Monday, May 26, 2008

Away, Part One

I've decided this year not to take my vacation in one big chunk, but to break it up into individual weeks.

This week I am off to Stratford, a small city (pop. 30,000) set in a beautiful rural setting in southwestern Ontario that is very close to my heart.

The motto of the city is "Industria et Ars" and this sums it up pretty well. It was named after England's Stratford-upon-Avon, and indeed, the river that our Stratford sits on is also called the Avon.

Due mainly to the efforts of a local-born journalist, Tom Patterson, a Shakespeare festival was founded in 1952. Tyrone Guthrie came over from Britain as the festival's first artistic director, bringing Alec Guinness who was the title role in the first play to appear, Richard III. It is a major festival now, running April to November each season.

The mandate of the company is still to produce mainly Shakespeare (and that has recently been re-emphasized), but there is much else that fills out the season, from ancient Greek to contemporary, with the festival's musicals being highly popular as well. There are four theatres in all. The main one is the Festival stage, a very special place, designed by Tanya Moiseiwitsch, which features a thrust stage that incorporates the shape of both a classical Greek amphitheatre and Shakespeare's own Globe. It's a wonderful space to witness a great show. The actual building is designed to resemble the original tent that was the festival's first home.

As for what I'm up to... well - as little as possible. I'm being treated to a week of deep relaxation (no computer): long walks, massages, reading, and a few theatre tickets. I shall report back with my reviews on my return, on this you can be sure. Heh heh.

21 comments:

willow said...

Sounds like an absolutely perfect week!!

Have a safe and restful time.

We'll be looking forward to your wonderful report on your return...you will be missed! :)

glamah16 said...

Have a great vacation.

Suza said...

I hope you have a wonderful, restful time - you deserve it. Massages, walks, and an excellent local chocolate store. What Blog Princess could ask for more?! Safe travels... don't forget your tiara...

B.T.Bear (esq.) said...

I wonder what Shakespeare yu'll see?

(Exit, pursued by a Bear...)

Bachelor said...

Hope you will report back of having a great time of rest and relaxation. Your plans sound wonderful!
The Bach

The Caked Crusader said...

HOpe you have fun!

Rebecca said...

Have a lovely time! Can't wait to read your reviews of the festival when you return....

Eaglewing said...

Enjoy your mini vacation. I've heard Stratford is quite renowned for their theatre. Look forward to your pictures of the trip. Have fun!

Betsy said...

We're missing you already!

david mcmahon said...

I've never been to Startford, but one day I will!

willow said...

Blog Princess G,

I have just nominated you as one of the five blogs that make my day. Go to my site for further information. Congratulations! :)

phil said...

Have a grand time.

You deserve it. :)

San said...

Sounds like heaven,Princess G. Enjoy deeply.

Betsy said...

My goodness! How long are you going to be gone anyway? :) You've missed a lot in the blogging world...ghosts, archeological digs, Ireland trips, food (of course!) awards, and giant skeletons! It'll take you all night to catch up on all the reading! :P

Woodchips said...

Enjoy your trip... safe journies!

Simply...Gluten-free said...

Sounds lovely, have a great time!

david mcmahon said...

Let me know when you return!

ABP

Capt. Luke said...

OK your week is up. Now get back...I am going through a horrible case of Princess DTs....ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Edward Hegstrom said...

Comments are up, so is it safe to assume...you're back!

Betsy said...

Yes, yes! We see you are back...or are you just teasing us????

Blog Princess G said...

Hello Blog friends! It's lovely to go away, it's lovely to return. Thank you all for your good wishes. I can't wait to sit back and catch up on what you have all been up to.

(Bob T. Bear... that is my favourite stage direction ever! And if that bear was you, I'd turn around and give you a big hug.)