Archive for the 'Live theater' Category

This is why I love Balls Cabaret

lesly1.gif• A comedian
• Two story tellers
• Two singer/songwriters
• A mime
• A music/comedy duo
• A barber shop quartette
• A video-shoot of the performers, crew and audience singing John Lennon’s “Happy Christmas (War Is Over)”
• An interpretive dance number accompanying an operatically-delivered song about penis worship.

You never know what’s going happen at Balls Cabaret. In addition to the above spectacles that were witnessed on Saturday November 17th, you also stand a chance of seeing magicians, musicians, jugglers(!), unicyclists, dancers, poets, nude poets, nude dancers and nude jugglers (if only). And some sort of ode to penises is virtually guaranteed – as it should be.

I attended Balls last Saturday for the first time in over five years. Nothing had changed. The indomitably cheerful Leslie Ball served as box office clerk, stage manager, talent scout, host and chocolate pusher. An enthusiastic audience ranging from teenaged girls to grandpas arrived promptly. The night’s performers, some grizzled stage veterans, others jittery first-time-playing-to-live-humans newbies, milled around the seats and backstage. At exactly midnight, 90 minutes of sometimes great, sometimes less-than-great entertainment ensued. Read the rest of this entry »

Live theater | 19.11.2007 15:53 | 2 Comments

This is why I love the new Guthrie Theater

guthrieatnight.jpgWhen I make changes, I make big changes. None of these, fractional, baby-step changes for me – that stuff is for wimps and the gumment.

Before my current incarnation as a lovable, grammar-starved, “slightly caustic” travel writer, I was a Federal Reserve Bank stooge. My specialty was electronic payments. I could explain every step of the process from the moment you hand your check card to the cashier at Rainbow to your account getting hit to the payment “settling” in Rainbow’s account. I knew enough about the system to initiate a “Fight Club” style nationwide financial crisis (with the help of a handful of likeminded, well-placed techies around the country, assuming they all wanted to become international fugitives, submit to facial reconstructive surgery and spend the remainder of their days in a lean-to hut in the jungles of New Guinea – so worth it).

Before my tenure at the Fed, I was a theatre geek. An ac-tor, to be precise. In fact my degree, for what it’s worth, is in Theatre Arts. Right about that time (1993), I was cast in the Guthrie’s production of “Othello”, starring Paul Winfield as Othello, Robert Foxworth as Iago and me as Cypriot Goon Number 7 (and yet, I don’t have a Wikipedia page – there is no God).

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Live theater | 16.11.2007 17:23 | Comments Off on This is why I love the new Guthrie Theater