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Deep Dish - Issue 439

12.05.2011 | Article by: Rolyn Chambers

Photos by: Tony Fong

Kiley and James mix it up, each in their own way @ Bloor Street Entertains

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Something goes kinda wrong after dinner. The $1,000-a-plate dining experience held in various upscale businesses in Yorkville for the 15th anniversary of Bloor St Entertains goes off beautifully, as usual. Guests are wined and dined at places like Birks, Swarovski and Ferrari-Maserati by culinary legends that include Jamie Kennedy and Susur Lee. The usual afterparty, however, anticipated by those who can’t afford to donate so much to the cause, is replaced by a variety show/live auction held at the Royal Conservatory of Music. Thank God for hostess Jann Arden’s potty-mouthed humour and the sultry vocals of Keshia Chanté, because the auditorium where the auction takes place is not even half full and those here are barely bidding. “I’m really not sure if this new format worked all that well,” TV host Glenn Dixon says politely before joining his brother, fashion designer David Dixon, and fashion designers Wayne Clarke, Chris Tyrell and Jim Searle in the lounge area. Live and learn.

The invite for the Tickle Trunk Party, in aide of Casey House, that is held by design company Yabu Pushelberg, says, “Dress to impress, costumes encouraged.” I had no idea so many would heed their call. It is like Halloween came late inside the east-end studio. As I enter the high-ceilinged white-walled space, guests mingle about a long narrow runway, and two glassed-in rooms become fantastical spaces with the aid of pink-and-orange floor pillows and metallic helium balloons. “No, we weren’t asked to, [design the new Casey House on Jarvis],” George Yabu says. “But we’re here to support Casey House in whatever way we can.” DJ Diego, former phantom of Fritz Helder & The Phantoms, takes control of the turntables as Sofonda makes her entrance with dancers Gerry King and Paul Charbonneau in tow. They put on a show full of choreographed moves and the dramatic use of regal red fabric. I think Sofonda must have the biggest trickle trunk in Toronto.

Go-go cuties in red boxer briefs, red neckerchiefs and fuzzy earmuffs mount the speakers to shove their fortune-cookie crotches in my face at AsianXpress' 11th Anniversary Party, AX-A-Gogo. Fly nightclub is packed as DJ Alex spins traditional top-40 tracks and even some Japanese pop. I have no idea what the words mean, but the excitement of the packed dancefloor makes me believe the songs are number-one hits. Bathed in serene, angelic white light, JMag woos the audience with a luscious lullaby of songs, including Justin Bieber’s “Next To You.” Wisely, Sofonda and her dancers repeat their performance from the Tickle Trunk Party earlier in the night. Sadly, longstanding general manager of fly, Gaelen Patrick, is leaving the club in January. Taking over for him will be promoter Gilles Belanger, one of the founders of Unified Weekend (the precursor to Prism). What, if any, change will transpire in the upcoming months? I should have read that fortune-cookie crotch.

Pop Machine has been going very strong for more than a year now at WAYLA, its popular east-end home. From the carefully chosen rotating art exhibits to the newish glassed-in DJ booth overlooking the intimate dancefloor, the space screams “fabulous.” In the back area, DJ Alessandro spins some Nicki Minaj as fellow DJ and event creator Shane Percy circulates, ensuring that everyone’s having a good time. People have been coming to his nights for ages, but tonight there are quite a few virgins. Adorable Paco Archi makes the trek, as does actor Adamo Ruggiero (formerly of Degrassi). “I hear there are a lot of hot guys with beards here,” he says, stroking his facial hair. And there are. But beards can be deceiving, as some guys who I think are above the age of 30 clearly do not appreciate the Freddie Mercury tribute that plays in honour of the anniversary of the Queen singer’s death. “I think most are too young to understand,” Percy remarks. This seems very wrong.

Twitter: @rolynsays

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