286 Harbord Street,
Newsletter published for former students
and teachers of Harbord Collegiate Institute
EDITOR: Josie Galati ('78)
ASSISTANT EDITOR: Murray Rubin ('5O)
Layout Editor: Sheldon Hua
Harbord Club email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit our website: www.harbordclub.com
WHY A HARBORD CLUB?
1) To establish and maintain a sense of common identity among former students and teachers of the school
2) To share news from Harbordites everywhere
3) To provide funds for prizes, awards and scholarships in all grades of the school
.Table of Contents.
(A belated signoff from editorial duties)
This writing has been very slow to start because I have been fumbling around in my mind for any good reason for not having submitted it in time for the last issue. Unfortunately for me I couldn't come up with an excuse which anyone would believe, especially the scholars of Harbord Collegiate.
It is unfortunate that our new editor, Josie Galati, had to introduce herself in her first issue so, to her and to you our loyal readers, I hereby humbly apologize. Anyway, at least I can confirm at this late date that from what I have heard from her at our executive meetings and seen of her involvement in our various functions (and of course knowing that she is a school teacher) she promises to be a thoughtful and competent editor.
Fortunately she has persuaded Murray to carry on his preferred informal role of providing assistance to the editor and I am happy for that. My own experience is that the editor needs the assistance of someone who has continuity of knowledge of the community of those of us who graduated as far back as the post WWII years. So long as there are enough of us around who graduated in those years the editor can be greatly assisted by someone who has lived continuously in that community of graduates and therefore knows that community.
Now, I thought some of you might like to know what were some of the joys and tribulations of being the editor of the Harbordite.
On a serious note, I must say that accepting the position, in my mind, gave me the opportunity to do something good for the fellow Harbordites who, during the school years, had accepted me and by their example helped me mature as a human being.
It was a very pleasant experience to open and read the in coming mail from so many many people in so many different places with so many different experiences to share. It was especially delightful to read the letters from people significantly older that myself, and I'm no spring chicken. The letter which I enjoyed the most by far was the one from Josh Fedder in which he described an outing with his grandchildren.
Combined with my attendance at the 1950 class reunion I have been re-acquainted with quite a few nice people who I hadn't seen for over 50 years. Unfortunately, a few who I sought out were no longer with us.
Finally, I must express my sincere thanks to Murray Rubin for having chosen me as editor and put up with me for some six years or so. I know I tantalized him with my "just in time" production style which obviously will never change.
Paul McIntyre '50
Tuesday, April 01, 2008
Check the date…April Fool’s Day and I see snow on the ground. Isn’t Mother Nature grand? I’ll admit it is melting, but I need to see the sun and my spring flowers...now!
As I look forward to the change in season I also like to reminisce the past. I teach high school students in Scarborough and this year was thrilled to have a new member join our staff. She was one of my best friends at Harbord!!
Can you imagine how time fell away as one day we stopped in front of the school office and I told her to wait as I had to check my locker (rather than my mail box!)
That is the way it can be with friends from Harbord. Time seems to stand still as the memories come back and laughter and smiles replace the concerns of today.
There is an abundance of graduates that spans decades. Wherever you live, whatever career path you are on (or off if in retirement), we need more of you to share the memories of Harbord. Let us use your submissions to get alumni to “see” what Harbord was like in your “glorious heyday”. Get everyone to smile.
Hope to see you at the fundraiser on May 3rd.
Josie Galati ’78
What an opportunity. I could not have asked for a better place than Harbord Collegiate Institute to start my experience as a principal. The history, legacy, pride and accomplishments of Harbord students, alumni and staff are impressive.
What an amazing school we have. It offers an array of activities to suit all needs and tastes. Successful athletics, vibrant arts, drama, and music programmes, a fantastic language programme, and some of the top science and math students in the city. Our Key Club, Best Buddies, Eco-clubs, and Free the Children complete the package by demonstrating Harbord’s commitment to helping out our world both in school and abroad.
As a former physical education and history teacher, I understand the importance of a strong co-curricular programme complimenting excellence in academics and also the importance of always keeping a link to the past. The Harbord Club helps us to honour our past as we continue to move forward. I’d like to thank Syd Moscoe and all the work of students and volunteers who help to organize our fabulous Museum, which helps to remind us everyday of Harbord’s legacy. Some of you may know that our Museum is used by many as an example of how schools can keep memories alive. I would also like to thank the Harbord Foundation for its generous donations help recognize our students’ accomplishments with their over 60 awards.
I am excited and looking forward to an amazing time at Harbord and I am committed to working with our school community to continue to support all the things that make us a great school.
My first impression of Harbord, when I first transferred here after two and a half years as vice-principal at Ursula Franklin Academy, was incredible…clean halls, polite students, an impressive array of activities and clubs and a sense of total engagement. I knew then and there that this was a special place. I am absolutely thrilled to be here.
Hello Josie – It is my pleasure to write a few words for the spring Harbordite: (hope I’m not too late!!)
From September 2005 until January 2008, it was my pleasure to serve as the principal of Harbord Collegiate Institute. When I received the call from my then superintendent that I would be transferred to Harbord for the fall, I felt honoured. I was moving from a challenging role as principal of the Secondary Alternative Schools, eleven small high schools located across the Toronto District School Board, to one equally challenging but different situation at Harbord, a historic high school, with a phenomenal reputation.
Everything positive that I had heard about Harbord came true to life. Harbord boasts an exemplary staff, remarkable students, an interested and supportive community and an avid, welcoming and enthusiastic alumni. I firmly believe that the programs at Harbord are second to none. Students are actively involved in their academic studies and are also incredibly involved in co-curricular athletics, creative arts and social justice issues. Our students worked so well directly with our alumni that a new local history course was developed as a result of this close relationship. I believe wholeheartedly that our Harbord graduates are well prepared for the world beyond high school whether they will be working, attending college, pursuing an apprenticeship or enrolled in university studies.
My time at Harbord was marked by the re-dedication and dedication of the First and Second World War monuments. The whole school community cannot begin to thank the Harbord Club enough for working together to facilitate these two momentous occasions in November 2005 and May 2007. It was my pleasure to work closely with, and learn from Syd Moscoe, Murray Rubin and Morton Katz along with countless other alumni and board personnel as these events came to life. When I drive by Harbord, I feel a sense of pride about the way everyone came together for such important and symbolic occasions. These memories, statue and sculpture will live on forever as a result of the incredible tenacity, dedication and passion of the Harbord Club.
In January 2008, Mr. Rodrigo Fuentes became the new principal at Harbord as I moved to a Central Co-ordinating Principal position. It is a different type of principalship in School Services in the TDSB where I have responsibilities in program, specifically in curriculum and instruction. The position is exciting, challenging, and rewarding. However, I now completely understand the continued connection one has to Harbord even once one leaves. I am very thankful to have had the opportunity to be principal at Harbord and I am proud to say that a part of Harbord will be with me forever.
Thank you. Sincerely,
The Harbord Club GETS New
Three major changes have taken place that will affect the HARBORD CLUB. We
have a new principal to replace the second woman principal at Harbord. Mary
Jane has been replaced by Rod Fuentes who was promoted from vice-principal
to principal. Joan McCarville graduated from HCI in 1970 is the new president of the Harbord Club and went on to teach from 1997-2006 in the History Department ending up as the head. Josie Galati is the new editor of the Harbordite. She graduated in the 1978. The same old crew, myself included are less active but we have Alice Freitas, Belinda Medeiros-Felix and Lisa Caparelli to take up the slack with new faces and new ideas. Willy Zimmerman will be proud.
Murray Rubin Executive member
Many times I am asked by graduates of Harbord why they no longer receive the Harbordite. I thought it was time to again explain the problem. People used to pay a modest fee to become a Harbord Club member and this fee included the Harbordite twice a year. It worked for a while but eventually we realized the following:
1. Many addresses were wrong, because people moved without notifying us and we were spending thousands of dollars without any benefit.
2. Recent graduates were NOT joining the Harbord Club and so did not receive the Harbordite.
3. All recent graduates were computer literate as well as most of the older alumni.
SO we made a decision NOT to charge membership fees making every Harbord student past or present an automatic member of the club. By going to your computer and going to the Harbord web site you can access the Harbordite plus other news. Our web site is www.harbordclub.com If you cannot access the Web and you want to receive the Harbordite please send $20.00 to the Harbord Club at 286 Harbord St Toronto Ontario M6G 1G5. We will mail you the Harbordite twice a year for 3 years in a booklet form.
We need articles for the Harbordite and if you have had an experience worth sharing please write about it in the Harbordite.
Murray Rubin Assistant Editor
By ADAM SEGAL, Special to The CJN
Thursday, 18 October 2007
Throughout his life, music coursed through Milton Barnes.
“Even when he was driving, he’d be jamming,” notes Barnes’ son, Micah.
“He was made of music. He had that gift.”
In celebration of the composer and conductor’s career, a tribute concert will be held at 8 p.m. on Oct. 22 at the Miles Nadal JCC’s Al Green Theatre.
