Archive for November, 2012

November 30, 2012

It’s a Wonderful Toronto! NTOW

CaptureDon’t know if you’ve heard of National Theatre of the World but you should have by now. They’re an amazingly funny comedy/improv troupe and I’ve liked everything of theirs I’ve seen, from Carnegie Hall to Impromptu Splendor to Scriptease to you name it. Their holiday offering It’s a Wonderful Toronto asks a question I’ve been asking all along, “What if the Ross Petty Panto had more swearing?”

I’ve been seeing hints and posts all over Facebook and the interwebs, but I asked directly what was up. From the info sent to me by the fabulous Naomi : It’s the dress rehearsal for It’s a Wonderful Toronto: The Rob Ford Holiday Spectacular! and Mayor Ford is having second thoughts. The show is an attempt to improve his dismal approval ratings, but Rob thinks the Holiday-themed sketches and songs are showing him in a negative light. While the cast and crew squabble with the Mayor’s image consultant, Ford becomes convinced that the show will torpedo his political career and threatens to end it all by jumping from the balcony of the theatre.

I need to see this.

If you are like me and can’t handle one more Nutcracker or Messiah (as marvellous as they are) then you should go see this. Like I’m going to. Also got some amazing talent in there – Aurora Browne, Brandon Firla, Ashley Botting, Jenna Warriner  and Paul Bates as (former) Mayor Rob Bruce Ford.

See you there. It’s only playing December 11th – 16th, and NTOW always sells a lot in advance. And a reminder it`s in the TPM Backspace which holds 64 people. So don`t come crying to me when it`s all sold out and you have to go to a German expressionist version of the Nutcracker where the audience has to be the Dancing Bears. Don’t even.

November 29, 2012

OAC Podcasts, The Arsonists and Cahoots

The OAC has started doing program podcasts, which is VERY cool – they offer additional info on various OAC programs, interviewing the grants officers etc. I like this for many reasons. Here’s the link to Theatre Programs, and here’s the link to Compass. Go have a listen, they both feature Pat Bradley who is awesome and gives good podcast.

Saw The Arsonists last night –  loved it. Despite knowing in advance that it had gotten great reviews, and others were loving it I did NOT know there was so much music AND a band. Things that make me happy…oh, and the set was GORGEOUS. Off you go to see it, it was really full last night. I’m gonna go read my program again.

Cahoots is having a fundraiser tomorrow night, which sounds excellent. Please join us on Friday, November 30th for an exciting night of fun and games with the Cahooters. From 6pm – 11pm we will be converting the Cahoots Studio Space to a cozy hangout with chili, drinks, snacks and a large selection of boardgames to come enjoy with your friends!
Tickets are $30 (for which you will received a $20 charitable tax receipt) and space is extremely limited so please RSVP to Justine by emailing her at
In the Cahootsalicious tradition we ask that you bring your own unique bowl for chili and to show off to your friends. We hope to see you there. Bring your game face!

Cahoots Theatre Company 388 Queen Street East, Unit 3, Toronto

Not much else to report today. It’s chilly out, put your hat on and find your gloves.

November 28, 2012

Fringe Lottery Results and a New Poet Laureate

(Love spelling Laureate. Just keep spelling)

The Fringe Lottery happened Monday night, and although results were live tweeted, you can click here for the whole list in a row of who was picked out of the hat.

Didn’t get in? Console yourself by attending Next Stage. Tickets here.

Did get in? You need to start Fringe socializing by attending Next Stage. Tickets here.

Toronto has a new Poet Laureate! From Live with Culture:

Respected Toronto-based poet, dramatist, novelist, and professor George Elliott Clarke has been appointed by City Council as Toronto’s fourth Poet Laureate. He takes the reins from outgoing poet Dionne Brand.

“It’s a great honour,” the gregarious Clarke (said). “I am humbled to follow in the brilliant wake of Dionne Brand, Pier Giorgio di Cicco, and Dennis Lee.” Read more



November 26, 2012

Fringe Lottery Tonight!

