Tag Archives: Danny Kaye

Marg Delahunty returns to T.O., Meryl & Julia move to Osage County and Jim makes more Mostel magic

NO BIZ LIKE SHOW BIZ:  Savvy scene-stealer Mary Walsh returns to Toronto next month in her new one-woman play, Dancing With Rage. The show, set to run March 6-31 at Theatre Passe Muraille,  incorporates both new

WALSH: Marg Delahunty returns to T.O.

and  familiar faces, most notably 22 Minutes alumni Dakey Dunn, Connie Bloor and the legendary Marg Delahunty. Walsh’s last stage stint here was almost two years ago, at the Panasonic with Andrea Martin and Louise Pitre in Love, Loss and What I Wore, directed by Karen Carpenter. Carpenter is also directing Dancing With Rage and she and Walsh still have to decide if they’ll tour the show after it closes here … Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts are set to co-star in the film version of Tracy Letts’ Pulitzer Prize-winning August: Osage County. John Wells will direct …  the cast of Ghost will perform a sneak peek of the

STREEP & ROBERTS: Osage County gals

show on Jimmy Fallon’s late show tonight before the West End musical hit even begins its Broadway previews … and  remember Slings  & Arrows, the brilliant take-off on Stratford and its oh-so-theatrical inhabitants?  Paul GrossMartha Burns and Stephen Ouimette were sensational, and newcomers Rachel McAdams and Luke Kirby weren’t too shabby either. New York Times writer Neil Genzlinger recently suggested that NBC’s much-ballyhooed Smash should avoid dumbing down its storylines and aim higher. “The writers,” he said, “would also benefit from watching a few seasons of Slings & Arrows, a terrific backstage television series that was smart and proud of it,” he advised. Challenging viewers “to keep up, as Slings and Arrows did, is ultimately more rewarding.”

UP UP AND AWAY: On a clear you can see --- whaaa??

IF YOU GET CAUGHT BETWEEN THE SUN AND NEW YORK CITY:  It was just a publicity stunt for the new sci-fi movie Chronicle, written and directed by director John Landis’ chip-off-the-old block Max. But it sure got people talking. To see how they did it, cick here.

A BRIDGE TOO FAR: Unless you're flying over it, of course ...

NOW IS THE HOUR:  Finally caught up with Jim Brochu‘s much acclaimed performance in Zero Hour, and although I didn’t see how his one-man show could live up to its advance publicity, it easily surpassed it. In addition to being an

BROCHU as MOSTEL: brilliant

extraordinarily disciplined and gifted actor, Brochu is also a brilliant writer and storyteller who is never less than engaging, so you don’t have to be a rabid fan of Zero Mostel to be captivated by his reconstituted presence on stage. I know several long-term admirers of Mostel who have been wowed by Brochu’s tour de force, and after seeing him in action, I can certainly understand why. His personal revelations, including Mostel’s bitter estrangement from his family, are tough and touching. His backstage stories, from his account of Lucille Ball testifying to the House Committee on Un-American Activities to his palpable loathing for

HANGING OUT: Merman & Brochu at Sardi's

Broadway blabbers Elia Kazan and Jerome Robbins, are unforgettable. The Zero Mostel we prefer to remember is the lovable clown from The Producers, the madcap jester from A Funny Thing Happened Our The Way To The Forum, the Jewish patriarch who wished he was A Rich Man in Fiddler On The Roof. But Brochu is a true creature of the theatre — his caricature hangs next to Ethel Merman’s at Sardi’s — and accordingly the artist Brochu reincarnates for us has to fight to be in the spotlight. Zero only gets to star in Forum because first choice Milton Berle and second choice Phil Silvers both turn it down. And although his portrayal of Tevye is burned into the heart of Broadway memory, he was third choice for that one too. (First name on the Fiddler producers’ wish list was Danny Kaye.)