The event will showcase Barnes’ unique command and fusion of so many genres, with original Yiddish, Latino, jazz and many more pieces penned by the maestro.
“We’re trying to pay tribute to as much of his influence, culturally and musically, as we can,” says Micah, who has collaborated with his brothers, Daniel and Ariel, on bringing the gala to the stage.
“It’s been really joyous, and I am really proud of my dad’s accomplishments.”
In addition to the Barnes boys, the concert will feature a host of talented musicians, including Trio Lyra, soprano Renee Bouthot, clarinettist Martin van de Ven, guitarist Brian Katz, pianist Marilyn Lerner, Mark Childs, Artie Roth, Suzanne Shulman, Lenka Lichtenberg and David Wall doing Yiddish and cantorial selections.
“I think audiences will take away the joyousness of his music,” notes Micah, himself an acclaimed musician.
“They will see the beauty and lyricism that he put into his work.”
Barnes, who died in 2001, was the product of the storied Annex Jewish community of Toronto during the 1940s and ’50s.
Growing up in this environment, he was exposed to Jewish tunes at an early age, which informed his musical career.
To that end, Barnes’ Song of Songs Cantata, Harbord Street Suite, Latino Song Cycles, and compositions for the Toronto Jewish Folk Choir, are all revered.
Born in 1931, Barnes began plying his trade as a jazz drummer and guitarist.
To advance his musical education and skills, he studied composition and conducting at the Royal Conservatory of Music.
A defining period in his musical development was attending and graduating from the Orchestra and Opera Conducting School of the Vienna Academy of Music.
“His years in Vienna were highly demanding and rigorous,” reflects Micah.
“I also think he felt a real sense of excitement to follow his heart to pursue a musical career. It was a great liberation for him to go to Europe.”
In those times, Micah noted it was common for many young Jews to join their family businesses or take a safe, professional path.
But rather than work in his family’s construction business, Barnes bucked the trend and had the courage to pursue his creative dreams.
In the early 1960s, Barnes launched his conducting career, which would eventually grow into recording and broadcasting for CBC – radio and television – among others.
He also served as the music director and conductor for the Niagara Symphony and Chorus and the Niagara Falls Philharmonic Chorus in the United States.
A defining moment occurred in 1973, when Barnes made a fateful decision to compose full time.
“It was very risky trying to make a living from composing in 1973,” notes Micah.
“It showed what his true calling was.”
Over the next several decades, Barnes composed on the international stage. Numerous musicians have represented his songs on disc.
He composed, orchestrated and conducted scores for feature films and television, including Blood and Guts and the Care Bear movies, Parts 1, 2 and 3, as well as dramas for CBC Television.
Today, his imprint and influence lives on.
“Dad’s music is incredibly romantic, and he has left us a legacy that continues,” says Micah.
Tickets for the show are $20. For more information, please call 416-925-6211 ext. 0
Doesn't it? Monuments you might have overlooked. Photography by Tibor Kolley
LEAH SANDALS – Article by the Globe and Mail
Special to The Globe and Mail
November 10, 2007
Remembrance Day is always heralded by a brigade of red plastic poppies on coat collars across Toronto. Whether they're surrounding you on the subway, or just poking you with a loose sharp end, they're hard to miss. Yet the limestone-and-bronze remembrance markers present on our streets 365 days a year are often overlooked. Even if some are popular structures (the Boer War Memorial at Queen and University is a frequent meeting place), their history and intended meaning are often lost amid the brilliant, noisy rush of the urban landscape. And this loss of meaning is particularly poignant given their function as tools of remembrance. Though it might seem ironic to have to pointedly remember memorials, here are a few of Toronto's unique places to bring your poppy for a reflective moment tomorrow.
Northeast corner of Keele Street and Wilson Avenue
Councillor Maria Augimeri (York Centre) could scarcely believe it a few years ago when Rosa De Notaris, a woman in her Downsview ward, insisted there was once a Second World War memorial fountain at Keele and Wilson. That led to the 2006 summertime unveiling of a new memorial that stretches over the entire parkette. Though there is a traditional monolith engraved with "in memoriam," the rest of the memorial is quite unconventional. Drawing on residents' desire to recognize aviation history in Downsview, artist Jeannie Thib and landscape architect Scott Torrance added an airstrip-conjuring row of blue aviation lights, as well as old-school windsocks, to the site. Limestone benches, to be carved next year with the names of five local lads who died in the Second World War, spell out "MOTH," for the de Havilland Moth light aircraft built there in the 1920s and 30s.
Harbord Street and Euclid Avenue
Though many Toronto high schools have memorials to their Second World War dead, very few were installed in the past 30 years, let alone unveiled in 2007. While Harbord Collegiate Institute's memorial commemorates those 52 grads who will forever belong to the 1940s, the sculpture - dramatic, soaring, polished steel in the form of a capital H - is definitely postmillennial. Designed by Harbord alum Morton Katz, the sculpture contrasts with the collegiate's nearby traditional First World War monument, which bears the traditional bronze figure of a young man in uniform. While Mr. Katz's new monument is not sombre enough to dampen the pheromonal energy of Harbord teens, the fact that it reflects an image of every passerby prompts a sobering jolt of recognition.
Hart House Circle University of Toronto
Though it's often regarded by students rushing to class as simply a handy timekeeping device, this Canadian memorial, second only in size to Parliament Hill's Peace Tower in Ottawa, commemorates the 1,812 U of T members killed during the two World Wars. It's also one of the few Toronto war memorials you can actually climb, taking in medal collections, commemorative stained-glass windows and stone-carved names across a four-storey stairwell traverse. Photos of John McCrae, author of In Flanders Fields, are also on view.
The Soldiers' Tower is not only an architectural triumph, but an acoustic one as well: At its apex, 51 iron carillon bells ring the memory of the fallen during the annual Service of Remembrance ceremony (which took place yesterday). You can visit the Memorial Room tomorrow from 10:30 a.m. to noon.
Starchitect Daniel Libeskind is the design muscle behind Flames of Memory, a memorial intended for Earl Bales Park to honour Jewish war veterans all over the world. His design is no cold, clear crystal, but a wide shield pierced by a flaming sword.
Though the official groundbreaking took place two years ago, Lou VanDelman, Flames' executive director, says $2-million more is needed to start construction on the $5-million project.
When asked what drives the project, especially given the current existence of a Jewish vets' memorial in Mount Sinai Memorial Park cemetery, Mr. VanDelman says, "The one at Mount Sinai is small and people don't see it. There's a rumour out there that Jews didn't fight in the wars. We want something in a visible location to remind otherwise."
Inside Yonge and Richmond entrance of The Bay
Though Simpson’s is gone, the memory of its fallen Second World War employees lives on in this small memorial display encompassing a hand-painted "honour roll" of 52 names, a Canadian flag and an artificial poppy bouquet that seems to want a good watering. Steps away from the fashion fantasy of metallic handbags and multicoloured hose, and virtually eclipsed by a picture-postcard holiday window, the memorial is barely given a glance by shoppers rushing by. But, as neglected as it seems, it's worthy of respect: Corporate remembrances, once common, are fast disappearing in an era of mergers, rebranding and "clean" Gap-pioneered retail design. (The Eaton's employees memorial, once housed on the fourth floor of the nearby Sears, for instance, has been donated to the Royal Ontario Museum.) It's a reminder of an era when cashiers, stockroom clerks and shoe salesmen also bore the name "soldier."
Queen's Park Crescent at Grosvenor Street
One of the more questionable war memorials in Toronto (if you're a revisionist), this monument, unveiled in 1895, was built to pay tribute to the 43 soldiers who died fighting Louis Riel's troops during the North-West Rebellion. Its granite base supports a figurative bronze interpretation of Peace who waves her laurels of blessing toward all turning right on Grosvenor.
Plaques bear the evocative names of key battlegrounds, such as Cut Knife, Fish Creek, Duck Creek and Batoche. This was the first public commission completed by Walter Allward (he was only 19 at the time), who went on to build the Vimy Memorial Monument.
The monument has been reappropriated by native and Métis groups as a key meeting place for moose-stew suppers on the anniversary of Louis Riel's death, and as a meeting place for other aboriginal events.
I have been asked why I spend so much time working at Harbord. I never really answered because I was afraid that, at best, my answer would be considered maudlin, at worst, pompous. Most people would not understand.
What do I have in common with Harbord? My special old teachers are all gone, the building is not the same and, of course, the students are different. This alumni group will understand, so I am going to tell you why I feel this way about our school.
I love my family, my friends and care for the people I am associated with, and I passionately love my country Canada. How does a demonstrative person like me express that love? You cannot go out in the street and hug strangers, but you can love Harbord Collegiate because this school is a reflection of Canada, a symbol of everything that is wonderful about our amazing country.
People of all races, religions, colours and ethnic backgrounds come to Harbord, as they came to Canada, are given the opportunity to get an education, keep their culture and be successful in whatever field they choose.
Nothing is impossible.
I would be here many hours listing the names of our individual success stories. Authors, poets, mayors and deputy mayors, UN ambassadors, scientists, leaders of industry, doctors, composers, musicians, architects, soldiers, lawyers, working people, teachers, Nobel prize winners, pharmacists.
