Tag Archive: Canada

Wife of minister given Order of Ontario

January 26, 2010

Seven medical doctors top the list of inductees into this year’s Order of Ontario, including the wife of a freshly minted cabinet minister.

Dr. Samantha Nutt, a co-founder of the charity War Child Canada, received the honour Monday just one week after her husband, Dr. Eric Hoskins, was

sworn in as Ontario’s minister of citizenship and immigration.

Six other medical doctors besides Nutt were also inducted this year.

They are: Philip Berger, an expert in urban medicine, addiction and homelessness; cancer specialist Helen Chan; Kellie Leitch, a pediatric orthopedic surgeon; James Orbinski, a founder of Doctors Without Borders; diabetes researcher Mladen Vranic; and Anne-Marie Zajdlik, a family physician and AIDS activist.

In a letter thanking Lt.-Gov. David Onley for adding her name to the prestigious list of winners, Leitch wrote of one of her patients, Emma Healy.

“I understand I was nominated for this award by Emma for my work,

along with my colleagues, in developing the Paediatric Surgery Department at the Children’s Hospital of Western Ontario,” Leitch wrote.

“Emma is a brave, 14-year old girl on whom I performed a significant surgery. Emma knows that having the Paediatric Surgery Department in London will help ensure that patients like her will not have to travel great distances from home to access vital medical services.”

Sports and media mogul Paul Godfrey, broadcaster Ken Shaw and Levente Diosady, whose work with food process engineering has helped to remedy iodine deficiency around the world, were also honoured.

“It’s an award I was surprised to receive and I’m delighted,” Godfrey said. “How could you not be?”

Godfrey, recently picked by Premier Dalton McGuinty to chair the Ontario Lotteries and Gaming Corporation, is president of the National Post, a former Toronto Sun executive and president of the Toronto Blue Jays. He was also once chairman of the now-defunct Metropolitan Toronto.

Former Scotiabank president Peter Godsoe and businessman Lawrence Bloomberg made the list for philanthropy, while writer Jacques Flamand, arts patron Shirley Thomson and actor and director Diana Mady Kelly made it for contributions to the arts.

The order was created in 1986 to recognize the highest levels of achievement in any field.

Onley will invest the new members of the order on Thursday.

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Jay-Z brings fans tricks and treats

November 2, 2009

jayz

http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/music/musicreview/article/719552–jay-z-brings-fans-tricks-and-treats

Jay-Z sure knows how to make an entrance.

A recording of the Beastie Boys’ “No Sleep Til Brooklyn” launched a 10-minute video countdown for the New York rapper’s appearance at the Air Canada Centre on Halloween night.

The arena lights dimmed. With 28 seconds to go, the music stopped and the crowd of 14,000 began chanting “Hova,” one of the entertainer’s many aliases, and put their thumbs and forefingers together in the shape of his diamond logo.

Right on cue, the performer rose up from a trap door, clad in black and wearing a trick-or-treat friendly hockey mask which he quickly exchanged for sunglasses as the band introduced “Run This Town.”

That was followed by “D.O.A. (Death of Auto-Tune),” another selection from current album The Blueprint 3, which the performer referred to as “superhero music.”

That may be the better characterization of Jay-Z’s status in hip hop, than the messianic position he’s more commonly afforded given his longevity and propensity for self-attached monikers like (Je)Hova and “The Rock of Gibraltar.”

His transition from teen drug dealer to rapper (with 1996’s Reasonable Doubt), to record company president, to husband of squeaky-clean diva Beyoncé to surpassing Elvis Presley’s record with 11 No. 1 albums is an extraordinary feat.

And having tempered the misogynistic lyrics and amped up his charitable efforts, Jay-Z who turns 40 next month, is exuding Clark Kent vulnerability these days. A recent sit-down with Oprah Winfrey found him recalling the pain of being abandoned by his father. His expressions of gratitude to attendees certainly seemed sincere at Saturday’s show, where tickets were priced up to $175.

He generously shared the spotlight, bringing back opening acts, N.E.R.D.’s Pharrell Williams and up-and-coming rapper J. Cole, during his 90-minute set, allowing local rapper Drake his first performance (“Successful”) since undergoing knee surgery last month and shouting out Toronto’s Kardinal Offishall in the audience.

Jay-Z, who last played the arena in April 2008, co-headlining with Mary J. Blige, performed hits such as, “99 Problems,” “Hard Knock Life” “Dirt Off Your Shoulder” and “Big Pimpin’.”

With a clothing line, sports clubs and co-ownership of the New Jersey Nets, rap could have just become Jay-Z’s calling card, but he’s still dominating the genre.

