NEWFOUNDLAND MARY will launch a seven week tour with a public performance October 1st at the George Ignatieff Theatre at 8 PM. For this performance all seniors 65 and over will be admitted for free.The show will feature stage veterans Rennie Wilkinson (Showboat, Mamma Mia, Ragtime) and Daniel Abadie (Cats, Rocky Horror Picture Show). The production will be directed by Liz Gilroy (A Christmas Carol, Rob Ford The Musical), with musical direction by Scott White who co-wrote the show with Peter Fenton (Bemused, The Giant's Garden)NEWFOUNDLAND MARY is described as a musical love story. Luis Rodriguez-Gonzalez is nervous. All his life he has dreamed of becoming a singer like Frank Sinatra instead of being a worker in a boot factory in Cuba, but he is poor, and needs help to realize his dream. There is only one person who can assist him; the very wealthy and larger than life NEWFOUNDLAND MARY. This transplant to Havana from St. John's Newfoundland is renowned for her skill at teaching music, and her generosity with the poor. On New Year's Eve of 1958, Luis gathers his courage and crashes a party that Mary is hosting in the hopes of convincing her to take him on as a mature student. What nobody realizes is that the following day, Castro will take power and Cuba will go through a revolutionary change. NEWFOUNDLAND MARY follows the evolving relationship between two people from very different worlds as they discover the importance of music in surviving life's challenges, the value of friendship during times of uncertainty, and the possibility of love at a mature age.IF YOU GO:Smile Theatre presents the world premiere ofNEWFOUNDLAND MARYBook by Peter Fenton & Scott White, Music & Lyrics by Scott WhiteDirected & Choreographed by Liz GilroyDesigned by Anna TreuschMusic Direction by Scott WhiteStarring Daniel Abadie and Rennie WilkinsonStage Managed by Laura GrandfieldDate: Thursday, October 1, 2015, 8:00 PMLocation: The George Ignatieff Theatre15 Devonshire Place, Toronto, M5S
Cabaret SauvignonConceived by | Daniel Abadie, David Fancy, Rod Morris, Kosta Zakharenko
Directed by | Daniel Abadie
Text + Lyrics | David Fancy
Composition & Arrangement | Jonathan Mastro
Featuring Performances by | Daniel Abadie, Louisa O'Keane, Karina Bershtyn, Eric Morin
Circus Performances by | Zacada Circus
Musical Direction by | Corey Wachala
"Cabaret Sauvignon was a fabulous show – fast-moving, raunchy, biting but fun, poignant and with spectacle. Indeed a vindication of cabaret. Congratulations. Just shows you what you can get away with ingenuity and irony." - Leah Bradshaw
"A vintage cabaret with urban spice. A perfect blend of talents from the Niagara Region. A taste of song, theatre, dance, circus and, of course, wine! It was sexy, raunchy, scandalous and every bit of fun to the last sip." - Rachel Balak
"Unbelievable! I'm still humming and tapping. Had no idea what we were in for and it was a delightful surprise! Great entertainment, great value, and all right here in Niagara. Who knew?" - Christine Merrick
The Rocky Horror Show
'Exciting & scary'
LORI LITTLETON , STANDARD STAFF
Friday, February 4, 2011 12:00:00 EST AM
Daniel Abadie might have a better idea of how he's feeling about having his 10-year dream come true after neXt Company Theatre's inaugural production hits the stage.
The new St. Catharines-based theatre troupe will unveil its first production, The Rocky Horror Show, from Feb. 10-12 at the Sullivan Mahoney Courthouse Th eatre.
"It's quite exciting. It's one of those things where you go through a lot of different emotions when you come up to something. It's a crazy project. It's been a dream for 10 years and seeing it happen, you get all different feelings inside -- fear, excitement, all of that," said Abadie, the company's artistic musical director.
"You feel really happy, (wondering) is it going to be as great as I think? It's exciting and scary all at the same time. ... I might be able to (better) answer the question once the whole thing is over."
Abadie and his partner, artistic associate Billy Arthur, joined forces with artistic director David Fancy last fall after the two new theatre companies discovered each other. Abadie and Arthur had originally created Theatre A&A, while Fancy was working on neXt Company Theatre.