The school was successful in 1892 when it opened and nothing has changed, Harbord is what Canada is all about. It takes a great country to produce this school. Mr Carlyle, who was my principal, would be proud of what we have accomplished here today but not surprised.
Onward Harbord. On to victory.
Towering tribute to war dead
From the Globe and mail
Relatives, friends and veterans are emotional witnesses as Harbord Unveils honour to World War II combat casualties
Debra Black - Staff Reporter
Bunny Bergstein, Sam Gotleib and Eugene Horbatiuk were the lucky ones – they survived the battles of World War II to return home and build a life.
But 52 other students and graduates from Harbord Collegiate Institute weren’t as lucky – their lives cut short as they fought overseas against fascism. “I knew a few who didn’t make it, which was sad,” said Bergstein. “I remember them well,” added Gotleib.
Yesterday, on the 62nd anniversary of VE Day that marked the war’s end in Europe, students from Harbord who died fighting in World War II were honoured with the unveiling of a stainless steel sculpture.
The sculpture – 5½ metres tall and weighing 1,636 kilograms – is a stylized letter H that is severed in the middle to symbolize the young lives lost in the war.
It sits in a cobblestoned amphitheatre in front of the school, just a few feet from its World War I memorial.
The names of all 52 who died in combat are engraved on the sculpture.
In all, more than 700 students, staff and alumni from Harbord fought in World War II.
Inscribed on the work by architect and sculptor Morton Katz, a Harbord graduate, are these words: “In the sculpture’s embrace may you feel the spirit of the names and see the faces of the fallen.”
In an emotional dedication ceremony on the front lawn, speakers reminded the hundreds of family, friends, students and dignitaries of the sacrifices made by the fallen and many others of their generation to protect the world for democracy.
A lone bagpiper played, the school orchestra and choir sang in their memory and a moment’s silence was proclaimed.
“It may be 60 years, but I found myself shedding tears,” said Marie Lindzon, whose uncle by marriage was among the Harbord war losses. Irving Lindzon was killed over the Indian Ocean in the war against Japan, she explained after the fighting in Europe had ended.
“I think it’s an amazing structure,” she said of the memorial. “It fits the bill to honour someone who gave their life for their country.”
“We must not forget those heroes,” said Bob Sterling, a Harbord `37 graduate who was one of the lucky ones who survived the war. He served as a navigator for Royal Air Force special operations.
Leslie Dan, a Holocaust survivor and 1950 graduate of Harbord, reminded the gathering that it is because the Allied soldiers from Harbord and elsewhere fought so doggedly in World War II that Canada has been able to build a compassionate and peaceful society that is the envy of the world.
“As high school students, we don’t spend enough time thinking about the past,” Grade 11 student Narine Gharakhanian-Martiros told the crowd.
“We may wonder about the future and contemplate the present, but when it comes to history, we often seem to need an inspirational nudge to remind us of the sacrifices the more than 750 students and staff that came before us have made.”
After the ceremony, many of the veterans, deeply moved, stood gazing at the memorial, gently fingering the etched names’ their fallen comrades.
Those who like a little sizzle to go with their steak will miss Dusty Cohl - whether they knew him or not
My friend Dusty Cohl died last week and I miss him. So do other Torontonians, including many who didn't even know him. Those who like a little sizzle to go with their steak will miss Dusty, whether they knew him or not.
About 40 years ago (or so the story goes), there were Dusty and his wife Joan -- he always called her Butch, God knows why, for there was never anything butch about her -- anyway, there the two of them were, minding their own business, a Toronto lawyer and his wife on a holiday in France, when suddenly they heard the biggest sizzle this side of hell. Later Dusty said he didn't think a sizzle of such magnitude existed. Looking for the source, they followed a crowd of lissome starlets and rotund critics along La Croisette until they bumped into the Cannes Film Festival.
Some steak, some sizzle. It was impressive. "Now why can't we have that back home in Toronto?" Dusty asked himself, and then he replied: "No reason."
That's how, after a gestation period of another 12 years or so, the Festival of Festivals (as the Toronto International Film Festival was first called) was born. It actually took three Mothers, the other two being Bill Marshall -- who in his day also gave birth to Toronto's tiny perfect mayor, David Crombie -- and entrepreneur Henk van der Kolk. Over the next 30 years, the festival grew, as children generally do. By now, it's a defining feature of Canada's identity, as much part of the international scene as the great festivals of Cannes, Venice, Berlin, Montreal or Karlovy Vary. It's also a nuisance of the first order, a veritable zoo, a multi-million dollar impediment to traffic, exhibiting some 400 movies from 60 countries every fall, attracting hoards of tourists and playing havoc with people who actually live in midtown Toronto, as I do.
Dusty's dream plunges me into the middle of a nightmare every September. But what are friends for?
My friend always seemed eccentric, probably because he was. A quasi-Creole cat in jeans, wearing a cowboy hat, carrying a crimson location bag from the movie Outrageous, walking like the Pink Panther.
"Hi, Dusty." "How ya doing, kid?" Handsome and photogenic, Dusty had changed little between his late 40s, when I first met him, and his late 70s when I last saw him in hospital. Only the salt in his beard had gradually replaced the pepper. He had always reminded me of a mischievous Neptune emerging from the briny depths. Carried no trident, though. A skewer, yes, stacking his old brick barbecue leaning at a raffish angle at "the farm" (as he called his summer home, with its seldom-used tennis court, unexplored stream and never-fished trout pond). Skewer in one hand, a shot glass of Crown Royal in the other, there he was, barbecuing the ribs, listening to the sizzle.
And what a sizzle it was, from politics to show business, from Ontario to Florida, from summer or winter homes to hospitality suites. The lineup of "mystery guests" a veritable A-list: Film directors David Cronenberg, Norman Jewison, Ted Kotcheff, Fred Schepsi; film actors Lou Jacobi, Helen Shaver; film critics Richard Corliss, Roger Ebert, Jay Scott (may he rest in peace). Add former Toronto Film Festival director Helga Stephenson; the late celebrity interviewer Brian Linehan and his biographer, former print and broadcast entertainment chief, George Anthony; newspaperman Lou Clancy; international impresario (The Rolling Stones) Michael Cohl; award-winning variety producer Sandra Faire; former Metro Toronto chairman and current Blue Jays president Paul Godfrey. Add old friends: Entrepreneur Billy Ballard, festival organizer Hannah Fisher, writer-lawyer Morley Torgov and countless others, and Dusty had barely begun cooking yet.
Joan could take the sizzle or leave it. So could the Cohl children: serious Robert in business; musical Karen in government; handsome Steve in the British Columbia woods. Dusty needed it. The reason may have been a sizzle-deprived childhood.
The industrial village of Toronto the Good, a.k.a. Hogtown, was hardly a glamorous place in 1929, the year Dusty Cohl was born, along with the Great Depression. His mother hoped he'd become Little Lord Fauntleroy; his father, a fighter for social justice. (He was a "lovely man," Joan recalls, an immigrant house painter, speaking languages galore, all except English.) Dusty himself probably wanted to become Flo Ziegfeld of Ziegfeld's Follies, the producer of Show Boat. As a compromise, he became a real estate lawyer, an accomplice (as he called himself ) of developers, a supporting "player" on the municipal stage. It wasn't so far removed from showbiz.
One mustn't underestimate the trauma of "Murray," the name Baby Cohl's parents had picked for him. It was a name Dusty associated with people who think inside the box. In a sense, his life became a quest to escape Murraydom. Perhaps this is why Toronto has a film festival today. Looking as if he had a permanent suntan, young Cohl adopted "Dusty" as his moniker, then--feeling free to think outside the box --founded a film festival. He founded two festivals, in fact, for in the 1990s he also launched the exclusive, by-invitation-only Floating Film Festival. Being a player for the first half of his life enabled Dusty to devote the second half to his true vocation as a fan.
Because, ultimately, that's what Canada's founder of film festivals was: A fan. He was a quintessential fan, a fan par excellence, a fanissimo, a true devotee of the bright lights and silver screen. It actually mattered to him what the buzz was on the Rialto.
Dusty might have made a great agent or impresario, but doing it professionally would have been too structured, too much like being a Murray. Other lawyers fussed about fine print; Dusty, the maverick in a cowboy hat, was a big-picture man. His ideal was the mil-lion-dollar deal on a paper napkin. He knew only too well the devil was in the details and he didn't want to do the devil's work. As an "accomplice," he didn't have to.
In the last years, the mantle of the Floating Film Festival had fallen to Dusty's young friend and heir-apparent, filmmaker Barry Avrich. Dusty himself was mainly doing the crossword puzzle in Eddie Greenspan's office, giving opinions when asked -- criminal law is a kind of show business, too --and making sure that everybody was doing the right thing. Dusty's approval mattered to the movers and shakers of the city -- nobody quite knew why, but it did. "When you see Ivan Fecan tonight, kiss him and say he's a mensch," he instructed me from his hospital bed on Christmas Eve. Apparently the CEO of CTVGlobemedia had done what Dusty considered the right thing in some business matter. Mensch is Yiddish for an honourable man. I refrained from kissing Fecan but gave him the message. He blushed and seemed pleased.