Apparently Mayor Rob Ford has been removed from office. There are nine thousand other places to read about that, so instead I will remind you that the FRINGE LOTTERY is TONIGHT!

The Lottery Party for Fringe 2013 will take place on November 26th, 2012 at Theatre Passe Muraille! Doors will open at 6:00pm and the event will kick off at 7pm. This event is FREE.

Also on the agenda:

  • More information about the Fringe’s 25 Anniversary season!
  • “Celebrity Pullers” from the Fringe’s 25 year history
  • The announcement of the New Play Contest Winners
  • A re-cap of the CDAP, National and International winners. (FYI: these draws will be live-streamed on Friday Nov 23rd at 2pm and Monday Nov 26th at 2pm. Check our main page for details.)
November 25, 2012

Sunday Round-Up November 25

Before I dive into a three-scripts-to-read day, I’d like to mention I have no idea who this dog is calling. Or why he doesn’t have a cell phone. Or where he got change to make the call.

And so here we are, rounding up last week:

It’s Tuesday – indeed it was.

Clocks Youth and Burgers – Didn’t get to see the Clock the Burger Ball was a great success (search #burgerball) and I’m happy to report the field trip ad designs are in so expect to see them sometime next week.

You Just Proved Advertising Works – well, you did.

Someone asked me the other day who I’ve been working with lately so here you go. I’m still working with Michael on past, present and future stuff for Proud, tying up some social media work for Young Associates, doing the marketing/social media for Expect Theatre and Awake for Next Stage, social media for OCAF, just finished lending a hand to Arts & Lies Productions, working on a strat plan with Small Print Toronto, and still more planning with Math Out Loud. So there you go. Things in the hopper, other irons in the fire, hence the reading of scripts today. Busy and happy with great projects.

Also – an article on Facebook and Edgerank – so everyone calm down. Thanks Rebecca! There’s also a great one in this week’s MacLean’s – have a read. I’m still not clear where anyone got the idea that all their fans would see all their posts all the time. If you had flyers, postcards, print ads, direct mail – would you have thought everyone had seen them? Even if they were up in the theatre you worked out of, or your admin offices? Food for thought.

Have a good Sunday.


November 23, 2012

You Just Proved Advertising Works

Chaperoning yesterday – my friend Robin’s Grade 12 media class was down at Harbourfront taking their media advertising workshop. I will only say this once – I am really envious and would like to know where these field trips were in my day.

They spent the morning doing two things (Tim the workshop leader = AMAZING) – they looked st some ads, discussed what they were for, were they good, bad indifferent, general analysis. Smart SMART young people BTW. Then for the rest of the morning they spent their time designing an ad themselves.

(where these field trips were in my day??)

Lunch break, big lineup to see The Clock, so we didn’t get a chance to. After lunch – lino block printing lesson and they had to design a logo for themselves. I KNOW, RIGHT??

Robin has said she’ll email me their ads once she gets them back from Harbourfront so expect a follow-up post on this. These are not the same students sa I met when we did the Gardiner last year, those were grade tens and these folks are Grade Twelves and I apologize for not making that distinction. These are also the same kids I’m going to do a social media chat with in February and I look forward to it.

Speaking of advertising

BILLBOARD TAX APPEALS EXHAUSTED – SUPREME COURT OF CANADA DECLINES HEARING is recommending that all supporters contact their local councilor and ask how they can make sure funds go towards the arts. I know I will be – it’s a friendly reminder that this revenue is a brand new source, that should be earmarked for arts and culture before it disappears into that quagmire of a line item known as “general revenue”.

(Find your councillor here: ).
Out the door, gonna go see some art and have a meeting or two. Tomorrow I’m going to the opening of Popular Mechanics – New Work by A Shay Hahn at the Cameron House.
Happy Friday!




November 22, 2012

Clocks Youth and Burgers

A full day today  – I’m off to Harbourfront to be a chaperone. A friend of mine is bringing her class to do some sort of workshop and I am tagging along as a responsible adult. I’m going early to get a coffee and check out The Clock. I like going on trips like this, it gives me a chance to do little focus groups on the youth of today, and see what they think of the experience they’re having that day. Plus I already know these ones, we went to the Gardiner last year and they made some pretty amazing commedia del arte sculptures.