Though The Blueprint 3 debuted to mixed reviews in September, it’s proved a contender, spawning a number of gems – “Thank You,” “Empire State of Mind” and “Already Home”– which were wildly embraced at the concert.

“I am a multi millionaire/So how is it/I’m still the hardest nigga here?” Jay-Z wonders in “D.O.A.,” echoing others’ consternation about his staying power.

It’s the authority of his against-the-odds ascendance; effective producers who find him sing-along choruses and catchy beats; and a knack for irreverent stick-to-your-ribs lines like: “This ain’t for sing-a-longs/This is Sinatra at the opera/Bring a blond/Preferably with a fat ass/Who can sing-a-song.”

The show was enthralling, but not ideal: Jay-Z’s touring voice is raggedy, his focus on “the haters” gets tiresome and hypeman Memphis Bleek is ineffectual.

Among the highlights: back-up vocalist Bridget Kelly’s powerful turn on Alicia Keys “Empire State of Mind” hook; the 10-piece band’s killing horn section; and the unique video towers that recreated the Big Apple skyline.

With a nod to self-actualizing books like The Seat of the Soul and The Celestine Prophecy, which he told Winfrey are nightstand staples, he now desires to encourage others.

“It sounds like a cliché, but you can’t let nobody block your dreams,” he counselled the ACC crowd. “If you have so much ambition, you will be so successful.”

He says it better on “So Ambitious”:

“I felt so inspired by what my teacher said/Said I’d either be dead or be a reefer head … I went from pauper to the president/Every deal I ever made set precedent … Dear Teacher, you’re probably somewhere near a speaker/I’m balling outta control, can you hear my sneakers?”


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Jay-Z brings fans tricks and treats

November 2, 2009

jayz

http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/music/musicreview/article/719552–jay-z-brings-fans-tricks-and-treats

Jay-Z sure knows how to make an entrance.

A recording of the Beastie Boys’ “No Sleep Til Brooklyn” launched a 10-minute video countdown for the New York rapper’s appearance at the Air Canada Centre on Halloween night.

The arena lights dimmed. With 28 seconds to go, the music stopped and the crowd of 14,000 began chanting “Hova,” one of the entertainer’s many aliases, and put their thumbs and forefingers together in the shape of his diamond logo.

Right on cue, the performer rose up from a trap door, clad in black and wearing a trick-or-treat friendly hockey mask which he quickly exchanged for sunglasses as the band introduced “Run This Town.”

That was followed by “D.O.A. (Death of Auto-Tune),” another selection from current album The Blueprint 3, which the performer referred to as “superhero music.”

That may be the better characterization of Jay-Z’s status in hip hop, than the messianic position he’s more commonly afforded given his longevity and propensity for self-attached monikers like (Je)Hova and “The Rock of Gibraltar.”

His transition from teen drug dealer to rapper (with 1996’s Reasonable Doubt), to record company president, to husband of squeaky-clean diva Beyoncé to surpassing Elvis Presley’s record with 11 No. 1 albums is an extraordinary feat.

And having tempered the misogynistic lyrics and amped up his charitable efforts, Jay-Z who turns 40 next month, is exuding Clark Kent vulnerability these days. A recent sit-down with Oprah Winfrey found him recalling the pain of being abandoned by his father. His expressions of gratitude to attendees certainly seemed sincere at Saturday’s show, where tickets were priced up to $175.

He generously shared the spotlight, bringing back opening acts, N.E.R.D.’s Pharrell Williams and up-and-coming rapper J. Cole, during his 90-minute set, allowing local rapper Drake his first performance (“Successful”) since undergoing knee surgery last month and shouting out Toronto’s Kardinal Offishall in the audience.

Jay-Z, who last played the arena in April 2008, co-headlining with Mary J. Blige, performed hits such as, “99 Problems,” “Hard Knock Life” “Dirt Off Your Shoulder” and “Big Pimpin’.”

With a clothing line, sports clubs and co-ownership of the New Jersey Nets, rap could have just become Jay-Z’s calling card, but he’s still dominating the genre.

Though The Blueprint 3 debuted to mixed reviews in September, it’s proved a contender, spawning a number of gems – “Thank You,” “Empire State of Mind” and “Already Home”– which were wildly embraced at the concert.

“I am a multi millionaire/So how is it/I’m still the hardest nigga here?” Jay-Z wonders in “D.O.A.,” echoing others’ consternation about his staying power.

