“MAMMA MIA”; Theatre Ancaster takes a chance… Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin
First saw the Benny Andersson/Bjorn Ulvaeus (ABBA) silliness ages ago when everybody trooped to Mirvish’s King Street theatre to hear, sing & dance to the mega hit. Thought the movie version (Streep/Brosnan etc.) was a disaster. Last night I again felt the excitement experienced in Toronto during the last century!. It’s toe-tapping; titillating; hummable and certainly encourages muted singing along. Well staged; superbly sung & acted and meticulously directed. Ancaster may be a community theatre, but its efforts are highly professional productions. Their 2018 “CHICAGO” made our O.A.R. Top Ten List and MAMMA MIA is a definite contender for 2019.

Cast & crew of Ancaster’s MAMMA MIA 2019   Photo by John Gillett

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Canadian Brass visits H.P.O. Reply

Review by Danny & Terry Gaisin

Two emotional events:- the Hamilton Philharmonic’s musical acknowledgment of Remembrance Day and THE CANADIAN BRASS as guest performers. The former touches both of us as we can remember the days of WWII. Air raids; rationing; slit headlights & blackouts and especially the black sedans that would drive into the neighborhood and disgorge two military types and a priest, minister or Rabbi. That always brought out everyone in sympathy. As for the ‘Brass’ we bought their 1980 album with Leona Boyd & Erica Goodman. Obviously we’ve been fans for decades. Finally got the album jacket autographed. Traditionally, the concert was opened by the RHLI’s Regimental Band.

“The BRASS” and HPO under maestro Giuseppe Pietraroia’s baton

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“THEFT”; Peninsula Players having fun Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

Jimmy Buffett wrote about ‘Changes in attitude; changes in Latitude’; but he was referring to a geographical coordinate rather than a social position. In Eric Chappell’s play – THEFT; two couples who consider each other as best friends, have differing financial positions. Been there, experienced that! The plot describes a weekend at John & Barbara Miles’ country estate. Upon returning to the mansion the quartet realized the place has been burgled and ransacked. All four are unaware that the thief is still concealed inside. When they discover the miscreant, he becomes the catalyst that exposes each of the foursome’s innermost secrets and attitudes within the group.

l-r: Baker; Ingram; Hunt; Nyman & Munroe in “THEFT”

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CZECH TALES; opening concert of 5@1st Reply

Review by Judith Caldwell

The opening concert of the 5 at the First season was entitled Czech Tales, featured  the
AYR Trio;  comprised of Angela Park, piano, cellist Rachel Mercer, plus Yehonatan Berick, violin; playing music of Dvorak and Smetana.  The afternoon began with an Hungarian piece, ‘Scenes de la Czarda No.4’ by Jeno Hubay a noted teacher, violinist and composer who taught the teacher of Berick, who then called him his ‘grand teacher’.  This was performed by Julian Kwon, a young violinist from Oakville who is currently the concertmaster of the Hamilton Philharmonic Youth Orchestra.

Berick, Park & Mercer – The AYR TRIO

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The Glove Thief, history- as drama Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

 As any history buff will know, the mid-sixteenth century in Britain was a time of strife. A queen without an heir; Protestant and Catholic animosities, and politics – with all the intrinsic intrigues; diplomacies; maneuvering; and especially ambition. Theatre Erindale’s presentation of Beth Flintoff’s play THE GLOVE THIEF depicts three of the most powerful women of the period…Queen Elizabeth I; Mary Stuart of Scotland and the extremely wealthy Beth Hardwick , Countess of Shrewsbury. The regal pair and the status seeking ‘Bess’ all interact with ‘Rose’, the title character; and thus through her eyes and thoughts, this play is Brit History 101.
Jenette Meehan & Sarah AbdelRahman in a dramatic moment       photo by Michael Slater
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‘The Cult of DALKHILU’ j.i.t. For Halloween Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

Less than week before the kiddies (& some adults) are out ‘Trick or Treating’; Missed Metaphor Productions has an ingenious and creative play onstage at Passe Muraille’s backstage that perfectly fits the rationale behind next Thursday’s celebration. No Zombies, but a tale about the pen leading to the sword. “The Cult of Dalkhilu” also captures contemporary idiosyncrasies, psychosomatic phobias and alpha/omega personality traits. It also challenges the audience and especially theatre critics because there are so many plot twists that even a hint of the story line would be a spoiler. So, this scribe can only talk about the playwright/director and the individual cast members.

the cast of DALKHILU

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