TIME OFF IN THE VAN.

That would be “Van”-couver.  I’m not doing some roadtrip in an SUV.

It’s been so long since I’ve been somewhere new and not working.  It’s been weird but nice. And the weather . . . . what????!!!!  You’ve got to be kidding me.  It’s amazing.  So beautiful.  Yesterday was +16 and sunny.  It’s been over +10 since I got here.  What a nice treat.  Now, of course, it’s supposed to start raining for the next  . . . 5 years.  But hey, I knew that before I came.  It’s still not going to be too cold so that’s nice.

I’ve been wandering around.  I went to the island yesterday, Granville Island.  So sweet and packed with stuff.  I went to the market, WOW, HOLY PRODUCE, BATMAN!!!   I could barely shop.  I got a little overwhelmed.  I clearly need to go with a list for the next few times just to keep myself focussed.  Whew!  So much over everything – fruits, veggies, meat, fish, spices from all over the world.  Some very exciting eating.  So we’ll see how that goes.  Woohoo

Today, I’m hitting the gym and I’ve got a fitting – Oh my God, I don’t know if I mentioned last time (and as it’s 7:00 in the morning here, I’m too tired to look)  that i had a fitting for my costumes on monday and they are going to be FANTASTIC.  Seriously. I will absolutely get pictures up.  And they are wigging me which I was hoping for.  Aldolpho seems the sort of man who would have the most outrageously over-the-top groomed hair.  And he will.  Woohoo.

It’s gonna be a good time y’all!!!!!!

Published in: on October 29, 2008 at 2:14 pm  Comments (2)  

VANCOUVER

So here I am in Vancouver.  And it’s beautiful.  Totally beautiful.  Oh my God.  The weather is so nice.  I was walking around today looking for Vancouver Playhouse so I would know where it is for my costume fitting tomorrow.  That’s right – COSTUME FITTING – (insert any screaming like a little girl sound suits your taste) .   The theatre we’re doing the performances in is literally 3 or 4 blocks from my place – What?!! Shut up!!!  But where the Playhouse administration offices/ costume shop, and rehearsal space is a bit further than I expected. It’s about a 20 minute walk which is not at all bad.  Not bad at all.   It’s just about making sure I give myself enough time in the mornings.  And there is also a skytrain that goes near it.  Yes,  skytrain.  How upscale is that?  woohoo.

So my place here.  It’s really beautiful.  It’s not big.  I share it with really sweet young woman (my impulse was to say girl but that is not really correct – even though she is only 21 . . . . . .  I don’t even need to make a punchline for that).  My room is literally a bed.  I don’t mean it only has a bed in it, I mean it’s a bed.  It is the exact size of a double bed.  Clearly meant to be a solarium for a chair a small table and cup of tea – a little doll cup.  There is a space as you walk in that is as wide as the door and about 1 1/2 feet deep to walk in, slide the door closed and get into bed.  Now this may sound disturbing but here’s the thing.  My dad was a porter for VIA Rail fo 38 years so I grew up on the train.  I loved those individual sleeping cars where you pulled the bed down to sleep for the night and it was the whole room. It’s like your bedroom gives you a big hug goodnight.  So I actually dig it and I ‘ve got corner windows (windows on two connected sides and I’m in the city core and we’re on the 22 floor so my view is soooo awesome).  At night, I can lie in bed and look out onto the city in my little private cabin.  I dig it.

So where do I put my things, you ask. I have the hall closet and that also worked out fine.  I think it’s going to be a great time.  And I’ve been running into people here who’ve been so nice.  Everyone has been so helpful and friendly.  I found an amazing gym.  Apparently it’s the best gym in Vancouver and conveniently – IT’S IN MY BUILDING!!!!!  What!!!???!!!

I’m really looking forward to the next 9 weeks.  And now I have to go meet a friend for a drink.

Published in: on October 27, 2008 at 1:53 am  Comments (2)  

CRAZY FEW DAYS

Wow, y’all.  It’s been an amazing few days.  Here’s what happened. Monday night I sang at the Fife House benefit at the Canon Theatre, Tuesday night I sang at a Gala night for the Shaw Festival at the Royal York Hotel Ballroom, and last night (Wednesday) I went to the un-televised Gemini Awards.  Whew!!

