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A Few Picks from Toronto Fringe - July 3 to 14, 2013

From a (several!) media release:

Picks from Toronto Fringe
July 3 - 14, 2013

Tickets can be purchased the following ways:
• On our website.
• By calling the Fringe box office @ 416-966-1062 x 1.
• In person at the main Fringe Club box office (behind Honest Ed's) starting July 3, 2013.
• In person at the show's venue, starting 1 hour before each show.

Just a reminder that we only sell 50% of the tickets in advance, so there will always be at least 50% of the tickets available at the door!
Please note there is absolutely no latecomer seating.
Tickets: $10 at the door (cash only) Or $11 in advance ($9 + $2 SC, Visa or Mastercard)

HAZARDS - July 5-13
NOBODY'S IDOL - July 4-13
Burnt... and toasted! - July 5-13


We are besieged by hazards, real and imagined, those outside ourselves, and the ones inside our minds - from corrosive substances to not knowing which fork to use; from freefalling into love to meeting your personal Waterloo; from a meteor hitting earth to handwriting that begins to look like your mother’s, even though she’s left-handed and you are right-handed. HAZARDS, a one-woman show created by New York Times best-selling author Mina Samuels, will play at the Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival July 5-13, 2013.

Inspired by the warning signs we encounter every day, HAZARDS dives into the chaotic soup of our minds, exposing our worries, from the personal to the universal, and our deep-seated fear of humiliation if we are “found out.” A performance piece in the absurdist tradition, HAZARDS combines spoken word with sometimes-frenetic, sometimes-beseeching movement, bringing us face-to-face with the question of our own significance in the universe.  And the answer is: YES!

Show information for HAZARDS:
Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse 79A St. George St (St. George just below Harbord)
Friday July 5 – 5:15pm; Saturday July 6 – 7:30pm; Sunday July 7 – 9:00pm; Tuesday July 9 – 3:00pm; Wednesday July 10 – 9:15pm; Thursday July 11 – 12:15pm; Saturday July 13 – 11:00pm


"Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendour in the grass, glory in the flower,
We will grieve not, rather find
Strength in what remains behind."
~ William Wordsworth

Two lovers, haunted by their former romance, see each other again after many years. Have the years apart brought anything more than pain and emptiness?  The Remnants present INGE SNAPSHOTS: MID-AMERICA MID-CENTURY, two of noted American playwright William Inge’s one-act plays - BUS RILEY’S BACK IN TOWN and GLORY IN THE FLOWER - performed as a double-bill at the Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse Theatre as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival July 3-13, 2013. T

Can coming to terms with the past bring hope for the future? Welcome to INGE SNAPSHOTS: MID-AMERICA MID-CENTURY. Playwright William Inge explored the same ground in two different versions of the same story - one a youthful reunion set against the optimism of early 1950’s America, and one through a more mature lens, set against the burgeoning change of the late 1950’s. INGE SNAPSHOTS offers an elegiac portrait of small town life, the fullness of first love and its aftermath. Presenting both plays with the same acting company, in a twist on the old model of repertory theatre, The Remnants ask the question:  How does a reunion change when a pair of lovers reunite later in their lives? How does time affect feelings of loss and regret?

INGE SNAPSHOTS is produced and directed by veteran theatre artist Rod Ceballos (Shakespeare Festivals of Chicago, Cincinnati and Idaho, Virginia Shakespeare Festival, Rose Theatre/Flower City Theatre Festival, The Empty Space Theatre, Fly on the Wall Theatre, BirdLand Theatre). Stage managed and associate-produced by Allison Bjerkseth (Six Acts, Prague Quadrennial).

Show information for INGE SNAPSHOTS:
Venue:     Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse Theatre 79 St. George Street, Toronto (St. George just below Harbord)
Performances:     Wed July 3 – 6:30pm; Fri July 5 – 8:45pm; Sun July 7 – 1:30pm     Wed July 10 – 11:00pm; Thurs July 11 – 7:45pm; Fri July 12 – 1:45pm; Sat July 13 – 12:00pm

Gayatri Productions presents THE VERY VERY GIRL
Created and Performed by Julie Brar

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you… I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.” ~ Maya Angelou

How do you piece yourself together after years of hurt and pain? Can you overcome trauma?  Gayatri Productions presents THE VERY VERY GIRL, a powerful one-woman show by Julie Brar, playing  July 5-13, 2013 at the Annex Theatre as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival. Inspired by real-life experiences, THE VERY VERY GIRL is about  identity and the formation of self.

