Archive for September, 2012

September 30, 2012

Yes and No

A favorite poem ends the first stanza in “yes”.

BlueTrueDreamI’m equally fond of the comeback, “What part of the word ‘no’ do you not understand?”

Stephen Covey of Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (I always say the title real fast) says it’s easy to say “no” if you have a burning yes.

A friend says, you have to say “no” before you can say “yes”.

Where does maybe come in?

Here’s the poem

September 30, 2012

Leaving WOTS

Leaving Word on the Street, I pause briefly at the stop sign that says RED. Lots of us fleeing the noise of the strike interrupting the poetry readings. I realize the street is still blocked off – tents and barriers. So I cross. Thinking disdainfully of the pedestrians who remain on the corner awaiting a green light.

As I near the other corner, a motorcycle whizzes down beyond the barriers and surprises me.

Are the pedestrian standbyers disdaining me now?

September 16, 2012

Fringe 19, 20, 21, 22, and 23

Took the grandkids to Plasticity Now (#19) and didn’t blog because we had a sleepover at Grandma’s house and Grandma fell asleep about 5 minutes after the kids.  I liked Plasticity Now and I *really* liked finding out what you can do with 2 overhead projectors.  I gave one away years ago when I thought the whole world had switched to powerpoint. dang!

20 and 21 were Till Death Do Us Part and Zanna Don’t at CBC – and that was to have been the end of it. They were both so incredible, we just kept on going.

Headed to Edible Canada to try to catch the last Appy Hour and they were sold out. Never mind, we had the roasted squash risotto and beet salad.

Then off to Pirates? for 22 (the question mark is a key part of the title, I believe).

23 Where is my Flying Car? – even though it made us late for the awards night, we were glad we’d seen it.

and by hanging around long enough we actually got into awards night and then seats three rows from the front.

How was your Fringe?

I saw 6 of the 10 pick of the fringe shows.

Will I see the others? Will I go to the Suburban Motel hold over? Fischer and Grim at Cultch in January?

only time (and energy) will tell….

September 14, 2012

Fringe 16, 17 and 18: It would be hard to find 3 more different shows.

After my last venue captain role, I headed immediately to Edible Canada for the daily Fringe special of appy and drink for $10. Oh, yum. I’ve learned to love that place.

Then we went off to Welcome to My Wake. Haven’t had time to process so not sure what I think about it, other than it’s classic Fringe: a one-person show about important events in the performer’s life.  It’s easier to comment on minor technicalities than the overall impact – I agree with the reviewer that wasn’t really happy with the pauses where the performer had to adjust the music and do stage management that got in the way of the flow. Overall, she’s clearly very talented. I’ll stay tuned. Oh, and her parents were in the audience, which was an interesting sub-plot.

Then to Intrusion – which my companion and I liked a lot. It was just 30 minutes and started and ended on time. When I got the form saying it was a work-in-progress and they’d like our written comments, I went: oh oh. this is something that’s not done. But it’s sufficiently done – and done well – to enjoy. Recommended.

The shortness meant we easily also managed to throw in a third show: The Donnelly Side Show (which I at first thought was a Slide Show.

After that I didn’t even have the energy for the Fringe Bar. I’ll be asleep within minutes but met a friend tonight who’s been following my blog posts, so thought I could keep it up for another two days.

Oh, btw: Temple of Khaos is off the list for the grandkids and me. Not so much because of the sexual content (I figure it’s Grandma’s job to expose kids to things their parents might not) but because of the responses from people leaving the theatre.

Plasticity Now might be the only show for tomorrow.

More then.

September 13, 2012

I love my Kick-Ass pass – Fringe Play #16

Venue captain at Alder Bay Bridge again – our job went very smoothly in that they’re short plays with small audiences. Minor issue is that play #1 goes longer than expected and although play #2 is shorter than advertised, tonight it started before play #1 finished, which then meant play #2 was still going when play #3 started. Because I think it’s good for the extra ticket seller to see shows, in this case it was a mistake in that I became the usher for play #3, leaving ticket seller #1 (venue captain material, that one!) at the table guarding all the stuff.

Unless you’re going for the Kick-Ass pass next year this might not matter at all to you.

For my post-volunteer; post-snack; post-wine show I did Two Blondes With a Passion Do Death in Venice.

