The Blog

A New Gig for Paula

June 17, 2018 – A New Gig for Paula

I am now a contributor to Ludwig van Toronto, an online magazine (mostly music) that is now branching out into dance and theatre. My first review for Ludwig van is The National  Ballet of Canada’s summer mixed program.

Ludwig van is a good-looking, informative magazine and I’m delighted to be a contributor for dance and theatre.

Here’s the link. Enjoy.

https://www.ludwig-van.com/toronto/

Musings – Ontario Election 2018

On the night Donald Trump was elected, comedienne Jenna Friedman on a late night talk show summed up the situation perfectly with – “We’re fucked.” Never did I think that I would be in the same boat with a meathead elected as premier in my own province. Now it’s my turn to say, “We’re fucked.”

The only smart Ontario voters live in Toronto. I’m talking about the old Toronto, the real Toronto without Etobicoke, North York and Scarborough, all of –Read More

TIFF Movies 2016 – Best and Worst

Saw 21 films, almost all of them enjoyable. Due to a broken neck, (I kid you not), caused by a very bad fall in early August, I had to construct a list of films where I didn’t have to switch theatres during the day. I also needed decent access because of my walker, so there are more big-budget English language movies than I would usually choose. My directors were largely women, although that was happenstance and not design. By coincidence, –Read More

Paula’s Picks and Pans

This week/weekend there is a deluge of openings. In dance, there’s ProArteDanza, Kathleen Rea, and Red Sky, not to mention Theatre Gargantua and the new music concert Unsound. One hopes they all find an audience.

Regarding Rob Ford

First let me point out that the death of a relatively young man with a young family is a very sad story indeed. Rob Ford was only 46, after all. Nonetheless, within the adage of you don’t say anything bad about dead people, i’ve been very amused how Canada’s politicians have struggled to find the positives to say about the late Mr. Ford. My favourite is, “He was very dedicated to the city”. I wonder who thought up that bit –Read More

Fall for Dance North Festival – Opening Night

Fall for Dance North is a triumph. The packed house was really stoked and you could feel the buzz in the Sony Centre. It was palpable excitement and each performing group was cheered wildly. Artistic director Ilter Ibrahmof mounted a dream program. What a boon for the city. Program two is tonight and tomorrow and I am in breathless anticipation.

No one will ever again say Fall for Dance what? The tickets for next year’s festival will go like wildfire.

Game of Thrones Rant

This is a stern message for George R.R. Martin.

I love the Game of Thrones series because I fell in love with the books long before they ended up on HBO. However, the TV shows have now moved beyond where Book 5 ended. We’ve been waiting for Book 6 for ages. Meanwhile the TV series leaps ever onward. Come on George, give the GOT fanatics Book 6. You’ve kept up waiting long enough. I am very aggravated.

Paula’s Picks and Pans

Featured Events in this column: Fall for Dance North, Sony Centre International Dance Series

Fall for Dance North

Upstart festival, new last year, ecstatic response from the crowds. All seats at the Sony Centre just $15. Best dance bargin in town. Three distinct programs. Oct. 5, 6 and 7.

Fall For Dance North features world premiere festival commissions by Natasha Bakht (Canada) and champion ballroom dance duo Maria Shalvarova and Alon Gilin (Canada), in addition to performances by Aszure Barton & Artists (USA/Canada), –Read More

Theatre

Tarragon Theatre/Volcano Theatre. Hannah Moscovitch’s Infinity. A superbly acted portrait of a dysfunctional famlly of brilliant people layered with quantum physics, no less. Mar. 25 to May 3. Read full review here. http://wp.me/p2s1nr-13j

The Coal Mine. Mike Bartlett’s Bull. An absolute winner about horrors in the work place. (Closed Apr. 5..) Read full review here. http://wp.me/p2s1nr-139

Brian Macdonald and Jean Béliveau

I was saddened by the death of these two great Canadians, but for very different reasons. In the case of Macdonald, its the passing of that first generatiion of Canadian dance pioneers. As for Béliveau, he brings back memories of my late mother.

Macdonald’s contributions to dance and theatre in this country are enormous. He was a fine choreographer who never disappointed. In his works, dancers looked wonderful, whether on or off point. As for his Gilbert & Sullivan productions –Read More