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June 18, 2015
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New School: Of MMVA Snubs and Power Ball Pee Breaks
A new column about the ups and downs of Toronto's young and stylish

photo by Ryan Emberley

Socially, the MMVA weekend can essentially be divided into two parts. The first, Saturday, consists of ‘gifting’ lounges in which media listen to brand reps awkwardly pitch their products in order to score free ‘swag’– things they’ll probably never use, but want in order to feel marginally vindicated about their shitty salaries.

Sometimes celebrities show up, like Cody Simpson who made the rounds to Universal Music Canada’s “Friends with Benefits” and Caesarstone’s “Influencers’ Lounge” with his hunk-of-a-dad in tow.

But it’s not just about the celebrities. Sometimes, innocent media bystanders like Flare‘s Ryan Cheung and myself get coerced into endorsing high-end sweatpants in front of the sort of camcorder I imagine they film Girls Gone Wild with. I may have even performed some sort of happy sweatpants jig. Consider this our preemptive ‘we didn’t mean it’ in case the footage makes it out of someone’s uncle’s basement and into the public eye.

Then there are those who just don’t show up. Lest he miss an opportunity for critics to huff and puff about his pretentious persona, eccentric young designer Adrian Wu – who’s been gallivanting around Europe in an effort to get his work seen by the likes of Dior and YSL – sent an assistant to pick up his swag.

The second part of MMVA weekend – the really painful part – is the after parties on Sunday. The ol’ “Drake is coming! Bieber is around the corner!” routine gets tired real quick in what’s essentially a blur of silicone side boob and spandex. I was on the beat at Universal Music’s official after party at Maison Mercer. The big wait was for LMFAO, but the photo pit was treated to glazy-eyed, sparkly-haired Marianas Trench frontman Joshua Ramsay shouting F-bombs from the moment he sauntered out of an unmarked van.

CP24’s Patricia Jaggernauth arrived just as LMFAO pulled up, and as a result, the red carpet was cleared and she was ushered inside far too quickly for her liking. “Ohh I’m not good enough for the red carpet… I’m just a weather girl,” snarled Jaggernauth as she passed the photo pit.

Nature calls at Power Ball:

At the booze-soaked Power Ball: Quarter-Life Crisis, there was one fashion designer who just couldn’t make it to the bathroom. Not far from the gala’s Harbourfront venue, Project Runway Canada winner Evan Biddell was spotted urinating off the dock into Lake Ontario. 

Mistaken identity:

Former Toronto Star gossip columnist Rita Zekas knows how to start a rumour. She spent Double Cross Vodka’s launch convincing pretty young things that she was in fact Betsey Johnson. Nixon band manager Brock McLaughlin tweeted I actually hung out with Betsey Johnson all night, having no idea who she was. I thought she was just a cougar,” before later claiming he was in on the joke.

Fashion notes:

The MMVA’s were a great night for Canadian designers; Katy Perry dazzled in Vawk by Sunny Fong, Nelly Furtado rocked out in a little lace number from Lucian Matis’ F/W 2012 collection, and Shenae Grimes donned an Angelina-inspired custom Amanda Lew Kee. Even Kardinal Offishall showed up to Universal’s after party in a patched denim jacket from HBC’s Olympic Collection.


Sabrina Maddeaux is Toronto Standard’s style editor. Follow her on Twitter at @sabrinamaddeaux.

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