Then there was nothing to do but wait. "Look, there comes Dusty," people used to say -- and there he came, in Toronto between April and November, or in Key Biscayne between November and April, usually dressed like a roadie from a rock group. "Hi, Dusty."
"How ya doing, kid?" Yeah, well (to quote Paul Newman in Cool Hand Luke.) Yeah, well Milk curdles. Leaves fall. "There comes Dusty" is another thing people will say no more.
I graduated in the class of '52 and had some early career choices. I had a 79% average in the Grade XIII exams and was refused admittance to the Faculty of Dentistry. I spoke to the faculty dean and he told me that there was some quota on people from certain schools, read:they didn't want too many Jewish students in Dentistry from Harbord.. How I know this is the fact that 2 other people from Harbord, non Jewish, with marks in the low 70% area, were selected ahead of me.
I had been dabbling in folk-music and I was given an offer to tour across the country for one month with a new folk group, called THE FOLK SINGERS. It was historic in that it was the first cross-Canada tour by any group other than a symphony. On my return I began studying to rewrite 4 Grade XIII papers, and upped my average in to the mid-80% area, and was accepted by the Dental School.
However as I entered Dental School, I formed another singing group called THE TRAVELLERS, in September of 1953. All through my 5 years at Dental School, I had a parallel career with The Travellers, appearing on 40 TV shows, many concerts, and recordings. On the TV show, Pick The Stars, which was the Canadian Idol show of the 50's, we defeated Rich Little in the semis and finished 2nd. On each performance on that show, we did a medlay of Canadian songs always finishing with our rearranged version of THIS LAND IS YOUR LAND. The song struck a chord in the newly-awakened Canadian psyche and we rode the wave with Command Performances for the Queen, and the Emperor of Japan, and appearances in Panama, Cyprus, Germany, Japan, throughout the U.S. and in every province and territory in Canada, and at Expo 67 in Montreal.
85 TV appearances, 16 LP's, and appearances with Pete Seeger, Peter Paul and Mary, Jack Benny, Harry Belafonte, Theodore Bikel and many other folk giants followed over the next 40 years. All this done while carrying on a practice in Dentistry for 40 years.
Ten years ago, after retiring from dentistry, I began teaching and doing performance lectures at U. of T., Ryerson, and George Brown College in Toronto, and at several universities in South Florida for the past 6 years. Unfortunately they make you come between December and April. and someone has to do it, so........
And now, let's return to the years at HCI between 1946 and '52. It would seem that if I made a 50 year career in music that I would have taken part in so many of the musical aspects of Harbord while there. But no. I entered Harbord as an athlete of some note and ended up quarterbacking bantam, junior and senior football teams, being on the basketball, swimming and track team for all those years, and captaining all 4 of those teams while in 4th form, and this leads to the politics that I spoke about earlier.
I was on the Boys' Athletic Association for all my years at Harbord and leaving 4th form, I was to be president of the Boys'AA during grade XIII. In those days, both Eaton's and Simpson's department stores had a council with one representative from each school. The two positions, 99% of the time, went to the president of the student council and the president of the Boys' AA, and the same with the girls' rep.
I must digress to tell you of Mr. Caldecott, who was head of Phys-Ed at Harbord for many years during my tenure. A former army Sgt.-Major, he was known for his tough discipline in all the school teams. My being around the gym and serving on so many athletic committees, put me in close contact with him. When I arrived for my senior year at Harbord, in September, I noted that my name was not selected to be either Eaton's or Simpson's rep, and that the person selected to replace the norm, was the head of the student cadet corps.
On the 2nd day of school, Mr. Caldecott drew me aside and asked if, "I was still hanging around those Communist Organizations. My parents were members of a left-wing political and cultural organization and it is natural for me to have become a part of their youth group. The Travellers actually began as part of that organization, as did Zal Yonofsky of The Lovin' Spoonful, Dusty Cohl of the Toronto Film Festival, Sharon Hampson, of Sharon., Lois and Bram, and many other Canadian Cultural icons. Could it be that the person who had a large hand in writing and popularizing Canadian Folk Songs such as THIS LAND IS YOUR LAND, could be guilty of Un-Canadian doings?
I later discovered that it was Mr. Caldecott, who did not suggest my name for those positions, and had vetoed my inclusion. Yet at the end of the school year, I was awarded the Moe Burstyn Trophy for Football excellence, a Bronze "H", and several other awards at the school commencement.
So, there you have it. World politics playing a part in a school selection, blatant Anti-Semitism affecting the career of a student. We must remember those times when other Jewish students were being refused admission even though qualified. There are not too many stories, though, of highschoolers being found guilty of being anti-Canadian. The Black List, usually unsubstantiated, affected many people in the arts from Pete Seeger to the Dixie Chicks, so, I always took solace in the great company I found myself in, and it lead me to greater purpose.
I learned a lot at Harbord as a student: of making friends, of being a team player, being loyal to my faith and to my principles and not giving in to the adversities that the times and the teachers, unfortunately, have thrown at me. I learned, "That This Land Was Made For You And Me".
Jerry Gray '52
Toronto Star - February 2008
I'm a sucker for love.
The older I get, the more I fall under love’s bewitching spell.
Not a kiss, and not an erotic embrace- though the Audrey-Royson clinch still sears and scorches and leaves no space for interlopers. No, I'm stricken, smitten by an avalanche of love that so anchors me it makes my legs weak with gratitude.
It's been ever thus, I find. Luck, maybe. Or a perennial providential dispensation.
As a kid, growing up poor in the village of Orange, outside Montego Bay, I can't recall anything but love. A doting dad. A saintly step-mom. A matriarchal granny who showered us with love and fitted us for life.
As kids, we’d tended the goats and cows and helped with the harvest of sugar cane-a brutal task that lately has me marvelling how my dad endured it as a farm worker in the American South or how my ancestors survived it for hundreds of plantation years. But the chores were wrapped around the idea of sharing the load and sharing large pots of food boiled on large open fires and spilling over with giant flour and cornmeal dumplings.
It's easy to love when everyone, it seems, loves you. Not like, but love. Like is a term of endearment. You like your friends, your drinking buddies, the couple that's always there for you, your season’s ticket mate who’s 41 years of Maple Leafs hockey heartbreak.
But love? That's a gift-undeserved, unmerited, an act of God-like disbursement. And there's been so much of that.
There's a little church in my home village. My heart skips just thinking about it. Every time I returned I see the same treasure I received – stalwart adult dressing kids in infant garments of security and self-esteem that endure.
I arrived in Toronto in July 1969, and found Harbord Collegiate as soft and receptive a landing place as any immigrant child ever received. The youths who now call me “coach” are reaping what Harbord coach Dave Grace sowed. He loved us. We knew it.
If I am a happy, stable, guy, it's because love has so often knocked me off my feet. If I smell the roses, literally, it's because someone has strewn my path floribunda and grandiflora, not to mention a cup of tea.
As I am writing this, I am 36,000 feet about the Carolinas, confident that 800 congregants are praying for my safe arrival.
At university, roommate Donald Coleman went door-to-door in the boys’ dormitory and collected $143 and some cents to keep me enrolled. I cannot talk or write about it without tearing up.
At the Star, iconic columnist David Lewis Stein mentored me, prepared for this city columnist job and, 10 years after his retirement, still calls and e-mails whenever he senses I need a shoulder.
So if you see me smiling, it's because I'm blessed. I am loved.
Just thinking about that brings a lumped to my throat.
Love does that to you. I'm a sucker for love.
March 19, 2008
Books for Youth: Morley S. Wolfe stands with the Challenging Racism and Celebrating Differences Youth Book competition winners during its fifth annual awards banquet at the Crowne Plaza Hotel recently.
My name is Yan Yen Loo and I am the recipient of both the Bright Penny Award and the Maxwell Goldhar Memorial Prize.
I would like to personally thank you for the hard work you have put into helping me further my education. Not only are you helping me, but you are also helping my family.
I grew up in a single-parent household where financial issues were always the main concerns. Being a well-rounded person takes a lot determination. I have that determination but without the financial aid there is only so much I can do. No matter how hard I worked on my academics or how much I participated in extra-curricular activities, in and out of school, or even how many hours I spent working my part-time job, the income my mother brought in to support my two sisters and I would be more or less the same.
Before the start of high school I had begun volunteering for a moms and tots program at my community center. Since then I have volunteered my time towards various causes, from elementary school homework clubs to helping out in a play production as a ballerina to the Toronto General Hospital and even to simply help give water out to runners during a marathon.