I know, I know – details. Okay.  So first of all, Fife House Benefit.  For those of you who don’t know Fife House. It’s an organization in Toronto that gives support to people living with HIV/AIDS.  Support in the form of helping with errands, laundry, companionship, etc.  And now they have done so well, they have started building actual accommodation.  I believe they just opened their first new building in Sept.  And they also have new homeless outreach programs.  Extraordinary work they’re doing.  And it’s all volunteer.  It restores my faith in humanity.  So they do this benefit every year for the last . . . 7 years or so. It went well.  Each performer had about 20 minutes to fill.  The one part that was a little weird was the fact that there is a silent auction going on at the same time and it’s not set up that people really stop and pay attention.   So there was a lot of talking.  I’m not a fan of that sort of thing as I work hard on my shit so I have ‘stories’ to tell.  But people did really start to listen after the first song so it ended up okay!!!  Which is awesome.   But some great folks performed.  Paula  Wolfson, Julie Michels, (both of whom were fantastic) and Jayme Armstrong from the HOW DO YOU SOLVE A PROBLEM LIKE MARIA show. I didn’t get to hear her but she looked beautiful.

Then on Tuesday, the Shaw Festival had a big Gala night at the Royal York Hotel.  I think it’s like a fundraiser/make love to the money-folk type of night.  Julie Martel, Gabrielle Jones (who is going to play the drowsy chaperone in THE DROWSY CHAPERONE which I’m about to do in Vancouver), Jeff Madden (who is about to take over the lead in JERSEY BOYS in Toronto) and I did about 5 numbers by Stephen Sondheim. That went really well and was short and sweet.

Then last night was the un-televised Gemini Awards.  They’re like the Emmy’s but Canadian – the television awards.  Cara Pifko was nominated for the movie she and I did about a year and a half ago – I ME WED –  as best performance by an actress in a supporting role in a mini-series or comedy or drama-comi-mini-me-extravaganza something.  Anyway, she asked me to be her date.  It was a fascinating experience.  Fun and fascinating.  Film and TV people are a particular breed, y’all.  It really is an industry where you’re only as good as your last project, and I think it probably makes lovely people become so set on trying to get the next job that they end up have to spend a lot of time, energy and money to be the “it” person.  It was a room full of a lot of tans, hair dye, and boobs. Now having said that, it was a room full of some incredible talent and intelligence.  Nothing is ever just one thing. But it was wild.

Cara and I were at a table right beside the stage.  Crazy.  So the show starts and they announce the first presenter – ANDREA MARTIN.  And out she comes.  Holy Shit, neither Cara nor I knew.  She does her shtick (very funny) and walks off the stage to sit down.  Where does she go to sit . . . . . at our table.  What!!!???!!!  We’re sitting at a round table of about 10. She sits downs five seats from me – across from Cara.  We both start laughing at the insanity. Then, at one point, they announce an award for sound.  They announce the winners as the sound guys for Cowboy Junkies for a Cowboy Junkies TV special and two guys from our table get up – it’s the sound guys for the Cowboy Junkies at our table.  It’s at this point I ask Cara who she had to blow to get these tickets.  COME ON!!!!

So it was a wild few days my friends.  Good times.  Now I’m just packing up to get ready to leave in two days for Vancouver.  I can’t wait. More later.

