Experience Toronto’s vibrant culture scene this month with five must-see arts events, from captivating performances to film festivals and iconic concerts. Don’t miss out on the city’s cultural richness.
1. Go to Tanya Tagaq
Critically acclaimed Inuk improvisational singer, artist, author and avant-garde composer Tanya Tagaq will be performing as part of the Royal Ontario Museum’s 16th annual Eva Holtby Program on Contemporary Culture on Nov. 14. The program begins with a moderated discussion between Tanya Tagaq and multimedia artist Omar Rivera, who operates under the moniker Driftnote. Together, they will delve into the inspirations behind their latest project, an immersive film titled Ajagutaq/Parhelion. This film will have its North American debut as a part of this program. The evening also features a performance by Tagaq alongside Inuit performers Nancy Mike, Varna Marianne Nielsen Apaloo and Charlotte Qamainq.
2. See the Reel Asian Film Fest
The Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival is back for 2023, aiming to connect cultures and foster community through the power of cinema. The festival will kick off with the debut feature, The Queen of My Dreams, directed by Fawzia Mirza, a Canadian filmmaker. Scheduled from Nov. 8 to 19, this year’s festival includes an exciting array of 15 feature films and 57 shorts from various countries. Deanna Wong, executive director of Reel Asian, expressed the importance of sharing Asian stories in a global context. Highlights include The Taste of Mango, Okiku and the World, Small Fry, In Flames, River and We Will Be Brave. For the complete festival program and schedule, please visit reelasian.com. Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival continues its mission to bring diverse and impactful stories to the forefront. The festival takes place at six downtown venues including the TIFF Bell Lightbox and the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema.
3. See Depeche Mode
Toronto, get ready for an unforgettable evening with the iconic Depeche Mode. This celebrated new wave band has been shaping the music landscape for decades, and their 2023 North American tour promises to be a must-see event. They’re returning to Toronto on Nov. 5 for a rare concert appearance at the Scotiabank Arena. Depeche Mode’s music has transcended generations, and their electrifying live performances are known for their energy and timeless hits. Depeche Mode’s latest album, Memento Mori, marks their first release since the passing of keyboardist Andy “Fletch” Fletcher.
4. Go to The Bright Divide
The Bright Divide is an intriguing concert experience that presents Morton Feldman’s Rothko Chapel and the world premiere of Mark by Cecilia Livingston, featuring original text by Duncan McFarlane. This artistic endeavour draws its inspiration from two influential figures in the world of art and music: Mark Rothko, an iconic 20th-century painter, and Morton Feldman, a significant composer of the same era. The event will take place at the TD Music Hall on Nov. 10 and 11 as part of the Soundstreams immersive music series.
5. Go to Good Mourning Fest
Evergreen Brick Works presents its inaugural Good Mourning Festival on Nov. 4 and 5, offering two distinct yet interconnected days of reflection and celebration. The festival aims to unite diverse communities and cultures to honour and share their experiences of death and grief, reaffirming that these emotions are a vital part of life. The first day encourages open conversations and explorations of the universal themes of grief and death. The program offers an array of interactive installations, workshops for meaningful dialogues and artistic creations celebrating the human experience. On Day 2 Evergreen’s beloved Day of the Dead festivities return, highlighting Mexican and Latin American culture. This day is a vibrant explosion of colour, featuring activities for all ages, traditional celebrations, an artisan market and mouth-watering food and drinks. This joyful event will bring communities together through music, dance, storytelling and cultural sharing. The festival offers a special opportunity to come together and reflect on the profound aspects of our existence in a supportive and inclusive atmosphere.