JIM BROCHU as ZERO MOSTEL in ZERO HOUR at Bathurst Street Theatre

When the curtain finally comes down — all too soon for some of us — the fact that we feel like we’ve just spent the evening with Zero Mostel, and not a carbon copy, is further testament to Brochu’s great skill as an actor. On stage here at the Bathurst Street Theatre through March 11, Zero Hour is a fascinating and formidably funny showcase for both of them. Don’t miss it.

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Brent Carver, Molly Johnson, Albert Schultz & Jackie Richardson set to sparkle this weekend

COME TO THE CABARETS, OLD CHUMS: The Canwest Cabaret Festival, returning to the Young Centre this coming weekend, promises 60 intimate

Molly-Johnson

JOHNSON: cabaret queen

concerts in five intimate clubs. And as usual the musical menu is dazzlingly eclectic. Obvious highlights include The Leonard Cohen Songbook with Brent Carver, Andy Maize, Patricia O’Callaghan, Mike Ross and Elizabeth Shepherd; a tribute to Danny Kaye by Don Francks and Albert Schultz; and solo turns by Ms. O’Callaghan, Jackie Richardson, Molly Johnson, DK Ibomeka and more. Don’t miss a beat — go to the source right here.

LITERATI: Because Douglas Coupland made such a big splash with his 1991 bestseller Generation X, I assumed his new novel Generation A was a sequel.

douglas-coupland

COUPLAND: alphabet soup?

Wrong. Coupland took the title for his new book from a commencement address delivered to Syracuse University graduates by fellow novelist Kurt Vonnegut. Said Vonnegut: “Now you young twerps want a new name for your generation? Probably not, you just want jobs, right? Well, the media do us all such tremendous favors when they call you Generation X, right? Two clicks from the very end of the alphabet. I hereby declare you Generation A, as much at the beginning of a series of astonishing triumphs and failures as Adam and Eve were so long ago.”

Incidentally, Generation A is set in the near future, where bees are extinct, until one autumn when five people are stung in different places around the world — a shared experience that unites them in a way that only Coupland could imagine.

FUNNY STUFF: Big winners at the 10th annual Canadian Comedy Awards in St. John, New Brunswick were stand-up guys (and gals) Jeremy Hotz, Debra

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HOTZ: award winner

DiGiovanni and Nathan MacIntosh, TV laugh-getters Jon Dore and Wendell Meldrum, and big-screen stealers Peter Oldring (Young People Fucking) and Samantha Bee (Coopers Camera.) Longtime comedy manager Lorne Pulmutar picked up this year’s Chairman’s Award and This Hour Has 22 Minutes creator Mary Walsh added a Dave Broadfoot Award to her ongoing collection. Biggest bonus for CCA founder Tim Progosh was a request from Deputy City Manager Andrew Beckett to bring the comedy fest back to St. John next year. (Well, okay, the Gemini nomination for his 2008 CCA Best of the Fest Variety Special hosted by Shaun Majumder didn’t exactly hurt his feelings either.)

OUR TOWN: Four Seasons Centre architect Jack Diamond talks with Toronto Star business columnist David Olive about architecture that works,

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MAJUMDER: Gemini nominee

 

tonight at 7 pm in The Bram & Bluma Appel Salon at the Toronto Reference Library … Toronto casting director Jason Knight (Chloe, Cairo Time, Away From Her) guests at ReelWorld’s monthly mixer tonight at Harlem Restaurant … and the third CP+S (Creative Places & Spaces) opens today with Sir Ken Robinson and Richard Florida headlining more than 60 high-profile speakers including Peter Munk, Sara Diamond, Gerry Flahive, Joe Rotman, Allyson Hewitt and outgoing Toronto mayor David Miller. This year’s theme is The Collaborative City and moderators for the 72-hour think tank include Ralph Benmergui, Matt Galloway and Ana Serrano. Should be a very lively three days.

TOMORROW:

Get out your calendars. We’ve got

sneak previews of some becoming attractions.