Calendar Girls - The Only Thing Missing Is George Clooney
- Written by Trish West
By Tim Firth
Directed by Heather Davies
October 16- November 10th
There are comedies that make you laugh out loud and dramas that bring tears to your eyes. Calendar Girls gives the audience the opportunity to do both -- and then some, because there are also moments within this play that will have you laughing so hard you cry.
This play is based on a true story with characters based on some very real people. Within the first 5 minutes I believed in these ladies on stage, in their relationship and support for each other within their group. Each character was distinct in her personality – the difference was defined in their body language as clearly as it was seen in their individual costumes. They were real to many of the women watching in the audience and gave us the opportunity to relate to their individual personalities, situations or conflict. We understood the courage it took for each of those ladies to bare it all.
I am interested to know how the men reacted to this play as I am sure they could see a glimpse of their wives, mothers or even teachers within these characters.
After watching the ladies during a hilarious photo shoot for their WI Alternative Calendar during Act 1, we understand their hesitation, fear, pride or awkwardness…successfully giving weight to this story. Their actions not only raised enough money to buy a new sofa for the hospital waiting room, but enough money for an entire new wing in the hospital. Another moment that I loved was during the letter scene in act 2…touching with humor – the lighting, props (letters) and delivery of the lines pulled together beautifully.
Brigitte Robinson had great energy, timing and strong presence in the role of Chris on stage. Sarah Machin Gale was a delight to watch as Ruth, especially during a turning point for her character seen in Act 2. A slight shift in body language and facial expression seen during David Warburton’s exit was bittersweet and one couldn’t help but feel bad (despite our laughter) at the awkwardness Lawrence (Andy Pogson) experienced during the ladies' photo shoot.
“Don’t touch the buns!”
The set was simple with wonderful detail and scene changes that were smooth and did not take away from the moment. There were fun moments when the costumes were a surprise and creative props used throughout the show added to the fun!
Accents felt natural, even during those moments where it was difficult understanding some of the dialogue. I imagine it would be the same situation if I suddenly found myself in the middle of Britain trying to follow a conversation.
Blocking was wonderful during the photo shoot – I was impressed with each of those ladies baring it all! In the second act, I did not understand why Ruth kept moving off the stage out of sight while setting up to return the badminton bird. It was distracting having her disappear and appear during the conversation right up until she moves back into view to give a wonderful final shot.
If you are looking to see something to make you laugh, cry or laugh ‘til you cry – mark your calendars to go see this show at the Grand! It is an inspiring story about friendships, a legacy and a celebration of being alive.
"The flowers of Yorkshire are like the women of Yorkshire. Every stage of their growth has its own beauty, but the last phase is always the most glorious. Then very quickly they all go to seed.” – Chris, Calendar Girls
Trish West is currently playing on stage as Pamela for Elgin Theatre Guild's production of The Fox on the Fairway Oct 18 - 28th. She is also looking forward to her own play Skin Deep being performed as a staged reading for Theatre Starts Writers Springboard Project this Nov 9, 10 in Newmarket ON... by the way - she is on day 319 of her photo a day challenge.
Scorched: a mystery unravels slowly with some masterful performances
By Wajdi Mouawad
Western University Arts and Humanities Students’ Council
Directed by Jessika McQueen
Played by Scott Beckett, Calum Beedling, Kierston Drier, Rebecca Factor, Marko Kljajić, Joshua Lerner, Samira Matan, Ashley Patenaude, Mark Prince, Katharine Dos Santos and Helen Wrack-Adams
The Arts Project
April 3–6, 2013
Originally written in 2003 under the French title Incendies, Scorched chronicles the journey of twin siblings Simon and Janine, as they carry out the unexpected last wishes of their mother, Nawal, who has spent the last five years of her life in self-imposed silence. According to Nawal’s last will and testament, the children are given two letters, one to deliver to a father they had believed dead and one for a brother they never knew existed.
Boston Marriage: strong cast with sharp, witty dialogue
By David Mamet
Produced by The Hour Glass
Directed by Kate Fenton
Cast: Caroline Dolny Guerin, Claire Lautier & Katherine Rayczak
McManus Studio Theatre
April 3-7th, 2013
Wed – Sat 8pm, Sun 2pm.
Originally used in the 19th century to describe two women living together, a Boston Marriage still is the term used to describe two women who decide to live together in a marriage-like relationship. The relationship between the women is not necessarily sexual but does involve a committed friendship. The relationship in this production came across as the latter despite the sexual banter found within the lines.
delilah - heartwarming and humourous
A Premier Production
Written By Len Cuthbert
Directed by Desiree Baker
Played by Tammy Vink (Jade), Heather May (Delilah), Ryan Cole (Mick), Ellena Grant (Dee-J)
YFC London Youth Centre Theatre, 254 Adelaide St. S.
April 3rd, 5th, and 6that 7 p.m., matinee on April 6th at 2 p.m.
delilah, now playing at the YFC London Youth Centre Theatre, is the full-length version of the London Fringe Festival play which received a nomination for Best Original Script from both the DISH Awards and The Brickendens. And a really great script it is! Issues of child abuse and neglect, the meaning of ‘family’, coming of age and the difficulties often associated, the right to live as one chooses, and the right to die as one chooses are just some of the serious themes dealt with in this sensitive, heart-warming, and often humorous story.
The London Artists’ Studio Tour 2013: An easy way to enjoy art
The highly successful London Artists’ Studio Tour is celebrating a major milestone this year – its 20th anniversary. On the weekend of April 12, Londoners will once again be able to visit artists in their studios and see how they create their works. It is an easy and relaxing way for art lovers to view a wide variety of art, browse leisurely, ask questions, see demonstrations, and make a purchase.
This year, 27 artists are participating in the Studio Tour. They represent almost every field: painting, jewellery, pottery, metalwork, sculpture, textile, weaving, woodwork, and glass. By far the largest contingent is painters, with 13 in total. Working in oil, acrylic, watercolour, coloured pencil, charcoal, pastel, and mixed media, their styles range from abstract to impressionism to high-realism.
Painter Kevin Bice co-founded the Studio Tour with textile artist Lorraine Roy, rightly predicting that Londoners wanted more interaction with local artists and to learn about the processes involved in making art. This year, the Studio Tour’s organizing committee includes Bice, potter Chris Snedden, coloured-pencil artist Beth Stewart, painter Margarethe Vanderpas, wood-turner Doug Magrath, and painter Corinne Garlick.