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Monday, April 30, 2007

FaceBook is Addicting

I was invited to join FaceBook by my mother. I did and now I have a real problem. I am addicted and I don't get other stuff done! I have found a lot of friends and I am looking for more. CRAZY! For those who say computers are anti-social they do not understand how this works. What a great way to get in touch and find people you haven't seen for a while. I am lucky because I was a teacher and a lot of my students are on because it seems to be a "younger people" kind of thing, but I have found a lot of them and I think it is cool to see what they are up to. Anyhow, i hope I can curb my addiction and get back to work on my writing.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Just Call Me a Patron of the Arts...

I went to "Footlights on Fashion" at Walterdale Theatre last night. I was solo because we had no baby sitter. I am not sure if we would have spent more or less at the Silent Auction had Mark been there. I came home with $288 worth of items. Actually they were probably worth more than that but that's what I paid. Of course, there were 2 items that I also really wanted that I lost in the final push of bidding. I only bid on things that I wanted and I knew I would use (theatre subscriptions, restaurant gift certificates, a gift for my Mom) and it was for a very good cause (Walterdale Theatre!). I would have loved to have come home with the painting but the minimum bid was $500.00. No one bid on it. I think they are putting it in today as well. I think that if Mark had been there we might have bid on it because we like having "real" art and we especially like Canadian artists. I just couldn't bid $500.00 without a consultation with Mark. Anyhow, the fashion show is on again today if anyone out there wants to support a great local community theatre!

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Ten Lost Years, 90 found minutes...

I went to Seacoast Studio's "10 Lost Years" last night with my friend AM. She studied at that studio when she did a year in Vancouver. Years ago I had taken a monologue workshop with Scott Swann at Dramaworks and it was AMAZING (I highly recommend it if he is ever back again - best weekend session ever). I had told her and she did the workshop and then signed on for the week long Shakespeare workshop with him and then a few years later she went and studied with him for a year. The Scott Swann method of learning and doing monologues is a very distinctive one. I really like it as a method of learning the stories and it is great at keeping the actors "present" on stage. There are some draw-backs though. Some of the actors were a little under-prepared. I think they relied on the method and didn't do as much work as they should have. The result was that two or three of the monologues lacked a narrative arc. The story was there and was told, and in character, but the monologue didn't necessarily feel dramatic. Overall the show was really good. The music was wonderful. Such great harmony and voices with character and emotion. I just think that there were a couple of rough spots that needed refinement.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Busy as a bee...

Whew! Thursdays are busy! I now feel very tired, but it was a good day.

Happy about my expected Income Tax Refund - YAY! Last year I had to pay so getting something back is a joyful thing!

Happy about WW --> down another pound for a total of 16.4 lbs! YAY! All those stroller walks this week have paid off.

Happy about Chanteueses --> Jam packed rehearsal but my independent practice paid off when it came to Popular. I am good for the Mamma Mia stuff for the most part and most of my issues are with words. Overall I am in good shape and now at least I know where I have to put the work in.

Nice dinner with AM at The Blue Plate Diner (Dine out for Life --> 25% of the bill goes to AIDS funding). I love Colonel Mustard's, but this was a nice change for the weekly dinner. Always a good conversation with AM and we talked about those things near and dear to us. Mostly theatre! Ha!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Come to the Fashion Show at Walterdale Theatre

This weekend, Walterdale Theatre is having a Fashion Show/Silent Auction. I have been told that it is more than just a Fashion Show with a melodrama and scripted "bits" and it will be quite the show. It is also a Silent Auction with lots of bid on to help raise funds for the projects we are working on. In two years we will be having out 50th Anniversary Season, so we are hoping to have a few things to commemorate the birthday! Maurice Pharmacy (aka US) have donated 2 lovely baskets for the Silent Auction (one for each show). I love themes so one basket is "Preserve Your Theatre Memories" (a scrap-booking basket with paper and scissors and stickers, etc...) and the other is "For the Beginning Playwright" (full of blank journals, pens, books and writing, etc...). I had fun putting them together and I hope they bring in some cashola for the theatre!

Oh yeah, if you want to come, call tix on the square!

Monday, April 23, 2007

BINGO hurts

I worked a BINGO last night as part of my Chanteuses commitment. I am sore today. Please don't laugh at my wimpiness. It probably didn't help that I had done 4 miles on the treadmill yesterday morning. With the amount of walking around the BINGO parlour I did I probably did another 4 miles. Next time I have to work a BINGO I shall bring a spare pair of shoes to change into since I hear that is what waitresses do. It's the whole "a change is as good as a rest" concept. With about and hour and 1/2 left in my shift I was asked if I could stay for the late shift for which I would receive a $35.00 registration credit (? - why was the initial BINGO worth a $100.00 deposit cheque?) but I kind of knew I would not be able to handle it. Anyhow, I shall do another next year if I am still in the choir. At least I know it will be a good work out.

