Hadestown filters the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice through the anachronistic imagination and emotionally immediate voice of singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell and her seven-piece orchestra. In this version, the titular pair descend into the underworld not because of supernatural meddling or because Eurydice dropped her cell phone down a hole, but because Mr. Hades' gold-mining town seems to offer a darkly shining road out of their poverty. The work first reached a broad audience as a critically acclaimed 2010 album that built what Paste Magazine called "wondrous ensemble singing" from famous voices including Justin Vernon of Bon Iver and Ani DiFranco.
Bacchus Cafe & Wine Bar's rotating menu complements the freshness of ingredients used, many of which are sourced from local suppliers. Visitors rest in a vibrant, art-filled space, lounging like child princes on couches and stools while enjoying delectably prepared tapas. Evening diners nosh on light items, such as an herb-crusted, Italian-style sardine ($6), oven-baked between crusty bruschetta and melty mozzarella, or a truffle oil-kissed mushroom and spinach crostini ($13). Meat-seeking taste buds pen four-verse love-raps for the calamari, prawn, and chorizo, served with sautéed onion, garlic, and peppers ($15), or the spice-marinated bison meatballs, bursting with mozzarella and baked in tomato sauce ($17).
Penned by internationally featured playwright Chris Craddock, one-man show Moving Along also stars the playwright as he unfolds his life for audiences through autobiographical monologue. Seated in a wired and theatrically lit "electro-chair," Chris employs a striking blend of humour and touching nostalgia as he divulges childhood memories, adolescent struggles, and adult rites of passage, such as building his first house with straw. The multimedia chair bathes the space in dramatic lights and sound to aid in storytelling and highlight Chris's fast-paced, stationary performance. Through an ever-evolving script and dramatic sound design from Dave Clarke, Chris invites audiences to explore a stranger's memory without having to wade through photo albums or learn telepathy. Audiences gather around the stage of the Roxy Theatre, a refurbished 1938 cinema and the nonprofit Theatre Network's permanent space.
Nominated for two 2010 Juno Awards for Best New Artist and Songwriter of the Year, indie songstress Carly Rae Jepsen originally claimed fame in 2007 as a finalist on Canadian Idol. Performing gold-certified singles "Bucket" and "Tug of War" off her debut album and tracks off her latest studio release, Curiosity, Jepsen charms audiences with her pop sensibility, bubbly personality, and confessional lyrics about unpaid library fees. Solo guitarist Matt Webb from Vancouver-based pop-punk band Marianas Trench kicks off the evening with catchy ditties from his debut EP. Webb rouses crowds with his simple, ’80s-inspired rock songs, surprising Marianas Trench fans with a different sound and crowd slip 'n' sliding techniques.
The Druid harbours a lively and authentic pub atmosphere with hearty fare, live-music sessions, and festive gatherings enlivened with Irish step dancing and emerald regalia. Dark wood panelling and gothic arches adorn the bar, and cozy round tables dot the dining room, where diners can improvise limericks about Galway Bay mussels ($14) and buffalo-chicken sliders ($10). The full pub menu plates traditional staples alongside modern twists, including a poutine burger with cheese curds and gravy ($12) and the dubliner fish 'n' chips ($10 for a one-piece meal, $12 for a two-piece), which is battered in Harp Irish Lager.
Ceili's Irish Pub & Restaurant spans a 250-seat dining space which revellers absorb live music, authentic Irish flavours, and frothy beverages. Anchored along the northwestern edge of downtown, Ceili's preps partiers' palates with a hearty drink menu of premium domestics (up to $6.75) and European brews (up to $7.75), each served in a proper drinking glass to evoke the beer's true flavour quality and sweating behaviours. Patrons sate hunger spikes with hearty pub fare off the classic, Irish-infused menu. Raise a cod-fillet sandwich topped with Cajun tartar sauce and Dubliner cheddar to toast the old country ($13.95), or paint a gravy limerick onto a plate of bangers and champ ($14.95). Souls longing for comfort can order the Guinness lamb stew to enjoy in the glow of the indoor fireplace, flat-screen televisions, or bioluminescent friends ($13.95).
Camaraderie prevails at this cheery establishment, whose gourmet pub grub keeps sports fans, DJ fans, and fan fans well energized. Snack champs can begin with yam fries ($5.75), wings in a dazzling array of flavours ($9.50), or classic poutine ($9). For heartier fuel, those inspired by the elegantly framed photos of sheep may turn to the Black Sheep lamb burger ($11.25) or the Jack the Ripper, whose entirely benign ingredients include spicy blackened chicken with bacon, aged cheddar, lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise, and a crispy, nonmurderous pickle ($11.50). Salads, soups, and internationally inspired edibles almost complete the picture, but Black Sheep grazes in more than culinary pastures. Games beam vigorously from large flat-screen TVs, and on Friday nights, DJs, like snake charmers, turn even the shy into slithery dancers.