"We developed a rapport and thought we could collaborate on the same projects. They needed help for some things and we needed for them to help us out with other things. And we thought, since we were working together next year anyway, we would put our companies together and make it a stronger company," Abadie said.
Though the two facets of the company had different aims, each can continue to explore a variety of theatre styles as one. Abadie and Arthur will head up the musical theatre component, evidenced by Rocky Horror Show and the June presentation of The March of the Falsettos. NeXt Company Theatre will also present That Woman A Sex Play, which was written and will be directed by Fancy and will star Monica Dufault, on April 13-16, and a documentary theatre piece in September that will deal with migrant workers in Niagara.
"We have the same idea for theatre and it's been really great collaborating so far," Abadie said.
Born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Abadie came to St. Catharines about 25 years ago. After studying voice performance at Brock University, he spent several years singing with Opera Ontario and then appeared all over Ontario with musical theatre companies, such as Gypsy Theatre, Scarborough Musical Theatre Company and Brampton Musical Theatre Company. Abadie has also directed fashion shows worldwide, including in Tokyo, Budapest and L.A.
Proceeds from The Rocky Horror Show will go towards neXt Company Theatre itself, to solidify its future, Abadie said.
"We started this project with no money. To produce live theatre is quite expensive and we decided to see if we can gather our friends we've worked with in the past, create a fundraiser and make it into a theatre piece," he said. "All the actors, the crew and the technicians for this show are volunteering to make the show happen and to make the rest of the season (a reality)."
The Rocky Horror Show follows sweethearts Janet Weiss and Brad Majors, who, after getting engaged, go to their old science teacher's house to tell him. Along the way, they get stranded and end up at the castle of Dr. Frank-n-furter, a mad transvestite scientist who is about to unveil his latest creation. Unable to continue their journey, the couple is forced to spend the night in the castle, where they are initiated into the life and customs of the Transsexual Transylvanians.
Michael Madden will perform the role of the narrator, while Arthur will play Brad Majors. Abadie will be Frank-n-furter, while Stacy Primeau will play the role of Janet. Melanie Ash is choreographer, with musical direction from Betsy Tauro.
Abadie said he's grateful to everyone working to make the new theatre venture a reality and the company plans to use as much local talent as they can, including Brock University graduates.
"This is a show people like to watch. No matter how many times they have seen it, they still like to go. It's a fun show," he said. "We're very committed to the area and very excited that this is actually happening."
Creating a little "Nunsense"
By Liz Dadson
Daniel Abadie (L), J.P. Baldwin, Kevin Jacobi, Brendan Briceland and Billy Arthur perform the final scene of "Nunsense" at the Bluewater Summer Playhouse
Brendan Briceland (L), Billy Arthur, Daniel Abadie, J.P. Baldwin and Kevin Jacobi in a scene from "Nunsense," on now at the Kincardine Arts Centre
The Bluewater Summer Playhouse production of "Nunsense" has a bit of twist, and you'll realize it right off.
The five nuns are played by men instead of women. But it's not a spoof on Catholicism, nor are they five men in drag.
"We are playing the nuns in this show," says J.P. Baldwin who portrays Sister Robert Anne. "We are those characters. Because we're guys, it adds a totally different dimension."
"It's a great story," says Kevin Jacobi who plays Sister Mary Regina, the Reverend Mother of the Sisters of Hoboken. The nuns are putting on a show to raise money so that they can bury their sisters who were accidentally poisoned by the convent cook, Sister Julia (Child of God). What transpires is an evening of hilarious fun and madcap mayhem.
The "Nunsense" concept originated as a line of greeting cards, featuring a nun offering tart quips with a clerical slant. The cards caught on so quickly that creator Dan Goggin decided to expand the concept into a cabaret show called "The Nunsense Story" which opened for a four-day run at Manhattan's Duplex and remained for 38 weeks, encouraging Goggin to expand it into a full-length theatre production.
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The original show, directed by Goggin, opened on Dec. 12, 1985, at the off-Broadway Cherry Lane Theatre, moving to the Douglas Fairbanks Theatre for the majority of its 10-year run. It ran for 3,672 performances, becoming the second-longest running off-Broadway show in history. By the time it closed, it had become an international phenomenon translated into at least 26 languages with more than 6,000 productions worldwide. It has grossed over $300 million worldwide, and more than 25,000 women have played in "Nunsense" productions worldwide.
