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December 12, 2018 5:00 AM Johannes Debus rekindles boyhood love of Handel’s Messiah

After a 10-year old Johannes Debus had sung Handel’s Messiah for the first time, he begged his mom to buy him an album. Three decades later, Debus is music director of the Canadian Opera Company, far removed from the cathedral choir in Speyer, Germany, where he had his first musical immersion. But he is having a happy reunion with Messiah next week. Debus 160

December 11, 2018 11:37 PM Jayne Eastwood is ACTRA Toronto’s pick for its 2019 Award of Excellence

She is also a voice and theatre actor. She was part of the cast of a legendary Toronto production of Godspell that brought together future comedy stars Martin Short, Andrea Martin, Gilda Radner and Eugene Levy in 1972. She won a Gemini Award in 1998 for the TV movie Dangerous Offender: The Marlene Moore Story as well as the Earle Grey Award for lifetime 147

December 11, 2018 6:40 PM Mikael Kingsbury wins Lou Marsh trophy as Canada’s top athlete of 2018

The award, voted on by a panel of sports editors and broadcasters, is given annually to Canada’s outstanding athlete by the Toronto Star and named after the former sports editor. A spirited debate among the voting panel of sports media surrounded the inclusion of ice dancers Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, who captured their eighth national title at the Canadian 140

December 11, 2018 6:22 PM David Shoemaker named chief executive officer of Canadian Olympic Committee

“It is a dream job and a homecoming too, to be able to come back to Canada after spending so much time abroad in sport and be able to contribute to Team Canada.” Prior to joining the NBA, Shoemaker served as WTA president from 2009 to 2011. He was promoted to that position from Beijing where he’d spent almost two years heading up the WTA’s Asia-Pacific 184

December 10, 2018 10:26 PM Ariana Grande adds Toronto date to Sweetener world tour

It’s been quite the year for the 25-year-old Florida native. The former Nickelodeon TV star racked up professional honours — including “Thank U, Next” breaking the record for most Spotify streams of a song by a female artist in a week, and Grammy nominations for album Sweetener and single “God Is a Woman” — while enduring personal trials, including the death 152

December 10, 2018 9:49 PM Toronto FC sets stage for player acquisition in allocation deal with San Jose

Major League Soccer uses the allocation process as its way of acquiring select U.S. internationals, elite youth U.S. internationals or former MLS players returning to MLS after joining a non-MLS club for a transfer fee greater than $500,000. The allocation ranking is set by taking the reverse order of the club’s standings at the end of each MLS Season 129

December 10, 2018 9:46 PM Mayor John Tory says Toronto should have say over pot shops

Toronto council will debate on Thursday whether to opt out of provincial legislation permitting private cannabis stores to operate in the city beginning April 1. “It’s not that we want to ban cannabis sales, but we want some sort of mechanism that gives us local control,” said Councillor Gord Perks (Ward 4, Parkdale—High Park) comparing what’s happened 151

December 8, 2018 11:23 PM Improving the starting rotation is Blue Jays’ main focus

Randal Grichuk: The Jays’ trade for the outfielder last January may not have looked great when he hit .106 in the first 25 games of the season and landed on the disabled list by May 1. But the 27-year-old came back in June a new player, hitting a near career-high .271 in the final four months. He finished with a team-high 25 home runs and 61 RBIs, and played 152

December 8, 2018 8:49 PM Raptors’ Kawhi Leonard vs. Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo should be fun to watch

It’s still far too early to start thinking about awards and honours, but fleeting thoughts about all-star and all-NBA and, yes, most valuable player awards aren’t far away. “The guy, he’s talented, man,” Raptors teammate Pascal Siakam said of Leonard. “I think people forgot that a little bit, how talented he is, the things he can do at the level he can do them at. “Not just (score) 203

December 8, 2018 6:53 PM Privacy concerns rehashed at Sidewalk Labs consultation

Waterfront Toronto’s chief development officer Meg Davis says more detail, including data governance, will be included in a master draft of the project which she says will be completed in January 2019. But she says the draft will only be available to Sidewalk Labs, Waterfront Toronto and three levels of government to ensure it abides by policies and regulations 161