“Little Women”; spunky thespian opportunity Reply

Review by Terry GaisinreviewerETG

“Little Women” was the category that my husband insisted upon before accepting any blind dates. I guess being vertically challenged has its benefits too. Louisa M. Alcott wrote a novel back in 1868 about four sisters during the Civil War that was part of my pre-teen bibliography. The heroine is spunky Jo March. Watching the Sheridan Theatre performance, I kept thinking of the famous Mary Tyler Moore show episode where Editor Lou Grant states “You’ve got spunk – I HATE spunk”!

The March's & their neighbors of Concord Mass.; circa 1863

The March’s & their neighbors of Concord Mass.; circa 1863

More…

Sheridan’s ‘HELLO DOLLY… ♫ It’s got ‘Elegance’ ♪ Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin
               Thornton Wilder’s “Matchmaker” is an outdated descriptive (except for some Southeast Asian cultures) that’s been replaced by such websites as E-Harmony™. However, the story and concept can still bring on a touch of nostalgia, especially if modernized by Broadway’s Michael Stewart & Jerry Herman. Hello Dolly is the musical account of Dolly Levi; the eponymous ‘Shiksa with a Yiddishe kop! Director Avery Saltzman has fortuitously fashioned an interpretation that has only heroes/heroines…no villains.

The Yonkers citizens of HELLO, DOLLY

The Yonkers citizens of HELLO, DOLLY

More…

H.P.O. a “Top Ten” contender evening 6

Review by Danny GaisinreviewerDJG

After two consecutive years of inclusion in the O.A.R.’s Top Ten listings (2011 –Sommerville, & 2012 under guest Matthew Kraemer of BPO); a two-year absence. Last evening’s concert under podium-candidate Stilian Kirov and guest soloist Blake Pouliot is a sure-fire contender for inclusion in our upcoming list! The concert was a technical, emotional, and performance gem. Only superlatives will do to describe any of these production aspects. Each of the three selected works demonstrated a specific facet of an orchestral concert.

Blake Pouliot, Yrs.truly & Stilian Kirov; post concert

Blake Pouliot; Yrs.truly & Stilian Kirov; post concert

More…

‘Piano Solitary’; a delightful teacher/pupil recital Reply

Review by Judith CaldwellreviewerJudith

On Saturday evening, Angela Park gave a piano recital which was prefaced by a performance by one of her students. Ian Chan is a 13 year old who lives near Toronto and had lessons from Park whenever she was home from her duties at Indiana University. Now she is back in the Toronto area the lessons have become more regular. Chan is not just an accomplished pianist; he also won the prestigious RCM Silver Medal for violin and plays percussion in the school band – an extremely talented young man.

Angela Park & student

Angela Park & student -Ian Chan

More…

‘YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN’; it’s really Alive Reply

Review by Danny GaisinreviewerDGcolor

Considering the gamut & levels of theatre that critics have the opportunity to witness, most of us 5th Estate types categorize or pigeon-hole the various genera; naturally, leeway is afforded to amateur and community ensembles. Clarkson Music Theatre’s YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN requires no such latitude…it’s as professional as any mainstream company; Shaw, CanStage & Stratford included! This musical (& very much alive) version of Mel Brooks’ 1974 movie hit is even more fun than its film original.

Dr. Freddie Frankenstein & his entourage

Dr. Freddie Frankenstein & his entourage

More…

The Massey Murder; still a spellbinder 1

Review by Danny GaisinreviewerDGcolor

The shooting of Charles ‘Bert’ Massey in February of 1915 was an epitomic ‘cause celebre’, He was a MASSEY, albeit not well-liked by the pater familias; and Carrie Davies was his virginal eighteen-year old housekeeper… the same age as young Bert was when he impregnated his wife and had the son whose pistol was the instrument of Bert’s death.
The family was away and Bert decided it was time to “do” Carrie. She resisted and the next day; in fear for her chastity – ‘blew him away’. Photo by James Smagata

the "Massey Murder" cast's representation of an old Miele letterpress printing operation

the “Massey Murder” cast’s representation of an old Miele letterpress printing operation

More…