When we read a book, watch a movie, go out for a meal we judge it. We either like it or we don’t. We all have opinions and we generally share those opinions with our friends and family. Word of mouth is still the best way to spread the news. Why? Because usually word of mouth means people are talking with people they know. They have a relationship and that means they’re better able to judge the recommendation and they know from experience whether or not what their friend likes will be something they like. [Read more…]
It’s the holiday season and that means it’s time to cuddle up by the fire, grab a mug of mulled wine or your significant other, or both, and watch your favourite Holiday flicks. And with the temperatures dipping to -26 Celsius here in Calgary a warm holiday drink is a welcome respite from the cold. And maybe that’s why we like holiday films. Mulled wine can warm our physical body but a good holiday film can warm our soul. And that’s probably because most of the time holiday films are life affirming. They’re feel good movies and God knows we could certainly use some feel good movies this holiday season. So here are five holiday recommendations.
Planes, Trains and Automobiles
Gather up the family and invite your friends, coworkers and neighbours to come experience the true spirit of Christmas at Lunchbox Theatre’s production of It’s a Wonderful Life. Presented as a radio play from the 1940s this production is a fun, energetic and inventive retelling of the classic story.
The Lunchbox production features an outstanding cast, brilliant direction, a beautiful set and an amazing mix of sound – both recorded and created live – to bring the story of George Bailey and the town of Bedford Falls to life.
I give it two thumbs up. Although I went to see the play with my sister, her husband, my niece, her boyfriend, and his mom and we all gave it two thumbs up so that’s twelve thumbs, right? How can you argue with twelve thumbs? That’s got to be as good as, if not better than, four stars or five sugarplums.
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If you’re a playwright read plays. If you’re a screenwriter read screenplays. If you’re a novelist read novels. But of course that doesn’t mean that a playwright shouldn’t read novels or screenplays or that a novelist shouldn’t read other forms of fiction. It’s all story and it’s all good and when you read work by other writers you get to experience different styles. [Read more…]
6th Annual Seoul Players 10 Minute Play Festival
My short comedy, Never Give Up, is one of 16 plays being presented at this year’s 6th Annual Seoul Players Ten Minute play Festival in Seoul, South Korea from November 12 to 19th. The production is being directed by Ernest Lee and stars Chris Gilmore as Nigel Davenport and Garen Fitzgerald as Todd Sparks.
Seoul Players is an English-speaking volunteer-run theatre company founded in 2001 by Australian Roman Zolnierczyk and is dedicated to bringing English-language theatre to Seoul. The company produces one or two main stage shows a year, an annual shadow cast production of The Rocky Horror Picture Show around Halloween and a 10 Minute Play Festival every fall. Productions are presented with Korean subtitles and are intended to help increase awareness of foreign theatre in Korea.
Never Give Up is about playwright Nigel Davenport who has been entering the Short Cuts Playwriting Festival for years. He’s never won, in spite of submitting hundreds of plays. When Nigel gets a call from Artistic Director Todd Sparks, he thinks his luck has finally changed, until he meets with Todd and Todd tells him that they’d like him to stop submitting to the Festival because he’s a terrible playwright. In fact, three members of this year’s reading committee resigned, two were treated for depression and one tried to commit suicide all because of Nigel’s plays. But instead of giving up this only inspires Nigel to try harder and figure out how to write an award winning play that will win the festival.
- Download a free copy of Never Give Up by clicking on this link: Never Give Up
Now, you might have figured out after reading my last blog, Mr. Trump Goes to Washington, that I like satire. Well you’d be right. In fact, I love satire. Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb by Stanley Kubrick is one of my all time favourite films.
I first saw Dr. Strangelove at the movies with a full audience in the mid eighties when tensions between the US and Russia were spinning out of control. Unfortunately, the film has become all too relevant once again by recent world events and the rising tensions between Putin and and the US. Yes, there are serious films about Nuclear War like Fail Safe but they don’t have they same punch as Dr. Strangelove. Dr. Strangelove stays with you and manages to explore a serious topic while revealing the absurd nature of nationalism and this nuclear nightmare we live in.
Society is inside of man and man is inside society, and you cannot even create a truthfully drawn psychological entity on the stage until you understand his social relations and their power to make him what he is and to prevent him from being what he is not. The fish is in the water and the water is in the fish.
So, if you’re like me you were riveted to your television set last Tuesday night for the finalé of Mr. Trump Goes to Washington. Season One ended with the election and spoiler alert…if you haven’t watched it already don’t read on. I’m just warning you – Trump wins. [Read more…]