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AGO First Thursdays An Evening of Words and Song with Patti Smith

Thursday, March 7, 2013
6:30–11 pm
19+, ID required

Important Notice

Tickets for Patti Smith's two performances on March 7 are sold out. Sales were processed online, by phone and in person. There was a high-volume demand, and we apologize to those of you who were unable to secure tickets.

Patti Smith: An Evening of Words and Song

Join us for a very special edition of AGO 1st Thursdays inspired by the exhibition Patti Smith: Camera Solo, featuring two specially ticketed performances by the legend herself, live in Walker Court. A roster of programming inspired by Smith will fill the Gallery spaces, including the Level 4 of the AGO’s contemporary tower, which will be filled with bars, music, art-making and special performances by local artists.

Highlights of the night will include:

  • Two specially ticketed performances by Patti Smith in Walker Court at 7:30 and 9:45 pm. Please note: only ticketholders to the performances will gain access to Walker Court for this event
  • Performances of Patti Smith tunes by CHOIR! CHOIR! CHOIR! in surprise locations throughout the Gallery all night long
  • Pop-up talks in the Patti Smith: Camera Solo exhibition by actor, writer and director Don McKellar; writer and pop culture expert Lynn Crosbie; the AGO’s assistant curator of photography Sophie Hackett; and the AGO’s manager of publishing, Jim Shedden.
  • Patti Smith–inspired art-making activities, including a life drawing station and an interactive collective writing project led by Toronto poet and novelist Zoe Whitall.
  • Performances by three of Toronto’s brightest young slam poets, Truth Is…, Spencer Butt, and Dahveed Delisca
  • The AGO’s rarely seen collection of 1960s concert posters and memorabilia, on display for one night only in the monthly Out of the Vaults 1st Thursdays feature. Items inlcude original set lists handwritten by Jim Morrison of The Doors as well as the vest Morrison wore for many concert appearances, and authentic concert posters featuring Jimi Hendrix, the Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin and Bob Dylan.
  • DJs, drinks and food in Galleries around the AGO; visitors will find an assortment of comfort foods and drinks including the Fresh Rock cocktail at the Galleria Italia pop-up bar, while DJ Shit La Merde spins tracks by artists who influenced Patti Smith as well as her contemporaries

New this month! The 4th Floor Art Party

A Smith-inspired art party will heat up the Vivian & David Campbell Centre for Contemporary Art on the AGO’s fourth floor. Separated into several distinct rooms, the gallery spaces will feature snacks, musical performances, poetry readings, theatre readings, and art-making stations.

THE MUSIC ROOM: Intimate performances by local musicians who have been inspired by Patti Smith. Singer/songwriter Emma McKenna kicks the night off, followed by performances by Andre Ethier, Amy Bowles and Katie Stelmanis.

THE THEATRE ROOM: Pomme Grenade Productions presents two readings of Cowboy Mouth — a play by Sam Shepherd and Patti Smith. The story depicts the relationship between characters Slim and Cavale, two lost souls living together in sin, as they struggle to find the meaning of art and the role of the artist. Excerpts will be brought to life by actors Vanessa Dunn, Adam Wilson, director Natasha Greenblatt, designer Amy Siegel and musician Gentleman Reg.

THE POETRY ROOM: Paying homage to Smith’s love of poetry with readings throughout the evening. Three of Toronto’s brightest young poets, Truth Is, Spencer Butt and Dahveed Delisca, will perform their original works.

THE WRITING ROOM: Toronto poet and novelist Zoe Whittall teaches visitors how to release their inner Patti Smith as part of a collective writing project.

THE READING ROOM: Text written by Patti Smith will be available to read inside an intimate gallery space all night long. For those looking for a moment of introspection in the midst of the party

THE CANTINE: Party-goers will enjoy tacos, grilled cheese sandwiches, mac ‘n’ cheese and drinks as DJ Katie Ritchie spins for those wanting to get their groove on.



Emma McKenna
Emma McKenna is a Toronto-based musician and academic. This spring she will release her second album, The Might, a follow up to her 2010 debut solo album Run With It. She will be performing March 23 at The Great Hall for the final Fucked Up Winter Series Showcase and March 24 at the Garrison.

Andre Ethier
Andre Ethier Is a songwriter and Painter from Toronto. His records are released by Blue Fog Records and he is represented by DerekEller Gallery.

Amy Bowles
Amy Bowles is a Toronto-based artist, musician and actor. Born in London, UK, she graduated from the Cardiff Institute of Art and Design (1993-96) with a BA in Ceramic Design. Since then, Amy has regularly exhibited sculptures, paintings and film. She is represented by Paul Petro Contemporary Art Gallery, and is a participant in the Cuckoo Collection, an online gallery. Amy is lead vocalist for the Toronto bands Pony da Look, Permafrown, and most recently, Hollow Earth.

Katie Stelmanis
Katie Stelmanis is the co-founder and lead singer of Toronto-based band Austra.


Truth Is...
Truth Is … A poet, a writer, a motivational speaker & an arts educator. In addition to Slam and a long list of feature performances across Canada and the U.S., Truth Is … has headlined in several conferences focused on social equity, gender equality, youth motivation and labour. She has also recently opened up for Canadian Hip-Hop idol K-OS & legendary activist Angela Davis.

Dahveed Delisca
David Delisca is a four-eyed ginger tea sippin', Haitian-born spoken word artist. A three-time member of the Toronto Poetry Slam's national team.

Spencer Butt
Spencer Butt is the mutant offspring of haunted houses and well-worn comic books. Known for his high-speed, emotional delivery, Spencer has performed across Canada and The U.S. at such event as Word On The Street, The Art Bar Poetry Series, Laugh Sabbath, San Francisco's Brave New Voices, Just For Laughs, Vancouver Poetry Slam and Saskatoon's Tonight It's Poetry.


By Sam Shepard and Patti Smith
Presented by Pomme Grenade Productions

Cavale is a poet, a thief, a killer, a barroom brawler, a vagabond. Slim is in love with her and desperate to leave. Lobster Man is helping them put on their show. Directed by Natasha Greenblatt, installation and projection design by Amy Siegel, with Vanessa Dunn, Adam Wilson and music by Gentleman Reg. Cowboy Mouth is the dream we are playing.


Zoe Whittall is the author of two literary novels, three volumes of poetry and the editor of one short fiction anthology. Her most recent novel, Holding Still for as Long as Possible, (House of Anansi) won a Lambda literary award and is being developed into a feature film.


We're choir! choir! choir! from Toronto. We started getting together weekly in February 2011. Every Tuesday we sing a couple songs. So far, we have tackled The Beatles (a few times), Simon and Garfunkel, Pilot, Guns N' Roses, Bon Jovi, Tina Turner, Cheap Trick, The Buggles, New Order, Talking Heads, Blondie, Fleetwood Mac, The Who, Madonna, Culture Club, Slade, Sloan, Daveed Goldman, Cyndi Lauper, Duran Duran, T-Rex, Prince, Erasure, Yazoo, Pat Benatar, Steely Dan, England Dan and John Ford Coley, Mister Nobu, Neil Young, Wham, Big Star, Bruce Springsteen, The Shirelles, The Pointer Sisters, Tears For Fears, Crowded House, Modern English, The Strokes, The Hollies, Annie Lennox, The Eurythmics, The Turtles, Elton John, Roy Orbison, Del Shannon, Handel, ABBA, The Police, Loverboy, Elliott Smith, Bryan Adams, The Bangles, Journey, Heart, The Cure, Hall & Oates, Slade, CCR, K-Ci & JoJo, and TLC.


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