Farnsworth Chronicles, 7

Farnsworth Chronicles, 7

The arrival of April means that we are less than four weeks away from the opening of The Farnsworth Invention.  It was fun giving a brief, ever so subtle, gratuitous plug for the show during my TEDxFortMcMurray presentation.  The invention of the television, which is what the play is all about, was my first example
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TEDx – the energy you give

TEDx – the energy you give

Pacing backstage in the moments leading up to my TEDxFortMcMurray presentation, I was doing everything I could think of to get my emotions in check.  “Breathing. Breathing. Breathing,” I texted my wife who was out of town on a course and unable to attend the inaugural inspiring speakers event in our community. I shared my
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Farnsworth Chronicles, 6

Farnsworth Chronicles, 6

As the morning dawns on the day of TEDxFortMcMurray, the cast of The Farnsworth Invention is bearing down on getting off book by next week.  After only a couple of weeks of rehearsals many of the ensemble members have already abandoned their text and are running the show free of that albatross. My character’s esteemed
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TEDx time in Fort McMurray

TEDx time in Fort McMurray

www.tedxfortmcmurray.com I get the sense that the TEDxFortMcMurray presenters are sharing a common experience, one of feeling a stunning mixture of nervousness, excitement, and determination.  We went through a dress rehearsal on the weekend, an opportunity to get familiar with the space and technology at the Suncor Energy Centre for the Performing Arts. To be
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Farnsworth Chronicles, 5

Farnsworth Chronicles, 5

In most ways, I am the interloper in the cast of The Farnsworth Invention, the new guy on the block.  Most of this 21-person ensemble have worked together in the past, either on Chicago or last season’s All Shook Up.  Many of them are also either current or former students of the Keyano College drama
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Centre of Hope Rebrand

Centre of Hope Rebrand

When you’re a local politician you get invited to a lot of special events and the one that was scheduled for early yesterday morning was something to do with the Centre of Hope (COH).  Even as I turned the corner to get to the ballroom at MacDonald Island and ran into Mike Reid, a current
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Farnsworth Chronicles, 4

Farnsworth Chronicles, 4

We began trying to recreate the stock market crash of 1929 at last night’s rehearsal for The Farnsworth Invention.  In many ways, I wish our audience could peer through the fourth wall and observe this process.  Without set, costumes or lights, this ensemble jumps into the frenetic mood that descended on Wall Street on that
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Return of Ian Hill

Return of Ian Hill

Ian Hill, March 19, photo by Paul Jen The return to Fort McMurray by former venture capitalist, current philanthropist Ian Hill following his transformative time here in January during the Leading the North conference was much anticipated.  Many of us gathered at MacDonald Island last night to mix, mingle and absorb the infectious enthusiasm of
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Farnsworth Chronicles, 3

Farnsworth Chronicles, 3

I’m not sure what the better metaphor would be to describe the blocking of this production of The Farnsworth Invention: building a puzzle or playing a game of chess?  Watching director Claude Giroux move the actors around the set for seven hours yesterday, I would suggest it’s a little of both. In the show, you have
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Farnsworth Chronicles, 2

Farnsworth Chronicles, 2

The voice is a muscle. This is a lesson I learn over and over again at the start of a rehearsal process.  After a couple of hours of going through lines my vocal chords begin to hurt.  Scratchy, raw, I carry on without certainty that I’ll be able to keep my voice together. After the
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