Theatre of Youth specializes in kid-friendly performances that engage young minds and captivate grown-up grown-ups. They produce five literary-based productions and two health and wellness productions each year. Since 2000, more than half a million children have gotten their jollies from the popular productions, which are known for their high production value and quality acting. Upcoming plays include the informative Inside Out that wraps an entertaining story around a lesson that encourages healthier eating habits. This Holiday season, catch A Little House Christmas which is adopted from the famed Little House on the Prairie series, or peer into the future and reserve seats for a stage adaptation of Judy Bloom's Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, opening next March.
Ilya's Bellydance & Henna Studio teaches the fine art of tummy undulation and hip-and-shoulder shimmying to abdomens anxious to shuffle their metaphorical belly feet. Eager rug-cutters can strive to improve their poise and self-confidence in a standard belly-dancing, burlesque, or Bollywood workshop. An expert audience mesmerizer instructs on navel-oriented movement techniques, including the classic bellybutton ripple that displays agility and removes any abdomen-attached forest creatures.
The consortium of professional instructors at Fred Astaire Dance Studio, which was cofounded by the legendary toe tapper himself, shepherds students of all ages and skill levels through lessons that span the style spectrum. Low-pressure private sessions allow enthusiastic teachers to fine-tune individual students' techniques and form, using their expert eyes and mechanical dancing shoes preprogrammed to do the Charleston. Patrons can learn how to cavort through classic waltz and fox-trot romps or swivel through the modern steps of salsa, swing, or samba. For dancers hoping to hoof it up in a social setting, the group practice parties provide a one-night extravaganza of instruction, demonstrations, and amateur firewalking.
Walk inside Caf? 1842, and one is surrounded by marble floors, exposed brick walls, and a restored tin ceiling. The caf?, tucked inside the lobby of the Huether Hotel, is replete with the aroma of Seattle?s Best Coffee and freshly baked muffins and scones. A fireplace adds a homey touch for people to sit and sip their coffee, or roast their morning marshmallows.
A cornucopia of savoury delights awaits diners at Encore! (formerly Ali Baba Steakhouse), where fresh, local ingredients are spun into a tapestry of thoughtfully prepared steaks, salads, fish, poultry, sandwiches, and more. Casual encounters may prefer Encore!’s lounge area where live jazz struts its artful dissonance Friday and Saturday nights in a sidecar with cocktails ($7–$9), beers ($3–$5) and martinis ($8). Intimate affairs of the heart or limbic system or may prefer the dining room, where professional service is on tap for lunch or dinner. Encore!’s flavour-fondling dishes—including duck confit springrolls ($10), grilled 8 oz. AAA beef tenderloin au poivre ($33), and lobster & chorizo papardelle ($24)—feed the soul via the mouth, an optimal place to store sips of Encore!’s dozens of red and white wine bottle selections ($29+) or an auxiliary stomach.
The Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony was founded out of necessity; in 1945, the Grand Philharmonic Choir was preparing a recital and needed tuneful accompaniment for the harmonic voices. Once its backup duty was over, however, the newly convened orchestra quickly established itself as an independent source for both classical and pops concerts performing more than 100 concerts annually in the Waterloo region. Now home to 52 on-staff musicians, the orchestra continues its decades-long tradition at venues around Kitchener, Waterloo, Guelph, and Cambridge. From his position as music director, Edwin Outwater oversees the joyful noise, which ranges from baroque to Beethoven to the Beatles and Broadway. Since assuming the role in 2007, Outwater has been one of the orchestra's most vigorous boosters, arranging the group's first commercial recording in a decade, engineering an exploration of prog rock in collaboration with the Institute for Quantum Computing, and knitting sweaters for each musician's instrument.