COME TO THE CABARET

Yes, this one is not called Bus Stop because it’s going to be happening between the Priscilla gigs and it’s a whole different thing.  I’m going to be doing what may be my last cabaret in Toronto for a long time and I so want anyone and everyone to come and play with me.  It’s RAINBOWS AND SONGBIRDS.  It’s the hit cabaret I did a few shows ago that people have been asking me about.  It’s time to bring it back. I’m revising and rethinking it.  I’m really excited.  I loved doing this show and I’m excited to make the changes I’ve been wanting to make and and bring it to people who had seen it and liked it, as well as the people who have said they wished they had seen it.

But this time, I really want everyone to see it who want to. What I mean is the last cabaret I did sold out and people couldn’t get in at the door – THIS IS NOT A PLOY- hahahahahaha, seriously, I was very surprised and thrilled.   But get your tickets and come on this ride with me.

Tallulah’s Cabaret

Buddies in Bad Times

12 Alexander St.

Toronto, ON

Sunday, Jan. 9, 2011

8:00

$20

For Tickets:  (416) 975-8555

Published in: on November 30, 2010 at 6:54 pm  Comments (2)  

BUS STOP #17

You know how every now and then you feel like you are on the edge of a life altering change of self?  Like who you are and how you walk through the world is about to change?  I woke up to that feeling today and then saw that gorgeous snow falling and making everything look clean and new.  As successful as I have been, and I’ll take a moment here to thank the universe, I don’t feel like I’ve nearly lived up to my potential.  I feel like I’ve hidden my creative self behind fussy busy-ness and food.  This morning, I felt this sudden primal call within me to strip away the fears and anxieties and move toward that man/performer/person (not necessarily in that order) that I am inside.  Life is too short and here I am in my 40th year. (I’m 39 but in the year of becoming 40) I don’t want another moment wasted if I can help it.  I’m getting clearer about what I want and I know some of how to move towards that.

I feel very inspired to start making different choices.  In the vein of “if this one choice you make keeps bringing you a result you don’t like, make a different choice and see if you get a different result.”  Then just keep making a different choice until you get the result you want.  I want to achieve so much more in my life.  I want to share whatever talents I have with as many people as I can.  I’m tired of still at this point in my career feeling like I’m not good enough.  Then watching others pass me by.  Screw that.  Okay.  Step by step.  Well . . . .I’m about to put on some big-ass shoes and start stepping all over the freakin’ place.  Let’s see how that choice works out.

Published in: on November 27, 2010 at 5:03 pm  Comments (1)  

BUS STOP #16

I was just looking for something on YouTube and it suddenly cross-referenced a number from my first cabaret in 2007.   So I’m going to share it with you.  I  remember being so nervous and excited to see if it is something I would really like to be doing.  Turns out it was.  So here is a little taste of Thom in the cabaret infant stage.

Published in: on November 25, 2010 at 7:24 am  Comments (3)  

BUS STOP #15

I know, I know and I’m sorry. It’s been too long.  My God, what has been going on.  Where to start????  Well understudy rehearsals have been going really well.  We’ve sort of gotten through everything now but it’s really laying it in and going over more choreography to solidify.  It’s been great to get even a small sense of how the show runs for Tony.  It’s quite extraordinary.  Once he starts, he doesn’t stop and there is such a fine line between being grand and being haughty.  One can be fun, the other can be a off-putting for an audience.   Tony maneuvers all of her ups and downs so beautifully, it’s both informative and still a little daunting.  So that’s going well.

On the benefit front.  I don’t know if I talked about the concert last week.  The one for Mitchell Marcus’ company, ACTING UP STAGE.

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It was at Patti and John Loach’s place.  The have a gorgeous place with a salon space in the kitchen with a grand piano.  We had a nice full house and Wayne played beautifully.  It was  a great night.  Money was made, good times where had.  There was a nice visit at the end of the night with just a handful of us.  It was nice to do an evening of songs I love to sing.  I look forward to many more of those.

Then this past Sunday night, I performed two songs at Buddies In Bad Times for an event called Shameless which was to support the wonderful gay/lesbian/transgendered teen programs that Buddies is responsible for.

www.buddiesinbadtimes.com

It was hosted by Ari Weinberg and had a great lineup of guests.  My buddy Sharron Matthews completely knocked it out of the park with her mini-set.  She constantly shows why she is the best cabaret performer in Canada.  It was great.  I sang Lovely Day To Be Outta Jail from the Cy Coleman musical, The Life and then I sang Gorgeous, from The Apple Tree.  It went well.  I was a little tired.  These weeks have been long but it was still really fun.

Then last night, I sang for It’s Always Something, the yearly benefit for Gilda’s Club, now in it’s 9th year.

