Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A bit More Theatre

I went back to see Frankenstein, having seen both cast options broadcast on the big screen from the National Theatre last spring. This time I made sure to see Benedict Cumberbatch as the creature and Jonny Lee Miller as Victor Frankenstein. I'm a big fan of Cumberbatch. Have you seen his Sherlock series? There have been two seasons of three long episodes each, each telling in contemporary form one of the tales. It's one of the best things I've ever seen on television, each one a gem.

Then, on Father's Day eve, I took my dad to see Soulpepper's winning You Can't Take it With You. This company continues to engage me. I must get off my arse and subscribe. Their regular company of actors is always excellent and one touch I appreciate is having one of the performers add an artist note to the program. This time it was Eric Peterson, who was playing Grandpa. I won't transcribe the whole thing, but I loved this:

"I start to realize this is the first old guy I've played, since I started playing old guys, that isn't grouchy, and angry; who is happy and brave. A bit of a stretch for me." 

Soulpepper performs in the Distillery District (a five-minute walk), but, the restaurants were experiencing water shortages or something, so we preceded the play with dinner at one of this blog's favourites, Mangia e Bevi. Yum.

Post-show, the actors invited the audience (first-come, first-served) to an adjoining space where they often have Saturday night cabarets, with a bar. Most of the cast was there, Mike Ross on piano and vocals, with some comely back up singers, doing numbers by John Lennon and Neil Young, between actors interviewing actors and having a good time. Soulpepper founding member William Webster also got a four-minute slot (he was stop-watched) where he got to talk about... opera!

I HEART Soulpepper.

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