NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE: Bad news was, Ben Heppner had to cancel his appearance at the Canadian Opera Company’s 60th anniversary
concert earlier this month due to the viral infection he caught in October while singing at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. Good news is, Heppner will perform a special solo recital with piano, on stage of the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, at a date to be announced soon. And, his songfest will be free for all ticket purchasers of the Nov. 7 COC Diamond Anniversary concert … the Stratford festival memorial celebration of stage lion Douglas Campbell is set for this Monday at 3 pm on the Festival Stage and is open to the public … National Ballet chief Karen Kain has wooed and won dancer Jirí Jelinek, who will join her merry NBOC band as a Principal Dancer in January. Previously a Principal Dancer for both the National Theatre in Prague and the Stuttgart Ballet, Jelinek has blazed a trail dancing through Europe, and was most recently invited by the
Hamburg Ballet to dance the role of Stanley Kowalski in John Neumeier’s version of Tennessee Williams‘ A Streetcar Named Desire … and guess who went on an African Gorilla safari, following in the footsteps of Dian Fossey? Would it surprise you to learn that I’m talking about Canuck ex-pat Harland Williams? Oh sure, it can get a bit dicey on The Jay Leno Show, but go to Rwanda, man — it’s a jungle out there. To see Harland and the Gorillas he almost Mist, uuuh, missed, click here.
SHARPS ‘N’ FLATS: As indicated in that extravagant recent photo spread in Hello magazine, Liona Boyd continues to live a fascinating life. From her eight-
year romance with Pierre Trudeau — “Pierre asked me to come and live with him and have a child by him” — to her ongoing relationship with HRH Prince Philip (“He’s still my best pen pal”) to her hush-hush performance for the sequestered jurors in the O.J. Simpson trial, the world’s first female guitar virtuoso has blazed her own unique trail in show business. This fall she has two, count ’em, two new albums — Liona Boyd Sings Songs of Love, a collection of duets with Croatian singer-guitarist Srdjan Givoje, and Seven Journeys , a CD of new-age, atmospheric music. And as if that wasn’t enough, her back catalogue is also
being reissued by Universal on iTunes. Which by my reckoning has gotta make 2009 the Year Of The Lion(a.)
OH, STOP GRIPING: Wonder why my hero, Manhattan gossip girl Liz Smith, can always make me laugh? Here’s an item from one of her recent, eminently readable columns on the frankly fabulous femme website, wowOwow.com.
“Brad and Angie spent a recent weekend personally baby-proofing their French chateau. (Oh, stop griping. They have a chateau, that’s just the way life is. I’m sure you have something they don’t have.) Not only did the parents of six toddlers put plugs over the electrical outlets and all that, they even moved out some of Brad’s art pieces and furniture, objects too sharp, too hard, too high, too appealing to curious tykes. So, for the time being, interesting stuff like Brad’s metal woven rug are in the chateau’s garage. Which is probably a smaller chateau. Life isn’t fair, deal with it.”
Funny lady, our Liz. Truthful, too.
DOUBLE OR NOTHING: Vladimir Putin puttin’ out a rap song? Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton meeting for a cup of coffee at Starbucks? Michael Ignatieff introducing the new Liberal theme song? And Quebec’s favourite game show is “Le Whack Job”? Yes, Linda Cullen & Bob Robertson have gone AWOL again. For another crazy episode of Double Exposure Radio. click here — but do so at your own risk!
AND NOW, MY FAVOURITE POSTER-OF-THE-WEEK: