Entertainment Beat

Beach musician, composer, and poet Mark Battenberg will be performing a special concert at Kingston Road United Church on Saturday, Nov. 22.ent-battenberg by koko

Morpheus, the God of Dreams: A Musical Meditation for World Peace features music written and performed by guitarist Battenberg. He will be accompanied by virtuoso cellist Andrew Ascenzo and multi-instrumentalist Mark Korven. The event will also feature the photography of Michael Battenberg.

This summer, Battenberg released The Tower: A Tale of Love and other poems from timeless realms, a collection of poetry and illustrations. His album of instrumental guitar music, Morpheus, the God of Dreams, an acoustic meditation, was also released earlier this year.

Morpheus, the God of Dreams takes place at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 22 at Kingston Road United Church, 975 Kingston Rd. Tickets are $10 at the door, with proceeds going to the church’s playground improvement fund.

Shawna Caspi will be playing a CD release show on Saturday, Nov. 22 at Gerrard Art Space’s new location at 1475 Gerrard St. E.

Caspi is a solo singer-songwriter whose folk songs are featured unadorned on Apartments for Lovers, her third album. While her first two releases included accompaniment from other musicians, this disc is her first to rely solely on her voice and guitar. Caspi recently toured both coasts of Canada, and performed rolling through the country in between with VIA’s Rail On Board entertainment program.

The show starts at 8 p.m., with opening act Sarah Beatty from Hamilton. Admission is $10 and a cash bar and snacks will be available.

Liona Boyd is returning to her old neighbourhood for A Winter Fantasy holiday concert on Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Liona Boyd
Liona Boyd

The First Lady of Guitar will perform songs covering the span of her career, including tunes from her new album A Winter Fantasy. She will be joined by the Toronto Beaches Children’s Chorus, and guitarist and singer Michael Savona, for two sets of holiday classics.

Boyd should need no introduction, but the former Beach resident has released two dozen albums, many selling at the gold and platinum level. She has performed for dozens of world leaders, including royalty in more than one country. She has recorded with Sir Andrew Davis and the English Chamber Orchestra, Yo Yo Ma, Georges Zamfir, Michael Kamen, Chet Atkins, Eric Clapton, David Gilmore and Roger Whittaker, and performed around the world.

A Winter Fantasy is her third Christmas album. The record includes mostly instrumental songs, along with three vocal tunes. Her album A Guitar for Christmas was the first classical album to reach platinum sales in Canada.

Tickets to Liona Boyd are $30, or $25 for students and children 12 years old or younger, available from ticketweb.ca or the church.

tempting murphy, also known as long-time Beach resident Neil Bennett, will be holding a CD release party downtown on Thursday, Nov. 27.

The name tempting murphy is a play on the idea of tempting ‘Murphy’s Law,’, and the new album is called Everything’s Eventual. Bennett plays acoustic guitar, and plays a mix of folk, roots, and pop. His musical roots are in London, Ontario, where he performed in the folk scene in the 1970s and 80s, playing alongside Valdy and David Bradstreet.

tempting murphy
tempting murphy

Bennett has been writing and singing since the 1970s, but after retiring from a teaching career started focusing more on his music. He has performed around town, including the Free Times Café on College Street, and Feathers here in the Beach. Keeping with his former career, Bennett led young participants in a recent Me To We day in the singing of his Terry’s Song, written to celebrate Terry Fox’s legacy.

The release for Everything’s Eventual takes place at 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 27 at C’est What, 67 Front St. Admission is $15, and includes a copy of the CD.

The Toronto Welsh Male Voice Choir is returning to St. Aidan’s for Christmas in Wales, a performance and sing-along on Saturday, Nov. 29.

The choir was founded by Gwynn Roberts in 1995 as Cor Meibion Gymru Toronto. It has performed Welsh music, African-American spirituals, operatic arias, Canadian folk songs, and Broadway tunes in churches, cathedrals, and concert halls through Ontario, Quebec, and New York State. The choir has toured Wales and England, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, and Alberta and British Columbia. In 2008 the choir joined others in a performance at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

The St. Aidan’s performance will feature traditional Welsh songs, Christmas carols including audience sing-alongs, and a reading of Welsh poet Dylan Thomas’ well-known narrative poem A Child’s Christmas in Wales. Artistic director and principal conductor William Woloschuk will lead the choir, which will be accompanied by pianist Carl Steinhauser and harpist Loril Shannick.

The concert takes place at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 29 at St. Aidan’s Church, 70 Silver Birch Ave. at Queen Street East. Tickets are $25, available by calling 416-691-2222 or emailing staidan@eol.ca. Proceeds of the concert will go to St. Aidan’s community outreach programs.

Cantemus Singers (cantemus.ca), under the direction of Michael Erdman, are mounting a show called Welcome, Yule. It’s an example of Mateo Flecha the Elder’s great Christmas ‘ensaladas’ – a form of irreverent and fun holiday entertainment created by the composer in the early 1500s.


The 16-voice chorus, founded in 2008, specializes in Renaisssance and early Baroque music, focusing on compositions not often heard by Toronto audiences.

Cantemus Singers are performing two shows to benefit Community Centre 55’s Share A Christmas program. On Saturday, Nov. 29 at 7:30 p.m., Welcome Yule will take place at the Church of the Holy Trinity at the Eaton Centre. The second show happens Sunday, Nov. 30 at 3 p.m. at St. Aidan’s Church, 70 Silver Birch Ave. Tickets are $20, with no cost for children under 12, and are available in advance from Centre 55, 97 Main St., at the door, or reserve by phone at 416-578-6602.

Jazzy Sundays continue weekly at Morgan’s on the Danforth, 1282 Danforth Ave., just east of Greenwood.

On Sunday, Nov. 23, Thyron Lee Whyte will be joined by David Restivo on piano and Robert Whyte on bass. On Sunday, Nov. 30, Lisa Particelli’s ‘Girl’s Night Out East Jam (where gentlemen are welcome too!)’ makes a daytime appearance. Mark Kieswetter will cover piano duties.

The Toronto Beach Chorale, directed by Mervin William Fick, is giving a special Christmas concert.

Toronto Beach Chorale
Toronto Beach Chorale

The choir will perform John Rutter’s Magnificat along with a variety of seasonal songs to celebrate Christmas. Rutter’s Magnificat sets the biblical canticle to music for choir, soprano solo, and orchestra, and includes elements of Latin American music. The chorale will be joined by soprano soloist Alexa Wing and a full chamber orchestra.

The concert takes place at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 6 at Kingston Road United Church, 975 Kingston Rd. Tickets are $25 at the door or $20 in advance through a choir member or the website. Youth aged 7 to 18 are $10 or $12 at the door, and children under 7 are free. See the website for information on ‘flex’ ticket pricing for this and upcoming spring concerts.

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