Entertainment Beat

The Beach BBQ and Brews Festival is back in all its smoking, messy, tasty glory on Father’s Day weekend.

Big Sugar
Big Sugar

From Friday, June 19 at 3 p.m. until Sunday, June 21 at 8 p.m., Woodbine Park at Coxwell and Lakeshore will host the free party, including epic barbecue booths, grilling demonstrations, a children’s area with rides and more, craft vendors, and plenty of live music to keep toes tapping, heads nodding, and food digesting.

Friday the show runs from 3 to 11 p.m., with music including headlining act The Trews. Saturday starts at noon and runs until 11 p.m., with West Coast stalwarts 54-40 headlining the main stage. Other Saturday performers include Al Simmons and Mini Pop Kids. Sunday things get underway at noon and go until 8 p.m. Big Sugar Reggae Style will headline the main stage on Sunday.



Beach residents Jillian Rees-Brown and Jorie Morrow met during a theatre production and became fast friends, bonding over shared experiences dealing with family caregivers. Rees-Brown, a professional actor whose credits include the Toronto Mirvish and US International tour productions of Billy Elliot the Musical, is taking care of her mother who lives in a nursing home. Morrow, a George Brown theatre graduate and veteran Fringe performer, is a social worker who often interacts with families dealing with dementia.

Jillian Res-Brown and Jorie Morrow
Jillian Res-Brown and Jorie Morrow

The two decided the best way to share the story of the often-forgotten caregiver was through theatre. Thus was born Hey! Good Lookin’, the duo’s show that will run as part of this year’s Fringe Festival.

Hey! Good Lookin’ begins with two estranged sisters meeting in an intensive care unit waiting room for the first time in a long time, after their 85 year-old mother is admitted. The play is described as “an absurd family story told with love, joy, sadness and humour.”

Hey! Good Lookin’ is directed by Denise Norman, and stage managed by Beacher Malcolm Byrne. Fellow Beach residents Hailee Morrow and Carol Leighton are also involved as assistant stage manager and publicist, respectively.

The play opens Friday, July 3 and runs until Saturday, July 11 at the Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse, 79 St. George St. Tickets are $10, on sale now.



The Children’s Peace Theatre on Dawes Road will host My One Demand, a free film screening running as part of Toronto’s Luminato Festival.

My One Demand is a live interactive film about unrequited love. The production will take place in real time, as it is live-streamed, filmed in one continuous shot following seven people on a journey across Toronto. The intent is to have the narrative react to audience input.

Pre-registration is required. The Children’s Peace Theatre is at 305 Dawes Rd.



Ian White of the Ian White Band
Ian White of the Ian White Band

The Ian White Band will bring its folk sounds to Hirut Restaurant, 2050 Danforth Ave. just west of Woodbine, on Friday, June 19, from 8 to 10 p.m. This is the band’s second appearance at the East Danforth establishment. Former Beach Metro News staffer Bill MacLean covers bass and backup vocal duties in the band. See ianwhite.org for more information.



Relish, 2152 Danforth Ave. just east of Woodbine, offers live entertainment almost every night. The venue will take part in the Toronto Jazz Festival offering small-stage jazz performances (different styles where noted) from June 18 until June 28.

On Thursday, June 18 Liane Fainsinger will play at 7 p.m. The Pearl Motel offers rock and jazz at 9:30 p.m. on Friday, June 19. Saturday, June 20 will see the Evan Deslaunier Trio perform at 7 p.m., with Red Brick playing R n’ B at 9:30 p.m. The Brickhouse Trio will play for brunch at 11 a.m. on Sunday, June 21.

The Mediterranean Stars will play Gypsy jazz at 8 p.m. on Monday, June 22, as will Jazz Moustache the following night at 7:30 p.m. The BTBs play at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 24. Thursday, June 25 will see Joanne Morra on stage at 7 p.m., followed by the usual karaoke at 10 p.m. The Lilly Mason Trio will play jazz and R n’ B on Friday, June 26, followed by Sam Taylor and the East End Love at 9:30 p.m. with a mix of jazz, rock, and blues. Monica Chapman hits the stage at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 27, followed by Bentroots playing “N’awlins blues” at 9:30 p.m.

Every Sunday night the stage is open for the weekly Stir It Up open mic, kicking off at 9 p.m.

The Jazz Festival has also adopted some other longstanding East End gigs. Jazzy Sundays at Morgans on the Danforth, 1282 Danforth Ave., continue on Sunday, June 21 with Carin Redman, Mark Kieswetter, and Jordan O’Connor, who will be joined by special guests Yvette Tollar and Thyron Lee Whyte.

Carin Redman
Carin Redman

On Sunday, June 28 Lisa Particelli’s ‘Girls Night Out’ jazz jam (“where gentlemen are welcome too!”) takes over the stage. Jazzy Sundays run from 2 to 5 p.m. with no cover.

A later show has been added after Jazzy Sundays on June 21. Bill McBirnie and Stephen Gardner will perform at 6:30 p.m., with no cover. McBirnie (extremeflute.com) is a well-regarded flutist, teacher, and writer. Gardner (stephengardner.ca) is a pianist capable of covering everything from classical to jazz to rock.

Joining these two venues are two more East Danforth Jazz Festival Club Series spots: Sauce and the Linsmore.

The Russ Macklem Quartet Jam Session (russmacklem.com) will play at the Linsmore Tavern, 1298 Danforth Ave., at 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 18, Wednesday, June 24, and Thursday, June 25. Joining trumpet player Macklem will be Dave Restivo, piano, Brian Chahley, bass, and Norbert Botos, drums. There is no cover and musicians are invited to bring along an instrument and sit in.

Sauce on the Danforth, 1376 Danforth Ave., will host Matt Morgan at 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 20. The Out of Towners (theoutoftowners.net) will play at 9 p.m. on Monday, June 22, followed on Tuesday, June 23 by Julian Fauth (julianfauth.com) at 6 p.m. Ewen Farncombe rounds out Jazz Fest shows in the East End at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 24. All shows at Sauce are no cover.



Drummer Greg Pilo’s weekly Tuesday evening jazz jams continue at the Salty Dog, 1980 Queen St. E., from 7 to 10 p.m. with no cover. Tonight, Tuesday, June 16, Pilo will be joined by flautist Bill McBirnie, guitarist Reg Schwager, and bassist Neil Swanson. On Tuesday, June 23, Steve Wallace will be on bass duties while Bernie Senensky will tickle the ivories. On Tuesday, June 30, Pat LaBarbera will play sax, Ted Quinlan will be on guitar, and George Koller will complete the rhythm section on bass.

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