Romeo; Juliet; N.B.of C. dancers; & the NAO Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

♪ I like to be in America; O.K. by me in America; Everything free in America… for a small fee in America! ♪.

Sondheim’s unsubtle dichotomy about reality facing the ‘Sharks’; Puerto Ricans in 1960’s NYC; packs a punch that equals even the best Hammerstein lyrics. Attending a Brott Festival concert homage-ing musical adaptations of Romeo & Juliet had this scribbler salivating at another opportunity to sub-rosa singing along with Bernstein’s West Side Story. Lamentably, Boris & the NAO played the suite…not the overture. So; no “America”.

Wang and Pereria interpreting SLEEPING BEAUTY

Wang and Pereria interpreting SLEEPING BEAUTY

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“From Broadway…with ‘LIKE’ ” Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin
Hamilton lost a major supporter of everything artistic with the passing of Pauline Zamprogna. It was only fitting that the Brott Festival presented a tribute concert dedicated to her memory and to the music that she so enjoyed. Her son, acting as an M.C. recalled the shows in which she either performed or relished. In other words those she really liked. This writer also happens to be a fan of the Broadway genre.

The soloists; Zambrogna 'mishpocha' and chorus taking their bows

The soloists; Zambrogna ‘mishpocha’ and chorus taking their bows

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The Brott Summer Festival; continues, even further 1

Reviews by Judith Caldwell

FLY ME TO THE MOON”, via the NAO
Boris Brott and the N. A. O. accompanied Chris Jason, as Frank Sinatra, flew us to the moon and back. I have always been a bit leery of musicians who ‘cover’ other musicians, it often makes for a nostalgic and slightly boring evening, but trust the Brott Music Festival to do it properly and give us wonderful music plus a lot of fun.

Sinatra tribute by NAO                                                     Knipple, Brott and Jason

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Toronto Fringe – 2014 3

Our O.A.R. team was able to cover 35 entries (with 3 still to come) of Toronto Fringe 2014. There were a few duds, but overall, the quality; effort, and most-of-all professionalism of the offerings were the equal of the TorFringe administration itself. Many of these submissions deserve an opportunity to extend their runs, and some showed enough promise as to progress mainstream.
For the 2015 Fringe, our reviewing protocol will be to cover only those productions that extend a request and offer ‘courtesy’ (read ‘comps) beforehand.
Terry Metter, editor
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N.A.O. – an OK Eroica; an ‘OMG’ Emperor! 1

Review by Danny Gaisin

                    Brott Festival’s Jacqui Muir, in welcoming the BPAC audience asked that ‘conducting between movements be curtailed…she corrected this to applause which can be distracting. However, I hope she didn’t really want to restrict those of us familiar enough with the scheduled works from slightly tapping out the tempi or even an occasional theme hum. Tonight it was Beethoven’s 3rd Symphony and his fifth piano concerto; two genuine favorites of this scribe.

Arthur Ozolins performing Beethoven's "Emperor" with the NAO

Arthur Ozolins performing Beethoven’s “Emperor” with the NAO

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NIAGARA FILM FEST – last day & wrap up Reply

Review by Judith RobinsonreviewerJudith Robinson

On the opening night of the inaugural Niagara Film Festival, I saw a haunting Masterpiece by the Director of Cinema Paradiso at the Empire Theatres in St. Catharine’s. The festival is turning out to be quite the event and well worth attending. Along with a daily reception at the festival headquarters—The White Oaks Resort & Spa—the film people are quite accessible & friendly.
In the opening film, The Best Offer, two art collectors cook up a deal to buy art treasures for a fraction of the price. More…