December 07

The 15th Annual Andy Kim’s-Toronto Christmas Show@The Queen Elizabeth Theatre-Wed.,Dec.4th,2019

By Wayne Baggs
Andy Kim’s 15th Annual Toronto Christmas show at The Queen Elizabeth Theatre charity concert featured: Sloan, Ron Sexsmith, Bif Naked, Tracey Ullman, Lorraine Segato of The Parachute Club, Jake Clemons, Jessica Mitchell with Tim Hicks, Ivan Doroschuk (Men Without Hats) Kevin Drew from Broken Social Scene and more. 15 years of Andy Kim giving back to the community with his annual Gifts of Light concerts.

This is a CAMH program that relies 100% on donation-funding. This program works with patients, families, and front line clinical staff to identify the patient wellness gaps in our system and support areas that do not receive ministry funding. The goal of improving the patient experience is what Gifts of Light is all about. Over, 13,000 patients benefit each year from the resources and experiences that are offered by this unique patient-centred program.

Necessities, like a toothbrush and a pair of socks can mean everything to a patient arriving at CAMH with nothing. Some patients stay for just a few days, while others stay for much longer – no matter how long they need to stay, it can be a challenging time for people in crisis. A simple ‘Gift of Lights’ can give a patient confidence and courage to keep going every day when some days may be a challenge.

Andy has some great friends in the music community that volunteer their time and talent for this great cause. With the ever versatile Bill Bell leading this amazing band through years of Canadian hits, the fans got what they came for. Lorraine got people off to a jumping start with Rise Up! Followed by the effervescent Biff Naked.  Next, they add a beautiful Sax solo by Jake Clemons to Andy Kim’s first song of the evening. Following this, a duet with Ron Sexsmith doing “Maybe This Christmas.” More music and more music to send us off to a brief intermission was the infectious Safety Dance, performed, to the crowds delight, with the spontaneous dance moves of Ivan Doroschuk.

The second half started with Sloan becoming the house band for Tracey Ullman and Kevin Drews great performance of The Buzzcocks, Why Can’t I Touch It. How cool is that? One offs that make shows like this what they are. Jane Siberry doing Calling All Angels was just stunning as was Jake Clemons. Ron Sexsmith returned to perform a few more, including one from his new album due out in April. Andy Kim’s Christmas event is on many calendars of annual events. With good reason, not only the great music but what a great cause. CAMH Gifts of Light. –

We would like to thank Eric Alper for the invitation to this event.