The Toronto Beach Chorale, under the direction of Mervin Fick, presents a special Good Friday concert “for light, peace and hope,” April 6 at 7:30 p.m. at Kingston Road United Church, 975 Kingston Rd. The Chorale will be joined by a small orchestra for this program.
The program includes three liturgical motets for women’s voices by Camille Saint-Saëns, and a motet setting for dramatic tenor, chorus, organ and harp; Cantique de Jean Racine; and the beloved Requiem, by Gabriel Fauré. The Requiem will use the original chamber instrumentation including harp, and featuring baritone soloist Geoffrey Sirett.
Tickets for this concert are $20 for adults or $10 for youth 7 to 18, and are available at the door, or online at torontobeachchorale.com.
Here’s your chance to go down in history as a member of a live studio audience on a recording by Beach songstress Jeanine Mackie. Mackie and her classic R&B band will be performing – and recording – their gig at The Drake Underground, 1150 Queen St. W., on April 10 beginning at 8 p.m.
Members of the Jeanine Mackie Band are: Bob McAlpine, guitar; Matt Horner, keys; Byron Stoehr, bass, John Johnson, sax; Arturo Avalos, percussion; Al Cross, drums, and Quisha and Jarelle Christie on background vocals.
Tickets for this live recording event are $10 if you order through the Drake’s website at thedrakehotel.ca/happenings/listings/, or $12 at the door. For more information visit jeaninemackieband.com.
Birchcliff Bluffs United Church presents its annual Easter drama, April 14, at 7:30 p.m. at the church, 33 East Rd., near Warden and Kingston. Were You There? is the title of this year’s production, which will feature new soloists, new music and a multimedia backdrop. Characters will express the excitement, fears and doubts of the events of Holy Week through lyrics, reflections, and reenactments.
Admission is $10 and all proceeds will go towards the Churches By the Bluffs Community Services Food Bank. Tickets are available at the door, and there will be refreshment provided. For more information phone Birchcliff Bluffs United Church at 416-694-4081.
Guitarist/poet Mark Battenberg will be giving a special fundraising concert for the Pegasus Community Project, April 14 at 7:30 p.m., at Kingston Road United Church, 975 Kingston Rd. Battenberg will be launching his latest book of poetry The Hidden Pass, the book that won him a Toronto Public Library-sponsored lunch with Margaret Atwood.
Joining Battenberg will be shakuhachi flute player Debbie Danbrook, Gemini Award winner Mark Korven and pianist David Powell, with narration by Pep Duhaime. For more information visit Battenberg’s website at battenbergmusic.com.
Tickets for this concert are $10 and are available at the door, or by calling Pegasus at 416-691-6835.
Acoustic Harvest presents a return visit by the popular husband and wife duo The Laws, April 21, at 8 p.m. For more than 10 years The Laws – John and Michele – have been writing and performing some of the finest country songs around. They have released six cds, the lastest called Try Love, as well as a cookbook, Live ‘n Cookin’, and have recently opened a music store called Rebel Cowboy Music in Wheatley, Ontario, where they live.
“John and Michele Law’s songs seem to be the lost essence of country music which has now become so commercial and formulaic sounding,” says guitarist and CBC radio host Randy Bachman. For more information visit their website at thelaws.ca.
Tickets for The Laws are $22 for adults and $20 for seniors and students, and will be available at the door, but a word of warning: come early, there will be a lot of people out to hear the pair. For more information call 416-264-2235, or visit acousticharvest.ca.
Beach crooner Michael Hughes is getting plenty of buzz around his one-man show called Mickey & Judy. The hilarious pseudo-memoir was debuted at last year’s Toronto Fringe Festival where it played to sold-out audiences. NOW Magazine called it one of the most outstanding productions and performances of the festival. Michael has been invited to perform Mickey & Judy at this summer’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Aug. 3 to 27. To raise funds for the trip to Scotland, Michael is performing a special encore performance of Mickey & Judy April 21 at 8 p.m., at the Toronto Centre for the Arts Studio Theatre, 5040 Yonge St.
Mickey & Judy chronicles Hughes’ childhood obsession with the star of stage and screen through a series of comical anecdotes, and a musical score that spans Judy Garland’s career on and off Broadway. The theme of the show is learning to accept yourself as you are and follow your dreams.
Michael Hughes has performed alongside Sarah McLachlan, Earth Wind & Fire, Chicago, and toured with Canadian music guru David Foster in his cross-country tour David Foster & Friends. Hughes’ initial recording, Michael Hughes, reviewed here, won a Toronto Independent Music Award for Best Adult Contemporary Album in 2010. Hughes has also performed in several musicals including being lead vocalist in the National Ballet’s West Side Story Suite. For more information visit mickeyandjudy.ca.
Tickets for Mickey & Judy are $25 and are available from the box office at ticketmaster.com/Mickey-and-Judy-tickets/artist/1697314.
The Lish (formerly known as Relish Bar & Grill), 2152 Danforth Ave., continues to host New Music Night every Saturday from 9:30 to 11:30 p.m. April 7 sees singer-songwriter Kristin Sweetland take the stage; April 14, Julian Taylor; April 21, Mark Sepic; April 28, Tucker Green; and May 5, Scott Pietrangelo.
Then, of course, there is the open mic night they call Stir It Up Sundays!, every Sunday from 10:30 p.m. until 2 a.m. There is no cover for either evening, so drop in and hear some great new music. For more information call The Lish at 416-425-4664.