Not every performer is suffering from venues being shut down and people staying away during the coronavirus scare.
“The crowd interaction is a little bit different [but] I make about the same that I did before,” says Annex musician Edwin Wentworth, who has been performing on the street for 12 years. “Even though there are fewer people.
“In times like this when people are stressed out they need music, they need something to lift them up. So people are really appreciative when they have someone around to make them music and make them feel better.”
Some small clubs in midtown, central and east end Toronto report they are staying open but many venues who had been scheduled to host concerts, art shows, exhibitions, camps, workshops and other cultural and recreational events have closed or have restricted activities.
Here are some of the events in Streeter areas that have been curtailed as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.
City camps and rec programs for March Break — and beyond
The City of Toronto announced yesterday it was cancelling all programs and shutting down facilities, which would mean the cancellation of city-operated March Break camps, the closing of licensed child care centres and shutting down, community and recreation centres, greenhouses and conservatories, arenas, pools, fitness centres, and ski hills.
Included in the city’s shutdown of facilities are public libraries. This effectively kills all performances, workshops, presentations, club meetings and other activities scheduled to take place at our local branches, at least until April 5, the tentative date for facilities to reopen.
Don Valley area
Aga Khan Museum
The travelling exhibition “Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From,” on the second-generation experience was scheduled to run until April 13. But it is now closed and tentatively rescheduled to open April 7. The same goes for all other exhibits and events at the Aga Khan Museum, 77 Wynford Dr.
Ontario Science Centre
No, you can’t take your kids to the science centre during the next few weeks off from school, because it too is closing as of today. Worse, the Ontario Science Centre is shut down until April 5, aligning itself exactly with the school closure period.
Shops at Don Mills
The shopping centre has announced that as of March 16 it is cutting its operating hours to 11 a.m.–7 p.m., except Sunday: 11 a.m.–6 p.m. for at least two weeks.
Central and North Toronto area
Bad Dog Theatre
The theatre at 875 Bloor St. W., specializing in unscripted comedy, has cancelled its scheduled performances until further notice.
Toronto Reference Library
The free exhibit showcasing rare and beautiful books over the centuries, “Art of the Book,” is closed, as its host, the reference library at 789 Yonge St., is part of the city’s shutdown of facilities.
The CanLit exhibit at the University of Toronto’s rare-book library is closed as of March 17 along with most of the university’s other book palaces. However the Robarts, Gerstein, UTM and UTSC libraries are to stay open with reduced hours from March 16 – 20 until further notice.
“Tafelmusik Presents: Bach’s St John Passion” on March 26. is cancelled at Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor St. W. The same goes for several other concerts and performances planned for the hall.
Royal Ontario Museum
March 17 was to be the next free night — the third Tuesday evening of each month — to explore the ROM, but it along with the museum’s other events and exhibits from March 14 to April 3.
The festival taking place throughout March at various venues across central and east-end Toronto has been cancelled, according to its website. This affects events at the Bata Shoe Museum, Toronto Reference Library, Tranzac Club, Innis College and many other locations.
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
The celebration of all-things Irish, which was to wind along Bloor and Yonge streets and downtown on March 15 has been cancelled. As have numerous parties to have been held in halls and bars across town.
Concerts cancelled at Lee’s Palace, 529 Bloor St. W., include Glen Matlock on March 16, Se So Neon on March 26 and Deafheaven on March 27.
Centennial campuses across Toronto, including the East York-based campus at 951 Carlaw Ave. announced yesterday it is shutting down classes for one week, followed by two weeks of online-only instruction. All other events and activities scheduled for this time period have been cancelled.
The festival taking place throughout March at various venues across central and east-end Toronto has been cancelled, according to its website. This includes events at such east-end venues as Areej Gallery, 2640 Danforth Ave., and Puppetmongers Studio, 388 Carlaw Ave., as well as many other locations.
Greek Independence Day OXI Parade
The annual celebration was scheduled to take place on Danforth Avenue in Greektown on March 29 this year, but has been cancelled.
Hope United Church
Hope United has cancelled a slew of activities, including jazz and gospel music, yoga, line-dancing, choir practice and more previously scheduled for the month of March. Also the Hope United Annual General Meeting and Pot-Luck Lunch have been postponed from their March date to April 19.
Danforth Music Hall
Concerts cancelled or postponed at the music hall at 147 Danforth Ave. include Caribou on March 17–19 and Keane on March 23.
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