On the Other Side of the World brings to the stage the relatively known story of Jewish refugees who fled Hitler's army and landed in Shanghai. That's just one of the events worth checking out January 11-12 in Toronto.

Next Stage Theatre Festival

Jan 8 to Jan 19 Factory Theatre

This year, the festival offers a diverse selection of work that ranges from musicals to political dramas, from dystopian visions of the future to an urban dance show. While some of the shows have appeared at previous Fringe Festivals, most are new works by established Fringe artists who have demonstrated the passion and tenacity to take their work to the next stage.

For the complete line-up of plays, check out the Next Stage Theatre Festival website.

Toronto Poetry Slam

Jan 10 Drake Hotel

This is a twice-monthly spoken word competition, where the judges vote on each poem presented. This ain't your grandma's poetry! The event is all about ideas, with one in particular: people sharing poetry for everyone to enjoy. Best of all, anyone can slam! Just show up to sign up for 730 pm sharp.

For more information on rules and potentially making it to the Toronto Poetry Slam team, check out the Toronto Poetry Slam website.

Hands in the Bowl

Saturdays (10 to 11 AM) Evergreen Brick Works

Sniff, taste, touch and play are key ingredients as you and your little one rolling up your sleeves as you learn to mix, grate, mash and then eat your delicious creations using only your hands!

For more information, check out the Evergreen Brick Works website.

No Pants Subway Ride and Dance Party 2014

Jan 12 (4 PM) Meet at: Downsview Subway Station

55 cities. 29 countries. The annual global No Pants Subway Ride is happening January 12, 2014. (See all the cities participating from Delhi to Barcelona here.) Requirements for participation:

  1. Willing to take pants off on subway
  2. Able to keep a straight face about it

For more information on the Toronto version, check out the event's Facebook page.

In Concert: New Kingston

Jan 11 El Mocambo

This band from Brooklyn blend NYC vibe with Jamaican sounds. To sample some of their music, check out the New Kingston website.