Joseph Ziegler

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The Weekender: A Christmas Carol, The Brothers Grimm and six other events on our to-do list

Joseph Ziegler reprises his Scrooge for Soulpepper’s A Christmas Carol (Image: Cylla von Tiedemann)

1. A CHRISTMAS CAROL
For the sixth time in his Soulpepper career, founding member Joseph Ziegler steps into Scrooge’s shoes in Michael Shamata’s energetic adaptation of the classic Dickens tale of a greedy curmudgeon who finds the true meaning of Christmas. In keeping with the play’s theme, each performance ends with a collection for The Stop shortly after the Cratchits receive their turkey (which, incidentally, is made of cotton, foam and glue). Dec. 3 to 29. $51–$68. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Ln., 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.

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The Weekender: TIFF, Lewis Black and five other events on our to-do list

Lauryn Hill performs at the ONEXONE fundraiser on Saturday (Image: Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images Entertainment)

1. LEWIS BLACK: RUNNING ON EMPTY
If Lewis Black comes across as a shouting man more than a funny man, that’s because there just seems to be so much to shout about—and never more so than in a U.S. presidential election year, when sanity tends to leap out the window. Hence his latest show, Running on Empty, in which Black brings his signature curmudgeonly exasperation to bear on Democrats, Republicans, Tea Partiers and a host of other groups that make him sick. The Daily Show regular says he enjoys playing to Canadian audiences, since they don’t arrive at the theatre with the built-in Democrat or Republican bias his U.S. audiences have, so perhaps the anger will be toned down a half per cent or so at his Massey Hall engagement. September 7. $35.50-$55.50. Massey Hall, 178 Victoria St., 416-872-4255, masseyhall.com

2. TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Toronto’s biggest, shiniest week-and-a-half-long party kicks off tomorrow with the world premiere of the confusing time-travel thriller Looper, and doesn’t let up until the end of next week at the earliest. Film buffs have already filled out their ticket packages, but for the less organized, there are still plenty of single tickets available for the less celeb-strewn screenings (check out our guide to this year’s 50 buzziest flicks for tips). Gawkers and (celeb) stalkers of all stripes will be on the scene, and party crashers will be practising their smoothest bouncer-buttering-up all weekend long. Keep a browser tab open to tiff.to for full coverage of the insanity. September 6 to 16. Various locations, 416-599-8433, tiff.net

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Today in Toronto: Death of a Salesman

Death of a Salesman The terrific Nancy Palk and Joseph Ziegler reprise the roles of Linda and Willy Loman, the tragic centres of Arthur Miller’s critique on the fragility of the American Dream. Find out more »

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Today in Toronto: Hot Docs, You Can’t Take It With You and more

A Florentine Tragedy and Gianni Schicchi A death-in-opera double bill. Composer Alexander Zemlinsky based his one-act tragedy on a play by Oscar Wilde that explores the restorative impact a murder might have on a failing marriage. Schicchi, Puccini’s sole, memorably tuneful attempt at operatic comedy, revolves around changing a dead man’s will. Find out more »

Hot Docs Oddsmakers, take note. Last year, North America’s biggest documentary fest screened two docs that went on to nab Oscars nominations, as well as all the films on the Genie Awards short list for the genre. This year’s edition, its 19th, will also be occasion for the unveiling of the recently revamped Bloor Hot Docs Cinema, which will screen non-fiction all year round. Find out more »

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Soulpepper announces its 2012—and 15th anniversary—season

Ins Choi (Image: Leon Aureus)

Today Soulpepper announced the 12 plays that will make up its 2012 season—which happens to mark the company’s 15th anniversary—including 10 new productions, two remounts and a revisit. Opening the season on January 12 is Soulpepper’s first original full-length play, Kim’s Convenience, written by Ins Choi and directed by Weyni Mengesha, both Soulpepper Academy alumni. “One of the great discoveries of these last few years is the fascination our young artists have had with the city in which they live,” said Albert Schultz, Soulpepper’s artistic director, in a statement. “This very funny, insightful and touching play…marks an astonishing debut for this multi-talented Canadian artist.” The play is set in Toronto’s Regent Park neighbourhood and follows a family that must deal with its past and confront its future. Check out the rest of Soulpepper’s 2012 season after the jump.

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