Alongside giving back to my community I have been involved in the school throughout my four years. I was always actively taking executive positions in several school clubs namely the position as co-vice-president of the Chinese Club. We held Harbord's annual lunar banquet, which turned out to be one of the best lunar banquet's Harbord has had. I also started the Free the Children Youth-in-Action group, with three other classmates, at Harbord to raise money to build a school in a developing country. As such a leader I have definitely grown a lot, because I eexperienced the true struggles of being a new leader with very little power and support. Despite many obstacles I did what I could do, that includes bake sales and weekly pizza sales. The biggest accomplishment came when I proposed a Harbord's Free the Children benefit concert to our principal. I had put a tremendous amount of time and effort to plan it all, down to the fine details of the event. Unfortunately, it did not get approved due to secuurity issues that could not be resolved. Although the concert did not happen I am extremely proud of what I had accomplished.
I have a natural passion for sports. I first joined Harbord's Cheerleading Squad in grade nine. Once I stopped dancing balleet mid-way through grade ten I became more involved, joining the track and field, softball and field hockey teams. My first year for softball I was awarded the M.I.P. and this year I became the M.V.P. on the team.
I never lost focus of my academics. To balance volunteering, school clubs, athletics, extracurricular activities and academic was my main goal. I managed to achieve averages over 90% in my first three years of high school and for my final year I graduated with an 88.9%.
My mother came to Canada from Vietnam in hopes to escape the war and for my sisters and I to simply have a good life. More than anything, she wants to see all three of us attend university, as she was not able to herself.
I am more than happy to say that I am currently at the University of Toronto studying in the Life Sciences program. I plan to double major in Human Biology and Peace and Conflict Resolution. I cannot stress enough how much I love the university life. Not only am I learning so much but I also appreciate everything that I learn. I am actively participating in sports intramurals and I have taken on a lead role in my college's (University College) athletics commission as the poster guru. There is no doubt that it is a lot of work, especially with a part-time job on the side as a tutor. It may sound cliché but I know it is a fact that when you love what you do there is no such thing as too much work!
Yan Yen Loo
I want to thank you very much for awarding me The Peter "Bubba" Miller Award. Your funding of this award is greatly appreciated. Thank you.
As a recipient of this award, I truly understand that I would not be able to achieve this award without many teachers who cared and helped me. Many thanks to Ms. Sue who gave me the great opportunity to join Harbord’s Volleyball Team where I learned teamwork and friendship.
Once again, thank you.
October 15, 2007
This year I was the recipient of the Hugh MacDonald Award for academic excellence. I am writing this to say thank you and to express my appreciation for all the help and support you have given me.
This is my fourth year as an award winner and it feels great to move on being recognized. Every year, I continue to work harder knowing that in the end I will be rewarded for all my hours of hard work. The support I receive from friends, family and community is what motivates me to never give up and to do the best that I can. Knowing that Harbord Club will continue to help and motivate future students makes leaving Harbord a lot easier.
Once again, thank you for the generosity and support through all these years.
October 4, 2007
My name is Jesse Fine-Gagné and I was the recipient of the Albert Cole award at Harbord’s commencement this year. I am writing to thank you for your generosity in donating this award and to tell you how much it means to me. Since I was very young I have been involved in school athletics, starting with cross country running in grade 1, working up all the way to five different teams in grade 12. The one award I always wanted but never got was the award for being athletic, and now I have finally achieved this with your help.
My bubie, who you would have known as Marion Erlick would like to say hi. I think it’s nice that there is a personal connection between us, because it creates a memory for a longer time than just an award would have been.
This year I am pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Toronto. I am trying to pursue athletics, but I suffered a knee injury during the summer, which is holding me back. Since I can’t be a part of any intramural teams I have immersed myself in music. I play as a part of two bands at the moment and I will hopefully be a part of the pit band for a show put on by the engineers.
I cannot thank you enough for your generosity,
27 July 2006
Many thanks for the wonderful collection of historical information you so kindly passed along to my family & me.
The Harbord Collegiate material is especially interesting, and in particular the “Anne Glassey” memo concerning her father and the possibility that George Weston might sell the business or wait for Garfield to return from the war. We checked our own archival records to discover that David Glassey was the Treasurer of the Athletic Association at the time that Garfield was a student. There is, in fact, a photograph within our archives which shows Glassey and Garfield in the same senior rugby team portrait. Glassey would certainly have known Garfield as a very young man and obviously thought well of him, having felt confident that Garfield could successfully take over management of the company.
There were a number of newspaper items that we did not have originals for, so these items will also be valuable additions to our archives.
The Harbord Club
286 Harbord St
Please find enclosed a donation cheque in the amount of $10,000.00. This
donation is made on behalf of the late Rosslyn Sharf(Shaul), a former
student of Harbord. Rosslyn passed away on Nov 7, 2007. This donation is made
in accordance to her will instructions
Many thanks for your letter re: omission of your name from the World War II monument. Only those who died are on the monument.
We are adding your name to the list of Harbordites who served in World War II and including a copy of your Royal Canadian Air Force certificate to be published in our next Harbordite issue. In the meantime, we are requesting your name be added to the World War II monument to honour your services for our country.
Hello! I went to Harbord in the 50's and I remember that the Grade 13's used to chant S A V T U every week at the beginning of our Wednesday morning assemblies. This stands out in my mind because other than their cheer, there was utter silence in the auditorium. We entered in silence; we sat in silence, and then the cheer.
Do you know what SAVTU stands for??
Bernie Riley, nee Koretsky
This is what we
discovered: S A V T U was a special formula created by Dr. Fraser
(physics teacher). SPEED, ACCELERATION, VELOCITY, TIME
Were you able to remember the "U" word?
P.S. We will ask our readers to help solve this riddle/mystery in the spring issue of the Harbordite.
Thank you so much for looking into this for me. I'll just bet that you'll get lots of responses when this quiz is published.
But NO, I have no idea what the U stands for.
I was just a tweeny grade 9 kid who was incredibly impressed that the grade 13's could chant this cheer while the rest of us were sworn to silence. What makes sense to me now is that Mr. Page, our military principal, allowed the cheer because he saw it as an expression of pride in Mr. Fraser.
I look forward to 'speaking' to you again.
Please e-mail us if you have any idea what the “U” represents in the SAVTU at:
video! Thanks for sharing.
I wish the ending were less abrupt.
You might wish to consider uploading it to YouTube, to make it more accessible in the future.
Class of 50
Dear Josie and Murray,
Thanks for sending this wonderful and poignant video which I happened to receive here in New York on Veteran's day. How appropriate. Keep up the good work.
Your fellow Harbordite, Jerome Bloom '46
I received your invitation to attend the ceremony to unveil and dedicate the World War II Monument in honour of the HCI students and staff who served and gave their lives for our freedom. The HCI students and staff from both wars gave their lives and their futures so generations of Canadians could continue to enjoy the unbelievable peace and prosperity, which few on this planet can even imagine. We can never forget that sacrifice! To not honour them means to bring shame on ourselves. You are to be commended for restoring both World War I and II memorials.
Unfortunately, I will be unable to attend the ceremony on May 8th, (2007). However, my thoughts will be with you all on that day. Although I am not a former student of Harbord Collegiate I have donated financially in a very small way to support both of your monument restorations. It has been my honour and privilege to do so.
I would like to ask if it would be possible for someone to send me a photo of both World War I and II monuments, as I would like to see the finished results of the both projects. Thank you and take care.
Globe and Mail Update
January 11, 2008 at 4:34 PM EST
Film producer Dusty Cohl, co-founder of the Toronto International Film Festival, died this afternoon of liver cancer at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto. He was 78. There will be a private family funeral with a public celebration of his life at a later date.
Tall and lanky, with a grizzled beard and an ear to ear grin, wearing his trademark black cowboy hat festooned with shiny pins and badges and an outré t-shirt, he appeared to be the epitome of louche. In fact, he was a family man, with kids and grandchildren, who remained married for more than 50 years to the girl he met in high school. He was also a genial and supportive father figure to many fledgling producers and directors in the Canadian film business.
“He was unconventional in his ideas and his dress, but he wasn't unconventional in his living habits and his loyalties,” said film and television producer Ted Kotcheff, who has known Mr. Cohl “longer than anybody,” dating back to summer camp north of Toronto in the mid-1940s.
A lawyer who made serious money in real estate deals in the 1950s and 1960s, Mr. Cohl was seduced by the movie business after a chance visit to the Cannes International Film Festival, and spent the next 40 years schmoozing backers, stars and directors. A co-founder of the Toronto International Film Festival, he was also a film and television producer, with credits on movies such as Outrageous! and the television series The Scales of Justice. “He was there in the Canadian film business from the beginning and he dedicated his life to it,” said Mr. Kotcheff in a telephone interview from California. “He was the very heart and soul of the Canadian film industry and the most lovable man that I have ever met, hands down.”
Murray (Dusty) Cohl was born on Euclid Street in Toronto on Feb. 21, 1929, the year of the great stock market crash on Wall Street. His father Karl was a Communist who worked as a house painter, a union organizer and ultimately an insurance agent, while his mother Lillian sold bed linens at Eaton's, according to Brian D. Johnson in Brave Films, Wild Nights: 25 years of Festival Fever.
