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    ENTERTAINMENT

    ENTERTAINMENT

    It’s hard to imagine the eye bugging, stage screaming, self-professed ‘grown little man’ Kevin Hart as a serious life coach. But 2020 Kevin Hart is not the same, and after some serious public setbacks, a few of them scandalous, Kevin Hart is on some Ted Talk vibes right now.

    Toronto-based filmmaker, Adrian Wallace, an award-winning director, screenwriter, and actor, has produced a documentary titled “Black Sun” that tells the story of two women anguished by acts of gun violence, and how they used their experiences to take a personal stand to help their affected communities. In addition to this film, Adrian is also developing his second documentary. It’s the second season of his YouTube series “Courtside”, which was his debut feature, as well as an upcoming TV show. I caught up with the busy thespian in Black History Month.

    “Utopia Falls, I call it my love letter to hip hop, to the hip hop culture. It takes a couple of my loves and smashes them together which is always a good thing. I’m kind of a sci-fi geek. I’m a comic book geek. I’m a genre geek. I love all that kind of stuff with mythology built in and then we obviously have our mythology with hip hop. I hadn’t really seen my culture portrayed in the future.”

    The Negroes Are Congregating is a relentless, in your face, mélange of sketch, vignette and spoken word that takes you to church and into the Black psyche living with anti-Black racism, all without missing a beat. The play is intricate, funny, contemplative, and incredibly fast-paced.

    You don’t need to be a parent to appreciate the joy, frustration and superhuman traits shared by mothers from all walks of life. But when a tuner like Motherhood: The Musical comes along with parodies titled ‘Ode to Boobs’ and ‘Costco Queen’, the monotony of mommy life becomes a comedic celebration of pregnancy, empty nesting and everything in between.

    A long-suffering Black maid living in 1963 Louisiana is stuck in a world she despises. Through a rainbow of musical genres, powerful life lessons and emotional evolution the musical Caroline, Or Change, offers universal resonance.

    Romaine Waite is an actor to watch; no pun intended. His supporting role on popular CBC television drama Frankie Drake Mysteries is just another in a long list of achievements on his way to inevitable stardom. As “Bill Peters” his character is often called upon by “Frankie Drake,” a fictional depiction of the first female private detective in 1920’s Toronto. Frankie Drake solves crimes with her partner “Trudy” (Chantel Riley); Trudy also being Bill Peter’s love interest. The show is a hit and is coming back this year for a third season. No small feat for a diverse, Canadian, female-led…

    Montreal born, Edmonton raised actor Dion Johnstone has been preparing for his latest role since he was a child. “My first introduction to Shakespeare was through comic books. There were these series of comics produced in the ’60s, early ’70s called Classics Illustrated and funny enough, the first comic book I read, was Julius Caesar. I loved it because I was reading the language and able to connect with the visuals and the fear of the language was taken care of really early.”

    Justin Alliman is an international basketball development coach, with a coveted position as a mentor coach with the Toronto Raptors 905. He’s also the founder of Dream Chaserzzz Basketball Inc. which allows youth who lack support to get access to elite training. “I was one of those kids myself,” he says. Justin’s organization has since served over 100,000 athletes worldwide. Now at the peak of his success, he’s authored a book that reveals some of the heartbreaking details of his journey. It’s called “Before My Glory.”

    Jeff Martin is a police officer turned author and motivational speaker. For the last 15 years he's been working in various detective roles, investigating criminal offenses ranging from homicides to sexual assaults. Having done over 1000 forensic interviews with children, Jeff is a youth communication specialist, who now travels North America giving soul-stirring talks to high schoolers.

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