Published in: on October 23, 2008 at 9:42 pm  Comments (2)  

STRATFORD AND WINNIPEG

Sorry it’s been so long, everyone.  Let me fill you in.  It’s been a bit of a whirlwind since Shaw finished. We closed A Little Night Music in the afternoon on Saturday, Oct. 4, closed Follies that night.  Then closed Wonderful Town on Sunday night.  Meanwhile I had been packing all week for the move back to Toronto.  Then on Monday (yes, the next day) my friend came to move me back.  My friend rented a van in Stratford and wanted to get it back that night.  That worked out fine for me.  I wanted to get to Stratford if I could for the benefit concert of Stephen Sondheim’s COMPANY.  I was hoping to get the move done and be in Stratford by 8.  Okay so listen to this, ya’ll.  My friend got to my place at Niagara-On-The-Lake by 11, Monday morning.  Then we packed the van, drove back to Toronto, dropped my stuff off in two different places, grabbed some food and drove to Stratford.  Ready for this? – we got there by a little after 4.  WHAT!!!????  Thank God I get occasional moments of my mother’s incredible organization.

So I made it to see COMPANY. It was fantastic.  I really need to play Bobby, the leading man, in that show.  If you all know anyone who can put it up, call me!!  😉   I had intended to go to Stratford anyway on the Tuesday.  So I just got to get there earlier.  I stayed in Stratford with my friends Jane and Laura for three days.  I visited with friends and saw 5 shows.  Yes, five.  It was quite the whirlwind.  I saw HAMLET, CAESAR AND CLEOPATRA, TAMING OF THE SHREW, THE MUSIC MAN, ROMEO AND JULIET.  It was a great time. I enjoyed them all to varying degrees.  And it was great to see some people.  I caught the 9:11pm train back to Toronto on Thursday then the next adventure began.

On Friday afternoon, I caught a 12:55 plane to Winnipeg. I had a slew of things happening in Winnipeg around the same time and so it worked out that I could make it to Winnipeg between jobs.  So I was in Winnipeg from Oct. 10 to Oct. 16.  The events were as follows (how very official that sounds): my mother’s 70th birthday on Oct. 3, I had a wedding of an old friend which I was asked to sing at on Oct. 12, Thanksgiving on Oct. 13 and my father’s 79th birthday on Oct. 14.  All went off very well.  Plus I had a great visit with my cousin Zoe, my cousin Julie, and my best friend Krista and her amazing husband, Matthew and fantastic baby, Miles.  The wedding went well.  There were a few little hitches in the ceremony but the reception was really beautiful.   And my song for the ceremony went well but I don’t want to do that anymore.  It’s too stressful.  All I kept thinking about was if I screw this up (ie. forget the words, etc.) I’m ruining someone’s wedding.  Aaaaaaarrrrrrgggggghhhh!.  But it all came off.  My favorite part of the wedding was when I was just about to leave and a stranger came up to me, gushing about my song and then said, “You should do this for a living!” – AWESOME!  I just said, “Thanks, I’ll look into that.”

And now I’m back in Toronto until Oct. 25 when I leave for Vancouver to start rehearsals for THE DROWSY CHAPERONE.  I’m really excited.  It’s going to be awesome.  In the meantime, I’m doing a benefit on Oct. 20 for Fife House (AIDS hospice here in Toronto)

http://www.scenechanges.com/previews.html

And I’m singing at a fundraiser, or something like that, for The Shaw Festival (nice that I don’t even know exactly what it is. They ask, I sing) here in Toronto on Oct. 21.  Then I’m going to be my buddy Cara Pifko’s date for the untelevised Gemini’s on Oct. 22.  Very excited about that.  She’s been nominated for the movie we did together a year and a half ago, I ME WED.  Fantastic.  She was great in it.  She’s so natural, I love that.   Then I see a play with a friend on Oct. 23, pack on Oct. 24 and leave on Oct. 25.  Woohoo.

In the meantime, I’m getting together with my usual holiday crew for a little pre-holidays holiday get-together since I won’t be here for the holidays, on Oct. 19.  It’s a packed few days but I like that.  I still have lots of time to relax and hang out.  It’ll be great.

Okay, I guess that gets you caught up.  More soon.  I’ll let you guys know how it all goes.

Published in: on October 18, 2008 at 1:55 pm  Comments (1)  

LIVING CARTOON

Oh my God, y’all.  This guy is amazing – Ennio Marchetto.  Crazy.

He also has a website.

http://enniomarchetto.com/

Enjoy, y’all.

Published in: on October 3, 2008 at 3:46 am  Comments (1)