It’s the authority of his against-the-odds ascendance; effective producers who find him sing-along choruses and catchy beats; and a knack for irreverent stick-to-your-ribs lines like: “This ain’t for sing-a-longs/This is Sinatra at the opera/Bring a blond/Preferably with a fat ass/Who can sing-a-song.”

The show was enthralling, but not ideal: Jay-Z’s touring voice is raggedy, his focus on “the haters” gets tiresome and hypeman Memphis Bleek is ineffectual.

Among the highlights: back-up vocalist Bridget Kelly’s powerful turn on Alicia Keys “Empire State of Mind” hook; the 10-piece band’s killing horn section; and the unique video towers that recreated the Big Apple skyline.

With a nod to self-actualizing books like The Seat of the Soul and The Celestine Prophecy, which he told Winfrey are nightstand staples, he now desires to encourage others.

“It sounds like a cliché, but you can’t let nobody block your dreams,” he counselled the ACC crowd. “If you have so much ambition, you will be so successful.”

He says it better on “So Ambitious”:

“I felt so inspired by what my teacher said/Said I’d either be dead or be a reefer head … I went from pauper to the president/Every deal I ever made set precedent … Dear Teacher, you’re probably somewhere near a speaker/I’m balling outta control, can you hear my sneakers?”


Take our FREE Online Assessment Today!
http://www.akcanada.com/facebookassessment.cfm

Socialize with Abrams & Krochak

AKCanada – http://www.akcanada.com
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YouTube –   http://www.youtube.com/abramskrochak
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Jay-Z brings fans tricks and treats

November 2, 2009

jayz

http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/music/musicreview/article/719552–jay-z-brings-fans-tricks-and-treats

Jay-Z sure knows how to make an entrance.

A recording of the Beastie Boys’ “No Sleep Til Brooklyn” launched a 10-minute video countdown for the New York rapper’s appearance at the Air Canada Centre on Halloween night.

The arena lights dimmed. With 28 seconds to go, the music stopped and the crowd of 14,000 began chanting “Hova,” one of the entertainer’s many aliases, and put their thumbs and forefingers together in the shape of his diamond logo.

Right on cue, the performer rose up from a trap door, clad in black and wearing a trick-or-treat friendly hockey mask which he quickly exchanged for sunglasses as the band introduced “Run This Town.”

That was followed by “D.O.A. (Death of Auto-Tune),” another selection from current album The Blueprint 3, which the performer referred to as “superhero music.”

That may be the better characterization of Jay-Z’s status in hip hop, than the messianic position he’s more commonly afforded given his longevity and propensity for self-attached monikers like (Je)Hova and “The Rock of Gibraltar.”

His transition from teen drug dealer to rapper (with 1996’s Reasonable Doubt), to record company president, to husband of squeaky-clean diva Beyoncé to surpassing Elvis Presley’s record with 11 No. 1 albums is an extraordinary feat.

And having tempered the misogynistic lyrics and amped up his charitable efforts, Jay-Z who turns 40 next month, is exuding Clark Kent vulnerability these days. A recent sit-down with Oprah Winfrey found him recalling the pain of being abandoned by his father. His expressions of gratitude to attendees certainly seemed sincere at Saturday’s show, where tickets were priced up to $175.

He generously shared the spotlight, bringing back opening acts, N.E.R.D.’s Pharrell Williams and up-and-coming rapper J. Cole, during his 90-minute set, allowing local rapper Drake his first performance (“Successful”) since undergoing knee surgery last month and shouting out Toronto’s Kardinal Offishall in the audience.

Jay-Z, who last played the arena in April 2008, co-headlining with Mary J. Blige, performed hits such as, “99 Problems,” “Hard Knock Life” “Dirt Off Your Shoulder” and “Big Pimpin’.”

With a clothing line, sports clubs and co-ownership of the New Jersey Nets, rap could have just become Jay-Z’s calling card, but he’s still dominating the genre.

Though The Blueprint 3 debuted to mixed reviews in September, it’s proved a contender, spawning a number of gems – “Thank You,” “Empire State of Mind” and “Already Home”– which were wildly embraced at the concert.

“I am a multi millionaire/So how is it/I’m still the hardest nigga here?” Jay-Z wonders in “D.O.A.,” echoing others’ consternation about his staying power.

It’s the authority of his against-the-odds ascendance; effective producers who find him sing-along choruses and catchy beats; and a knack for irreverent stick-to-your-ribs lines like: “This ain’t for sing-a-longs/This is Sinatra at the opera/Bring a blond/Preferably with a fat ass/Who can sing-a-song.”

The show was enthralling, but not ideal: Jay-Z’s touring voice is raggedy, his focus on “the haters” gets tiresome and hypeman Memphis Bleek is ineffectual.

