The Cornwalls’ All-Inclusive Cancun Christmas at the Chemainus Theatre Festival. A review.

The Cornwalls’ All-Inclusive Cancun Christmas at the Chemainus Theatre Festival. A review. Everyone has their favourite family story of Christmas disaster and dysfunction—it’s what makes movies like National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation and A Christmas Story perennial favourites during the holiday season. The Cornwalls (introduced to Chemainus audiences in The Cornwalls’ Countryside Christmas in 2011) embark on an epic misadventure that … [Read more...]

Anne of Green Gables by the Victoria Operatic Society November 24-December 3 2017. A review.

Anne of Green Gables by the Victoria Operatic Society November 24-December 3 2017. A review. When modern life and the busy period leading up to the holiday season threaten to overwhelm, what comfort there is to be found in the quintessential and iconic Canadian tale—Anne of Green Gables.  This spunky orphan girl with fiery red hair has captured people’s attention since the book (written in the 1880s by Lucy Maud Montgomery) was published in … [Read more...]

Onegin by Amiel Gladstone and Veda Hille Belfry Theatre October 17-November 12 2017. A review.

Onegin by Amiel Gladstone and Veda Hille Belfry Theatre October 17-November 12 2017. A review. As rich and luxurious as the plush red velvet curtains draping the stage, Onegin, book, music and lyrics  by Amiel Gladstone and Veda Hille, based on Pushkin’s revered novel-in-verse and Tchaikovsky’s opera, is a marvel of complexity—replete with glorious costumes (Jacqueline Firkins and Alaia Hamer), inspired gypsy-jazz-Eastern European choreography … [Read more...]

A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline by Little Bowes Street Collective October 21-29, 2017. A preview.

A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline by Little Bowes Street Collective October 21-29, 2017. A preview. One of Victoria’s newest theatre companies, Little Bowes’ Street Collective brings A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline to the Teechamitsa Theatre at Royal Bay Secondary October 20/21 and to the CCPA Performance Hall October 27/28/29.  I spoke with co-founders Melissa Young (director of the show) and Alison MacDonald (who performs the role of Patsy … [Read more...]

Red Hot Cole at Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre August 2017. A review.

Red Hot Cole at Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre August 2017. A review. Ah, summertime—the season of film blockbusters, beach books and romantic musicals. Veteran director (and UVic Phoenix alumnus) Darcy Evans in his Blue Bridge début, mines the extensive repertoire of legendary composer and lyricist Cole Porter in this light, frothy--and original—confection. Evans re-imagines the venue as the Roxy Lounge (Brian Ball’s set includes … [Read more...]

Red Hot Cole at Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre. Interview with director Darcy Evans.

Red Hot Cole at Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre. Interview with director Darcy Evans. Director Darcy Evans created a Cole Porter work-out playlist to immerse himself in the acclaimed composer and lyricist’s music as he arranged the tunes for Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre’s upcoming Red, Hot Cole! (August 2-13, 2017). Evans, who graduated from the University of Victoria Phoenix Theatre, and began his theatre career in Spirit of a Nation, … [Read more...]

Theatre SKAM presents SKAMpede July 14-16 2017

Theatre SKAM presents SKAMpede July 14-16 2017 One of my favourite summer-time experiences is Theatre SKAM's SKAMpede.  I love the feeling of the wind in my hair as I zip from show to show. Now in its ninth year this summer festival (formerly known as Bike Ride) introduces audiences to a mobile feast of short works along the Galloping Goose Trail.  Originally meant for audiences who meandered by bike from venue to venue along a series of … [Read more...]

Blackstones and Bathtubs at the Port Theatre in Nanaimo July 2-8 2017. A preview.

Blackstones and Bathtubs at the Port Theatre in Nanaimo July 2-8 2017. A preview. Nanaimo's culture and heritage are the focus of a new musical as local producer Katy Bowen-Roberts (known on lower Vancouver Island for the annual Yellow Point Christmas Spectacular—originally in Yellow Point and due to its popularity, now staged in Courtenay, Nanaimo and Victoria) presents Blackstones and Bathtubs in Nanaimo at the Port Theatre July … [Read more...]

Rock Legends at Chemainus Theatre Festival. A review.

Rock Legends at Chemainus Theatre Festival. A review. Alex Mustakas brings 25 years of experience helming Drayton Entertainment to the Chemainus Theatre Festival with this summer’s blockbuster musical extravaganza Rock Legends (a sequel to his equally popular Twist and Shout seen in the 2015 season). Over an exhilarating two hours and a half hours, the audience is treated to a window in time, framed by an interesting device—it’s 1975 and TV … [Read more...]

The Canadian Collage of Performing Arts 20th anniversary season 2017-2018

The Canadian Collage of Performing Arts 20th anniversary season 2017-2018 The Canadian College of Performing Arts (CCPA) is looking to celebrate its 20th birthday with thousands of its best friends. CCPA’s year-end production, in April 2018 at the McPherson Playhouse will be a celebration of some of CCPA’s best musical theatre performances from the past 20 years and will feature suites by the creative team of Jacques Lemay and Janis … [Read more...]