Stripped. Deprived. Made bare. How do you go from a strict Sikh upbringing to stripping in bars across Canada? How do you navigate the distance between the girl you were, the woman you’ve become, and somehow find your way to the person you want to be? At the age of 15, THE VERY VERY GIRL makes the difficult decision to leave her traditional Sikh family - a move which frees her of abuse but leaves her feeling lost, alone and desperate.  She tries to find her way in increasingly dangerous places, through sex, alcohol, and drugs, working in strip joints to make her way. THE VERY VERY GIRL follows one young woman’s search for freedom … and the many missteps she makes along the way.

Show information for THE VERY VERY GIRL:
Venue:     Annex Theatre 730 Bathurst St, Toronto (Bathurst between Harbord and Bloor)
Performances: Fri July 5 – 8:45pm; Sat July 6 – 4:00pm; Sun July 7 – 9:45pm; Tues July 9 – 2:15pm; Wed July 10 – 1:45pm; Thurs July 11 – 7:30pm; Sat July 13 – 7:30pm
Red Canoe Studio & Raccoon Productions present…
by Jerry Brodey and Robert Morgan

“You gotta figure out what you’re gonna do with the dark stuff. Cause believe me, you got it. We all got it.”

Red Canoe Studio and Raccoon Productions present SOLO: A BOY’S JOURNEY, a one-man show about male rites of passage created by Jerry Brodey and Robert Morgan, playing July 4-14, 2013 at Tarragon Extra Space as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival. Inspired by a true story, SOLO: A BOY’S JOURNEY explores the nature of violence, gender and racism and ways to offer hope to today’s youth.

Two teens in crisis. A nervous social worker. Can anything save them from themselves on this foray into sacred Native land? Welcome to SOLO: A BOY’S JOURNEY, by Toronto-based Red Canoe Studio. A melding of myth and personal history, SOLO tells the tale of two teens in trouble with the law who come together on a canoe trip with their social worker in Canada’s North. This journey leads the boys away from their chaotic childhood and into a world that is both frightening and life-changing. Add a loud-mouthed raccoon trickster and you have a combination of high drama and sharp humour that keeps this one-man show balanced on the edge.

Venue: Tarragon Extra Space 30 Bridgman Ave  Toronto (one block north of Dupont & two blocks east of Bathurst).
Performances: Thurs July 4 – 11:00pm; Sat July 6 – 5:15pm; Sun July 7 – 1:15pm;    Wed July 10 – 11:00pm; Thurs July 11 – 8:45pm; Sat July 13 – 7:00pm; Sun July 14 – 1:45pm

JUST LIFT YOUR FEET by Heather Allin
A woman encounters a dying animal on a lonely road, and realizes she is facing the loss of something within herself. Part myth, part reality, JUST LIFT YOUR FEET is a mesmerizing fable of a woman, a creator, an artist who longs to deeply connect to others, to embrace and embody life… but suddenly realizes the connection, the embrace… is gone.

“Creativity is what gets me up in the morning. It’s the soul and heart of my life and living,” says Toronto actor and emerging playwright Heather Allin. For Heather, living a life without living creatively is a kind of starvation.  “It feeds us, nourishes us, and inspires us. It calls us to relate to others, but more importantly, it calls us to relate to ourselves.” It is this view of life and the importance of the creative experience that is the subject of her new play, JUST LIFT YOUR FEET, due for its debut in July at the upcoming 2013 Fringe Festival.

