North by Northeast: Cameron House Records Outdoor Stage
Historically, one of the complaints of the Toronto music scene has to do with the bureaucratic red tape that promoters had to wade through in order to hold special events. That’s changing, as evidenced by today’s pop-up licensed patio (as part of the sprawling NXNE festival of music, comedy, film and interactive media) being thrown by local roots-music purveyors Cameron House Records. Music will happen outdoors (2 to 10 p.m.) and indoors (11 a.m. to 3 a.m.), with the the cowboy-booted singer Whitney Rose hitting both stages and with powerful refreshments being available until 4 o’clock in the morning inside the Cameron House club. June 21 (NXNE runs to June 22). $10 to $15 (or NXNE pass or wristband). 408 Queen St. W., nxne.com.
Navajo Star Wars
Use the Athabaskan language spoken in the southwestern United States, Luke. There are at least a score of languages used by various life forms in Star Wars: A New Hope, but here comes a linguistically revised version of the lightsaber classic that dubs Navajo for the English parts. Reading the English subtitles may give audiences a new appreciation for George Lucas’s under-admired dialogue. Perhaps a heightened understanding of the treatment of Native Americans by an “evil empire” will be gained. Or, heck, maybe the Navajo Harrison Ford will actually emote. June 21, 3:30 p.m. Free (limited capacity; tickets can be reserved in person or by phone). TIFF Bell Lightbox, 350 King St. W., 416-599-8433.
Gatsby Garden Party
“Can’t repeat the past?” he cried incredulously. “Why of course you can.” Jay Gatsby, the titular millionaire of the F. Scott Fitzgerald classic novel The Great Gatsby, had it right. This weekend you’re invited to relive America’s jazz age on the grounds of the era-specific Spadina Museum, where dancing, croquet, costume contests and live music will happen as part of a family-friendly affair. And while you don’t have to dress up as a specific character, you’re daisy if you do. June 22, noon to 5 p.m. $5 (ages 12 years and under are free). 285 Spadina Rd., 416-392-6910 or toronto.ca.
In character as the wide-openly gay bon vivant Buddy Cole, Kids in the Hall veteran Scott Thompson visited the Sochi Olympics this past winter and lived to tell about it. If you missed his dispatches from Russia on The Colbert Report, there’s a good chance that the likable, open-hearted comic will regale with his adventures and chat about whatever else pops into his nimble mind. June 20, 7 p.m. and June 21, 9 p.m. $20 to $25. The Flying Beaver Pubaret, 488 Parliament St., 647-347-6567 or pubaret.com.
Toronto Jazz Festival
The upcoming attractions are numerous – Earth, Wind and Fire, Keith Jarrett, Snarky Puppy, Dianne Reeves and Bill Frisell – but Sunday belongs to the steel-guitar gospel of Robert Randolph and the Family Band. To fans of blues and funk, the uninhibited Mr. Randolph and his accompanists preach to the choir. To appreciators of gospel music, the soulfulness and dynamic sermonizing delivery of the band strikes a chord. Sweet hallelujah, in other words. To June 28, torontojazz.com. (Robert Randolph: June 22, 8 p.m. Hotshot blues guitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd opens). $69.50. Nathan Phillips Square, 100 Queen St. W., 1-855-985-5000 or ticketmaster.ca.