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Faustus felled by own ambition

Jillian Keiley’s production of The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus aims to demonstrate “how we sing
to each other as much as do birds and whales” by using elements of musical theory in the theatrical
presentation. Keiley’s director’s notes admit Faustus is one of the most challenging but potentially rewarding tests of this idea, because it’s “known as one of the most rhythmically complex works ever composed in pentameter.”

The production’s central problem is its assumption that Marlowe’s rhythmic complexity is not enough in itself; by piling so much additional weight on top of the text, from the sound design to vocal arrangements, Faustus itself is buried under too many other ideas.Continue...

A little help from their Friends

It’s not often that drinking beer on a porch can start a revolution. But then, it’s not often that you find a house like the one on Bellwoods Avenue in Toronto, where ohbijou lead singer and songwriter Casey Mejica lives with her sister and bandmate, Jenny.Continue...

Rock and Roll Report Card

For now, Charlemagne are something of a guilty pleasure, but Deadlines is an entertaining and assured opening volley, capturing a young band at the crossroads between evolving into a terribly good band or just a compellingly terrible one.Continue...

A frightening but hopeful vision

Stepping into See you tomorrow, an exhibit of paintings at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre’s Samuel J. Zacks gallery, your first sensation is of nearly overpowering vertigo. The dizziness comes from
the small exhibit’s massive main attraction, Eleanor Bond’s “Later some industrial refugees from communal settlements in a logged valley in BC.”Continue...

Local artist’s Leisurely Walk not always a clear path

In the middle of Cameron Tomsett’s “Light Up” sits a nondescript everyman.

His demeanour is burdened and his face is vapid and vague. Sitting at the bottom of a lamppost that dominates the frame, he is caught in emotional limbo, stuck between an illuminating dawn and a path of confusion.Continue...

Male perspective on Vagina Monologues

Since 1999, Feb. 14 has been about more than just cinnamon hearts and teddy bears. For the last nine years, V-day, a global movement to stop violence against women and girls, has been celebrated on Valentine’s day, with Eve Ensler’s Vagina Monologues as V-day’s centerpiece in the fight for gender equality and female empowerment.Continue...

Do-it-yourself Disastrous Love Affairs

We Were Writers for Disastrous Love Affairs Magazine is Thomlison’s first release from his independent press, 40wattspotlight.Continue...

No Letdown from Sweet rockers

The Sweet Homewreckers are like the band next door, except actually good—when’s the last time your neighbour’s basement jazz-fusion band got complimentary reviews in Exclaim ! and Chart or hit #43 on the Earshot charts for national campus and community radio? Nice work for six Trent students, if you can get it.Continue...

A ‘listless’ Miss Potter

Set in turn-of-the-century Victorian London, Miss Potter follows the recent trend of films that chronicle the exciting, engaging lives of such interesting artists as Johnny Cash and Ray Charles. Beatrix Potter, the author of the Peter Rabbit children books, is the subject of Hollywood’s most recent biopic. The film, unfortunately, is both stale and painfully slow to say the least.Continue...

The loneliness of the Limestone City

It’s not every night that you’re only one of three people in the theatre—four counting the person
onstage. You would expect, given the small crowd, that the energy of only one man might not be
able to fill the entire Wellington Street Theatre. Think again. The Hack , starring H. Benjamin Ellis as Harrison, is a drug-addled fervour of disillusionment and isolation. The show is based on real-life stories from H. Benjamin Ellis’ stint as a nighttime cabby, as told to writerand director Charles Robertson.Continue...

From Newmarket to Coachella

A lot of musicians aspire to make it big in the music industry through sweat and blood, but the usual result is yellowing pictures of glory days passed and distorted nostalgia.Continue...

Rock and Roll Report Card

Three years after his hit “Right Thurr,” the novelty of Chingy’s St. Louis-style rap has long since worn out. No matter how many vowels he drops “hurr” and “thurr” on the new album, Hoodstar, he can’t seem to pull it together to create a cohesive sound.Continue...

Warm and Woolly tunes leave quiet impression

Even rock stars need a little peace and quiet now and then—but it’s odd that three members of
Canadian rock ’n’ roll juggernaut the Constantines decided to dial it way down at the same time.

During their break after touring Tournament of Hearts , guitarist Steve Lambke released sweet, occasionally twangy, folk as Baby Eagle, lead singer Bry Webb began playing with the Paramedics and keyboardist/guitarist Will Kidman outhushed them all with Woolly Leaves.Continue...

Bicycles, clowns and cubicles

Take a story about a bicycle, a cryptic dance number, some awkward office humour and an enigmatic clown show, and then you’ve got this year’s Vogt B.Continue...

A world of betrayal, torture and murder

This year, Forest Whitaker has earned a great deal of well deserved attention for his performance in The Last King of Scotland , now in wide release. Whitaker, for better or worse, has long been typecast as a gentle-giant figure, with his intimidating size subjugated by his trademark hound-dog expression and kind demeanour.Continue...

A week at America’s first gay Bible camp

You’d have to be either an idiot or an amnesiac to want to relive being a teenager, which makes Camp Out predictably uncomfortable viewing with a twist—it’s a documentary about a week at America’s first gay, lesbian, bi, transgendered Christian Bible camp.Continue...

Bicycles offer bubblegum joyride

Despite sub-zero temperatures outside, Toronto-via-Brantford bubblegum pop-rock sweethearts The Bicycles played their first show in the Limestone City last Saturday night, quickly heating things up
upon taking the stage at the Artel.Continue...

Rock and Roll Report Card

2006 was apparently the year that hosts of artists, long since assumed dead and certainly well past their period of relevance, decided to resurface and treat the world to their elderly musings ...Continue...

Laviolette’s label more like a home

Richard Laviolette moved to Guelph from Tara, a small town in Bruce County, with the intention of becoming a teacher. He studied history at the University of Guelph before dropping out to dedicate all his time to music. Laviolette claims that dropping out of school was a “natural transition” for him.Continue...

Fucked Up rewrite punk rock rulebook

Fucked Up are like that neighbourhood kid everyone always knew was talented but never thought would make it. Hailing from Toronto, Fucked Up announced their arrival in 2001 with a series of intense live shows. After a few lineup changes, Fucked Up quickly recorded a demo tape and then dropped the No Pasaran seven-inch in 2002. A steady barrage of singles followed, including Police in 2003 and Looking for Gold, one of the most sought after modern punk releases, in 2004. It was clear that Fucked Up had the goods, but would they ever get it together and put out a full length?Continue...

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