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MARK WIGMORE'S TOP 3 – WEEK OF JANUARY 22nd

It’s Monday and that means Senior Arts Editor Mark Wigmore shares his top picks for your arts and entertainment week ahead.

WINTERLICIOUS

 
Foodies unite... again! It's Winterlicious. Beginning Friday and running through February 8th, more than 200 of Toronto’s top restaurants are offering three-course prix fixe menus at various price points. Some of the good looking splurge choices, Susur Lee's Lee, Canoe, The Shangri La's Bosk.. and just next door, Momofuku's Daisho. There are also culinary events including Dinner with The Mackenzies at the Mackenzie House, and High Tea at Casa Loma. www.Toronto.ca for details.



 


FILM STARS DON'T DIE IN LIVERPOOL

 

Annette Benning delivers a wonderful performance in this biopic.
 


 
Jamie Bell (aka Billy Elliott) co-stars in this Oscar buzz worthy film. The story is based on the memoir of the same name by Peter Turner. He was a young actor when he met Gloria Grahame working the theatre circuit in Liverpool. Little did he know she had been a huge Hollywood star at one point, even winning a pair of Oscars. This film tracks their spring/autumn romance while she contends with her health. I thought it was one of the year's best. Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool opens Friday.

 

MUSIC: LORI CULLEN & CALYPSO ROSE

 

Things are really humming along at Hugh's Room Live lately. Jazz FM91 presented Molly Johnson to a full house last week, and this Saturday, it's the lovely voice of Lori Cullen.

 


 

Lori’s voice is so pure and honest, and you can hear her on the recent recording, Sexsmith/Swinghammer Songs.  It featured a collection of songs written for Lori by Ron Sexsmith and Kurt Swinghammer. It should be a great evening of music on Saturday. $25 advance tickets, $30 at the door. Doors and dinner start at 6pm, and the music at 8:30. www.Hughsroom.com for info.

 
On Friday, it’s a big Caribbean party at Koerner Hall.

 


 
Dozens of recordings, 800 songs penned, and 77 years old: Calypso Rose of Trinidad/Tobago is coming to Toronto backed by the local act, Kobo Town. The legendary Calypso Soca singer is at Koerner this Friday night. www.RCMusic.ca for tickets.

 



BONUS IDEAS

 

CANADIAN OPERA COMPANY: RIGOLETTO

 

The COC made headlines last week, announcing the brand new Opera, Hadrian, from Popera genius Rufus Wainwright. But until that exciting premiere, the Canadian Opera Company has plenty to offer, including Verdi's Rigoletto




Rigoletto is a very doable 2 hours and 22 minutes. It tells the tale of a man driven by rage to murder his employer for seducing his daughter. Gilda, not understanding her father's dismay, gets in the middle of it, and you know, it's an opera, so it doesn't end well.  Fabulous set and costume design and talented singers using the Bel Canto style to take on the familiar Verdi catalogue.... How can you lose? Rigoletto opened Saturday. It continues through February 23rd. www.coc.ca for info.






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