An only child, he attended Charles G. Fraser elementary school and Camp Naivelt (New World) a Bolshevik Jewish summer camp north of Toronto, from the age of five. It was at camp that he shed his hated first name and acquired the nickname Dusty. Another camper, named Harris Black, was called Blacky and the kids decided that Murray Cohl (pronounced coal) should be Dusty, probably as in coal dust.
“He was my camp counsellor,” said film and television producer Ted Kotcheff who attended Camp Naivelt from 1943 thru 1945. “He was my boyhood hero.” What Mr. Kotcheff loved about Dusty were the same qualities that have always captured people's affections: “He was so full of good humour and intelligence, and he was a born non-conformist. Even back then he was unconventional in his dress, which appeals to young people.”
Dusty let his t-shirt hang outside his shorts while the other counsellors were all tucked in. “He had his own style,” said Mr. Kotcheff, who also has a much darker memory from those days: Seeing his hero “ejected” from camp in the summer of 1945, after a “Kangaroo Court” found him guilty of being an “anarchist Trotskyite” — at age 16. “He always saw that as a very amusing incident in his life, but that was Dusty. He was dedicated to following his own vision of things; he was an original.”
After public school he went to Harbord Collegiate from 1941-47. That's where he met Joan Cairn, although she says she knew of him from Camp Naivelt. He asked her to dance, she told a family friend, felt very comfortable in his arms and knew that he might be “the one.” After high school, he went to the University of Toronto, earning a bachelor of arts degree in 1950. The following year, on Dec. 23, 1951, he and Joan married — they celebrated their 56th wedding anniversary late last year — and eventually had three children, Robert, Karen and Steven.
After the U of T, he entered Osgoode Hall Law School, coming first in his class one year and graduating with a law degree in 1954. For most of the next 20 years Mr. Cohl worked as a zoning and real estate lawyer, putting together land parcels and property developments in Toronto and Florida. He was “tremendously successful” according to his close friend, film producer Barry Avrich, but retired from the business “at the top of his game” when people starting referring to him as “the King of Real Estate.”
In 1964 he and his wife Joan were holidaying in the south of France and she suggested they visit Cannes. By chance they found a parking place in front of the Carlton Hotel, ordered a drink on the terrace and “saw and felt the pulse of the action” of the annual film festival, which just happened to be on at the same time. “I was like a kid falling into Disneyland,” he said later. It was another four years before they made it back to Cannes, but from then on they were regulars at the International Film Festival, schmoozing critics, producers and stars from a table on the terrace of the Carlton Hotel.
In 1973 he met William (Bill) Marshall, a Glaswegian who had immigrated to Canada as a teenager and attended the U of T for a couple of years before finding a job marketing soap for Proctor & Gamble and delving into public relations with a partner named Gil Taylor. Wanting to make movies, he formed the Film Consortium of Canada with Henk van der Kolk, a Dutch architect turned producer, with whom he made films on contract for the Ontario government. Mr. Marshall was also the communications whiz who helped propel David Crombie into the Mayor's office in 1972 and then worked as his executive assistant.
Bored with politics, Mr. Marshall was thinking of getting back into film when Mr. Cohl approached him about Pinocchio's Birthday Party, a children's film he was helping to produce. Both men have claimed credit for the idea of launching a film festival in Toronto, but what is certainly true is that they both embraced the concept as enthusiastically as seals sliding down water slides.
In 1974 they visited a number of film festivals to make contacts. At the Atlanta Film Festival, they went to a party celebrating the Canadian films being screened including The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz, directed by Mr. Kotcheff and adapted from the novel by Mordecai Richler. Mr. Kotcheff remembers walking into a reception for the Canadian film contingent, twigging to something familiar about another guest, whose back was turned, and yelling “Dusty.” He recognized him from the back of his neck even though he hadn't seen him since Camp Naivelt days 30 years earlier, because “I loved this man.” The two men embraced and immediately began making jokes about anarchist Trotskyites.
The following May, Mr. Cohl and Mr. Marshall went to the film festival in Cannes, rented a suite in The Carlton Hotel, ensconced themselves in the bar on the terrace and started schmoozing. “Dusty was the only person I knew in Canada who had actually been to Cannes in those days,” Mr. Marshall recollected in a telephone interview.
“There were only about six of us making movies,” he said. “We wanted a film festival [in Toronto] “because foreign people might come and we'd get to sell our movies. Henk [van der Kolk] was the managing director and I was the executive director because I had to look at all the movies people sent us and Dusty was the accomplice.” Instead of being the guy driving the getaway car, his role as an “accomplice” was to schmooze and in Mr. Marshall's estimation there was nobody better at talking, bringing key people together and creating an undercurrent of excitement about a project.
They announced the Toronto International Film Festival at Cannes in May 1976 and launched it at the Ontario Place Cinesphere in Toronto that October on a budget of about $500,000 of which about half was in goods and services and some public support from then Secretary of State John Roberts (obituary, April 3, 2007) and Jim Coutts, principal secretary to Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau.
Unlike Cannes which is largely an industry festival, they wanted theirs to cater to the movie going public and use crowds as a draw to attract media and industry. The first year they wantonly courted Warren Beatty through his Toronto cousin, but he failed to show. Unexpectedly, Jeanne Moreau and Dino de Laurentiis did. And they had a bit of luck by screening Cousin, Cousine, which was later nominated for three Academy Awards. In 1978, they defied the then powerful defunct Ontario Censor Board by showing an uncut version of In Praise of Older Women, based on Stephen Vizinczey's bestseller and almost caused a riot by handing out 4,000 passes to a screening at a cinema that only seated 1,000. The overflow crowd engendered one of the slick talking Mr. Marshall's more elusive qualifiers. “We're not oversold. We're just over-attended.” But after three years Mr. Cohl and Mr. Marshall retreated and Wayne Clarkson became the first of several professional managers of the burgeoning festival.
In addition to TIFF, which has long been one of the top film festivals in the world, Mr. Cohl put his “accomplice” skills to work, co-producing feature films such as Outrageous! and The Circle Game and was a consulting producer on The Last Mogul, Rush: Grace Under Pressure Tour, Guilty Pleasure, The Extraordinary World of Dominick Dunne and Bowfire. He was also executive producer of series The Scales of Justice, which began on CBC radio in the 1980s and was aired on CBC television from 1991 - 1995. Hosted by lawyer Edward Greenspan, it featured docudramas based on real cases in Canadian Criminal law.
He also worked with his cousin, rock promoter Michael Cohl, famous for organizing tours for The Rolling Stones, on a pay television concert series on cable television in the 1980s called First Choice Rocks. Less successfully the two Cohls worked with basketball legend Wilt Chamberlain in an attempt to bring an NBA franchise to Toronto.
In 1990, Mr. Cohl started The Floating Film Festival, an almost annual luxury Caribbean cruise featuring films programmed by the critics such as Roger Ebert, Richard Corliss and George Anthony, world premieres and a showcase tribute to a film legend. The FFF or The Floater, combined the best elements of “the smallness of Telluride, the warmth of Toronto and the glamour of Cannes,” according to Mr. Cohl. It even had its own emblematic t-shirt depicting an art deco style cruise ship flying a flag with a cowboy hat, inspired by the black Stetson that invariably adorned Mr. Cohl's head. The 10th edition of the FFF, which will sail from Los Angeles on February 25th, is dedicated to Mr. Cohl's memory and features a tribute to actress Gena Rowlands.
He was also a member of the founding board of Canada's Walk of Fame in 1998, which celebrates the achievements of music, arts and sports celebrities with an annual televised special and by encasing their names in a slab of cement on the sidewalks in the entertainment district. In its ten years, the Walk of Fame has inducted more than 100 Canadians, including Wayne Gretzky, Karen Kain, Gordon Pinsent and Kiefer Sutherland.
Mr. Cohl was invested into the Order of Canada in May 2003 for “his pride in Canadian talent” and his “desire to celebrate our achievements.” He was diagnosed with liver cancer late last fall.
Dusty Cohl (1929-2008)
Toronto Star - Saturday, January 12, 2008
‘Original, unorthodox’ and loved
The Toronto international Film Festival will never be the same, because Dusty Cohl won’t be there holding court non-stop for 10 days with his trademark black cowboy hat, premium cigars, slat-and-pepper beard and Cheshire-cat grin.
Murray Cohl, 78, died yesterday at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre after cancer got a grip on him around the time of the 2007 festival.
“The festival was Dusty’s gift to the city,” Bill Marshall, one of the festival’s founders, said yesterday. “There would be no festival without Dusty.”
In the words of Wayne Clarkson, a former TIFF director and currently CEO of Telefilm Canada, “Quite simply, Dusty put Toronto on the showbiz map.”
It’s cherished part of TIFF lore that the idea of creating a major international film festival in Toronto began in 1964 when Cohl and his wife Joan, driving through France, arrived in Cannes without realizing there was film festival going on.
He soon landed on the terrace of the Carlton Hotel, where he presided year after year holding court and schmoozing – and trying to persuade people that this was the sort of event that could kick-start a film industry in Toronto.
Dusty Cohl was above all a charming salesman, shrewd deal maker and cultural ambassador who had a gift for forging bonds of friendship with lots of people, including rich, famous and talented people all over the world, many of whom he persuaded to boost the Toronto film festival in it early years.