Venue: Robert Gill Theatre 214 College Street Toronto (College at St. George)
Performances: Wed July 3 – 10:30pm; Fri July 5 –5:15pm; Sat July 6 – 7:30pm; Mon July 8 – 3:00pm; Tues July 9 – 8:30pm; Wed July 10 – 2:00pm; Sat July 13 – 10:30pm

NOBODY'S IDOL by Alexandra Lean
Does everybody really want to be famous?  How far would you go for fame?  Alexandra Lean Productions presents NOBODY’S IDOL, a fun, fast-paced musical created by Alexandra Lean, playing July 4-13, 2013 at the Randolph Theatre as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival. Come and spend 90 minutes with Fame as he hosts the singing competition where he is the grand prize.

A lifetime of fame. That’s the guarantee for the grand prize winner in NOBODY’S IDOL, an irreverent musical parody that dives into the conflict between the “nobodies” and “somebodies” of our pop-culture world. Inspired by this magical promise, misfits and wannabes duel with their voices at the world’s biggest televised competition.  From pop to hip-hop to rock n’ roll, this new musical bursts onto the Toronto scene with gorgeous voices, great dance numbers and a twisted plot that will pin you to your seat – who will have it all? In a world divided between “somebodies” and “nobodies”, who is judging whom?

Venue:     Randolph Theatre at 736 Bathurst St, Toronto (Bathurst at Lennox)
Performances: Thurs July 4 – 8:45pm; Sat July 6 – 5:15pm; Mon July 8 – 12:45pm; Tues July 9 – 6:45pm; Wed July 10 – 3:30pm; Fri July 12 – 5:15pm; Sat July 13 – 11pm

Donna Greenberg's Burnt... and toasted!
Music, dance and the spoken word come together in celebrated singer/songwriter Donna Greenberg’s BURNT…and toasted!, a one-woman show about love…and love gone wrong. Co-created by musician and  lyricist Jordan Klapman, BURNT…and toasted! is playing July 5-13, 2013 at the Tarragon Extra Space, as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival. Inspired by true-life events, BURNT…and toasted! chronicles one woman’s tale of love, loss and her rise from the ashes.

Once burnt, where do you find the fire and passion to rediscover self-worth? BURNT…and toasted! is a one woman musical show based on the life of performer Donna Greenberg. Through her journey, Donna discovers a courage that she never knew she possessed, and with it rises to rebuild a life filled with dreams she had never dared to dream before, where success is the sweetest revenge. BURNT…and toasted! is the story of a joyous mid-life rebirth.

Venue:  Tarragon Extra Space 30 Bridgman Ave, Toronto ON M5R 1X3
Performances: Fri July 5 – 11:00pm; Sat July 6 – 12:00pm; Mon July 8 – 10:45pm; Tues July 9 – 5:15pm; Thurs July 11 – 10:30pm; Fri July 12 – 7:30pm; Sat July 13 –1:45pm

Love. Friendship. Secrets. Fruitful Productions is proud to present BLUE MOON GIRLS, a story of childhood friends and the choices they face when love comes between them. Written by Jessica Lea Fleming, BLUE MOON GIRLS plays July 5-13, 2013 at the Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival. Tickets are available beginning June 17 via, by telephone at 416-966-1062 (ext.1), or at the door.

Julie and Sonya meet as teenagers in the small Métis -French town of Blue Moon, Ontario. Complications arise when they both fall in love with Christian, and sacrifices are made by all. Heartfelt and funny, BLUE MOON GIRLS asks: What is real love? …and perhaps more importantly: What does it cost?

Venue: Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse 79 St. George Street (St. George just below Harbord)
Performances: Fri July 5 – 1:15pm; Sat July 6 – 9:15pm; Mon July 8 – 10:45pm; Tues July 9 – 4:45pm; Thurs July 11 – 9:30pm; Fri July 12 – 5:15pm; Sat July 13 – 1:45pm


What Else Is Hot This Week?

Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company Spring 2013 Toronto Performances

From a media release:

The new season brings
Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company
to new heights and new audiences

March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
April 25-28, 2013 - Annual Toronto Season - World Premiere of Portales

TORONTO : Following on the heels of Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company's (EESDC) 30th anniversary year where its production Aguas/Waters was named one of the top five dance shows of 2012 by NOW Magazine, the early months of 2013 are full of excitement and possibility for Esmeralda and the company, which brings the finest flamenco and Spanish Classical Dance to Toronto stages.

