Principal Joel Gorenkoff Leaves NTCI

NT’s (now former) principal Joel Gorenkoff and his wife, Leeanne, at the Foundation’s farewell party in February.

On a snowy night in February, past and present members of the Foundation came together to celebrate Joel Gorenkoff, principal of North Toronto from 2007 to January 2017. His time at NT ended abruptly when he received notification of a transfer to Lawrence Park Collegiate Institute. Always positive, Joel understood that he was needed at Lawrence; at the same time, he was certainly disappointed to say goodbye to the school he has called home for the past ten years. Equally disappointed were the Foundation members, who had come to rely on his dedication, dependability and genuine passion for the improvement of NTCI.

During his time at North Toronto, Joel oversaw the transition from the old building to the current school, making an effort to ensure that the many Heritage pieces valued by alumni, such as the Heritage Court and the award walls, were preserved. He was also instrumental in organizing the 100th anniversary, working closely with the Foundation to ensure a celebration that brought together current students and alumni. But perhaps Joel’s greatest contribution to the Foundation has been his appreciation of the positive value the Foundation brings to the school community. He encouraged the placement of two student reps on the Foundation Board and has worked closely with the Board on newer endeavours, such as Homecoming Weekend and alumni events at Red and Grey Day.

While we are certainly going to miss Joel’s presence on the Foundation, we are grateful for the many contributions he made while at North Toronto. These contributions will continue to impact NT students for years to come. We wish him all the best in his future endeavours at Lawrence Park.

Business Is Booming at the Dragons’ Den

At our most recent Dragons’ Den, where the Foundation listens to a variety of presentations from clubs and teams in need of funds, the Foundation was interested to learn that many of the newer clubs at North Toronto have a business bent. It appears that North Toronto students are becoming astute businesspeople even before they graduate and head off to Rotman or Ivey.

One club with a business focus was DECA, associated with DECA Ontario, where members compete at regional, provincial and international case study competitions for awards and scholarships. While competition is a major part of the club, students also have a chance to network with other business students and business leaders around the province.

Another club that requested funds was the NT Business Club, which host events at which successful businesspeople speak to students about the realities of business and what it looks like in the real world. Both these clubs are indicative of where NT students are planning to go when move on to post-secondary studies. The Foundation is happy to support these clubs, and we encourage the learning and experience that can come from them. We also recognize that there are many NT alumni in the business and finance sectors, and we hope to play a role in building connections between them and these clubs.

71st Maytime Melodies Invitation

Dear North Toronto Alumni,

It is with great pleasure that we present our 71st Maytime Melodies on May 11th and 12th at 7:30 p.m. Our theme this year is Canada 150, and our Friday concert will feature a number of Canadian compositions. Tickets are $10 and are available for select seating. Please contact the Music Department directly to place your order at:
(416) 393-9180, ext .20100
deborah.pady@tdsb.on.ca

Looking forward to celebrating with you!
Debbie

(Foundation Note: This will be Debbie Pady ‘s last Maytime Melodies as she has accepted a position at Earl Haig for next year.)

40th Anniversary of 1977 Senior Football City Championship

On November 5th a reunion took place to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the amazing Norsemen victory in the city championship for Senior Football. The reunion was planned by team members Andy Maize. Hugh Murray and Geoff Reeves, who conjured up the idea during their regularly scheduled “guys nights” over beers in a local pub.geoff-reeves-football-reunion_v7

The reunion was 40 years and 1 day after the championship game.  On November 4th 1976, the Norsemen defeated arch-rival Lawrence Park Collegiate at CNE Stadium, on the all-new “AstroTurf”.  The score was a resounding 63-22 for the NT victors. Ironically, the game took place a few days before the Ottawa Roughriders won their last Grey Cup – also 40 years ago this year.

The reunion was attended by 30 team players, and was also honoured by the presence of team coaches Brock Cromwell, Dave (‘One Knee’) Grace, and Danny Russell.  The evening featured cocktails and dinner, accompanied by original game films and heartfelt speeches. Dinner was followed by an open party of NT friends and colleagues from school year 1974-1980 (a format once known by this crowd as a “Hoedown”) and the festivities went until the wee hours of the morning .

