To the Barricades, Vol. 19

To the Barricades, Vol. 19

This is the wanderprobe edition of “To the Barricades”, or as some like to call it, vanderprobe.  Related to “sitzprobe”, which is a term used in opera and musical theatre to describe a seated rehearsal—the literal translation of Sitzprobe—where the singers sing with the orchestra, focusing attention on integrating the two groups, our wanderprobe had
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The art of happiness and elixir of sleep

The art of happiness and elixir of sleep

I began re-reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin after it landed in a pile of book titles that were game changers suggested by friends on Facebook.  It was an impressive list with classics like The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari, The Art of War, Getting to Maybe, and Everybody Leads, just to name a
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To the Barricades, Vol. 18

To the Barricades, Vol. 18

Our first foray onto the main stage felt like a preview of cue-to-cue.  Things moved quite slowly as we all got familiar with the traffic patterns and the workings of the actual “trucks” (massive and moveable set pieces) and the “revolve” (the big bridge unit in the centre of the deck).    Figuring out the
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To the Barricades, Vol. 17

To the Barricades, Vol. 17

If a room could tell stories, this room would have a million of them.  The rehearsal hall lay bare and empty as the stage management team completed the move into the main theatre after last night’s costume parade. Over the course of many productions – Grapes of Wrath, The Taming of the Shrew, A Wonderful
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To the Barricades, Vol. 16

To the Barricades, Vol. 16

Ben pointed out that last night was the final time we would be working the show in the rehearsal hall.  I’m not sure how many people picked up on that little factoid as stage manager Steph Link walked us through the schedule for the next two weeks.  I didn’t. We will be in the rehearsal
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To the Barricades, Vol. 15

To the Barricades, Vol. 15

Chuck Smith sat against the wall in the rehearsal hall last night, serenely reading Victor Hugo’s novel that set the dominos tumbling in 1862 which eventually led to the creation of the musical production of Les Misérables, which so many of us are living with in right now.  The spirit of fun, generosity and calm that
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Convergence nears

Convergence nears

When I think of the first iteration of ConvergenceYMM the colour green jumps into my mind.  The decorations, vests worn by the organizing committee and the bright green apples used as the centrepieces for the tables provided the perfect palette for change.  The apples were also pretty tasty, my favourite kind, nice and tart.  And
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Numbers

Numbers

17 50 70 250,000 We are surrounded by numbers – attracted, inspired, angered, and motivated by them.  Numbers rule and define our existence in many ways. I start waking up between 4 am and 5 am.  I know this because of numbers, pumped out by a tiny digital clock that rests on the window ledge
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#SexAtSite

#SexAtSite

Many months ago, Brenda Yamkowy, executive director of the HIV North Society, sat down with me to throw some marketing ideas around about how to bring more awareness to safe sex practices here in the oil sands region.  They had a decent budget and an aspiration to lower the rate of STI’s (Sexually Transmitted Infections).
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To the Barricades, Vol. 14

To the Barricades, Vol. 14

God bless Miss Kim.  The accomplished choreographer came into rehearsal on Friday night and added some flavour to both “The Innkeeper Song” and “The Wedding”.  Many of us fell in love with Kim’s approach during last year’s production of Hometown…The Musical!  My job as the master of the house hasn’t changed much, except to make
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