He was an only child, born on Feb. 21, 1929. His father was a house painter, his mother a salesperson at Eaton’s.
Ted Kotcheff, the future movie director, met him at Camp Naivelt, a mostly Jewish Communist summer camp from which Cohl was expelled for allegedly being a Trotskyite.
He was amusing and totally adorable, the most lovable man I ever met,” says Kotcheff. “And he was exactly like that decades later when we reconnected.”
After attending Harbord Collegiate, Cohl went to Osgoode Law School. In 1951, he married his high school sweetheart, Joan Carin, and they had three children, Robert, Karen and Steven.
As a young lawyer, Cohl made a fortune in real estate law and development. But he found his true calling when he drifted away from law and into show business.
“Life was a continuing party that Dusty never wanted to leave,” said his close friend Barry Avrich, the advertising executive, filmmaker and TIFF board member who took over the Floating Film Festival, which Cohl started in 1992.
“He was always there behind the scenes, putting people together and offering advice. I was blessed to be in his galaxy.”
According to Helga Stephenson, former director of TIFF, “Dusty took the boring out of being Canadian. And he took care of a lot of people.”
Piers Handling, the festival’s CEO, says: “The key point about Dusty was that he set a tone for this festival that set it apart from all the others. If European festivals were stuffy black-tie affairs, Toronto was going to be the opposite – irreverent. With his cowboy hat and T-shirts, he made a fashion statement, announcing who and what we were – rebels.”
Cohl liked to be billed as accomplice on the various projects he worked on, including Marshall’s 1977 movie Outrageous.
“Going to Cannes with Dusty was like going with Princess Diana,” says Marshall, who ran the festival with his partner Henk van der Kolk in its first years. That’s because Cohl had such a wide circle of friends and fans from the international movie world.
At Cannes, recalls former Star movie critic Ron Base, “Dusty would plunk himself down and before you knew it the most amazing assortment of people joined him – movie stars, directors, journalists, starlets, a movable feast.”
Long-time friend Edward Greenspan says: “He was an original – unorthodox, free thinking, genuine, creative, eccentric.”
Cohl became a member of the Order of Canada in 2003. His funeral will be a private family affair, with a public memorial later.
In September, the Toronto film festival will reveal its plans to honour Cohl.
At 79, he was still on court
Lawyer, roughly 40 years older than other players in pickup basketball games, never lost the competitive spirit of his youth
STAFF REPORTER: MICHELE HENRY
He played basketball well past his 79th birthday.
Roughly 40 years older than the other players in the pickup games he joined twice a week, Sydney Himel could hold his own on the court. The competitive spirit of his youth, which propelled him through various leagues and international games, worked its magic even in his twilight years.
At 6-foot-l, Himel was a tall teenager. "Doc," as he was known, would dominate as a guard in the games that unfolded in the gym at Mackenzie Collegiate Institute.
Sydney Himel, who died
Jan. 27 at 81, wanted to be "a
strong Jew with a strong body."
Sydney Himel, who died Jan. 27 at 81, wanted to be "a strong Jew with a strong body."
Himel played basketball throughout his life — on the Varsity team while attending law school at the University of Toronto, during his years as a litigator and throughout his tenure as president of Beth Emeth Congregation, a local synagogue, in the 1980s. He started basketball house leagues at the Community Hebrew Academy of Toronto, where his two sons Martin and Daniel went to high school. He kick-started the program that still exists today.
After a drawn-out illness, he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer little more than a month ago. He died Jan. 27 at 81.
He leaves his children, five grandchildren and companion Hyla Aronoff.
Born June 24, 1925, in Toronto, he was the youngest of five children. Himel grew up helping his parents cook in the small convenience store and restaurant the family owned on Dundas St. near Kensington Ave.
Although the store was a social hub, the Himel family struggled during the Depression. With no money for entertainment, Himel would pass his time on the court. When he was a bit older, he scored a position on the Tri-Bel team in Toronto, and on the YMHA seniors' team when he was in his early 20s.
He played in the Maccabiah Games, an international sporting event, twice — in 1950 and 1954. It was there that he met his wife, and the mother of his children, Malka Stein. They parted ways in 1966.
More than just a game, basketball was a way of life for Himel, his son Martin said, and it underscored his father's legacy: the synergy of Jewish identity with athletics.
The son of immigrants, Himel was brought up with a hardy work ethic and an emphasis on education. But he believed in balance.
"He didn't want to be someone just praying all the time," Martin said. "He wanted to be a strong Jew with a strong body."
But Himel never forgot about his roots. He called upon them almost daily as a lawyer. The sole proprietor of a thriving practice, he worked mainly with new immigrants to Canada.
"He could empathize with their position because of their background," Martin said. "They always felt they got respect from him."
Globe and Mail
Friday, June 8, 2007
I met Alex when we were both 14 years of age. We grew up in the same area of Toronto. I was impressed with his outgoing manner. He had the gift of the gab and a good sense of humour; our friendship clicked immediately. With other friends from the neighourhood, we had a group that developed a great comradeship. What is now Trinity-Bellwoods Park was our playground. We formed a Jaffa Club under the auspices of Young Judea, where many world–wide problems were discussed: Alex headed the debating team.
We lost Alex for a while when he discovered the Palais Royale and Bert Biosi the band leader. He became a smooth dancer. It was interesting, because he was tone deaf, but he knew how to keep the beat.
Al graduated from Harbord Collegiate and began a pharmacy apprenticeship. He enlisted in the army in 1943, and was discharged in 1946. He enrolled in the college of pharmacy at the University of Toronto and graduated in 1948.
In 1955, he found the love of his life, Sara Fortinsky, and they were married. He admired his father-in-law who was melamed – a teacher in the humanities, Judaism and Talmud. Al was so impressed by him that he became observant. He bought a home with a large yard and became enthralled with gardening. He put in a green house and in winter, he nurtured seeds. Motorists would often stop their cars to view Al’s garden – a thing of beauty.
Al was a true, loyal friend to his buddies. When one became confined to a wheelchair, Al would almost force him to circulate – taking him to movies, the theatre, the symphony and anywhere his friend had to go.
Al opened a large drugstore in Toronto at Sheppard and Jane, where he would dispense fatherly advice to seniors on how to use their medications. The older patients found a professional they could talk to – and his drugstore thrived.
Al retired in 2002 and about that time his wife, known as ”Sorcy,” was showing signs of Alzheimer’s; in 2005 she was placed in Toronto’s Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care. He was at her side at 4:30 every afternoon and was very attentive to her and to the other patients.
Al was always involved in the community, especially in social services, and was presented with many plaques and citation. He loved his city and his country and wanted to give back his energy and time. His mission was to improve seniors’ health-, home- and long-term care. In 2003, he received the Ontario Volunteer service Award, and the Volunteer of the Year Award from the city of Toronto in 2003 and 2005.
In March, he called to tell me he had been diagnosed with “galloping leukemia,” the type that destroys the body quickly. We had lunch the next day. His stoic comments were “I’m not afraid to die. Life has been very good to me, and I’m ready to accept my fate.” Then he said, paraphrasing Ecclesiastes: “There is a time for everything under the sun, a time for birth and a time for death.”
I phoned April 3, his voice was strong and he was in good spirits. That evening, he conducted a Passover seder and told his family that this one was this best. That night he was rushed to the hospital, where the “galloper” took his life away.
Alex leaves a marvelous legacy to his three children and seven grandchildren: honesty, family love, optimism, devotion to friends and community, and a wonderful sense of humour.
It happened so fast I would have preferred the chance to say goodbye, give him a big hug and maybe drink our last chugalug together.
>> Wilfred Rovan is a friend of Alexander Gorlick
By FRANCES KRAFT – Staff Reporter
Nathan Hurwich, a benefactor of Associated Hebrew Schools and many other Jewish causes, died Feb. 14. He was 98 years old.
A native of Toronto, Hurwich attended cheder at Toronto Hebrew Free School, a predecessor of Associated. He was Associated’s oldest living alumnus
Its campus on Finch Avenue just east of Bathurst Street was named the Nathan O. and Roey Hurwich Education Centre after he and his wife – who predeceased him in 2005 after 73 years of marriage – became its benefactors in 1979.
He began working at Tip Top Tailors and completed high school at night.
Later, Hurwich opened a small automotive jobbing business, which he sold before founding Mobile Automotive Products, a manufacturers’ distributor that he sold some three decades ago.
Hurwich’s grandfather, a scholar and ritual slaughterer, imbued him with a love of Judaism and Israel, Rabbi Roy Tanenbaum of Beth Tzedec Congregation said in a eulogy.
A fundraiser for many Jewish causes, Hurwich received more than 100 awards and honours. He was tireless in raising funds for Israel and travelled there frequently, the rabbi said.
Hurwich co-chaired Canadian Jewish Congress’ Soviet Jewry committee and travelled to Russia in the 1970s to learn about the situation first-hand and deliver Hebrew books that he had hidden in his luggage. He was also a founding member of Beth Tzedec, where he held almost every major office.