1977champ-team-reunionBefore the party started the team took the attached picture and burst into a rendition of the NT school song. The event was a “Yuge” success and there was some discussion about the 1977 championship win as well…Stay tuned on that one.

Geoff  Reeves

NTCI’s Own Dragons’ Den

As part of its mission to support current students through scholarships and grants, the North Toronto Foundation recently invited students from interested clubs, teams and initiatives to apply for funds from the Foundation. Dubbed the Dragons’ Den by Foundation members, events such as these give alumni board members a chance to meet with current students and get a better sense of what it is that NT students are doing when they aren’t in the classroom. After the evening, Foundation members were left with a sense of amazement and pride, Continue reading NTCI’s Own Dragons’ Den

Emily D’Angelo

Those who attended the 2016 edition of Maytime Melodies, featuring the Mozart Requiem, were treated to Emily D’Angelo’s stunning performance as the contralto soloist. Recognized as one of Canada’s most gifted young operatic stars, Emily graduated from NT in 2012 and furthered her studies in music performance/voice at the University of Toronto. She graduated last spring and earned a coveted position with the Canadian Opera Company’s Ensemble Studio. This fall, she will also be making her debut with the Canadian Opera Company, playing Zweite Dame in their production of Mozart’s The Magic Flute. Her achievements and rapid rise to fame in the world of opera were recently highlighted in November issue of the North Toronto Post. The digital version of the Postarticle can be found at

http://www.postcity.com/Eat-Shop-Do/Do/November-2016/Singer-Emily-DAngelo-is-happily-hitting-some-career-high-notes/

Lorraine Clarkson

Ins Choi

Kim’s Convenience—the new CBC show about a Korean-owned convenience store in Regent Park—has a North Toronto connection! The ground-breaking comedy, which debuted this fall, is based on the play Kim’s Convenience written by NT alumnus, Ins Choi. The play successfully debuted in 2011 at the Toronto Fringe Festival, winning the Best New Play award with Ins both acting in and directing this production. The following year, Soulpepper Theatre remounted the play. An incredible hit, the production won the Toronto Theatre Critics and Best Canadian Play awards, and was nominated for the 2012 Dora Mavor Moore award for Outstanding New Play. After graduating from NT in the early ’90s, Ins attended York University and graduated from the acting program in 1998. Actor, playwright and poet, Ins is performing his celebrated one-man spoken-word play Subway Stations of the Cross at Wycliffe College, Toronto, on Saturday, November 26, starting at 7:00 p.m. For more on Ins Choi, visit http://inschoi.wixsite.com/inschoi

Lorraine Clarkson

Paul Raff

An innovative backyard addition to a typical North Toronto home by award-winning Canadian architect and NT alumnus, Paul Raff, was recently featured in the Globe and Mail (June 3, 2016: http://evykb1pu18t3wms9b2yqgmtt.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/160603_GVR-004_Glencairn-House-Addition_The-Globe-and-Mail.pdf) and the National Post (July 23, 2016). The addition, described as “spirit in the sky from the backyard” and a “theme and variations” is, according to the National Post’s Martha Uniacke Breen, a brilliant combination of Paul’s belief that “there are spaces you design that are visually beautiful, with handsome materials, graceful lines and plenty of style. And there are designs that were primarily guided by the way the inhabitants want to live.” To read more about Paul Raff and the work of the Paul Raff Studio, visit http://paulraffstudio.com/ or http://torontolife.com/style/home/great-spaces-built-to-last/

Lorraine Clarkson

Don Wright’s Legacy Finds a New Home

25 Bright Red Binders

When I took over the care of the NT Archives in the 1990s, they were situated in a former kitchen in the basement of the old school. At the time, I noticed a stack of binders piled high amid the rafters of the storage room. There were 25 of these bright red books, with gold lettering on the spines declaring that they were the Don Wright Collection. I had a huge job just trying to identify and organize the Archives, and so I left the binders to sleep where they were and focused on more immediate tasks.

Who Was Don Wright?

However, I did enquire of the Music Department, Just who was this Don Wright? Continue reading Don Wright’s Legacy Finds a New Home