Happy haggis!

It’s Robbie Burns Day, so I’m wearing my clan tartan (kilt) – Fraser hunting tartan. I do this every year.

Of course, I need pants underneath while travelling in this freakin’ Canadian weather. And I don’t go regimental. Ever.

Who’s Robbie Burns? Check him out on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robbie_Burns


Surreality show @ Alumnae Theatre

Hey – In light of the more sobering news of the past week, I decided to hold off on posting about Alumnae’s Stoppard one-act shows (After Magritte and The Real Inspector Hound) opening till this morning.

See the Surreality show post on the Alumnae blog: www.alumnaetheatre.wordpress.com

Also check out the opening night review from the Mooney on Theatre website: http://www.mooneyontheatre.com/2011/01/review-the-real-inspector-hound-after-magritte-alumnae-theatre/

Tender Heart Songs

Some more beautiful music to share with y’all today.

Tender Heart Songs is a CD collection of original lullabies written, arranged and sung by my good friend Kira Callahan. I picked up several copies back in the fall, one for myself and a few for friends with little ones at home. And I can tell you these songs are so beautiful and relaxing, you don’t have to be a small child to appreciate them.

I just saw that the website for the CD is up and running, and includes song clips, as well as info on the CD’s genesis and how to purchase it. Check it out: http://tenderheartsongs.com/Home.shtml

My big fat artsy weekend

Wow. So lots of artsy fartsy past-times this past Friday/weekend, some of which I described in my post on Saturday – namely, the set painting drama at Alumnae Theatre.

Saturday afternoon, I got to read with prospective actors at the callback auditions for an upcoming New Ideas Festival play: Summer’s End (by Francine Dick, directed by NIF co-founder and my pal Kerri MacDonald). Being an audition reader – for me, anyway – is all the fun of an audition and none of the pressure. Kerri had us doing various bits of the play as lawyers, children and even in stage whispers. Big, big fun – and I’ll be following this play throughout the rehearsal process and posting on the Alumnae Theatre Company blog: www.alumnaetheatre.wordpress.com

Saturday night was I Furiosi’s concert My Big, Fat Baroque Wedding with my friends Martha and Fiona – as always, a lovely time. This is an amazing, eclectic and edgy group of musicians – and far from playing period music all serious-like, they have a blast with concert themes/titles, costumes and big goofy fun. And the all-ages audience really digs that. In fact, some of the audience came dressed for a wedding. Check them out: www.ifuriosi.com

On Sunday, I was back at Alumnae Theatre for the producers lunch for the After Magritte/The Real Inspector Hound cast and crew. This also gave me a chance to check out the re-painted floor, which due to the lack of a glaze coat this time, was showing some wear from ladders, furniture and actor traffic. Sigh! We’re going to need ongoing touch-ups, especially if it gets left unglazed. Marysia is back in today – and the two of us may be in tomorrow night, working around final rehearsals/tech to finish the last of the painting (which was put even further behind schedule by the bizarre glaze outcome on Friday night). This all reminds me of a quote about working in the theatre from the movie Shakespeare in Love:

“Allow me to explain about the theatre business. The natural condition is one of insurmountable obstacles on the road to imminent disaster.”

“So what do we do?”

“Nothing. Strangely enough, it all turns out well.”


“I don’t know. It’s a mystery.”

And, of course, I had to watch the Golden Globes – in spite of, or perhaps because of, allegations of payola and backroom deals during the nomination process. Always fun to see nominees being genuinely chuffed about being in the presence of celebs. My favourite speech of the evening has to be Paul Giamatti’s (won for Best Actor in a Drama for Barney’s Version); The Globe and Mail’s piece today has some fine excerpts: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/arts/awards/golden-globes/giamatti-salutes-great-nation-of-canada-as-he-wins-globe/article1872396/  I also loved how Giamatti repeatedly expressed delighted disbelief over receiving the award from presenter Hallie Berry. And after host Ricky Gervais’ joke about the HFPA President, I’m pretty sure he’ll get his wish and not be invited back.

Thoughts go out to the families of actress Susannah York (who I adored in Tom Jones, A Man for All Seasons and Jane Eyre, just to name a few) and playwright Romulus Linney (father of actress Laura Linney, another of my favourites, who won a Golden Globe for The Big C last night), who both died on Saturday.

Till next time…

Drama behind the scenes

For those of you in theatre, film or t.v., you’ll know that a lot of the drama happens backstage or off-camera.

The set designer and production team for Alumnae’s two one-act Stoppard shows – not to mention some of us on the painting crew – got a good dose of drama this morning when set designer Marysia Bucholc returned to the set to discover that something had gone horribly wrong with the glaze on the floor.

Basically, it dried very unevenly – and in some cases, left a milky white film all over the place. So she’s in the process of re-doing the floor. Unfortunately, those of us who helped last night (including my friend Lies – and we were there till a bit after 11 p.m.) are unable to help out today – but when I called Marysia (after receiving an emergency phone call from producer Lynne Patterson), she had already re-done the base coat, had folks on the way and would be okay.

So now we may have to go back to do some odds and ends on Wednesday night, as we’ve lost time today on re-painting and re-lining the floor.

Off to help my friend, director Kerri MacDonald, with her New Ideas audition this afternoon – then meeting two friends for I Furiosi’s concert tonight. They’re an amazing, edgy baroque ensemble – check out their website: www.ifuriosi.com

Great weekend all!