Monday, 12 August 2013

A Move To Wordpress

As with my new Criterion Collection blog, I have moved this one to Wordpress as well. 

Until Blogspot sort out the errors with the site I will be staying on Wordpress.

I hope to see you there :-)

Sunday, 28 July 2013

The Misanthrope

Once again I found a local play via the TO.Tix website.  This time is was The Misanthrope by Molière.  Unlike the last play I went to see (The Mousetrap) this one was set outdoors.  The setting was the Guild Inn Gardens in Guildwood, on the outskirts of Toronto with the Guild Festival Theatre staging the play.

Before purchasing my ticket I had quickly read a little about the play.  Phases and words like “comedy of manners”, farce and satire instantly appealed to my taste.  So for the price of $24.90 I click “buy”.

On with the play itself and I found it to be everything I thought it to be.  It was a hilarious look at one man’s quest to not partake in any “folly” or fake niceties that was prevalent in 18th Century French aristocracy.  He decides that he will say nothing but the truth.  This leads to all sorts of problems including a trip to court after he insults a fellow member of high society when he writes a love sonnet.  Whilst the words of the sonnet were truly bad, the over-the-top way in which it was delivered made it a highlight of the show.

The main problem our “honest aristocrat” faces is the fact that one person who does enjoy a good gossip happens to be the lady he loves.  She enjoys the high society lifestyle to the full, which means never saying no to a host of suitors who vie for her love and attention. 

As the story unfolds, we see all the backstabbing and bitching that comes with putting on airs and graces instead of being honest.  In the end the truth comes out and everyone is left in no doubt as to where they stand.

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Art Gallery of Ontario

I ventured out to this gallery for the first time a few weeks ago.  I think I have been spoilt by the Art Galleries of the UK, both in terms of quality and price.  Whilst I do not mind paying to see works of art, I do mind to paying $25.  Included in this price was an exhibition of early Renaissance paintings from Florence (no photos due to ban).

All was not lost though, they have a few Impressionist paintings and others that I liked.

Here are a selection of the paintings that I enjoyed.  Apologies for the quality, I had to take them on my iPhone.

 Raoul Dufy – Hyeres Square, the Obelisk and the Bandstand

 Pierre Bonnard – Autumn Landscape

 Pierre Bonnard – Table Laid for Dessert

 Jan Van Goyen – Peasant Cottage

 Alfred Sisley – Saint-Mammes, Grey Weather

Pierre Auguste Renoir – The Seine at Chatou
 Claude Monet – Etretat L’Aiguille and the Porte d’Aval

 Alfred Sisley – Landscape near Moret

Claude Monet – Vetheuil in Summer
 Camille Pissarro – Poplars, Grey Weather, Eragny

Alfred Sisley – View of Marly-le-Roi: Sunlight
Marc Chagall – Over Vitebsk
Hendrick Andriessen – Still Life (Vanitas)
Aelbery Cuyp – View of Dordrecht
Jan Van Goyen – View of Rhenen
 Salomon Van Ruysdael – The Ferry Boat

 Cornelius Krieghoff – Village Scene in Winter

Franklin Carmichael – Cranberry Lake
 Franklin Carmichael – Houses in Servern Bridge

 A.J Casson – Mountain Ash (Rowanberries) 

 J.E.H MacDonald – Laurentian County, Winter

 Lawren S Harris - Houses, Richmond Street

 A.Y Jackson – Red Barn, Petite Riviere

 Lawren S Harris – Street Scene with Figures, Hamilton & In The Ward, Toronto

 Emily Carr - Gitwangak, Queen Charlotte Islands

 Cornelius Krieghoff - The Narrows on Lake St Charles

 Cornelius Krieghoff  - Sillery Cove, Quebec

 Cornelius Krieghoff – Clearing Land near the St Maurice River

 Cornelius Krieghoff – Council, Lorette Indians, Lake St.Charles Country

 Cornelius Krieghoff – Ginger, the Colonel’s Dog

 Cornelius Krieghoff – The Owlshead from Round Lake, Lake Memphremagog

 Kenneth Campbell Lochead – Dark Green Centre

 Alex Colville – Elm Tree at Horton Landing

 Jack Chambers – Meadow

 Stewart Westmacott – The Falls of Niagara Taken from the American Side

 Guido Molinari – Green-Red Serial Mutation

 Helen McNicoll – Interior

 Mary Hiester Reid – A Study in Greys

F McGillivray Knowles – A Breezy Day

As you can see, I was rather fond of Cornelius Krieghoff.  He was a member of the "Group of Seven".  

Saturday, 22 June 2013

The Mousetrap

What an excellent idea it was to decide to watch this local community performance of Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap.  I can fully understand now why this is such a popular play the world over.  I went to the Chicken Coop Theatre (excellent name) production at the Palmerston Library Theatre. 

From start to finish, this play was marvellous, each actor was truly convincing in their role.  I loved the fact that, due to the theatre being very small, the actors actually walked though the audience when going to the "kitchen" or "bedrooms".

I cannot of course give away the story, that is top secret, but I found the plot to be very convincing.  It really is one of those stories that, when it finally all unfolds, has you going "oh yes, that makes sense".

I picked up a leaflet for the coming season from Stage Centre Productions, the play was produced with their cooperation.  I quite fancy their upcoming staging of The Unexpected Guest, again by Agatha Christie.  This is not until October though.  If I do decide to go then I'll be sure to post a review here.

Carmen - A Disappointment

I should have looked into this a little more before purchasing my ticket.  I must also learn the difference between what I deem Ballet and what passes for "modern" these days.

This performance was nothing like a Ballet, nothing at all.  For me this was a dance production, a modern dance and not a very good one.  Granted, I have never seen Carmen before and bar one piece of music, was not too sure on the music either, but this was just a mess.  I have no idea what was going on when our ears had to suffer through minutes of almost Neanderthal type noises, that I think were supposed to represent the "passion" between the characters.  It was hideous and most off-putting.

Thankfully I was in the same seats as my previous visit so only wasted $25 on this poor pretence of a Ballet.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Canadian Opera Company - Dialogues des Carmélites

It is time to revive this Blog.  Now that I have a job I can start visiting the Arts once again.

On Saturday 25 May I went to the Four Seasons Centre for The Performing Arts to watch the final performance of Dialogues des Carmélites .

I bought my tickets via T.O.Tix Whilst they were Level 5 and one row from the very back they were fine, in no way too high up.  My only complaint was the safety bar that ran along the seats in front.  As the seating sloped downwards towards the middle of the row, the bar was in my sight-line.  Thankfully there were empty seats nearby so I moved 3-4 seats along and the bar was out of the way.

The opera itself was very good, very few props but lots of people.  The story was simple, nuns during the French Revolution being forced to abandon their faith, they stand true to their beliefs and are killed for it.  The final scene, as they fall, one by one, to the sound of the guillotines blade was very chilling.

So for the cost of $25 I had a very satisfying first trip to the Opera.

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Photos From Lake Ontario

Firstly, apologies for the lack of activity.  I have been very busy these past few months as I have emigrated to Canada.

Now that things have settled down I have found time to walk down to Lake Ontario with my camera.  Waterfront Trail is a series of paths that follow the shoreline of the Lake.  Sections 2 & 3 are where I am so today & yesterday I went walking. 

Whilst the weather was better on Saturday it was still not cold and both walks were nice scrolls, though my legs were glad to make it back to the sofa!

Here are some of the results from the walks.

The rest of my photos are available on my Flickr page here