“Ehnes & the H.P.O.; an heroic St. Paddy’s evening”, Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin
I coulda been a contender‘ says Brando in “On the Waterfront”. My mother wanted me to be a doctor or a lawyer, but Daddy, as part owner of a Montreal newspaper never opposed my interest in journalism. Maybe the MD or LL.B would have made me more financially stable, but given the opportunities afforded the so-called ‘Fourth Estate’ such as critiquing  a concert last evening, I wouldn’t change professions for even half of Gates’s wallet!
The Hamilton Philharmonic under artistic director
Gemma New is an amazing conglomeration. Audiences can almost physically sense the affection and respect between musicians and the podium. 

Violinist Ehnes & Conductor New – the Allegro movement of ‘The EROICA’


“CHESS, The Musical”, a creation of 2/4ths of ‘ABBA 1

Review by Terry Gaisin
Q B pawn to d4! Not a coded spy message but an opening gambit. The game of chess was created during the sixth century in India or maybe Persia or perhaps China. It still is popular and such tournaments as Levitsky v Marshall in 1912; Byrne v Fischer in ’56; the Kasparov/Topalov match in 1999 was only out-viewed by the former taking on IBM’s “Deep Blue” in 1996.
The winner of the 1974 Worldvision TV talent show was won by a Swedish group. Two males-Benny Andersson & Bj
örn Ulvaeus were joined by singer/dancers Agnetha and Anni-Frid and by incorporating their 1st initials became known as ABBA. Remember them?

the cast of CCMPs “CHESS, the Musical”


“TOP GIRLS”, an awesome play to undertake Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin
Margaret Thatcher was England’s Prime minister from 1979 to 1990. As a woman who had broken the so-called ‘Glass Ceiling’, she became an instant icon for feminists everywhere. Alas, she proved an exception rather than a new rule. Playwright Caryl Churchill’s 1982 “TOP GIRLS” is an allegorical study about the struggles women have faced throughout history as seen through the eyes of Marlene, a contemporary employment agency mid-manager who has just acceded to a position of responsibility over her male counterpart. The plot is basically broken into four segments that though totally diverse…interconnect.   ‘Awesome’, despite it’s present connotations, is defined

Photo by Jim Smagata (UTM)

Robinson, Clarke; Wu; White; McPherson & Termaat – the “TOP GIRLS”


“COTTAGERS AND INDIANS”; Using humour to ask serious questions Reply

Review by Ellen S. Jaffe

Most of you who are reading this review, and will see Drew Hayden Taylor’s new play, Cottagers and Indians, at the Tarragon Extraspace, are probably closer to “cottagers” (or “settlers”) than to “Indians,” although I hope Indigenous people also see this play, inspired by actual people and events. Taylor, an Anishnaabe, was born, grew up, and lives on Curve Lake Reserve, near Peterborough. He writes in a variety of genres – novels and short stories, plays, television scripts. His work is comedic – but comedy used to spotlight the truth about difficult situations, usually about Indigenous characters and their dealings with “the rest of Canada,” to borrow a phrase.    photo by Cylla von Tiedemann

Barnes & Hoyt in a dramatic on-stage moment


O.C.O.; a concert regretfully missed Reply

by Danny & Terry Gaisin
Mar. 4, ’18
Last evening the Oakville Chamber Orchestra presented an evening of vocal and instrumental classics. Works by Tchaikovsky and Schumann were to be highlighted. No doubt, conductor Charles Demuynck would have prefaced the former’s ‘Serenade for Strings’ by explaining the sonatina format, and undoubtedly would have advised the audience to watch for the reiterations within the work. Hopefully, he would have spoken about the unusual term larghetto elegiaco. Assuredly, the guest soloist’s violin played by Tiffany Leung was faultless.

Bernie Altschuller

        Fifty-five years ago, I was introduced to a close friend of my fiancee’s -Elaine Langer, who was going to be one of Terry’s bridesmaids.  Unlike some of my future wife’s family; Elaine took me as an immediate friend. When she and Bernie Altschuller married four years later; a gracious (and hospitable) foursome developed that has lasted for almost six decades. More…

A “REALLY REALLY” tough play to perform & observe 1

Review by Danny Gaisin

Paul Downs Colaizzo’s 2012 script about the so-called ‘Generation ME’ exposes all the warts and angst of collegiate years by highlighting relationship stereotypes… male/female; male/male; female/female, and the sisterhood/brotherhood bonds. A septet of actors cover all of these via an ingenious coherence of associations. These are exacerbated by each individual’s personalities as well as insecurities. All these ingredients make for a potent dynamic. Difficult to direct; problematical to perform; and certainly arduous and embarrassing for an audience to observe. The plethora of scatological adjectival outbursts aside, observers can’t help but identify with certain characters portrayed on stage. This scribe definitely saw a personal refection in ‘Cooper‘.
Photo by Joseph Taylor

McDonald & Morgan in a dramatic moment on stage