100 years ago this week, the Ballet Russes premiered Rite of Spring in Paris and an instant classic was born. It was fresh and new, edgy and alive. It sparked a riot, so they say. At least one person was challenged to a duel. A duel, for Pete’s sake! That’s badass.
It’s hard to think of anything positive to say about Mayor Rob Ford, except that he is single-handedly releasing his city from that deathly stereotype, Toronto the Good. The moniker has hung around for years, comforting the smug, annoying everybody else.
In the first of an ongoing series of short’n'sweet interviews, The Rover put five questions to Québecoise singer/composer/poet/musician Geeta, who will perform her new work The Bandit Queen this Friday and Saturday at Eclectik, an “interdisciplinary soapbox” at the MAI.
Samoan New Zealander Lemi Ponifasio and his company MAU have just returned to Montreal to perform at Festival Transamerique. The piece, Birds with Skymirrors, appeared in Santiago, Sydney and Ottawa before coming here. Lauded by the international press as “extraordinary” (The Guardian) and “surreal” (The National Business Review), the company is known for beautiful and disquieting work. An ex-pat New Zealander myself, I asked Ponifasio a few questions about politics, the environment, exoticism and the South Pacific.
Saying you’ve got to see this play is a lazy start to a review. But there’s only one more performance of Winners and Losers. You don’t want to be a loser, right? That’s the central question of this riveting piece of hyper-real theatre at FTA. Actors Marcus Youssef and James Long play themselves in a mainly verbal battle over taste, judgement, childhood and capitalism.
The row of yellow schoolbuses parked outside the Théâtre d’Aujourd’hui on St-Denis signalled before I got there that this would be no ordinary show. It was…
When was the last time you went to a festival that included a session on Standing Upside Down? Or Breathing, Bananas and Barnyard Animals? No, it’s not Juste Pour Rire. Welcome to the Yoga Festival Montreal, organized by the dynamic Yocomo, the Yoga Community Montreal.
While corresponding with Michael Nardone during the time of this interview, his brief Facebook messages were filled with delightful descriptions of wherever it was he found himself (he was in Montreal, New York and North Carolina during the time it took to compile this interview). Michael strikes me as being a kind of 24/7 writer, carrying his love of language wherever he goes.
While I was reading Shyam Selvadurai’s third novel, The Hungry Ghosts, I was reminded of the dictum of American novelist John Hawkes when he said that plot, theme, and character were enemies. Once they were gone, all that mattered was overall vision and structure. Hawke’s statements may be dated, but they still hold true.
Dear Dana Michel, This is just to say that I have no idea how to review your work, Yellow Towel, that I saw last night as part of the FTA — a dilemma as I am a dance critic and one who, as you will appreciate, must produce something and in a timely fashion.
Gone are the days when a theatre-goer could get a ticket, stand in line, sit in the dark watching a play, then go out for drinks and talk about what it all meant. At least at Festival Transamériques. Nella Tempesta greets you and the door and follows you home.
Last night, South-African choreographer Robin Orlin and the Moving into Dance Mophatong company presented Beauty remained for just a moment then returned gently to her starting position… Despite Orlin’s international reputation as a creator of powerful and provocative works, Beauty failed to pack a serious punch, giving a disappointing start to the FTA festival for dance.
June is busting out ahead of schedule and all theatre eyes are on the annual Montreal St. Ambrose Fringe. Surely the 23rd coming is at hand..and what rough beast, its hour come round at last, now slouches toward the Plateau to be born? (Apologies to the late great W. B. Yeats.)
A recent TED talk, The Surprising Need for Strangeness, emphasized the need for us to connect with people who are different from ourselves. Doing so helps us discover new ideas and avoid sameness. This notion can also be applied to music.
I’m going to die. It’ll happen one day whether I like it or not, I won’t have a choice. Neither will you, your best friend, or your worst enemy. If we could invest in the inevitability, we’d all be rich. The problem is; dying isn’t sexy and it doesn’t sell, while fear, denial and escapism is the defining hustle of our time. Di(e)-agnosis? Death needs a makeover, a re-brand, stat!