Tonight has finally arrived and I’m off to the Burger Ball, which is beer and burgers and live music and I think a really good way to spend a Thursday evening. It’s a fundraiser! For The Ontario Vegetarian Food Bank!

Some Thursday reading in case you are not going on a field trip or seeing the Clock or eating burgers for a good cause –  Lead With Your Heart, Not Just Your Head. Some good advice for managers and leaders out there.

And another site that a friend turned me on to I’ve bookmarked it based on their tag cloud. Enjoy!


November 20, 2012

It’s Tuesday

(I can’t think of a good title. I’m not going to force it)

TAPA AGM yesterday, always good to see other member folks and say hi and catch up. Jim Roe FTW in the category of Best Other Business ever.

Also, the Theatre Development Fund has launched the TDF Theatre Dictionary – a video guide to “theatre lingo” by TDF and theatre companies from across North America, the video on how to use it is below, and here’s the link to the dictionary.

I’m starting work with Small Print Toronto this afternoon, they are a fantastic company and I am excited to be part of helping them move to the next level of being the awesome org they are.

All for now! – Also this is interesting, and probably true.

November 18, 2012

Sunday Roundup – November 18

I don’t even want to think how close we are to  – anyway, about last week.

They Don’t Need You -better have a valid reason about hassling people into your theatre.

Next Stage Festival! – several things you need to know about Next Stage. New info is that passes go on sale, tomorrow I think! Go get one!

A Theatre Post – some stuff about theatre. And the NINE shows that opened last week

Stuff to Read, Stuff to Do, Stuff to Watch

I was invited to a workshop yesterday, the continuation/embiggening of the one I wrote about last January. The piece has gotten so much bigger, in a wonderful way. Many thanks as I am always honored to be invited into the process. I hope Anita continues to keep me posted.

Reminder it’s the TAPA AGM tomorrow.

All right that’s it for me today, I have to go grocery shopping and stuff as I have a guest over for dinner tonight, who is a favourite person. Today’s picture up there should give many of you a vague clue as to who it is.

November 16, 2012

Stuff to Read, Stuff to Do, Stuff to Watch

It’s Friday! Whatever that means to you, be it the end of the week or the start of the week or a day like any other day – it’s Friday!

Next Stage Festival passes go on sale at the top of next week. Since at some drunken point between late December and New Year’s you’re going to resolve to “see more shows” in 2013, here’s the deal. Go buy a pass now while you’re still pre-holidays flush and then when it’s New Year’s Eve you can confidently say you’ve already started your resolution, and then when Next Stage hits two days after the New Year, you’ll have cured your champagne headache, already HAVE tickets and still have the cash for a beer in the tent.
I can’t help you any more than that – wait yes I can, at this point I am recommending you see Expect Theatre’s Awake and Charlotte Corbeil-Coleman’s Sudden Death. You’re welcome.

Speaking of the holidays and January and cold, Carly Maga has written a really good piece in the Grid about our attempts to be Broadway North – “If Toronto is Broadway North, then we might as well give in and declare Canada “America North.” That’s not to say we haven’t had wonderful commercial theatre productions travel through Toronto. But theatre tourism here just isn’t what it used to be. It simply doesn’t make sense to focus on pleasing tourists instead of locals.”

Across the ocean Danny Boyle is accusing Maria Miller of an “outrageous snub“: “Not one of those [artistic directors, including Hytner] has been even approached by this woman,” he said. “That is outrageous. This is cultural life of our country. She is the minister of fucking culture. I mean, come on.”

Found this video on Facebook courtesy Brendan Healey and the fine folks at Buddies – Sacred Geometries. “Theo designed all the artwork for Toronto Workshop Productions. He passed away earlier this year. He’s a vital player in our city’s rich theatre history and this piece shows just how stunning his work was.”

Happy Friday!

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