Friday, April 20, 2007

How to lose $55.00 in less than 1/2 an hour...

Had fun tonight at the Century Casino. We went there to celebrate Magnolia's 30th birthday. It was nice to get dressed up and go out like grown-ups. It was also great to see other grown-ups, especially a couple of the Steel Ladies! So how do you lose $55.00 in less than 1/2 an hour? First you waste $15.00 in slot machines --> that will take about 5 minutes. Then lose $30.00 at Caribbean Stud Poker. I don't' even know quite how that game worked. That will take another 5 minutes. Then take the remaining $10.00 to the Blackjack tables and you will likely get about 20 minutes of play. I was "schooled" on how to properly signal for a hit or hold. The dealer didn't like my technique, but he was funny about it. Anyhow, Casinos are sad and surreal. Most of the people didn't look very happy, but we were!

WW Check in

I had missed a week at WW and got there today with Mom. I was happy to be down an additional 0.6 lbs for a total of 15.4 lbs. So I got another 5 lb sticker ('cause I like them!). I have to keep reminding myself that even though I have a long way to go (at least another 50 in my mind) I am doing great. I think because 15 is a small part of the total it doesn't feel as significant as I want it to. For some people 15 would be insurmountable. My new goal is to get my 10% by the end of the month. I think I can, I think I can...

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Hair Today...

As of last night I am back to brown hair. Okay, I left two blond peek-a-boos, but I am primarily brunette again. I did it myself as I am trying to cut back on the spending and it costs about $150.00 to get my hair coloured in the salon vs. $15.00 for the drugstore stuff. I would have stayed blond had I gone to a salon, but like I said, I am trying to be more restrained about the cash thing, oh, and because time for an appointment is so hard to find.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Virginia Tech

This is a tough one. It is so awful to hear about things like this. I flit from news report to a game and then back to a news report. So terrible to think that you can go to a "safe place" and not be safe. If I think about it too much I would have to keep the kids in the house all the time and home school them. But you can't live like that. And it was a tragedy, yes, but what percentage of the total murders in America yesterday were those 31 people? Hard to say. People always say things like "I never thought it could happen to me" when they go through tragedy, but you have to think that or else you would be paralyzed by fear.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Friends

I had a really nice visit with a good friend of mine who was in town this week. She and I both lived in Fort McMurray for many years and we did a show together (Oliver) when she first moved up there. I remember we were all very guarded about her at first because she was new to the theatre and the city and got the lead in the show. That is a tough position to be in for a person new to a theatre community. Anyhow, once we got to know her it was alright - better than that - because she was just as cool as we were (ha ha ha). I remember showing her how to paint on cleavage because she didn't have any and she played a whore.

Anyhow, over the years I did a lot more shows and she did a few and started having kids. When I started having kids we were both pregnant at the same time twice, so that's kind of cool. She has 4 boys and I have 2 so they came over yesterday and tore around the house and had a good time. I got to visit with my friend and it was just like old times. Last night we met up with more "old friends" and went to Blades of Glory and laughed like idiots. It was very nice.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Shaking Things Up a Bit...


I went to see Antony and Cleopatra at Walterdale Playhouse last night. I did find a date - two, in fact. My mom filled in for Mark and then at the last minute Mark showed up and bought a ticket. Mom and I went to Packrat Louie's before the show for a little supper and it was very lovely. I had only eaten 12 points earlier in the day so I was free to enjoy my dinner (I would've enjoyed it anyhow, but it was nice to know I was still being good points wise).

The show was really well done. I was impressed with it overall. I think, however, because it is a play that I was completely unfamiliar with and a tragedy it was hard to leave it with a excited rush. I find that Shakespeare's language, no matter how much it is raved about, fortifies the fourth wall instead of opening it up. You never lose the sense that a Shakespeare Play is "happening now" because the language adds the the theatricality of the production. That being said, I don't mind that. It just prevents a total emotional investment for me.

The director (who I know as a friend, so I will try to be objective) did some wonderful things with tableau and shadow. It really worked as part of the production and didn't come off as a "drama school assignment" that sometimes happens when people try to use those techniques. He also trimmed the script effectively so that it raced along and kept the audience with it. I liked that because it came in at just over 2 hours and you didn't feel bored. He did a nice job with the edits.

I was also very impressed with the overall calibre of the actors. I was very pleased with all the "men who could act and speak Shakey's language". There was a broad spectrum of ages and no one stood out as weak. Nice to see. The 3 leads were particularly good. I have only seen Cody before (Octavian) onstage. But he, Marc Antony and Cleopatra were all really strong. You believed all three of them. I also really liked Enobarbus.

