Symphony in Newmarket

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Orchestra Toronto's inaugural 1955 season got right to the point. It had, after all, only one concert. That concert, however, made such an impact that the dedicated 55-member company, then known as The Bennington Heights Community Orchestra, continued to perform works alongside a string of renowned conductors until 1998, when it put its magical rings together and morphed into Orchestra Toronto. The largest distinction between Orchestra Toronto and other companies: it's truly a community project, corralling volunteer musicians to make up its 80-member team and deliver everything from Mendelssohn symphonies to flamenco concerts.

5040 Yonge St.
Toronto,
ON
CA

The largest soft-seat theatre in Canada, the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts is perhaps most famous for its overhanging marquee outside. The diagonal canopy and its snake-like rows of lights were restored to their original form in 2010, along with the facility?s wood, brass, and marble accents. Inside the lobby, York Wilson?s mural, The Seven Lively Arts, fills eyes with fractured, panoramic representations of various artistic media, from slanted musical staffs to menacing Greek theatre masks.

1 Front St. E
Toronto,
ON
CA

Shiatsu and LaStone therapist of Transense Healing Arts Holistic Centre employs two distinct therapy treatments to help clients reduce pain and discomfort. She uses her knuckles, thumbs, palms, knees, and elbows as instruments of relaxation, drawing from shiatsu techniques and Japanese-style acupressure to pinpoint and expunge stress. Alternatively, she uses heated basalt rocks formed from volcanic lava during LaStone therapy, loosening up knotted muscles.

Her experience stems back to the Aveda Institute in Victoria, B.C., where she graduated from in 1998 in esthetics. Since 2000, she has added LaStone therapy to her repertoire, which allows her to stimulated the autonomic nervous system and increase oxygen in the body. Her subsequent interest in shiatsu led her to Shiatsu School of Canada, which enables her to continue her journey of educational growth through her daily practice.

344 Bloor St W
Toronto,
ON
CA

With period instruments in hand, the musicians of the Aradia Ensemble have spent the last two decades breathing new life into the music of the Baroque. In addition to a regular concert series that mixes beloved classics with oft-overlooked gems, the ensemble frequently pairs with dancers, actors, and non-classical musicians to create unusual juxtapositions that shed light on the intricacies of the baroque style and make 18th-century ghosts wish they'd known about zithers. Under the baton of maestro Kevin Mallon, the group has recently earned a Juno nomination and garnered acclaim for its annual Dublin Messiah, a recreation of the original Dublin performance of Handel's seminal Christmas piece in 1742.

270 Gladstone Avenue
Toronto,
ON
CA

The resident instrumentalists at Artscape Wychwood Barns, the Music in the Barns Chamber Ensemble makes good use of the surprisingly effective acoustics of the renovated warehouse it calls home. Dedicated to the works of modern and contemporary artists, the ensemble works closely with composers and builds their programs around 20th and 21st century artists. Not just classical artists either—the group has not only worked with Yo-Yo Ma, the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, and the Canadian Opera Company, but also with Kanye West, Mary J. Blige, and Richard Reed Perry of the Arcade Fire.

601 Christie Street
Toronto,
ON
CA

The intimate venue known today as City Theatre opened its doors in 1993 as the Second City Detroit. Renamed in 2004, the space still hews to the comedy troupe’s mission with a packed schedule of thigh-slapping theatrical performances. The stage is located inside the Hockeytown Café, where the entertainment is supplemented by a menu of beer, buffalo wings, and deep-fried pucks.

651 Yonge Street
Toronto,
ON
CA