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ART & LIT

Toronto Gay Book Slam & Panel Discussion

This month's Java Knights discussion forum, presented by Gay West and ACT, features Upstairs in the Crazy House: The Life of a Psychiatric Survivor author Pat Capponi and four other literary guests for readings and conversation. Tuesday, 7 p.m. Free. Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W.

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416-551-1709. RSVP.

Cdot Design Pioneers

Exhibit

From corporate logos to cookie packages, these designers created some of Canada's most recognizable icons. A new exhibition by Cdot, Toronto's association of communications designers, highlights some of the works that defined a discipline. Opening reception Friday, 7 p.m. $5 to $10. Sharp Centre for Design, 100 McCaul St. 416-977-6000. .

Double Bounce

After a successful debut last spring at the Ephemeroptera art studio in Brooklyn, local curators Helen Reed and Maiko Tanaka feature art from abroad in a sequel show here in their hometown. See 12 young conceptual artists from Vancouver to Denver collaborating on long-distance artworks, proving that maps, letter mail and jpegs make the art grow fonder. Until April 12 . Tuesday to Saturday, 12 to 6 p.m. Xpace, 58 Ossington Avenue. 416-849-2864.

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Trees of Canada

Local artist Risa Horowitz draws inspiration from an unlikely source for her 150-painting exhibition at Michael Klein's gallery MKG127 - her day job. While digging away as a researcher for an architectural firm, she found it strange how the foliage and bark of sugar maple, white spruce and other trees, which are rendered in urban design programs, are anything but picturesque. Here, Horowitz uses the paintbrush to breathe life back into their natural forms. Until April 12. Wednesday to Saturday, 12 to 6 p.m. 127 Ossington Ave. 647-435-7682. .

Muse 08 Carnivale

For this year's annual dinner and art-auction fundraiser for the Schulich Heart Centre at Sunnybrook, 89 featured artists are asked to answer "Who is your muse?" Local photographer Jeff Cutler, who will auction off a still life entitled La Lumière, says, "My grandmother. She was a painter. It was fun to watch her bring a barn or countryside to life with a brush." Friday, 6:30 p.m. $35 to $45. Dominion Club, Grand Banking Hall, 1 King St. W. 416-548-8100.

Terrible Noises for

Beautiful People

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Those who stumbled upon Misha Glouberman's warehouse experiment on Nuit Blanche may have déjà vu at this upcoming "noise event". Dozens of sound improv performers, who have studied at his eclectic School of Learning, will wander about making unconventional sounds that call to mind a hippo giving birth or a Chevy stuck in neutral. Friday, 8 p.m. $12. Latvian House, 491 College Street. 416-922-2931. .

STAGES

Abattoir

Allen Kaeja's abstract interpretive dance piece, co-choreographed with his wife, Karen, explores innocence, coming of age, and meat by-products, drawing from his youth growing up in the slaughterhouse his father built in Kitchener. Tuesday through March 29, 8 p.m. $18 to $30. Premiere Dance Theatre, 207 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000.

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Eggs & bunnies

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Easter Royal Brunch

Feast like Sir Henry Pellatt at this popular annual brunch at Casa Loma, featuring omelette and seafood buffets (plus treats from the Easter Bunny). Then take a self-guided tour through the gargantuan 98-room historic mansion. Reservations required. Tomorrow, 11 a.m. and 12 p.m. $43.35. Casa Loma, 1 Austin Terrace. 416-923-1171. .

Easter Egg Hunt

Puck's Farm, a favourite rural retreat for rock stars and elementary school kids alike, kicks off Easter Weekend with hourly egg hunts, races, games, pony rides, hay rides, live music and baby animals. Today, tomorrow, and Monday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. $5 to $10. Puck's Farm, 16540 11th

Concession, King Township, Schomberg. 905-939-7036. .

Beaches Lions Easter

Parade

The Bunny himself will take his place among over 100 floats, dogs in costumes and 10 marching bands playing everything from samba to Bollywood tunes making their way along Queen Street East.

Tomorrow, 2 p.m. Free. Queen Street East from Victoria Park

to Woodbine.

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SHOPPING

All About Pets Show

You take them to doggie spas and buy them gourmet treats - now pamper your furry children even more by checking out the newest fashions, toys and training tips at this show, featuring a seminar by bestselling behaviorist Dr. Stanley Coren. Today, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and tomorrow, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. $8 to $10. International Centre, 6900 Airport Road, Mississauga. 905-677-6131.

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BRAIN FOOD

Charles Darwin and the

Nature of the Naturalist

The ROM's senior curator of insects, Christopher Darling, talks about Darwin's impact on museum curators. With more of the world's species endangered, the naturalist's attempts to organize the natural world into a coherent system have become more important than ever. For ROM senior members. Wednesday, 11 a.m. Free. Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queen's Park. 416-586-5700. .

The Garden As Art Form

Spring gardening goes po-mo with this week's featured lecturer, Montreal landscape architect Claude Cormier. Best known for his cutting-edge Blue Stick Garden, his body of work also includes Toronto's HTO urban beach and the new Four Seasons Hotel. Thursday, 7:30 p.m. $15. Toronto Botanical Garden, 777 Lawrence Ave. E. 416-397-1340. .

FILM

Canadian Film Fest

This five-day screening and schmooze-fest is devoted exclusively to homegrown productions, including Spencer Rice's ( Kenny vs. Spenny) Confessions of A Porn Addict, and The Last Hit Man, a thriller starring Joe Mantegna. Tuesday through March 29. $10. Various venues; for schedule, visit .

Female Eye Film Festival

Kari Skogland's The Stone Angel, adapted from the Margaret Laurence novel and starring Ellen Burstyn and Ellen Page, is the opening night gala premiere at this indie film festival celebrating female directors from around the world.

Thursday through March 30.

$8 to $10. Various venues;

for schedule, visit

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HOT NOTES

Kissin Plays Brahms

Russian virtuoso pianist Evgeny Kissin tackles Brahms's formidable Concerto No. 1. TSO composer and clarinetist Raymond Luedeke will also present Tales of the Netsilik, evoking the legends of the Inuit people. Wednesday, 8 p.m. $41 to $130. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St. 416-872-4255. .

Toca Loca

This local contemporary music ensemble is forward-thinking, hip and knows how to break the rules gracefully. On tour for their "pop project," which will travel next to Halifax and Montreal, artistic director Gregory Oh, pianist Simon Docking and percussionist Aiyun Huang - all classically trained musicians - unearth unexpected results while bridging the vague intersection of pop and classical in 15 new explosive songs. Tuesday, 8 p.m. $15 to $20. Glenn Gould Studio, 250 Front Street West. 416-205-5555. .

Send listings info to

CORRECTION

The MUSE 08 Carnivale art-auction fundraiser for the Schulich Heart Centre at Sunnybrook, which takes place tomorrow night at the Dominion Club, does not include dinner. Incorrect information appeared on Saturday.

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