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37th Anniversary Open Stage

Free Times Café (320 College Street)

Celebrate 37 years of engaging live music, authentically great food, and vibrant culture & atmosphere!

Sign up starts at 7:30.

Saturday, December 16th

Saturday, December 16th

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Russell Leon Student Concert

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Russell Leon (guitar/voice)

Russell Leon
Russell Leon's current sound is a stark contrast from his acoustic musical roots in rural Ontario. Living off the grid, (no running water, telephone nor electricity) Russell was surrounded by artists and creative thinkers. His musical inspiration was rooted in live performances, late night jam sessions, and battery operated sound systems that wore out his Led Zepplin, Simon and Garfunkel and Neil Young records. Russell Leon's latest recording State Of Mind, is a musical journey through an electro/acoustic soundscape that begs comparison to Beck, Flaming Lips, or a tripped-out Death Cab For Cutie - a stark contrast to his past recordings.


More About Russell Leon

Sunday, December 17th

Sunday, December 17th

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Jewish Brunch Buffet with Jewstice League

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Jewstice League

Live music as part of the "Bella did you eat" Sunday brunch.
1st seating - Reserve between 10:30 – 11am, music at 11:45
2nd seating - Reserve at 1:15pm Club (1:00 Bistro), music at 1:45

Buffet includes over 50 Homemade Items - Potato latkes, blintzes, lox eggs & onions, challah, french toast, sour cream, apple sauce, bagels, lox & cream cheese mix, salmon patties, gelfilte fish, cheese, salads galore, fresh fruit, cheeses, cakes, sweets, tea, coffee and much more! Children 12 and under 1/2 price, 3 and under free.

Jewstice League
We are the Jewstice League Klezmer ensemble. Our name signals the fact that we are rooted in various social justice causes. In addition, we are a folk group that aims to promote Eastern European/Yiddish culture and klezmer. We are a 7-person-ish ensemble: violin, flute, accordion, mandolin, sax, trombonne, harmonium, piano, clarinet, drums, double bass, and tuba.


More About Jewstice League
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Christmas Concert Beau Noel

Gallery 345 (345 Sorauren Avenue)
Julie Nesrallah (voice), Caroline Léonardelli (harp), Matthew Larkin (piano)

Program
- Henri Bosco & Illo Humphrey: Noëls de Lourmarin
- D'où viens-tu bergère (arr. Kelly-Marie Murphy)
- Entre le boeuf et l'âne gris (arr. Kelly-Marie Murphy)
- Henri Büsser: Le sommeil de L'Enfant Jésus
- Charles Marie Widor: Ave Maria
- Traditional Carols & More!

Julie Nesrallah
A singer, actress and broadcaster, Julie Nesrallah is regularly engaged by leading opera companies, symphonies, festivals and chamber music ensembles across North America and around the world. Miss Nesrallah débuted at Carnegie Hall with harpist Caroline Léonardelli in March 2015. She is also the recipient Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal for her cultural contribution to Canada. On July 1, 2011 Miss Nesrallah sang God Save the Queen for His Royal Highness Prince William and Her Royal Highness Princess Kate. She has also performed An Evening for Peace in Montreal for Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan. Miss Nesrallah is the Executive Producer and star of Carmen on Tap, a company she created that performs the opera Carmen as dinner theatre.

Caroline Léonardelli
Caroline Léonardelli, concert harpist and recording artist is a renowned soloist, chamber musician, and teacher. Caroline's solo recording El Dorado received a JUNO Award nomination in the category of Classical Album of the Year solo or small ensemble. Her latest solo recording Impressions de France has been selected by Apple Music editors as one of ten harp recordings worldwide for their feature on the instrument.

Caroline has been described as a "World Class Harpist" in Harp Column Magazine, and her live performances have been reviewed as "Brilliant" and "Outstanding". Reviews of Caroline's Impressions de France recording: "What she brings or adds to the music at hand, to any piece she plays, is close to magical" "She sees beyond the notes and recreates what the composer had in mind" Classical Music Sentinel. "It is her artistic sense of pacing and of shaping melodies within cascades of notes that help make these performances commanding." WholeNote Magazine. "This is a French album for me like no other", "warm touch, coupled with an articulate technique" "thoughtfully chosen and laid-out repertoire, filled with surprises and all masterfully presented" Harp Column Magazine. Caroline has released six recordings on her own label and has a worldwide digital distribution agreement with NAXOS.