March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
Company dancers Esmeralda Enrique and Paloma Cortés perform Spanish Classical dance with the celebrated Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir for A Night in Madrid featuring the Iberian flavoured music of composer Luigi Boccherini who made his home in Spain. His work is infused with the sounds of Spanish and gypsy folk music.

March 20-24 …

Polina Semionova to Appear as Guest Artist with American Ballet Theatre

From a media release:


New York - Polina Semionova, a principal dancer with Berlin State Opera Ballet, will debut as a Guest Artist with American Ballet Theatre for the 2011 Metropolitan Opera House season, it was announced January 14, 2011 by Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie. With ABT, Semionova will perform Kitri in Don Quixote at the matinee on Saturday, May 21, opposite David Hallberg as Basilio, and the dual role of Odette/Odile in Swan Lake on Saturday evening, July 2, opposite Hallberg as Prince Siegfried.

Born in Moscow, Semionova studied at the Bolshoi Ballet School before joining the Berlin State Opera Ballet as the company’s youngest principal dancer. Her repertoire with Berlin State Opera Ballet includes Odette-Odile in Swan Lake, Nikiya in La Bayadère, Marie in The Nutcracker, Princess Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty, Swanilda in Coppélia, Kitri in Don Quixo…

So You Can't Go: Six Ways To Travel Virtually

So You Can't Go:
Six Ways To Travel VirtuallyTravel is limited for most of us in the world these days. For Canadians, it depends on the province you live in, but with the border to the US still closed, and other options limited at best, virtual travel from the couch can provide at least a view with a difference at a time when you may well need it most. Google Cardboard – VR On A BudgetYou don't need a lot of cash to get into travel via virtual reality. Google Cardboard is a line of VR viewers that are, well, made of cardboard, and are priced starting at $12CAD.If you check out this link, you'll find out how to download the software to your smartphone.At this link, you can get yourself an actual Google Cardboard for a hands-free VR experience. Google Cardboard apps offer a variety of ways to experience our beautiful planet, including Google Earth itself, which can take you anywhere, along with apps to view museums and cultural artifacts, and more.Ascape VRAscape has a huge l…

Harlem Stage Digital Event: A Drop Of Midnight October 13 & 15 2020

From a release:Harlem Stage Digital Event:
A Drop Of Midnight
October 13 & 15 2020A two-part conversation with Jason ‘Timbuktu’ Diakité and his creative team around the developmental process of creating his autobiographical theater project, A Drop of Midnight. In this conversation Jason will take us on his journey to becoming one of Sweden’s chart-topping hip-hop artists and a best-selling author. He’ll also share the story of how a mixtape from Brooklyn traveled across the waters to the tiny village of Lund, Sweden and altered the course of his life forever. We will examine the impact of hip hop music and culture on the globe. How has hip-hop united communities of color globally?  How do you translate a personal story into a universal truth? How do you build a creative team? How has the current climate of social justice informed your artistic practice? Jason will read excerpts from the play and share some of the music. October 13—Part IIn this conversation A Drop of Midnight author…

Blues/Rock: The Cole Patenaude Band - Are You Happy Now? (Independent / 24 July 2020)

The Cole Patenaude Band - Are You Happy Now?
(Independent / 24 July 2020) Buy the CD Big vocals and infectious grooves make up this release from The Cole Patenaude Band. It's modern blues with a classic sensibility, anchored by solid musicianship and upbeat songwriting. 
Keyboard player Dean Thiessen and Patenaude on guitar trade off solos and melodic lines to keep it interesting through a range of bluesy style, incorporating rock and country, with a pop song sheen on songs like For the Money. Would You Be Mine is more Elvis-esque rockabilly, while How To Love is an acoustic song with folky storytelling lyrics and feel. 
Compromise is a standout track, with a snarly guitar line and a churchy organ swelling underneath a nice bluesy beat. Horns aren't credited in the notes, but I swear I heard some on this and a couple of the other tracks. 
As a husband, father, and full-time mechanic based in Langley, British Columbia, finding the time to make his music was a challenge…