“I don’t know if there was an organization in Toronto that Nat was not involved in,” said his niece, Miriam Cohen Freilich, in a eulogy.
Explaining his involvement with Associated in a 2003 CJN interview, Hurwich, who had no children, said that “without the Jewish schools, we have no future.”
Jane Cooper-Eade, a niece of Roey Hurwich, said in a eulogy that her aunt and uncle acted as surrogate grandparents to her children, buying them treats and taking them to synagogue on some of the Jewish holidays. “Uncle Nat truly loved children,” she recalled.
Hurwich leaves two sisters, Anne Cohen Himel of Toronto, and Ada Altman of Washington, DC. He was predeceased by his brothers, Reuben, Samuel, Dave and Sydney.
From N.Y. Times
Bernard Schwartz M.D. Ph.D. (1945 Harbord graduate) was active in directing plays and a member of the former “The Brotherhood of the Parabola”, which put on Variety Shows and charged admission (which went to Harbord's coffers); had outstanding academic achievement during his time at Harbord.
Bernard Schwartz was a Glaucoma specialist, founding chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology at the Tufts-New England Medical Center, and Editor-in-Chief of two ophthalmology journals, died on November 10, 2007 at the age of 79 of a recently diagnosed cancer. Dr. Schwartz was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada in 1927. He received his medical degree from the University of Toronto in 1951, then undertook postgraduate training at the University of Iowa, where he completed his ophthalmology residency in 1955 and then earned his Ph.D. in physiology in 1959. From 1960 to 1968, he conducted research and clinical practice in the New York area. In 1968, he joined the faculty and staff of the Tufts-New England Medical Center where he established and chaired the Department of Ophthalmology until 1990. As a glaucoma specialist, Dr. Schwartz conducted many studies related to the endocrine aspects of that disease. In the early 1970s, he began developing methods to document glaucomatous changes in the eye structure by manually drawing diagrams of the back of the eye meticulously labeled with numerical descriptions of their characteristics. These same concepts were later incorporated into advanced technological methods. Dr. Schwartz contributed many journal articles and book chapters to the medical literature. In 1968, when the Survey of Ophthalmology was a little-known journal that published abstracts, Dr. Schwartz became its Editor-in-Chief. He changed its focus from abstracts to comprehensive, literature-based articles written by experts on currently important topics. The journal has become a leading journal in the field, and because of its outstanding educational value, it was sometimes referred to as the “Bible” of ophthalmology education. He later founded another Journal, Comprehensive Ophthalmology Update. He served as Editor-in-Chief of both journals until his death. Active in many ophthalmological organizations, he received the Presidential Award from the American Glaucoma Society in March 2007. Beloved husband of Marcia (Struhl) of Boston. Devoted father of Ariane Schwartz of Boston, Jennifer Schwartz of San Francisco, Karen Schwartz of Los Angeles, and Lawrence Schwartz of Connecticut. Loving brother of Dr. Harvey Schwartz and his wife Fran of Toronto, Canada.
Peacefully on September 19, 2007 at the age of 79. Dr. Lawrence (Larry) J. Rosen, former husband of Rheta and Jacqueline. Loving father of Barbara (Simon Schreiber), Martin (Heather Ferguson), Jack (Candice Snow), Jordana, Jason, Lori, Lisa and Richard (Andrea). Loving grandfather of Lauren, Amy, Jade, Jasper, Sarah, Reuben, Joshua, David, Rachel, Ben, Simone, Michelle, Roxanne and Casey. Predeceased by brothers Dr. Sidney Rosen and Dr. Philip Rosen. Fondly remembered by many nieces, nephews, friends, former patients and special friends.
Mary Jane Bell beloved daughter of Mary and Donald Bell (deceased) of Windsor, Ontario, passed away in her 69th year at St. Catharine's General Hospital on Saturday, October 6, 2007.
Mary Jane was a graduate of the University of Windsor and the University of Toronto and attended La Sorbonne and the University of Toulouse. Her love of life included teaching, travel, bridge and her pets. During her teaching career at Malvern and Harbord Collegiate Institutes she became a friend and inspiration to her many students. Although in ill health for several years, MJ was sustained by an active mind, faithful friends, dedicated caregivers and devotion to her pets.
Mary Jane will be greatly missed by her family and many friends
YEAR ONE AWARDS
Cassandra Wang Kensington Foundation Award
Amy Zhong Kensington Foundation Award
Roland Wong Kensington Foundation Award
June Lee Kensington Foundation Award
Esther Jeon Harbord Club Mary Campbell Award
Riana Ang-Canning Harbord Club Class of 1953 Award
Harbord Club Elsie J. Affleck Award
Kwame Ansong Harbord Club Ronald Dagilis Award
Harbord Club Olive B. Streight Award
Henry Zhao Harbord Club Lena Winesanker Award
Harbord Club Lou Somers Award
Nancy Ho Harbord Club Harold Vogel Award
YEAR TWO AWARDS
Frances Gao Harbord Club Charles Girdler Award
Kensington Foundation Award
Jannie Lam Kensington Foundation Award
Susan Kwan Kensington Foundation Award
David Guo Harbord Club Zimmerman/Molinaro/
Harbord Club A.G. “ Archie” Baker Award
Nancy Dai Harbord Club Leonard Steinberg Award
Harbord Club Lee Yin Memorial Award
Annie Huang Harbord Club Stella Campbell Award
Ashley Mac Harbord Club Euphrasia E. Hislop Award
Jamie Kwan Harbord Club Hy & Zel’s Corporate Award
Si Mai Wang Harbord Club Binh To Award
David Xie Harbord Club Class of 1955 Award
Bingying Lin Harbord Club Chigi Agbaru Award
Yaban Pehlivan Harbord Club Marie (Fine) Berris Award
Camille Or Harbord Club Irving Pomerantz Award
Jason Zhang Harbord Collegiate Excellence in Cooperative Education Award
Tracey Biinna Jim McQueen Excellence in Education Award
YEAR THREE AWARDS
Jay Kim Kensington Foundation Award
Austin Hung Harbord Club Robert Wightman Award
Kensington Foundation Award
Ang Cui Kensington Foundtion Award
Chantel Arce Harbord Club Hilkka Filppula Award
Harbord Club Allister Haig Award
Brendan Fossella Harbord Club Hilkka Filppula Award
Karen Rao Harbord Club Stapleton Caldecott Award
Jennifer Chow Harbord Club Ron Bottaro Award
Harbord Club Edward Carey Fox Award
Shan Jin Harbord Club Ken Prentice Award
Andrew Kha Harbord Club Charlotte Laywine Pivnik Award
James Hsiao Harbord Club Herbert W. Irwin Award
Harbord Club Maxwell Stern Award
Nicole Lee Harbord Club Philip Givens Award
Dale Wang Palmerston Area Residents’ Association Bursury
Alison Lee Harbord Club Philip E. Band Award
Vanessa Gold Harbord Club Zimmerman/Molinaro/
Regina Nunno Harbord Club Ethel M. Sealy Award
Laura (De)Sousa and I are planning a reunion for those that graduated in 1983 from Harbord (our 25th anniversary)
We have set up a website with the details of the reunion. Essentially, we have selected Paupers Pub as the venue for this event and have reserved it on May 31st starting at 7pm
Here is the link with further details
WHEN: Saturday, May 3, 2008
2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
WHERE: Harbord Collegiate Institute
286 Harbord Street
Come out and celebrate with us (19+)
This event is a fundraiser for the Harbord Club, which continues to publish and distribute (by e-mail and regular mail) the alumni news newsletter, “The Harbordite”, twice a year, and which continues to support Harbord students with scholarships and awards.
Let's get together...
-To celebrate Harbord's history
-To tour the school and see its fabulous museum
-To meet old friends
-To admire the restored World War I soldier
-To see the new World War II monument dedicated in May 2007
-To hear a presentation by its creator, Morton Katz
-TO HAVE FUN!!
Please join us on May 3 or pass on information
about this event to your family and friends (19+)
Cost- $25 per person
Light refreshments will be served, as well as, a cash bar will be available.
Your cheque should be made out to The Harbord Club and mailed to:
The Harbord Club
C/O Joan McCarville
286 Harbord St.
Toronto, ON, M6G 1G5
***Cheques need to be received by April 21***
Make your plans now, and let's celebrate Harbord together!
For more information please e-mail: email@example.com
or call 416-393-1650 EXT 3 (Belinda)
For more information please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
or call 416-393-1650 EXT 3 (Belinda)
President - Joan McCarville
Treasurer - Peter Miller
Museum Co-ordinator - Syd Moscoe
Harbordite Editor - Josie Galati
Harbordite Assistant - Editor - Murray Rubin
Secretary – Patricia Wong
Director – Murray Rubin
Director – Doris Chan
Harbord Club Foundation
President/Treasurer - Peter Miller
Secretary – Patricia Wong
Director – Murray Rubin
Director – Joan McCarville
Director – Doris Chan
286 Harbord Street
Toronto, Ontario, Canada