold-out screening of the film The Spring of My Life by Italian director Zavvo Nicolosi at this year's European Union Film Festival, you can still catch it from the comfort of your home. Surprises are just around the corner as two long-lost friends meet again for a long journey and a daring race against time that will bring them to face their past to rebuild their friendship until a shocking revelation emerges. Italy's The Spring of My Life and the films of the other nations participating in the European Union Film Festival will be available online until December 18. Check out the Istituto's website to purchase tickets, and check back regularly for updates on upcoming events.

The Toronto Consort

The Toronto Consort presents Medieval Christmas, December 8 & 9 at 8pm and December 9 at 2pm, at Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre, 427 Bloor St. West. The Middle Ages produced some of the most serene and heartfelt Christmas music of all time. This Yuletide program visits medieval churches, convents, courts, and taverns in a program combining music with projected images taken from the treasure trove of medieval paintings, book illuminations, and stained glass. A sellout in seasons past, Medieval Christmas is presented in a darkened, candle-lit hall designed to transport you into the mesmerizing world of the Middle Ages, unplug you from the world outside, and send you home feeling the joy of the holiday season. Tickets are available here.

Toronto Reference Library

Love children’s literature? Explore a new exhibit in the TD Gallery at Toronto Reference Library (789 Yonge Street) celebrating 75 years of the Osborne Collection of Early Children’s Books. Get an up-close look at treasured objects from the collection — including rare versions of Alice in Wonderland, Peter Rabbit, Anne of Green Gables, Franklin, The Hobbit and more. Plus, get hands-on with interactive vintage storybook pages. Experience this charming new exhibit until February 11. Free admission. Visit tpl.ca for more information.

The Bloor St. Culture Corridor, Toronto's most diverse arts and culture district, is a true creative cluster, an arts and culture destination, and a collaboration between some of Toronto's most dynamic arts and culture organizations.

The Bloor St. Culture Corridor offers the public a wide variety of arts genres, from museum experiences to films, art exhibitions to music concerts, and opportunities to experience some of Toronto's cultural diversity, including Aboriginal, French, Jewish, Italian, Japanese, Estonian, African and Caribbean arts and culture.
All Bloor St. Culture Corridor organizations present arts and cultural events for the public year-round in destination venues located in a cluster along a vibrant stretch of Bloor Street West. Each year more than three million members of the public go to Bloor St. Culture Corridor arts and culture destinations, and attend exhibitions, performances, and events. Together, the Bloor St. Culture Corridor organizations employ more than 5,500 culture workers and generate more than $629,500,000 in economic impact each year. In 2016, The Bloor St. Culture Corridor was successful in working with the City of Toronto to have the Bloor St. Culture corridor section of Bloor St. West designated an official City of Toronto cultural corridor.

The Bloor St. Culture Corridor includes:
918 Bathurst Centre for Culture, Arts, Media and Education: 918 Bathurst St. 918bathurst.com
Alliance Française de Toronto: 24 Spadina Road alliance-francaise.ca
Bata Shoe Museum: 327 Bloor Street West batashoemuseum.ca
Blackhurst Cultural Centre: 777-779 Bathurst St. blackhurstcc.org
Gardiner Museum: 111 Queen's Park gardinermuseum.com
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema: 506 Bloor Street West hotdocscinema.ca
Istituto Italiano di Cultura: 496 Huron Street iictoronto.esteri.it
The Japan Foundation, Toronto: 2 Bloor Street East, Suite 300 jftor.org
Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre: 750 Spadina Ave. mnjcc.org
The Music Gallery: 918 Bathurst St. musicgallery.org
Native Canadian Centre of Toronto: 16 Spadina Road ncct.on.ca
The Randolph Centre for the Arts: 736 Bathurst St. randolphcentreforthearts.com
The Royal Conservatory of Music / Koerner Hall: 273 Bloor Street West rcmusic.com/performance
Royal Ontario Museum (ROM): 100 Queen's Park (Entrance on Bloor St. W.) rom.on.ca
Soundstreams: various venues on the Bloor St. Culture Corridor soundstreams.ca
Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra & Chamber Choir: 427 Bloor Street West tafelmusik.org
The Toronto Consort: 427 Bloor Street West torontoconsort.org
Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library: 120 St. George St. fisher.library.utoronto.ca
Toronto Reference Library: 789 Yonge Street torontopubliclibrary.ca
University of Toronto Faculty of Music: 80 Queen's Park music.utoronto.ca
VEMU Estonian Museum Canada: 310 Bloor Street West vemu.ca
Women's Art Association of Canada: 23 Prince Arthur Ave. womensartofcanada.ca

Sophie Vieira    12/2/2023


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