Among the highlights: back-up vocalist Bridget Kelly’s powerful turn on Alicia Keys “Empire State of Mind” hook; the 10-piece band’s killing horn section; and the unique video towers that recreated the Big Apple skyline.

With a nod to self-actualizing books like The Seat of the Soul and The Celestine Prophecy, which he told Winfrey are nightstand staples, he now desires to encourage others.

“It sounds like a cliché, but you can’t let nobody block your dreams,” he counselled the ACC crowd. “If you have so much ambition, you will be so successful.”

He says it better on “So Ambitious”:

“I felt so inspired by what my teacher said/Said I’d either be dead or be a reefer head … I went from pauper to the president/Every deal I ever made set precedent … Dear Teacher, you’re probably somewhere near a speaker/I’m balling outta control, can you hear my sneakers?”


Take our FREE Online Assessment Today!
http://www.akcanada.com/facebookassessment.cfm

Socialize with Abrams & Krochak

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Even Oprah's coming to the Toronto Film Festival

August 31, 2009

Like the 33 before it, the 34th Toronto International Film Festival will boast a lot of sexy celebrity power to complement its serious lineup of films.

The 2009 guest list is topped by Oscar nominees George Clooney, Matt Damon, Ellen Page and Penelope Cruz, terrific talents who also send fans’ hearts a-flutter.

Clooney is coming in for two films. Along with Ewan McGregor, who will join him on the red carpet, Clooney co-stars in Grant Heslov’s comedy thriller The Men Who Stare at Goats. Clooney also has the lead role in Jason Reitman’s Up in the Air, the Canadian’s first film since the Oscar-nominated Juno.

Damon is attending the filmfest as the title star of Steven Soderbergh’s The Informant! Page, drawing on her Nova Scotia roots, stars in Drew Barrymore’s feature directorial debut, Whip It. Page is a small-town Texas girl who finds a way to deal with her misfit personality by joining a roller-derby league. Cruz is coming back to Toronto as the star of flamboyant filmmaker Pedro Almodovar’s latest opus, Broken Embraces.

Fest organizers announced the roster of 500-plus guests yesterday, with the usual caveat that individuals might drop out before the fest starts on Sept. 10. But the celebrity list is part of the festival’s acknowledgement that stars provide the sizzle while the films provide the substance.

The list also includes Viggo Mortensen, Liam Neeson, Keanu Reeves, Oprah Winfrey, Nicolas Cage, Jeff Bridges, singer-actress Mariah Carrey, pop star Neil Diamond and Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York.

Neeson will be on hand for the premiere of Atom Egoyan’s Chloe, the film he was shooting in Toronto when Natasha Richardson suffered her fatal accident on a ski slope north of Montreal. Neeson rushed to his partner’s side, arranged for transport to New York, and sat with her while she died of brain injuries.

Winfrey is coming in as the producer of festival entry Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire. The cast of the awkwardly titled drama includes Carey in a role that required her to strip away her glamour.

The Duchess will do the fest schmooze as co-producer of The Young Victoria, the English-language debut for Quebec filmmaker Jean-Marc Vallee of C.R.A.Z.Y. reknown. Ferguson’s daughter, the Princess Beatrice, has a small role as a lady-in-waiting.

The complete list of celebrities is pretty wild. While there is just one famous Clive — Clive Owen; and one famous David — David Duchovny; there are two famous Colins — Colin Firth and Colin Farrell; two famous Bills — Bill Nighy and Bill Murray; and five famous Michaels — filmmaker Michael Moore with actors Michael Douglas, Michael Cera, Michael Sheen and Sir Michael Caine.

Other name actors include Danny DeVito, Danny Glover, Chris Rock, Mads Mikkelsen, Peter Sarsgaard, Kevin Spacey, Rob Lowe, Willem Dafoe, Aidan Quinn, Bryan Brown, Brian Cox and Woody Harrelson.

Eccentric rapper Snoop Dogg is also on the list, as is Til Schweiger, whose career is juiced because he is on-screen today in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds.

Among name actresses, Natalie Portman, Jennifer Connelly, Jennifer Garner, Julianne Moore, Eva Green, Demi Moore, Abbie Cornish, Sissy Spacek, Tilda Swinton, Ally Sheedy, Miranda Richardson, Lisa Kudrow, Isabella Rossellini, Emily Blunt, Emily Mortimer and Kristin Scott Thomas have all said yes to invitations. So did actress-director Drew Barrymore.

Besides Juno co-stars Page and Cera, celebrated Canadians include Don McKellar, Colm Feore, Elias Koteas, Jacob Tierney, Jay Baruchel, Arsinee Khanjian and Gordon Pinsent.