Matthew Larkin
One of Canada's most influential liturgical musicians, Matthew Larkin is well-known throughout the country and beyond as an organist, choral director, orchestral conductor, composer, and collaborator in a wide variety of musical styles and genres. Born in England, he came to Canada as a child, settling in Kingston, Ontario. He received his early musical training as a boy chorister at St. George's Cathedral, and was appointed organ scholar and assistant organist there while in high school. As a student at the University of Toronto, he was Organ Scholar of Trinity College, and returning briefly to England, he studied with Nicholas Danby of the Royal College of Music. After serving in a number of parishes in England and Toronto, Matthew moved to British Columbia and was appointed Organist and Choirmaster at St. John's Church, and after seven years there, he moved to Ottawa to become Director of Music at St. Matthew's Church. He later was appointed Associate Organist of St. James Cathedral, Toronto, and for fourteen years, he was proud to serve as Director of Music at Ottawa's Christ Church Cathedral.

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Miles Finlayson Trio

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Miles Finlayson (guitar)
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Gordon's Acoustic Living Room

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Gaye Zimmerman-Huycke (guitar/voice), Dean Cavill (guitar), Brian Morgan (violin), Bart Clarke (bass), Wayne Neon (saxophone/flute), Barry Pausey (guitar), Jonathan Rudin (mandolin), Rory Sinclair (bagpipes), Terry Campbell (percussion), Gordon's Acoustic Living Room
More About Gordon's Acoustic Living Room
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Somewhere There presents: Mirapolis

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Mirapolis, Luan Phung (guitar), Chris Rennie (saxophone), Noah Sherman (drums)

Mirapolis
Mirapolis is modern classical cover band born out of playing free jazz at experimental rock shows. All compositions by members of the band with inspirations from Karaikudi Mani and Olivier Messiaen.

Somewhere There
Somewhere There is a collective of Toronto-based musicians who present, support, and celebrate creative music-making.


More About Mirapolis

Monday, December 18th

Monday, December 18th

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Aidan Funston Quartet

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Aidan Funston (guitar), Dillon Colter (drums), Thomas Hainbuch (bass)
More About Aidan Funston
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Lovely Linda Saslove hosts Open Stage Mondays

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Linda Saslove (voice/guitar)

Signup at 7pm.

Every Monday, all artists are welcomed to sign up and share their songs, poetry, prose or comedy act on Toronto's longest-running open stage; local artists, or those visiting Toronto are encouraged to attend. Here are some of the artists who started their careers at the Free Times open stage: Jason Fowler, Jory Nash, Kat Goldman, Ron Sexsmith, Emm Gryner, Laura Fernandez, Sarah Slean, Noah Zacharin, The Lemon Bucket Orkestra.


More About Linda Saslove
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Ben Jansson Quartet

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Ben Jansson (saxophone), Trevor Hogg (saxophone), Ross MacIntyre (bass), Morgan Childs (drums)
More About Ben Jansson

Wednesday, December 20th

Wednesday, December 20th

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Vaughan Misener Trio

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Adam Cesarone (guitar), Vaughan Misener (bass), David Steinmetz (drums)

Vaughan Misener
Vaughan Misener is a bassist and composer active in the jazz community in Canada, the United States and Europe for many years. Vaughan has had benefit of knowing and working with some of the finest musicians of our time including Pat Labarbera, Kirk MacDonald, Bruce Gertz, Robert Bonisolo, Jeff Andrews, Jaco Pastorius, Lorne Lofsky, Johnathan Blake, Donny McCaslin and Mike Stern. Vaughan Misener teaches at Humber College in Toronto, Canada and has given clinics at Humber, Mohawk College and York University. In an article for Toronto Life, Stuart Broomer wrote "Electric bassist Vaughan Misener is an intense and skillful player, subtly directing a band with pulsing lines that can suddenly explode in fresh directions".


More About Vaughan Misener

Thursday, December 21st

Thursday, December 21st

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Vokurka's Vicarious Virtuoso Violin

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Ed Vokurka (violin), John Fletcher (guitar), Abbey Sholzberg (bass)

Ed Vokurka
Violinist Ed Vokurka's music is a unique blend of European classicism and North American Swing. He possesses a lyricism rarely found in a jazz violinist. In his eclectic approach to jazz, Ed is uniquely providing a missing link between his original classical training and the jazz world, which he embraces so passionately!


More About Ed Vokurka