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It was created in the name of Canadian comic, Gilda Radner who died of cancer over a decade ago.  I have to admit I’ve always wanted to be asked to perform for them.  They have gotten such A-list talent over the years and this year they asked me to do the number that follows the touching testimonial  from someone who’s life, Gilda’s Club has touched.  It was  great honour and it went really well.  The lovely woman who gave the speech was a mother of a 4 year who has stage 4 (terminal) cancer.  The speech was beautiful and I’m sure there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.  Then I went out and sang “Infinite Joy” from Elegies, by William Finn. It was an amazing moment for me.  Then two numbers later, the cast of Priscilla and I sang We Belong from the end of our show and that was the finale.  What a great night.  Then there was a wonderful party in the lobbies afterwards.  Really fun.

And that is it until Dec. 24 when I sing with the Metropolitan Community Church choir on at Roy Thomson Hall.

www.mcctoronto.com

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Hallelujah.  It’s been amazing but now it’s time to sleep.  Whew!!  I can actually get some rest and have a day off next week.  It will have been 4 weeks since I got a day off and I’m a little weary.  I wouldn’t have said no to a single benefit though.  It’s been wonderful.

The only other thing I may do now is I may do a “goodbye for now” cabaret in Toronto in January.  I have to see how that pans out.  What else do I have to do . . . ???  Oh yeah, FIND A PLACE TO LIVE IN NEW YORK CITY.  Aaaaahhhhhhh!!!! Yes, my friends, it is time to find a place to live. If anyone has any leads, please let me know.  Ideally not a sublet but an actual available apartment would be great.

And I will have a little bit of cool news soon.  Can’t tell at the moment but I will hopefully get the news in the next couple of days.  Stay tuned.  And thank you all for reading and coming on this journey with  me.  It’s been such a joy to share it with you.  It will be a fun to return to the “DonnaBlogs” and they WILL be returning once we get back to New York in February.  It’s a wild ride, my dears, a wild, sequin-encrusted ride.

I’ll leave you with this fascinating thought.  We wear so much glitter on our lips in the show.  Where does all of that glitter go that we end up swallowing????

Enjoy.

Published in: on November 23, 2010 at 11:30 pm  Comments (1)  

BUS STOP #14

I just watched the last episode of Glee.  (Not the last one ever, but the most recent one that just aired in this season).  I’ve gone a bit up and down with the show.  I really liked it, then I wasn’t sure, now I’m really enjoying it again.  What I’m so thrilled and struck by is the response to the show. I love that people are letting story-telling music back into their lives.    What do I mean by “story-telling” music?  I mean music that is used to further a story along – it’s very theatrical.   It reminds me of how powerful music can be.  I don’t know if there is a single person who doesn’t have some kind of music or a certain song that they attach to a moment in their lives, a person, an event.  I love having music be such a huge part of my life.  I kind of can’t believe now that I never intended to be a singer.  It wasn’t on my radar.  Now, all I want to do is tell stories in song.  I love that I can craft an evening out of music – create an arc, link the songs thematically. That’s all very exciting to me.

I realize more and more these days just how much I need that outlet.  I’ve actually been thinking – for the first time as an adult, that it may be time to start writing.  (“But you’re writing right now, Thom”)  I know, but actually writing.  I suddenly dawned on me the other day, I’ve now been published in two magazines.  One was the article I did about the release of the OUTRAGEOUS dvd and the other was for the opening of PRISCILLA.  I’m actually a “published” writer but I’ve never stopped to give myself any credit for that.  Now having said that, let’s be clear, I’m not equating myself with Shakespeare, Stephen King or even Danielle Steele but the point is, I’ve maintained for years that I don’t write  . . . . but if I can have two pieces published while “not even trying”, then imagine what I could do if I started to get out of my own way.  Aha, I knew I’d find a theme for this entry.  Getting Started or Getting Our Of Your Own Way.  I think it’s time to start writing . . . . something.  What???!!  I don’t know.  I’m not sure if that’s important.  Just something.  I’m finding I really enjoy writing this blog.  I like adding new entries.  I feel like I need more to write about.  My days don’t seem packed with enough stuff. I mean, yes, I’m busy but it’s a lot of the same experiences.

It is definitely time to start a new chapter in the Thom Allison Book of Bits.  I want to go to New York, do my show, do another show or two, then start really doing concert and cabaret work.  Maybe try film and TV again.  I feel like I need/want to start filling my world with new experiences.  My life has been so work-centric for so many years.  I feel like I need/want more “life” in my life.  You know what I mean?  It has started already but now I’m just getting hungrier.  There are changes happening and they are good.  I’m having growing pains though.  I can feel the universe is pushing me in directions that will ultimately be good but right now are a bit caustic.  hahahahah  Wow, that’s quite the word but it is a bit apt.  But that’s okay.  I always know that adversity leads to incredible, life-changing growth and that’s what I want.

It’s so important to be grateful and gracious in the tougher times.  I think the universe takes note of how you weather the uncomfortable or challenging times and rewards you if you can stay humble, still give thanks for the multitude of good things that continue to come your way, and remain good-spirited.  It’s also a much easier way to move through the world.