Among well-known directors, the guest list includes Steven Soderbergh, George Romero, Atom Egoyan, Guy Maddin, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Ridley Scott, Tyler Perry, Lee Daniels, Werner Herzog, the idiosyncratic American brothers, Joel and Ethan Coen, and Portuguese legend Manoel de Oliveira, who is 100 years old and still making films.

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Even Oprah's coming to the Toronto Film Festival

August 31, 2009

Like the 33 before it, the 34th Toronto International Film Festival will boast a lot of sexy celebrity power to complement its serious lineup of films.

The 2009 guest list is topped by Oscar nominees George Clooney, Matt Damon, Ellen Page and Penelope Cruz, terrific talents who also send fans’ hearts a-flutter.

Clooney is coming in for two films. Along with Ewan McGregor, who will join him on the red carpet, Clooney co-stars in Grant Heslov’s comedy thriller The Men Who Stare at Goats. Clooney also has the lead role in Jason Reitman’s Up in the Air, the Canadian’s first film since the Oscar-nominated Juno.

Damon is attending the filmfest as the title star of Steven Soderbergh’s The Informant! Page, drawing on her Nova Scotia roots, stars in Drew Barrymore’s feature directorial debut, Whip It. Page is a small-town Texas girl who finds a way to deal with her misfit personality by joining a roller-derby league. Cruz is coming back to Toronto as the star of flamboyant filmmaker Pedro Almodovar’s latest opus, Broken Embraces.

Fest organizers announced the roster of 500-plus guests yesterday, with the usual caveat that individuals might drop out before the fest starts on Sept. 10. But the celebrity list is part of the festival’s acknowledgement that stars provide the sizzle while the films provide the substance.

The list also includes Viggo Mortensen, Liam Neeson, Keanu Reeves, Oprah Winfrey, Nicolas Cage, Jeff Bridges, singer-actress Mariah Carrey, pop star Neil Diamond and Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York.

Neeson will be on hand for the premiere of Atom Egoyan’s Chloe, the film he was shooting in Toronto when Natasha Richardson suffered her fatal accident on a ski slope north of Montreal. Neeson rushed to his partner’s side, arranged for transport to New York, and sat with her while she died of brain injuries.

Winfrey is coming in as the producer of festival entry Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire. The cast of the awkwardly titled drama includes Carey in a role that required her to strip away her glamour.

The Duchess will do the fest schmooze as co-producer of The Young Victoria, the English-language debut for Quebec filmmaker Jean-Marc Vallee of C.R.A.Z.Y. reknown. Ferguson’s daughter, the Princess Beatrice, has a small role as a lady-in-waiting.

The complete list of celebrities is pretty wild. While there is just one famous Clive — Clive Owen; and one famous David — David Duchovny; there are two famous Colins — Colin Firth and Colin Farrell; two famous Bills — Bill Nighy and Bill Murray; and five famous Michaels — filmmaker Michael Moore with actors Michael Douglas, Michael Cera, Michael Sheen and Sir Michael Caine.

Other name actors include Danny DeVito, Danny Glover, Chris Rock, Mads Mikkelsen, Peter Sarsgaard, Kevin Spacey, Rob Lowe, Willem Dafoe, Aidan Quinn, Bryan Brown, Brian Cox and Woody Harrelson.

Eccentric rapper Snoop Dogg is also on the list, as is Til Schweiger, whose career is juiced because he is on-screen today in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds.

Among name actresses, Natalie Portman, Jennifer Connelly, Jennifer Garner, Julianne Moore, Eva Green, Demi Moore, Abbie Cornish, Sissy Spacek, Tilda Swinton, Ally Sheedy, Miranda Richardson, Lisa Kudrow, Isabella Rossellini, Emily Blunt, Emily Mortimer and Kristin Scott Thomas have all said yes to invitations. So did actress-director Drew Barrymore.

Besides Juno co-stars Page and Cera, celebrated Canadians include Don McKellar, Colm Feore, Elias Koteas, Jacob Tierney, Jay Baruchel, Arsinee Khanjian and Gordon Pinsent.

Among well-known directors, the guest list includes Steven Soderbergh, George Romero, Atom Egoyan, Guy Maddin, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Ridley Scott, Tyler Perry, Lee Daniels, Werner Herzog, the idiosyncratic American brothers, Joel and Ethan Coen, and Portuguese legend Manoel de Oliveira, who is 100 years old and still making films.

Socialize with Abrams & Krochak
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Facebook –  http://www.facebook.comAKCanada
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