My only problem, and I almost hate to comment, was a costume/make-up thing. Okay, Here you have Cleopatra, who is giving her heart and soul to her performance. She's really good. You believe her. She's funny, she's passionate, she commands the stage. She is working hard out there and doing her work well. She should be dressed in an outfit that really complements her. One that outshines the clothing of her "women". She is Cleopatra. She's in a society where the opulence of the royalty would be displayed. BUT her primary costume is plain in comparison to her handmaidens and was ill-fitted and distracting. I know it may sound petty, but I think the designer let her down. Why do the handmaidens have sparkles and more elaborate hair. Is she not the queen? I felt it was a mistake of the design. I also wished that all the Egyptian women, and most particularly Cleopatra, had stronger makeup. They looked quite washed out and all were in need of a little lipstick (dark lips ladies!). This is Egypt where the ladies use kohl and henna and paint with gold on their skin. Like I said, it is a minor issue with an otherwise successful production. I just think that all the pieces need to support the work not detract from it.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Weird Dream Last Night

I had one of those very vivid weird dreams last night. I don't know why. We were doing Steel Magnolias and for some reason the actress who played Truvy was late (a traffic thing) so the director stepped in for her. This was very strange and there were 2 guys in the show whose function I could not quite figure out. Then Truvy showed up and we explained to the audience and started over. There was also this strange sub-plot with treasure being hidden in the audience. I really have no idea what this dream was all about, but it was nice to see the chick from Steel Magnolias again, if only in my dreams.

I am off to the Walterdale tonight to see Antony and Cleopatra. My date (read: husband) cancelled on me due to the busy-ness of work so I have to find a date or go solo. Know anyone who would like to see the show tonight for free?

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Away From Home...

I am away from home, at the Best Western in Olds, Alberta. I don't do the best outside my own home. Well, I am not suffering, but I do find that when I am in certain situations I really WANT to be home. I get thrown off sometimes because I feel like I do not know the rules. I try to participate and then I usually feel like I made a mis-step. It stresses me out a bit. I also get stressed out managing my children on the road. There are all these other people you have to "worry" about. As their mother, I recognize that they are tired and off their schedule, so my instinct is to cut them a little slack, however, I get the impression that other people are not so forgiving. It pumps the stress even higher when these other people start trying to "manage" your children for you, even though you are in the room. I see them do exactly the WRONG thing with the oldest one all the time. I also get a little insulted because their "stepping in" suggests to me that they don't think I am doing the work right. Imagine if you had to do your work in a new place with none of your usual tools and then you had someone come and evaluate your performance and literally start taking over your work. That's what it feels like.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Happy Easter!


Happy Egg Day! Well, it is tomorrow but I doubt I will be able to post since I will be pretty busy I imagine. I have always liked Easter. The thing I loved the best was when we would take the dye used to colour our eggs and throw it onto the snow. In Fort McMurray there was rarely an Easter when there wasn't snow to throw the dye on. It took about 2 minutes at the most to do this, but I loved it. I also liked colouring the eggs since I was always a crafty kid, but I would get frustrated when an adjoining egg would bump mine and spoil the perfection I tried to achieve. Ha ha ha! My other favorite Easter thing? Cadbury Mini-Eggs. 4 points for one of the little bags. Sigh.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Two Blogs in One

Hey Y'all,

I started a new Blog that will deal primarily with my writing. If you go to my profile you can check out "On Writing", or go to http://finster-onwriting.blogspot.com to find it.

I Got the Solo!


I am very excited. I auditioned at Chanteuses last night for the solo in "Popular" (from Wicked) and I got it. Yay! yay! yay! It was more nerve wracking than a normal audition because I had to sing in front of the whole choir (20+ little eyes and 40+ little ears) and the others auditioning were good too, so I felt good when I got it. I think my acting experience really helped because she was looking for someone who could sell the role, but the fact that the song suits my voice really well doesn't hurt either. I am just so happy to get the chance to sing it.


Thursday, April 05, 2007

A New Member of the Family


So I cleaned the fish "bowl" and really felt that I wanted another fish, so I went to Petcetera and bought a new betta. He looks a lot different from the last one as the last one was red and the new one is blue. Oliver has christened the new fish "Fate" (after his favorite computer game). The boys seemed unfazed by the death of the first fish and Smeep is much more interested in the new one.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

A Watery Grave


When we did Steel Magnolias at Walterdale Playhouse in the fall, our lovely director gave all of us a fish as a show gift. I knew that some of the fish passed away since then, but I had been spared. That is, until this afternoon, when I noticed Fighter (re-named by my eldest son, who wasn't fond of Rhett for a name) was awfully quiet and hugging the bottom of the tank. I looked closer and discovered he was not just napping. I will deal with his funeral after the boys go to bed and I am not sure if I will "replace" him. I think I might because I enjoyed having him around. He was the only boy in the house who knew how to be quiet and not make a mess.