O.A.R.’s “THE TOP TEN”, 2015 2

This is the beginning of our 2nd decade of Arts Review’s TOP TEN (or 16th as our own publishers). As always, choices are made regarding the educational; entertainment or professionalism values of events we attended during the calendar year.           

5 @ the 1st;  a January concert titled ‘Czech Celebration’ made for a warm Saturday afternoon featuring compositions by Dvořák; Pichl & Martinu. The presentations; arrangements and technical expertise exhibited- earned this chamber group their first inclusion in our annual list.

Theatre Unlimited; all of our contributors; due to the ubiquitous nature of ‘The Sound of Music’ know the music & lyrics ad nauseum. But the competence of direction; stage crew and cast – especially the Von Trapp kiddies; made this iteration a standout and proof positive that community theatre can off-times hold its own with the professional producers.

The [large] cast of SOUND OF MUSIC

The [large] cast of SOUND OF MUSIC

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“SHIKSA” a CD worth owning & enjoying Reply

Review by Danny & Terry Gaisin

Editorial disclaimer: – Traditionally, the ARTS REVIEW has avoided critiquing CD’s and especially those recorded by people we know…especially those we like! However, when Lara St. John told us her new album would be titled ‘SHIKSA’ we were determined to listen to what she might include and how she would have the inclusions arranged. Result — do read on…
Shiksa, n; Yiddish (a) the original name for the female version of a well-known electric razor.  (b) The slang term for a maid in an upscale Jewish household.

The SHIKSA album

The SHIKSA album cover/ label

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A Hamilton weekend; – 2 ‘Biggies’ 1

Review by Danny Gaisin
               We’ve been Hamiltonians for a half-decade. Alas, whenever we have guests we invariably show them eight or twelve waterfalls, and then back home. This year, we’ve decided to expand our appreciation of other things local. The Greenbelt Harvest was our inaugural. As suggested by a neighbor, yesterday we visited the vintage Steam & Technology Museum on Woodward Avenue. A commanding sense of déja vu as we approached, yet this would be our first visit!  Our guide Julia, explained the reason for such a recollection…we’re fans of CBCTV’s ‘Murdoch Mysteries’.Hamilton's Steam Museum, aka Downtown 'Toronto' 1900Lori Yates & Drugstore Cowboys, performing

Steam Museum, aka Downtown ‘T.O’ 1900                                Lori Yates & Drugstore Cowboys

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A serious political recommendation Reply

Editorial Opinion by Terry Gaisin
The ONTARIO ARTS REVIEW’s mandate is to promote and critique (positively if possible) things cultural. During our nine years of existence, it has been a rarity for us to venture away from this mandate…especially into the realm of politics.
However, there are certain circumstances where we feel it is meet to exercise our position as Canadians; members of our Province and interested parties within our extended community. We live in Hamilton, but as part of the GTHA, what happens within our protracted society becomes important – for us and our readers.

Terry & ANN; celebrating Canada Day in Bronte

Terry & ANN; celebrating Canada Day in Bronte

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“GREENBELT HARVEST PICNIC”; a learning event 1

Opinions by D. J. Gaisin & L.A. Lobacita

The picnic has been around for 4 years but somehow flew below our personal radar…definitely our loss. This is one amazing production and even more than the incredible entertainment, it’s an educational opportunity. Advice on ‘green’ choices; awareness of local efforts and craft talent, coupled with some personal guidance, suggestions and education made this an unforgettable experience. Even the early uncooperative weather failed to dampen our or our lawn neighbours’ spirits. Fortunately it was drizzle – not downpour ‘cuz we neglected to bring folding chairs or blankets.

Harvest Picnic-ers, dancing to Los Lobos

Harvest Picnic-ers, dancing to Los Lobos

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Oakville Jazz Festival… “whas happenin’?” Reply

Review by Jacqueline CurtisreviewerJacquie
What’s happened to the Oakville Jazz Festival? This year it was thinner than ever. Other than Daryl Struermer and a couple of others, there was such a bizarre mix of lesser known (being kind, here) artists maybe doing jazz, maybe not. There was a focus on non-professional activities, and on the Saturday night, two, count ’em, two ballroom dance demonstrations (actually sales pitches) by two location franchises. This was the Saturday during prime evening time. The event was poorly promoted and hugely disappointing.

Oakvillians downtown but NOT at the Jazz Festival

Oakvillians downtown but NOT at the Jazz Festival

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