However, Bluewater's show may be the first to feature men in the title roles. And the actors are thoroughly enjoying it.
Besides Baldwin and Jacobi, the musical comedy features Brendan Briceland as Sister Mary Amnesia, Daniel Abadie as Sister Mary Hubert, and Billy Arthur as Sister Mary Leo, all under the musical direction of "Father" Tom Inglis.
"We're not being offensive," says Jacobi. "It's not a send-up. These nuns are fantastically funny. Each has strength and versatility, as well as her own poignant moment in the show."
Jacobi, Briceland, Abadie and Arthur have just completed a production of "Nunsense" at the Gypsy Theatre in Niagara Falls, with Baldwin as the choreographer. Baldwin then had to step in to fill the role of Sister Robert Anne for the Bluewater production. "So, we have a different nun in this show," says Jacobi. "We're fortunate that he was already familiar with it."
The actors are enjoying their time in Kincardine. "I love it here," says Baldwin. "I would love to do a show every summer, all summer long here."
"It's an unbelievable place," says Abadie. "We just arrived Monday but we already love it here."
They also like the cabaret-style seating at the Bluewater Playhouse which is different than the large theatre in Niagara Falls. The stage is not that much different, but the acoustics are fabulous, they say.
"You have great technical people here too," says Jacobi.
The show is directed by John Dalingwater, with stage management under the supervision of Bernadette Feeney and stage manager Scott Andrew Kurchak.
"Nunsense" is wild, wacky, outrageous and hysterically funny
By Liz Dadson
Billy Arthur (L), Brendan Briceland, Kevin Jacobi, J.P. Baldwin and Daniel Abadie perform a chorus line in "Nunsense"
You know a show is good when intermission arrives and the audience does not want to take a break.
Such is the case with the Bluewater Summer Playhouse production of "Nunsense," the final show of the season.
While the play is hilarious because of its content, it is even more outrageous with five men portraying the Little Sisters of Hoboken. A first for Bluewater, and possibly for the show, the lead characters include Kevin Jacobi as the Reverend Mother Sister Mary Regina, Daniel Abadie as Sister Mary Hubert, Billy Arthur as Sister Mary Leo, J.P. Baldwin as Sister Robert Anne, and Brendan Briceland as Sister Mary Amnesia.
The premise of the play, written by Dan Goggin, is that the nuns are forced to take their show on the road to raise money so they can bury their sisters accidentally poisoned by the convent cook, Sister Julia (Child of God). It is a fast-paced, brilliant, witty production that will keep you laughing throughout.
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And well before intermission, you'll discover that the five actors have performed their roles so well, you forget they are guys instead of girls. The acting is fantastic, the singing is equally so, and the musical accompaniment by "Father" Tom Inglis is superb.
There are many fabulous one-liners, such as one nun asking if there are any Protestants in the audience? "Okay, I'll speak slower."
Some of the incredible jokes are even funnier, given the male cast. "How do you tell time at the convent? I know what time it is when one hand is on John and the other hand is on Peter ..." "What did Jesus say at The Last Supper? Anybody who wants to be in the picture, get on this side of the table."
There is audience participation in the game show, "The Lord is Right," with the contestants participating in various games, culminating in the spinning of the "Wheel of Faith" and trying to get as close to Jesus as possible.
Jacobi is the perfect Reverend Mother, attempting to keep the sisters on track throughout the show, until she ends up with a dose of chemicals that permits her to walk on the "wild" side.
Baldwin is hysterical as the rogue sister who wants to be a "star" and his portrayal of the "melting" Wicked Witch from the 'Wizard of Oz' is too funny for words.
Briceland tries his hand as a puppeteer; Arthur is the "Dying Nun;" and Abadie is the second in command who takes over when Mother Superior gets stoned. And the recipe book scene is priceless - wait for the reference to "Boy Scout Treats!"
Buy a ticket and go see "Nunsense" as you've never seen it before, on now until Sept. 5 at the Kincardine Arts Centre.