The largest event of its kind, the CONTACT Photography Festival brings together local and international artists at over 175 venues across Toronto. This year’s theme, Field of Vision, focuses on how photography affects imagination and our apprehension of the everyday. May 1-31. Various Venues. Free.
Just like its name, rock.paper.sistahz is a dynamic, multifaceted festival that celebrates the work of black theatre artists. Open to experimentation, events include filmed workshops, interdisciplinary improvisations, a variation on the soul train and a reading by M. NourbeSe Philip. May 24-31. Various Venues. Tickets $10-$45.
Khaled Hosseini (author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns) talks to Heather Reisman about his life, humanitarian work and new novel entitled And The Mountains Echoed. May 27. Indigo Manulife Centre. Free.
The Toronto All-Star Big Band swings for a night to benefit Regeneration Community Services, a charity that assists people living with addiction and mental health problems. May 30. Hugh’s Room. Tickets $25-$30.
Premiering 28 ten-minute plays, the 8th InspiraTO Festival runs on a set of challenges. Six of the plays open with the line, “I see a rabbit.” The following six take place in a tunnel. The six after that contain a character that leaves home, while the final group has rope as an integral part of their productions. May 30-June 8. Alumnae Theatre. Tickets $12-$50.
Edward Keenan, senior editor at The Grid, talks about Some Great Idea: Good Neighbourhoods, Crazy Politics and the Invention of Toronto (Coach House), his book about Toronto’s self-image and leading lights. May 30. Barbara Frum Library. Free.
For its 9th year, the Waterfront Blues Festival gives the stage to newcomers and old-timers honed in the art of the bent chord. Prize giveaways and award-winning BBQ compliment performances by Deanna Bogart, Fathead, Morgan Davis and more. May 31-June 2. Woodbine Park. Free.
Ben McNally Books is hosting a travelling trio of authors called the Fictionistas. They are, in no particular order, Dora Dueck (What You Get at Home), Stella Harvey (Nicolai’s Daughters) and Ailsa Key (Under Budapest). The evening will be hosted by Cordelia Strube (Milosz). June 1. Free.
To start off the Toronto Reference Library’s Aboriginal Celebration, novelist and cultural critic Thomas King speaks about his work The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America, a personal retelling of what it means to be “Indian” through the history between non-Natives and Natives. June 5. Toronto Reference Library. Free.