Now having said all that, I don’t want anyone to think I’m having a bad time in my life right now.  Not at all.  I’m on the verge of something really wonderful, I can feel it.  There are great changes afoot (how often does one get to use the word “afoot” and in the proper context? Oooh I’m free-wheelin’ now.)   Every day is a new adventure.

What I’m particularly happy and glad about is all of the gigs I’m being asked to do while I’m still in Toronto.  It’s flattering and humbling and exciting.  It’s a wonderful way to leave the country.  I do the salon benefit for Acting Up Stage on Sunday night – oh my God, that’s tomorrow. Eek!!  I hope I don’t suck.  Then I do the benefit for Gay, Lesbian and Transgendered Youth, “Shameless” at Buddies In Bad Times on the next Sunday, Nov. 21, then the Gilda’s Club benefit on the Monday after, Nov. 22.  Then I think that’s it right now until Christmas Eve at Roy Thompson Hall.  Although I feel like I’m forgetting something.  I’ll figure it out.  I’m excited to do my first cabaret in New York.  Don’t know when or where but I will definitely be doing one.  Well, more than one.  I know I have to for my soul to feel expressed now.  I really do think it’s a gateway to becoming the person/performer I’m meant to become.

I have a young cousin who, in tough times, I would tell/remind that “you create your own reality”.  It is what I’m reminding myself and all of you of right now.  We all have the power to create the world we want to live in, both in our immediate lives and the world at large.  If you believe it and work towards what you want . . . . . wait, how do I want to say this? . . . When you gain clarity and ask the universe for what you want, the universe hears you.  It’s just that the universe can’t really give you something if you don’t know what it is you want.  Be bold, dream big, believe in your worthiness of achieving it and watch how your life will unfold before you.

To quote Auntie Mame:  “Life is a banquet and most poor sons-of-bitches are starving to death.”  Take a bite out of life and keep eating; gorge yourself on your own possibilities, my dears.  Happy Today!!!!

Published in: on November 13, 2010 at 2:13 pm  Leave a Comment  

BUS STOP #13

Hi kids.  Sorry I’ve been quiet for so long.  Lots going on but not lots going on.  We’ve had some injuries and illness going on in the cast.  There is a some cold-like disease going around.  I had it and it turned into bronchitis which is never fun but now I’m done with it.  But I hurt my knee on Saturday night.  At the top of the second act, we bring audience members onstage and then dance with them.  At one point we do a polka.  Well, my lady on Saturday night was a little over-enthusiastic and she wanted to lead.  In the ensuing “skirmish”( as I like to call it), I wrenched a ligament in my knee.  I didn’t have to miss a show but I did have to alter some stuff.  And yesterday we had one of our Divas go down.  They’ve been working so hard, performing on talk shows, etc.  Her voice just decided it had enough.  But the good news is Ellyn, one of our female swings (all-purpose understudies) went on and was amazing.  She was nervous but you would never have known.  Brava.

The show is going really well.  The audiences are loving it.  Seriously.  It’s been pretty great.  The show gets easier the more we get it in our bodies.  And understudy rehearsals are going well.  The more I learn of Tony’s stuff, the better I feel.  I’m able now to keep an eye on some of Tony’s stuff while on stage in the show now.  My God, it’s like watching a masterclass in how to craft a performance and surf an audience.  He really is incredible.  I couldn’t have a clearer roadmap.

Other than that, life is busy and I feel like the universe is getting me ready for a whole new sense of my life.  I really do.  It’s kooky.  There are these things going on that feel like I’m being tested, prepared and gifted (ie, being given gifts).  My business manager and I decided that because of the move to NYC, it would be better to start taking care of my own affairs and because the company is also closing it’s doors after about 50 years, as the owner is now in his eighties and has had enough, yesterday I went and collected all of my stuff.  It really does feel like I’m leaving to begin a whole new adventure.  Exciting and scary.

I also keep getting asked to do more events while I’m here in Canada which is wonderful and fun.  So add Nov. 22 to your calendar.  I’ll be a guest soloist at the Gilda’s Club benefit at the Princess of Wales Theatre that night.  Very honoured and excited.  I feel like there is so much to do before I leave.  Not the least of which is find a place to live in NYC.  Woohoo.

So my life is  just getting my world together, learning my understudy stuff, getting to the gym, and doing the show.  I’m filled with gratitude these days.  So much to be grateful for.

Published in: on November 11, 2010 at 1:58 pm  Leave a Comment  

BUS STOP #12

I had to share this video with you all of you.  I’m very proud of Canada right now and everyone should see this video.  I hope it saves more lives.   No young person should die ever again because of a sexual preference.

Published in: on November 6, 2010 at 5:23 am  Leave a Comment  

BUS STOP #11 – THE BIRTHDAY BLOG

This is short and sweet.  Thank you to everyone who has sent me such amazing birthday wishes today.  It’s been a wonderful day.  Thought I’d share a little something with all of you on the anniversary of the day of my birthday.

Two of my greatest influences in my youth – The Muppet Show and Shirley Bassey.  ‘Nuf said.

Published in: on November 2, 2010 at 9:44 pm  Comments (1)