Motown the Musical: Berry Gordy’s lavish love letter to himself

Motown the Musical: Berry Gordy’s lavish love letter to himself

Motown: The Musical begins with a high decibel blast of pure soul straight from the ’60s. Immediately we are in the midst of a marvelous musical battle – an energetic sing-off between The Tops and The Temps (Temptations), two of the best known male groups from the early years of Motown. From their patent leather […]

PLAYBILL: Metis Mutt matures

PLAYBILL: Metis Mutt matures

“I am Metis – which means that I’m both native and white. Half of me wants to assimilate you into my culture – and the other half is just too lazy to do it.” Does that joke make you cringe? Yes? Does it make it any better coming from an actual Metis man? No? Well, […]

HMS Pinafore: A jazz cruise with pizzazz

HMS Pinafore: A jazz cruise with pizzazz

Shortly after it was written in 1878, Gilbert and Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore (or The Lass That Loved a Sailor), became the most popular musical in the world. Propelled by silliness and mirth, it was a huge hit in London and, crossing the ocean, became an immediate sensation in America. At one time pirated versions were […]

PLAYBILL: Ever been to sea?

PLAYBILL: Ever been to sea?

If it weren’t for a certain Victorian-era creative team’s fascination with all things nautical, musical theatre as we know it today might be far different. Imagine if H.M.S. Pinafore had been set in the Canadian prairies: Ranch boss’s daughter falls in love with a lowly ranchhand, cue “Come away with me on my tractor, Buttercup.” […]

Corb Lund and Ian Tyson: The Last cowboys

Corb Lund and Ian Tyson: The Last cowboys

There was an edge of sadness to Saturday night’s Corb Lund-Ian Tyson collaboration at the Jubilee Auditorium in Edmonton – a sense of that the cowboy lifestyle they sing so passionately about is going away forever. “Our good times are all gone” goes the line in Four Strong Winds – which ended the concert (as […]

MUSIC PREVIEW: Corb Lund meets Ian Tyson

MUSIC PREVIEW: Corb Lund meets Ian Tyson

Saturday night two Alberta heroes take over the Jubilee Auditorium for a show of epic proportions. Corb Lund is of course an Albertan legend, with more nominations and awards than most other artists have hits. One Juno, an insane ELEVEN CCMAs, and a whole lot of others that are too numerous to mention. And all […]

PLAYBILL: You will be visited by 4 ghosts

PLAYBILL: You will be visited by 4 ghosts

Scrooge … Scrooge … SCROOGE, wake up! It’s me, your former partner, Jacob Marley. Why I’ve turned into a ghost whose only gig is to warn to you not to be so greedy is beyond me. “Don’t end up like me,” I’m supposed to say. But I was a generous guy! People liked me! Didn’t […]

PLAYBILL: In with Gretzky, out with DISNEY!

PLAYBILL: In with Gretzky, out with DISNEY!

Northlands Coliseum will be hosting its last show ever this weekend. After that, what? They’re tearing it down to build a domed waterpark? Not super clear on that. Anyway, capping 43 years of memories, where once Gretzky skated will now be the icy stage for Mickey and Minnie Mouse and all their friends – stars […]

REVIEW: Barenaked Ladies have lost their direction

REVIEW: Barenaked Ladies have lost their direction

A band could never get away with calling itself Barenaked Ladies today. There can be only one! Even as the original’s former magic was sadly lacking during a maddening show at the Jubilee Auditorium Thursday night. It was maddening because the four remaining members – singer-guitarist Ed Robertson, keyboardist-guitarist Kevin Hearn, bassist Jim Creeggan, and […]

PLAYBILL: John Ware comes to life

PLAYBILL: John Ware comes to life

Not much is known about the life of John Ware – which of course means it’s open season for curious biographical playwrights. As long as their poetic license is up to date with not too many demerits. The record of Calgarian playwright Cheryl Foggo appears to be clean, and her celebrated play John Ware Reimagined […]

MUSIC PREVIEW: The Glorious Sons on upward path

MUSIC PREVIEW: The Glorious Sons on upward path

Hailing from Kingston, Ontario – hometown of the late Gord Downie and the Tragically Hip – The Glorious Sons have had five singles hit the top 10 on the Canadian rock charts since they were founded in 2011, including Lightning, The Contender, and Kill the Lights. And three of those came off their glorious debut […]

Tegan and Sara share queer agenda in Edmonton

Tegan and Sara share queer agenda in Edmonton

Tegan and Sara are Alberta-bred – twin sisters and openly queer. They used to play at the old Edmonton institution known as the Sidetrack Café. The connection to Edmonton is fitting because the crowd who filled the Jubilee Auditorium on Tuesday night looked like a throwback to the good ol’ days at The Roost with […]

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