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October 2007 - Nr. 10


The Editor
Freiheit zur Einheit
Freedom to Unity
Raising of the German Flag
Paul Bernhard Berghorn
Dan's Satire
Frankfurt Celebrates Toronto
Down On The Town
KW & Beyond
German-Canadian Citizenship Law
The Sale of Depression
New Kasseler Store
Dick reports...
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehört?
Dance Classes for Children
A Spanish Fantasia
Newfoundland's Duo Concertante
November Listings
The Whirling Dervishes
Renewable is Doable

Sybille reports

Art Matters

German dramatist Friedrich Schiller thought that true art would set an individual free. Anyone who has ever been strongly affected by a work of art knows that there is a feeling of freedom, and euphoria involved. The aesthetics of a work of art can cause all sorts of emotions that can even be overwhelming at times. These feelings remove us from the normal work-a-day world and its trials and tribulations, freeing us to see other things than those that cause us problems and pain. They widen the space in which we operate as an individual, alleviate the pressures we are subjected to, thus making us feeling free, or a lot freer than at other times. By being able to look beyond our normal world and life we can see solutions more readily and be more cause over our endeavours.

Therefore it is not a surprise to hear it said that the arts are even more important than other things we thought essential, like good government, resources and the like. In the end, if we feel good, then we can make anything go right, even the politics of our country. So I vote, as always, for more arts!

Toronto Film Festival audienceLet me start by recounting an event of early September as part of the Toronto International Film Festival, which has become huge, perhaps just a bit too big. However, it is noteworthy that all sorts of German films were being shown and I saw a couple of them. They were not necessarily the best films I had ever seen subject wise, but performances and the way the stories were told was exceptional. Let’s take "Love comes lately". This movie’s title is a misnomer. It has not much to do with love but with the fear of being alone and sex serves as the substitute or instant remedy for loneliness.

You say there is something wrong with the title? Right on, it Director Jan Schuetteshould say: Sex comes lately…But that is also wrong and that only from the grammatical point of view. Asking the Director Jan Schuette about it he answers that it is a play of words thought of by an American. Of course! He borrowed from "Johnny comes lately"!

Our film hero is an older fellow concerned with not being able to perform as a man anymore and runs into all these lonely women that want him for … well you know… all very Freudian, but charmingly done.

The after party for all those many movies supported by the German Film Institute took place in a most unlikely district of Toronto, namely on Queen Street East, between Jarvis and Church, an area not famous for savoury lifestyles. However there we found a hidden pearl among those unlikely possibilities, one of them being a screaming match between 3 individuals and the throwing of objects on the opposite street corner. George Restaurant at 111c Queen St. East is part of an entertainment complex with a charming courtyard worth recommending. The surprise of course is the location, which has the desired bite for a rather blasé audience!

The best part of the party was hearing about the amazing lead actor Otto Tausig. Here is an actor who really does not have to act anymore, certainly not for money, he has an adequate pension and all he needs after a long and rewarding career. Except, he also has an unusual hobby due to his nature. He is a humanitarian in the truest sense of the word. He takes on projects and uses the money to buy children from the Far East out of abuse and labour situations. I understand so far he has salvaged 15 hundred Children!

Italian films were also strong this year and the celebration of Italy’s art took place in the Subway below the Subway, under the Cumberland Station. And while art imitated life or perhaps the other way around is certainly original, but it did not play out so well. The food and drinks were served out of subway cars. Fine! They had fresh air, or at least refreshed air. The platform served as the party space and was much too narrow for the many people, especially since there was no fresh air to be felt and machine grease overpowered the too many different perfumes congregating together in the limited space. However, partygoers are looking for an edge, I was told again, and this certainly had it too.

What we do not suffer for the sake of our arts!

Bach meets Gould

But now we come to some really important artistic work. There was no suffering here! The 3rd Annual Bach Festival is about to happen. I attended the 3rd "aperitif" as it was called in the Church of the Redeemer, corner of Bloor and Avenue RehearsalRoad, the traditionally styled church that stands dwarfed by surrounding high-rises, providing a visual contrast between old and new, underlined by the newest addition of Toronto’s architectural marvels across the street, the ROMs crystal addition.

All together now!Who would have thought that Bach could be such fun! Listening to an opening rendition of a Bach hymn on the exquisite organ of the church I did not expect to be entertained so much and so humorously and charmingly. Professor Brown was, after a short warm up rehearsal with a choir, ready to teach the rest of us tBacho become Bach singers, and she succeeded admiringly well with a few simple relaxation techniques. But that was not the only intriguing thing that evening. I believe that the Bach Festival is capable of doing what was promised that night: A life altering experience.

Bach, who charted the known an unknown territory of music completely and without whom no further sophisticated development of music would have taken place, as some believe, must be preserved for all futures to come. How else are we going to understand music and enjoy it? He makes it simple, no matter how complex it actually is.

GouldBy personally experiencing this festival, or parts thereof, anyone can gain a new understanding of a very important art form. This is guaranteed to make one enjoy music, any music, even more than before. You can go to and find out all about it, or you can read the paper ad in our publication for a performance schedule on the campus of U of T and in other venues, such as Roy Thompson Hall.

Bach meets Gould Gould meets Brown
Bach meets Gould Gould meets Brown 

I hope to have wet your appetite for some real art in this town of ours. Toronto has a lot to offer in the arts. Splurge on it! You can find more art events in our online listings at and in every online issue.


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