Turns out I was in the majority of those who had actually never read Death in Venice and it turns out I had absolutely no idea what it was about.  I also didn’t recognize the blondes as blondes, as they’ve greyed or darkened beyond blonde.

While nothing like what I was expecting, it was a pleasant way to end the evening. And the Fringe is all about surprises, right?

Here’s the Edmonton review in case you want a glimpse about the production to decide whether with 3 days left in the Fringe whether you’re going to add it to your dance card.

Friday – heading to 3 plays after an early vollie (that’s what they say for volunteer) shift that ends just after 7pm. See you at the Fringe bar?  or Welcome to my Wake, Intrusion and the Donnelly Side Show (this involves getting from one theatre across the street to the other in less than five minutes. Wish us well!

And so to bed, perchance to dream … in hip hop!


September 12, 2012

VanFringe #14 and #15 – but OK I met someone tonight who’s done 31 shows!

Last night: She Has a Name at the Firehall. 90 minutes of high drama, fabulous acting, important story executed extremely well. I can’t stop with the hyperbole. The leads – but really everyone – were top notch. I can’t say enough about it. Only warning: it’s pretty dark and hard.

Tonight, after venue captain at 3 outdoor shows, headed off for a lamb donair and amber beer to say Hip! Hop! Shakespeare.

This one is a generational thing, I think – although you have to be at least a little disposed to both Shakespeare and Hip hop. People my age came wondering how would the hip hop part and (some) of the younger people came liking hip hop and wondering how the Shakespeare part would work. Extremely well done – but me – I missed a lot of the hip-hop references. Got most of the Shakespeare parts though. Took the playlist home. Might wander around Youtube to figure out what I missed.

Four days left. Tomorrow I’m booked for Two Blondes, Friday I hope to fit 3 in after a quick stop at Edible Canada for Appy hour. Saturday two with the grandkids: Plasticity Now and Temple of Khaos – both have been cleared with the parents.  Sunday off to CBC to check out Till Death Do we Part and Zanna Don’t.

Two dozen shows – I wonder if I get a badge or something.


September 10, 2012

Fringe Show #13 – Not unlucky at all – Underbelly at Waterfront

Venue Captain at Firehalll tonight. missing a volunteer and an almost sold-out show for the first show. She Has a Name – people were wow’ed by it – I look forward to seeing it tomorrow after my shift at the Firehall. This is 2 for 2 being short a volunteer at the Firehall and all but one it was their first time as a volunteer.  Challenging.

Second show – bad for the performers – but good for the venue captain – only had about 20 or so in the audience.

Talking in code on the radio phones is not my favorite part of this job, but I’m getting better at it.

Anyhow, since I’d seen Riverview High and Suburban Motel down Hastings at the Waldorf was sold out (I think it’s sold out for the rest of the Fringe actually), I headed to Granville Island. Got a ticket for Underbelly at the Waterfront. Got a beer and a lamb donair and watched some great improv to old movies on a screen. Checked into the Volunteer Centre (Vollie Centre to us vollies!) – no doughnuts and the coffee was 30 minutes away.

The folks at the Info Centre in answer to what they’d heard or seen of Underbelly was most people raved about it and one didn’t.  After seeing it, I can see why. It takes a fair bit of concentration. And even though I was front and centre, it was a little late in the day to really concentrate. The guy’s so talented and the words (polysyllabic many) roll off his tongue and I love how he plays with the words.

I’d say – go and love it – and don’t bother to concentrate hard enough to catch every little thing.

It’s the kind of piece I’d love to be able to read the text of afterwards. There were some great lines.


September 9, 2012

Fringe 9, 10, 11, 12 – rained out or I might have done more

No volunteer shift today so it was planned as a big Fringe day. Started out at the Cultch for Dream Warrior – amazing costumes – but expected a lot of the audience (how many people are conversant with Derrida, Karaoke, Sci-fi and Casablanca?)

Took ages to get by bus to Granville Island – partly because I was standing at Howe Street when my cell told me no buses would arrive till 4am!  and then back to Granville, when although the cell phone *said* buses were coming, they clearly weren’t.

So missed Recess – about the teacher we don’t want to be or have – I’ve met the actor in the lineups, she seems very sincere and is indeed a teacher.

