Mélange, a restaurant and neighbourhood institution in the making at Main Street and Gerrard Street East, has been featuring live entertainment for a while.
The latest regular attraction is a weekly show where the audience is the star. The house band provides a soundtrack, while patrons are invited to take inspiration from the musical legends whose photos adorn the walls, and sing their hearts out.
Malcolm and the Malcontents will bring the beat on Wednesday, July 30, and Wednesday, Aug. 13 and 20. They cover a blend of R&B, blues and classic rock. On Wednesday, Aug. 6, the Mélange Madmen will offer classics by Santana, Hendrix, the Stones and more.
All open mic nights run from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Mélange is at 172 Main St., just north of Gerrard.
Beach-raised Alex Eddington will be performing an extended version of Yarn, the show he performed at last year’s Fringe Festival, as part of the SummerWorks Performance Festival in August. East End theatre and puppetry power couple Tyler Seguin and Helen Juvonen are director and assistant director, respectively, for the show.
The solo performance combines true stories, puppetry, music and live sound design in an autobiographical story exploring the effects of isolation. Eddington spent a summer working on Scotland’s Isle of Mull, and the show follows his travels into superstition and magical thinking as he becomes obsessed with the mystical energy of standing stones. The story is framed by a traditional Scottish ‘yarn’, about a young man who is blown across the sea into a new life.
The play will run at Majlis Art Garden, a sheltered outdoor garden theatre space which will be decorated by long strands of yarn suspending instruments and props. The sounds of the outdoors in the city become a part of the show.
The 80-minute show runs at 7:30 p.m. from Aug. 7 to 10 and Aug. 12 to 17. Tickets are $15, available at the door or in advance through summerworks.ca. Dress for the temperature, as the Majlis Art Garden, 163 Walnut Ave., is sheltered from rain and wind, but is not climate controlled.
Judy Croon will be joined by some of Toronto’s finest stand-up comics for the Dogstarz Comedy Fundraising Gala on Thursday, Aug. 14.
Croon is a comedian, Second City stand-up coach, radio host, author and motivational speaker. She’s opened for the likes of Joan Rivers, John Stewart and Lewis Black, and appeared on several network television specials. She is the author of From the Stage to the Page: Life Lessons from Four Funny Ladies!, and has co-hosted radio shows in Canada and the US.
Along with the laughs, the night will feature a silent auction and door prizes. The Dogstarz gala will benefit the Toronto Humane Society.
Tickets are $20 in advance through dogstarz.ca, or $25 at the door. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the show takes place at the Fox Theatre, 2236 Queen St. E. at Beech.
Beach United Church will be marking the end of August with its Summer Sizzler fundraising concert.
The George Olliver Duo and special guest Peter Mueller will perform from 8 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 29.
Olliver was a member of Mandala. He’s opened for the Rolling Stones and has played with legends including Whitney Houston, Junior Walker, Etta James and Wilson Picket.
Mueller has spent much of his career as a guitarist backing Olliver, Tom Cochrane, Buffy Sainte-Marie and Anne Murray among many others. He spend half a dozen years in the Canadian Idol backing band, working with current stars like Carly Rae Jepsen and Jacob Hoggard of Hedley.
Tickets to the show are $25, available in advance through eventbrite.ca or at the door. For more information call the church office at 416-691-8082.