Upcoming hiatus & news

Photo by Jens Lelie on Unsplash

 

Hi all – Hope 2020 is being good to everyone so far!

life with more cowbell celebrated its ninth anniversary earlier this month and—counting two years blogging for Alumnae Theatre Company—that means I’ve been blogging about theatre for 11 years now. Time flies! It’s been an amazing 11 years, reviewing remarkable, mind-blowing theatre; shouting out Toronto’s rich and vibrant literary, visual arts and music events; and interviewing and getting to know various artists.

When I first started the blog, I had a permanent full-time office job, so I was able to put in the requisite time and energy on an unpaid after hours/weekend passion project; and, since its inception, life with more cowbell has grown in both readership and inclusion on media lists. Over the years, I’ve considered various ways to ‘monetize’ the blog, but in the end decided to keep it free and without strings attached.

A couple of things have changed since the birth of the blog. First, I was laid off my full-time job almost four years ago; and I’ve since become an accidental freelancer/contract worker (copy editing, proofreading and writing, in addition to working as non-union voice-over talent) as I continue to search for permanent employment. Also, as much as I’ve enjoyed shouting out the Toronto arts scene, especially theatre, I’ve found that I’ve been spending most of my free time writing about other people’s art instead of making my own. For a while, I considered that writing about other people’s creative work was my creative work. But after performing in Andrew Batten’s last play The Sad Blisters and exhibiting in ARTiculations’ 2019 Curio Shadow Box Show last year, and a day on location, acting in an indie film adaptation of a novel couple of weeks ago, I realized I really miss working and playing in that creative space.

So, I’ve decided I need to make a change. And to that end, I’ll be putting life with more cowbell on an indefinite hiatus as of February 1 as I ponder a new direction for myself and the blog. I already have a few review bookings coming up (Shakespeare BASH’d’s Cymbeline and Toronto Irish Players’ Many Young Men of Twenty in February; and Discord and Din’s Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again. in April); I intend to honour those commitments—but, otherwise, I won’t be doing any reviews in the foreseeable future.

I’ve thought long and hard about this. In fact, it’s come to mind every New Year for the past few years. And even though I won’t be reviewing, I’ll continue to broadcast boost shows and performances/events on social media; and tweet, share and post about performances, events and exhibits I attend. When I return to the blog, I’ll provide an update on where we’ll be headed next.

To my readers, thank you so much for your feedback and support throughout the years; and big thanks to all the marketing/PR and production folks for including me on their mailing lists and inviting me to see so many amazing shows. The blog and I aren’t going away—I’m just hitting pause as I prepare for a return with a new direction. And I will keep shouting out Toronto’s rich and vibrant arts scene no matter what.

Cheers, Cate

 

 

 

Toronto Fringe: Sexy, saucy fun times as one young woman gets her tassels on in Becoming Burlesque

Untitled-4It was some cheeky fun times at Toronto Fringe last night, as the Al Green Theatre (750 Spadina Ave., southwest corner of Bloor St. West and Spadina) was transformed into Babylon, a burlesque cabaret featuring the music of hot local Toronto bands and even hotter dancers. This is Becoming Burlesque, written/produced by Jackie English, co-directed by English and Sebastien “Toro” Marziali, and choreographed by Pastel Supernova.

When a high kick goes awry and a dancer is injured, a helpful female audience member who retrieves a stray costume piece finds herself with a new job when the girls take her under their collective wing. Starting as a kitten (the gal who strikes discarded costume bits), she learns how to walk in heels and work the revealing costume, eventually finding herself in the middle of a dance number. Caught up in the choreography, she’s a natural – and her burlesquification continues under the watchful, supportive eye of her new family until graduation day – and the kitten grows up and gets a feature spot of her own.

Becoming Burlesque features scenes/choreography from Pastel Supernova’s upcoming indie film Love Letters Cabaret (the live cabaret of the same name runs at Lula Lounge). Featuring fabulous and entertaining performances from Kasia Rheann aka Minou, Amber-Kelly Mackereth aka Azura, Knox Harter, Julie McLaughlin aka Revel, Sweet Rosie Me, Thrasher and Liana Lewis aka Petra – and English as the new girl – Becoming Burlesque treats the audience to some hot good times, with scintillating moves, and plenty of opportunities to whoop and woot their appreciation of the performances. These women come in all shapes and sizes – and all are beautiful.

It’s some big, sexy, saucy fun as one unsuspecting young woman gets her tassels on in Becoming Burlesque.

Becoming Burlesque has one more performance at the Al Green Theatre: today (Sun, July 12) at 4:00 p.m. So get yourselves down there and cheer on the girls! The house was packed last night, so if you haven’t pre-booked your ticket, you best get your pretty butts to the venue box office early.