Went to Hard Times which was good, although I like my fringe a little fringier.

Loon was of course amazing and sold out and instantaneous standing ovation.

In spite of the rain we did one of the site-specific pieces under the Alder Bay Bridge – ReLapse. Partly because I’m the venue captain at that site on Wed & Thurs and wanted to see where the sites were and what the issues were.

These two women have got to get the trooper award – they were totally game to go ahead “rain or shine”. We all got given blankets that we wrapped around ourselves rather than used to sit on (the normal dry-weather use), but they were exposed to the elements. At the end I said: If I’d known what the piece involved for you, I never would have spoke in favour of going on with the show!

I’ve done my Fringe blitz. From here on in, it’s probably one show a day.

I told someone I had a fringe hangover – they said: Oh, from the fringe bar?

me: No! From too much theatre! I couldn’t get to sleep last night with all these characters fighting for space in my mind.

But most of us know that hangovers are often worth the price.


September 8, 2012

Fringe 5, 6, 7, 8 – What I did on Day 3 of the Fringe

Whew. Exhausted. A four-hour shift as venue captain at Revue Stage. 3 different venues on the first three days with largely brand new volunteers for a brand-new volunteer (me) is a bit much. If you’ve never volunteered at the Fringe and decide to – pick your first 3 shifts (at least) at the same venue doing the same role. And maybe avoid opening weekend – things settle down by Monday.

Anyhow I’m totally using my Kick-Ass pass. Attended four – count ’em – shows between 4:30 and 11:30pm tonight.

Burned at the Steak – brilliant!

Fishbowl – ditto

Felony – wow! (but regularly sells out – only 14 allowed on the trip around the island starting at Big Yellow Crane)

Slut (r)evolution – also brilliant

All very different, so I can’t compare, but I’d recommend them all. I’d have to know more about you, dear reader, if you wanted me to pick only one for you to attend. Carmyn (the slut mentioned above) encouraged us all to spread the word of mouth, so although I’m tired, I decided I’d blog, tweet, facebook before falling asleep.

Do the Fringe. It’s amazing!

September 8, 2012

Mary’s Fringe lineup for Saturday

Maybe I’ll see you on the Island today.

I’ll be volunteering as venue captain at the Revue stage 12-4pm – drop by and say “hi”.

Ne Me Quitte Pas: Piaf and Brel – Saturday Sep 8, 2012, 1:25 PM
Venue: Revue Stage
This woman can sing! She dazzles lineups by roaming around giving out her postcard and breaking into song. She’s also “Nell” and encourages knitters to bring their knitting. I’d say if you like music these are two great picks
Hard Times! – Saturday Sep 8, 2012, 3:10 PM
Venue: Revue Stage

It’s half-price today. That’s all I know.

Then I’m going to play at the fringe.
Burnt At the Steak – Saturday Sep 8, 2012, 4:30 PM
Venue: Performance Works

I’ve heard this one is getting great reviews. Including someone who reviewed shows that played Victoria and are now here had it as a recommendation.

Fishbowl – Saturday Sep 8, 2012, 6:30 PM
Venue: Performance Works
Rumlour has it Colin Thomas likes it. If you see the review, post the link here.
I’d like to see Felony but they only let 14 people participate and I lucked out last night. I have a feeling that unless you buy in advance or show up *really* early you can’t get in. Those of you with rush passes, you’ll probably not get to see this one on your pass. And Kick-Ass passes can’t reserve in advance.

Felony – Saturday Sep 8, 2012, 8:00 PM
Venue: Big Yellow Crane 40

Felony – Saturday Sep 8, 2012, 9:30 PM
Venue: Big Yellow Crane 40
Of I miss out on Felony, I’ll head to:

Welcome to My Wake – Saturday Sep 8, 2012, 8:30 PM
Venue: Emily Carr Parkade
I love these site specific shows. Did I mention how fabulous Lost in Twine at the Netloft is.
Half price show.
Recess – Saturday Sep 8, 2012, 10:20 PM
Venue: False Creek Gym
You should come!
 “This high energy multi-media one woman show was the winner of “Best Female Solo Show 2009″ at the San Francisco Fringe Festival.!”
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