15 Arts and Culture Things to Do This Fall in Toronto
If you’re going to drain your precious dollars each month just to keep a roof over your head in Toronto, you may as well take advantage of the city’s bustling arts and culture scene found right outside your front door.
While there are the big-budget theatre productions and galas, there are also events and projects that won’t break the bank. Getting your culture fix in Toronto is simple – and may even inspire you creatively in the process.
Here are 15 arts and culture things to do in Toronto this fall.
If you have a soft spot for powerful films, the ImagiNATIVE film festival showcases Indigenous films that are designed to enlighten and encourage important conversations. The festival runs now through October 21.
Who says big budget music festivals are only for the warmer months? Now until October 25, the Red Bull Music Festival will hit Toronto after successful stints in cities around the world. We can expect things like unique performances from DVSN with members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Alice Glass, Tanya Tagaq, and Lil Berete.
The shameless bookworms will appreciate the International Festival of Authors, a 10-day festival that takes over Harbourfront Centre October 18 to 28. Here, writers will discuss their works, the backstory behind them, and their creative process.
If you prefer indie theatre to a large-scale production, Theory takes over the Tarragon Theatre from October 24 to November 25. A hot-button play for our times, the thrilling production explores the meaning of free speech in our social media-driven culture in all of its good, bad, and ugly glory.
The art world elite will unite for the annual Art Toronto contemporary art fair from October 25 to 29. The annual event is considered one of Canada’s most important art events, as it fills the Metro Toronto Convention Centre with the modern and contemporary art of all kinds and some of the most influential figures in the art world.
Go glam on November 1 for an evening of drama, decadence, and mind-blowing performance, at the Centre Stage Gala presented by the Canadian Opera Company. Here, guests are invited to mingle with emerging opera stars and notable COC artists, while supporting a new generation of operatic talent. While gala tickets cost $1,500 for the black tie affair, tickets for the Ensemble Studio Competition (think, the American Idol of opera) and pre-competition cocktail reception only are $35 (for patrons and younger), $50, $65 or $80 and available online.
First Thursdays returned for the season on October 4. The event series offers an art-infused party for Toronto’s connected young professional set at the sprawling gallery on the first Thursday of every month. Guests have the option to purchase tickets for the party alone, or for the party and admission to the current Anthropocene exhibit. The next event is November 1.
Even if you’re not a seasoned musical theatre enthusiast, any lover of 90s and early 2000s pop culture will appreciate the upcoming Friends! The Musical Parody from Mirvish Productions. Running November 1 to 25, the upbeat, uncensored production recreates the best moments from Friends’ 10-year run.
For the lovers of storied venues and intimate performances, Indie Week hits Toronto November 6 to 11. It will fill venues throughout the city with hundreds of talented but under-the-radar musicians who may just become your next playlist staple.
East of Yonge, the new Museum of Illusions – the first in Canada – is set to open its doors in the St. Lawrence Market neighbourhood (132 Front St. E) on November 7. Here, you can indulge in a visual, sensual, and educational experience as you explore the world of illusions.
Experience the magic of blockbuster hit Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire like never before when the beloved film is accompanied by a live score from the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. It all goes down at the Sony Centre November 15 to 17.
While you’ve likely seen the “Unzipped” zipper-like installation on your social media feeds, it’s worth checking out the massive interactive King West (533 King West) installation in person before it leaves town at the end of November.
Find all the handmade goods and crafts your heart desires when the One of a Kind Show and Sale returns to Toronto November 22 to December 2. The event will fill the Enercare Centre at Exhibition Place with 800 makers, who will offer everything from art and ceramics, to jewellery and furniture.
Hit the AGO this fall to take in a collection of stunning photography from world re-known Ed Burtynsky. Anthropocene illustrates how we, individually and collectively, are leaving a human signature on our world and runs until January 6.
After years of waiting, the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) has finally opened the doors to its new home in the Tower Automotive Building on Sterling Road. The massive museum now spans 55,000 square feet over five floors, two of which are taken over by their current highly Instagram-worthy Believe exhibit.
Are you going to any of these events? Let us know in the comments.
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Erin is a Toronto-based writer, actor and queen of the side hustle. When she’s not writing the day away in a face mask, she’s taking in the city’s vibrant arts scene, doing a red carpet interview or brunching with her leading ladies. Follow me: @erinnicoledavis