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Opera House, Geneva, St. Paul's bustling with entertainment

There is lots to see and do in the area in the coming days and weeks, says our arts and entertainment columnist
murray-mclauchlan credit murray mclauchlan
Canadian musician Murray McLauchlan is coming to the Orillia Opera House Sept. 18 for a chat and some music.

First off, I want to take a moment to acknowledge Sept. 11. In many ways, I feel, the events this date marked the beginning of a new breed of politics, feeding off fear and hatred.

It marked the date that the whole world started going off the rails. Let’s hope we can get back on track, soon.

Remember, “Love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world.” Jack Layton

We have a kind of new or at least a new hybrid event in town. The Orillia Museum of Art and History and Orillia District Arts Council are combining their annual awards and events, and tah dah! Welcome, the Orillia Regional Arts and Heritage Awards.

I am excited to be part of the organizing committee that is putting this fun and oh-so-worthwhile event together. There are five awards categories, no self-nominations, and there will be a wonderful awards evening for everyone at the end of the process. So, go to the website to read the information, download the nomination form and nominate a person or a group of people today.

Deadline for nominations is Oct. 25 at 4 p.m. and the awards event is Nov. 27 at 5:30 p.m. at the Geneva Event Centre. This is your chance to recognize a hard-working artist, or historian in our area. Make it happen!

I want to acknowledge that I missed the kick-off Mariposa Arts Theatre (MAT) film night in my column last week. I think I was so upset that I was going to miss the Gordon Lightfoot doc, If You Could Read My Mind, due to being out of town, that I just put it right out of my mind.

Anyways, MAT film nights have started up again, and if you have never been, just go. They are always phenomenal movies that we wouldn’t otherwise get to see here, and every time you go, you support wonderful live theatre right here in O-Town. The next movie is The Last Black Man in San Francisco, on Sept. 18, followed by Sometimes Always Never on Oct. 2. All films are at Orillia Galaxy Theatre at 4 and 7 p.m. and tickets are $10 in person at the Galaxy, cash only. For more information, head to the website.

The Geneva Event Centre has its September events up on the website and they are looking fun and funny, with a couple of great nights of comedy coming up. Sept. 19, come check out the Ringos, a fantastic comedy duo, with the show, 80’s Kids Will Understand, at 8 p.m. Sept. 27 at 8 p.m., check out comedians Cedric Newman and Chris Quigley in their No Map Required Tour. Tickets for both of these shows are $20 in advance and can be picked up online at the website above.

On Sept. 28 at 4 and 7 p.m., The Geneva presents the Canadian premiere of the film, I’m Just Me-The Charlie Pride Story. Tickets for this moving film are $10 online through the Geneva. It will likely sell out so commit today. Thanks Don Porter for bringing these great events here to town.

The Orillia Opera House (OOH) fall events are looking similarly fun and worth seeing. Well-loved Canadian musician Murray McLauchlan is coming Sept. 18 to talk about his life and music and play some tunes as well. You can buy tickets for this and a similar evening featuring Pavlo, on Oct. 9, in a combo pack, through the Opera House website.

Also at the OOH this fall, the Banff Centre Mountain Film Festival fall tour, featuring different films than the winter tour in January, on Sept. 27. And, Oct. 4 Green River Revival, a CCR tribute show with costume changes as well.

Heads up, Irish Mythen is coming to town! Inside the Music is bringing the feisty and talented lady to St. Paul’s Centre, Nov. 8 at 7 p.m. This musician and this show are very popular here in town, so grab your $34.50 tickets now online.

Speaking of St. Paul’s Centre, Lakehead University’s Third Age Learning five-part lecture series is starting up again next Wednesday. The theme this time is, Is Democracy Dying?, and featured speakers are Dr. Valerie Hebert, Dr. David Moscrop, Dave Meslin, Dr. Dennis Pilon, and Dr. Tanner Mirrlees. You can pick up your tickets for the series and more information here.

This weekend, two arts openings in the arts district, the Equinox Show at Hibernation Arts and Tina Poplawski’s show at the Orillia Museum of Art and History, both Saturday afternoon, Equinox from 1 to 3 p.m. and The OMAH show with an artist’s talk at 12:30 p.m. followed by a reception until 4 p.m. Don’t miss the chance to see these works.

Music in the bars this weekend of course! At Fionn MacCool’s, Friday, Jamie Drake from 8 p.m. to midnight, and Sunday, Mark Ekins from 2 to 5 p.m. At the Brownstone Café, Thursday, Body Love, an Art Celebration, and Friday, Tech Night with DJ Subverse Tech. At the Hog ‘n’ Penny, Saturday, Jakob Pearce.

Don’t forget to send me your arts and culture events, to by Tuesdays at noon. Have a wonderful week!