The Garrison, 1197 Dundas St W
The Garrison is a favourite of mine. Like Studio Bar, there’s a bar in the front, but it is sectioned away from the stage and venue space in the back, which makes the event seem more intimate. Whoever is back there wants to hear the reader (or whomever the performer may be). It creates more of a buzz. There’s a small bar in the back as well. Also, if you missed dinner, you can grab a cheap taco or burrito, and they ‘aint half bad!
The Bell Jar, 2072 Dundas St W
This cute café is a popular spot for intimate poetry readings and other independent literary events. There are amazing treats and drinks. It makes for a good day or evening venue.
Studio Bar, 824 Dundas St W
Studio Bar is a perfect venue space. The front is furnished with seating beside a long bar. The entrance greets guests with a tapas bar where food can be ordered. Then, of course, is the stage venue in the back. People can sit along cushioned walls or stand up close to the star of the show.
Handlebar, 159 Augusta Ave
So hip. So Kensington market. This is a smaller more cozy venue. There’s a small space in the back where the performer can read, and the audience sits throughout the bar. It’s a cheap and easy spot for guests.
Supermarket, 268 Augusta Ave
Another great bar in Kensington Market, this venue has lots of space. There’s a big bar and seating in the front and then the stage sits in the back, slightly partitioned from rest of bar. Keep in mind, if this is a paid event, people can hear and see the stage fine from the bar space… so could be hard to encourage people towards paid space.