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Things to Do in Toronto: Shows & Events in May 2016

THERE ARE ALWAYS SO MANY THINGS TO DO IN TORONTO. GET OUT AND ENJOY SOME OF THE MANY GREAT PERFORMANCES AND EVENTS TAKING PLACE THROUGHOUT THE CITY IN MAY!

Leviathan at Canada’s Wonderland is Canada’s tallest and biggest roller coaster

MAY 1  The country’s largest theme park, Canada’s Wonderland kicks off opening day with even more excitement to its lineup of rides with two new soaring interactive experiences: Skyhawk and Flying Eagles. The former is the first of its kind in North America, letting thrill seekers control their own cockpit by navigating 360 degree turns and inversions from 135 feet in the air, while the latter lets pint-sized pilots—along with a co-pilot—steer their own plane. Of course, the park’s 16 roller coasters, water park, two kids play areas, and midway games are among the other draws that make it the most visited seasonal amusement park in North America.

MAY 1 TO 3  Esteemed paleontologist Nizar Ibrahim speaks about the discovery of fossils belonging to the largest predatory dinosaur ever discovered as part of the National Geographic Live series.

MAY 2 AND 3  Canadian musician Lights, known for such songs as “February Air” and “Drive My Soul,” performs an acoustic show at The Danforth Music Hall with special guests DCF.

MAY 4 AND 5  The Toronto Symphony Orchestra presents Brahms Symphony 4 alongside a new work by John Adams with a violin solo.

MAY 6  A roster of Canadian and world champion figure skaters take part in Stars on Ice, including Patrick Chan, Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford, Javier Fernández, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir and Joannie Rochette among others.

MAY 7  Catch Canadian singer and songwriter Royal Wood at The Danforth Music Hall.

MAY 7 AND 8  Dan Howell and Phil Lester, former radio hosts from BBC Radio, in a new interactive stage show featuring sketches, anecdotes and surprises in a new touring production, The Amazing Tour is Not on Fire.

MAY 9  Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright Tony Kushner, best known for Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes, discusses the challenges of writing about difficult topics.

MAY 10 AND 11  Seattle-based rockers Pearl Jam, known for such songs as “Daughter” and “Last Kiss,” hit the Air Canada Centre stage during their North American tour.

MAY 11 American singer and songwriter Ben Folds tours in support of his latest album, So There, with special guests Dotan.

The Piano Guys (photo: The Piano Guys)

MAY 12  Quartet known as The Piano Guys, who rose to You Tube fame for their renditions of pop songs played on the piano and cello, perform at the Sony Centre.

MAY 13 AND 15  Paired with words by Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko, Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 13 as performed by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, depicts the horrendous deaths of thousands of Jewish people during World War II at a Ukrainian ravine called Babi Yar.

MAY 14  Head to BMO Field to cheer on the hometown soccer team, as the Toronto FC takes on the Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

MAY 16  Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of former President Bill Clinton and Democratic presidential candidate Hilary Clinton, talks about her life as a new mom, author and vice chair of the Clinton Foundation.

MAY 16 TO JUNE 18  The growing women’s liberation movement of the 1960s is the backdrop for The Heidi Chronicles. Soulpepper Theatre Company’s production of this Pulitzer Award–winning drama follows the titular character, Heidi Holland, through two decades of her life, as a highschool student to her successful career as an art historian, and finally as a single mother. The evolving role of women over two decades, as seen through Heidi’s professional and personal lives, serves as the primary theme of this political zeitgeist.

MAY 17 TO JUNE 12  A quartet performs one last concert on their way to heaven in the musical Forever Plaid, featuring hit songs from the 1950s.

MAY 17 TO 29  Irish dancing and music spectacle made famous by Michael Flatley, Riverdance, celebrates its 20th anniversary with a world tour.

MAY 18 AND 19  Love yourself—and love Justin Bieber—who’s in concert at the Air Canada Centre for two nights during his Purpose World Tour.

MAY 20  A virtual sensation from Japan, Hatsune Miku, sings and dances through a computer generated voice and graphics.

MAY 21  Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, known for such songs as “Walk Like a Man,” “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” and “December ’63—Oh What a Night,” headline the Sony Centre stage.

MAY 22 Selena Gomez makes a stop in Toronto during her world Revival Tour, with special guests DNCE.

MAY 23  Celebrate Victoria Day with a spectacular fireworks display at Ashbridges Bay.

MAY 24  The Second City, presents its 77th mainstage revue, The Hotline Always Blings Twice, on now through to June 16. For this production, the improv comedy troupe skewers the likes of blind dates, binge watching television shows, and Blue Jays bandwagoners.

MAY 25  The Kronos Quartet, who have been in existence for more than 40 years, perform at Koerner Hall with special guest Tanya Tagaq.

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder (photo: Joan Marcus)

MAY 25 TO JUNE 26  What’s a lowly clerk in a dead end job to do when he learns that his deceased mother was a member of a wealthy aristocratic family? If you’re Monty Navarro then you start plotting to bump off the eight relatives that stand between you and the family fortune, of course. A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder is an uproarious Tony Award–winning musical about one man’s nefarious crusade to do whatever it takes to inherit a family dynasty.

MAY 28  A who’s who of Canadian music headline the CBC Music Festival at Echo Beach. Featured performers include Hey Rosetta!, The New Pornographers, Whitehorse, Tanya Tagaq, Tokyo Police Club, Maestro, Ria Mae, Julian Taylor and The Franklin Electric among other bands.

MAY 28  Country superstar Carrie Underwood, known for such radio-friendly songs as “Cowboy Casanova” and “Before He Cheats,” heads to the Air Canada Centre as part of The Storyteller Tour: Stories in the Round. Special guests include Easton Corbin and The Swon Brothers.

MAY 28 AND 29  For one weekend each year, visitors can roam through more than 130 buildings of historical, cultural and spiritual significance for free during the annual Doors Open. Some edifices, such as the Bergeron Centre for Engineering Excellence at York University and The Masonic Temple—David Bowie and Frank Sinatra have performed here—are normally off limits to the public, and others, like St. James Cathedral, the Legislative Assembly of Ontario and Old and New City Hall are returning favourites with special guided tours and displays. For the first time, Doors Open features a keynote, speaker: award–winning industrial designer Karim Rashid.

MAY 28 AND 29  Head down to the shores of Lake Ontario for the Waterfront Artisan Market, which features handcrafted goods from more than 40 local makers, as well as food vendors.

MAY 31 TO JUNE 12  A homage to Elvis Presley, Return to Grace, features some of the King’s greatest hits including “Unchained Melody” and “Love Me Tender.”

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