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April 2012

Learn Chinese Brush Painting!

April 25, 2012 | Sara | Comments (0)

Are you an aspiring artist, or lover of painting and art? Would you like to learn the ancient and celebrated technique of Chinese Brush Painting? If so, then join us at Albert Campbell branch on Wednesday May 2nd from 2:00 to 3:00 in the afternoon for an interactive workshop in celebration of Asian Heritage Month. Participants will learn the skilled art of Chinese Brush Painting from a local artist, and make their own masterpieces to take home. This program is suitable for teens, adults, and older adults.

Registration is required and space is limited, so make sure to register in advance by visiting the branch or calling 416-396-8890 to reserve your spot!   

Chinese Brush Painting
Chinese Brush Painting 2

Remembering Randy Starkman

April 19, 2012 | Marie | Comments (1)

We are saddened by the sudden death of Toronto Star Sports Reporter Randy Starkman.  Randy had a special interest in Canada's young athletes who sacrifice much in order to achieve success at the Olympics.  Tributes from athletes and his fellow journalists testify to his devotion to his craft and his subjects. 

Kennedy/Eglinton was pleased to host Randy in April 2010 courtesy of the Toronto Star Speakers Bureau. He arrived at the branch, backpack full of laptop, for our evening program after a full day of his own work. 

Our audience was small that night, but Randy didn't mind.  He spoke informally to a small group which included 5 teens and a young family.  He talked about the places he'd been and the athletes he'd met. They enjoyed his stories and he answered a lot of their questions.  It was really quite a nice conversation!

He launched the branch's  "Keep Toronto Reading" April events, and made the first entry in that year's "travelling journal" He faithfully put it in his backpack and pledged to leave it on the TTC for others to pick up and share their favourite reads.


The best thing about the evening, however, was a connection Randy made with a precocious young lad who was eager to demonstrate his computer skills.   He worked one on one with the child for quite a while, trusting him with the laptop, and was impressed with the boy's enthusiasm and talent.   Randy was just so interested in what this child was showing him. And this was after his official program ended.

That, I think, is the treasure of Randy Starkman.  He was interested in people, their lives and their journeys.  And, I think, he had a real desire to see success in the people he met and the athletes whose lives he covered for the Star. One of those athletes, paddler Adam van Koeverden, this week shared his memories of Randy in the Star.

It is the mandate of a public library to welcome all within its walls. People meet, engage, and create within those walls.The young lad who so engaged Randy that night hasn't been back to the branch for a while.  People come and people go, but they often leave a lasting impression on us.  The young lad did so, and so did Randy Starkman.  That's, to us at the branch, his legacy.  He was a great guy who considered his work a vocation.  We will think of him at Kennedy/Eglinton with affection and respect.  Much respect.

It's Romance Time at Kennedy/Eglinton (well, sort of)

April 18, 2012 | Marie | Comments (0)

Spring is the traditional time for romance.  People meet, their stars collide, they fall in love and live happily ever after. Right?  Ha! Really, romance is a complicated thing. In the spring and all the seasons, for young and old alike. 

May's Movies, with Marie feature four films  with really, serious complications. 

  • Hannah and Her Sisters
  • Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
  • Persuasion
  • Crimes and Misdmeanors

We bookend the month with two serious but funny Woody Allen films. Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) is all about Elliot's (Michael Caine) mid-life crisis of confidence and fidelity. 



Crimes and Misdemeanours (1989) is about Judah Rosenthal (Martin Landau), an apparently successful opthamologist who is conflicted about his infidelity with the needy Dolores - Anjelica Huston in a stunning performance.  Jerry Orbach, Sam Waterston and Claire Bloom figure prominently in Judah's moral journey.  This film features the best one-line analysis ever of what makes something funny.



Woody Allen began his career as a standup comic before he turned to film directing.  The film critic Richard Schickel sat down with Woody Allen in 2002 for a long, long conversation. Borrow the book.Woody Allen A Life In Film

And if you want to explore Woody's wit in writing, Mere Anarchy, 2007 and   Getting Even, 1978 are grand introductions that will make you chuckle out loud.

 But wait!  Do you think love got complicated only with Woody Allen?  Wrong, wrong, wrong.  Love affairs have been fraught with interruptions, interference and complications for ever and ever - and everywhere too! 

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954, Stanley Donen) is a rip-roaring yarn with a bit of Biblical inspiration featuring handsome Howard Keel, joyful Jane Powell and a whole lot of dancing, singing and even - even an avalanche!


 There's also an amazing barn-raising sequence in this film, which of course is highlighted by dancing and singing.  The director Stanley Donen is legend in Hollywood for the most magnificent of 1950s musicals.  Read more about Donen and his achievements: Dancing On The Ceiling

Persuasion (1995, Roger Michell) is perhaps the most sentimental of our four May films.  It resonates with strong, independent single women who have made (or have had made for them) decisions about life, love and destiny.  Time, geography, war and poverty are just some of the obstacles in the way of Captain Wentworth and the plain (but very smart) Anne Elliot.  Jane Austen's amazing novel Persuasion has been oft-adapted for the screen.  This version with Ciaran Hinds as the dark and sullen Captain Wentworth

starts and ends (literally) on the sea. Persuasion addresses questions of unconditional love over time and geography, when people can communicate only through letter writing.  Who loves more ardently, more long-lastingly?  Men? Women?

Handwritten letters feature prominently in this film.  Remember the art of writing a really, really good letter? Remind yourself by borrowing  For The Love Of Letters, then try writing one yourself!

Can love really conquer all?  Maybe.  Find out Fridays at 2pm, Kennedy/Eglinton.  Bring a snack, bring a friend.  We'll supply the romance. And tissues!


100 Year Anniversary of the Titanic

April 5, 2012 | Sara | Comments (0)

On April 14, 1912 the unthinkable occurred when the RMS Titanic collided with an iceberg and sank to the bottom of the ocean killing 1517 passengers and crew members. This April is the 100 year anniversary of the disaster, and to commemorate the event Albert Campbell branch will be hosting a lively lecture with award-winning writer Hugh Brewster who will be discussing his new book RMS Titanic: Gilded Lives on a Fatal Voyage.

Join us for this event on Tuesday April 10, 2012 at 7:00pm at Albert Campbell Library




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