H.P.O. – one “Wicked”-ly marvellous evening 2

Review by Danny GaisinreviewerDJG

               For someone committed to attend about 220 cultural events per year; anticipating finales becomes a dogma. However, there are the rare theatrical occasions where this scribe has even re-attended; or concerts so perfect that we dread the obligatory encore. Last evening’s Hamilton Philharmonic’s ‘Pops’ presentation – “Wicked Divas” was such an event!

The wicked divas

Parker, Kraemer & Rozek; the NOT-SO “Wicked divas and their leader

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“Colours in the Storm” (sorry, no banner-line!) Reply

Review by Terry GaisinreviewerETG

There were ten artists who became collectively known as Canada’s “Group of Seven” or ‘The Algonquin Club’. Of these, the most famous was Tom Thomson and he was actually more of an associate than an actual member. His mysterious death is the subject of Jim Betts’ musical “COLOURS IN THE STORM”, and Sheridan’s performing Arts faculty has enlisted him to direct 18 undergrads in a creative, moving interpretive presentation at the Studio Theatre.

Thomson and his Canoe Lake compatriots

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“SPRING AWAKENING”, mature and visceral Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

Change is difficult; change is normally resisted (oftimes vigorously); change usually evolves, rather than precipitates. The mid to late nineteenth century witnessed reformation in the arts, philosophy, science, and design. Frank Wedekind’s 1890 “SPRING AWAKENING, a children’s tragedy”was, and still is, controversial.

Kerr & Foy; interacting

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Renaissance Christmas performed by the Oakville Ensemble Reply

Review by Judith Caldwell

On Saturday evening at Grace Lutheran Church, the Oakville Ensemble gave us a Christmas Concert of Renaissance music sung à cappella.  The concert was taped for later airing by Cogeco™.  It will be aired several times before Christmas.
As in other disciplines, the Renaissance was a time of innovation and change for music.  There was a demand for serious music as entertainment, not just for liturgy, and musical education led to the growth of those educated amateurs who wished to play publicly.

Director Potvin & the Oakville Ensemble singers

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“Lord of the Flies”; L.O.T.’s version is contemporary Reply

Review by Benjamin  Kibblewhite     

For many of my peers, William Golding’s novel The Lord of the Flies has been forever spoiled by uninspiring High School English teachers. Thankfully, the Lower Ossington Theatre’s production, adapted for the stage by Nigel Williams and directed by Darcy Evans, banishes those painful memories. The novel is primarily an allegory for the tenuous nature of civilization, and the strain between easy groupthink and the frustrations of individuality as well as democracy.

The crash survivors creating their own society

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Erindale’s “In the Midst of Alarms”; an interpretive study Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

Il ne pas necessaire d’etre bilingue; but it helps!  UTM’s Theatre Erindale has taken Dianne Graves’ book about women during the war of 1812 and created a stage representation. As the school’s administration did for the 2010- ‘a Child of Survivors’; they re-invited director Ralph Small to work with the students. This result may be totally different, but the effect on audiences will be just as impacting.  Photo courtesy of James Smagata – UTM

U.S. & British soldiers battling, while the non-combative women hide

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