Tag Archives: performance

the circus arrives.

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to avoid crowds, montreal’s circus festival will pop up in random places

Over the course of this week, some lucky residents in Montreal will be entertained with surprise circus acts that will pop up around the city at undisclosed locations.

The outdoor performances are organized as part of Montreal’s annual circus festival and are taking place from July 6 to 12 at random locations around the city in order to avoid huge crowds from gathering and maintain physical distancing.

As artistic director of Montréal Complètement Cirque, Nadine Marchand explains, a truck called the “Bonheur Mobile” will roll up to alleys, parks, streets, and squares in Saint-Michel, Anjou, St. Henri and the Quartier des Spectacles (to name a few) over the next week.

Ten Quebec circus performers will come rolling out and put on an hour-and-a-half-long show for any unsuspecting Montrealers who happen to be passing by or looking out the window.

Apart from breathing life and joy into the city, the festival has also been organized with the goal of providing work for the artists, as many have been out of work and unable to perform or tour due to the pandemic and it’s not clear when their industry will be back up and running.

Those lucky enough to happen upon one of these surprise performances are asked to stay on their front steps and balconies to avoid getting too close to others.

“the circus arrives without warning.”

-erin morgenstern, the night circus

 

 

 

story credits: marilla steuter- martin, cbc news, daily optimist magazine

art and science.

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Opera house performs first post-lockdown concert for an all-plant audience

Next week, Barcelona’s Liceu opera house will emerge from its lockdown-induced siesta by throwing a concert to a rather unusual audience. The attendees will not need masks or gloves, nor will they be required to follow physical distancing rules.

However, they might like to take along a nice comfy pot and some water to prevent their roots from drying out as a string quartet serenades them, fittingly, with Puccini’s Crisantemi (Chrysanthemums).

A total of 2,292 plants will occupy the venue’s seats and listen to the opera house’s first post-lockdown concert when it reopens next Monday. Non-vegetal music fans will also be able to enjoy the performance as it will be live-streamed.

According to the Liceu’s artistic director Víctor García de Gomar, the Concert for the Biocene, played the by Uceli quartet, is intended to help us ponder the current state of the human condition and how, in lockdown, we have become “an audience deprived of the possibility of being an audience”.

For Eugenio Ampudia, the conceptual artist behind the concert, the project will serve to reflect what has happened across Spain and around the world as the COVID-19 pandemic has forced people to retreat from shared public areas.

“At a time when an important part of humankind has shut itself up in enclosed spaces and been obliged to relinquish movement, nature has crept forward to occupy the spaces we have ceded,” said Ampudia.

After the concert, the plants will find themselves in a new home, with each one of them being donated to 2,292 health workers as thank you for their efforts over recent months.

“the first rule of opera is the first rule in life:

see to everything yourself.”

-nellie melba

 

photo and story credits: the optimist daily

walk like a dinosaur.

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The T-Rex Walking Club parades in Ferndale,MI

The T-Rex Walking Club takes a stroll to bring joy during the coronavirus pandemic.  A silly and secret club formed during the pandemic is on a quest to bring smiles to the faces of kids, and a few adults, while under Michigan’s stay home order.

On Friday, when Governor Gretchen Whitmer extended Michigan’s order, there was parade of a pink unicorn, followed by a gentle giraffe, a ferocious bear, a swinging stegosaurus, Scooby-Doo and a shark too, a tall pterodactyl, a trotting triceratops, a black-and-white penguin, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, a friendly T-Rex, another penguin, and a one-eyed Minion.

This motley crew, which calls itself the Ferndale T-Rex Walking Club, takes its unannounced strolls through neighborhoods. There are other characters, too, and a few members have costumes on order. On their next walks, you might see an additional unicorn, more sharks, a polar bear, a gorilla, a Godzilla, an alligator, a hippo, a flamingo, a zebra, and an upside-down clown.

Most members of the club are also members of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.The point of the parade, is to cheer up the community during otherwise gloomy times and get children and adults to smile, said Oscar Renautt, who heads the Elks public relations committee.

The T-Rex club has its own set of rules. You must be invited; have an enclosed, inflatable costume; wear a face mask; and you can never, ever tell anyone where — or when — the group is going to go walking.

The founder, Ms. Ignash, received her pink unicorn costume one Christmas, has had it for years, and she’d occasionally show up somewhere in it for a laugh. Then, she posted the article in Facebook for local residents and they thought it was a good idea. Folks asked her to organize an event, so she did. It was right after the stay-at-home order, and within two hours, close to 200 people were interested. 

Ignash decided that it was a totally crazy idea, and irresponsible to create crowds of people during a pandemic, so she canceled the event, and started over. Instead, she created a private group and invited just a couple of friends to join her. They went on a walk in costume, and then another, and another, adding a few friends — and characters — each time. 

The costumes are so big that they naturally require the walkers to space out about six-feet apart, a social distancing requirement of the governor’s order. They also don’t want to spread the virus so they wear masks.Visibility inside isn’t so good either, and it can get hot inside the costume. So they don’t walk for too long. “But, it’s fun because kids really freak out,” Ignash said. “They see us coming, or they hear other people talking about us coming, and kids freak out. Its fun, just so much fun.”

credits: Frank Witsil- Detroit Free Press, Ferndale Elks Club

“a procession is a participants’ journey, while a parade is a performance with an audience.”

 Rebecca Solnit, Wanderlust: A History of Walking

alley cats.

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 collective joy in graffiti alley 

ann arbor, mi – summer 2018

“the urge to transform one’s appearance, to dance outdoors, 

to mock the powerful and embrace perfect strangers is not easy to suppress.”

 -Barbara Ehrenreich, Dancing in the Streets: A History of Collective Joy

 

revelation.

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i so enjoyed irish musician

glen hansard

one of my absolute favorites

you may remember him from the indie film ‘once’

for his surprise academy award for best song that year

for his heartfelt, passionate, and powerful music

or perhaps not at all

but on this night

he told the stories behind each of his songs

invited detroit musicians up on stage with him

sang a traditional irish song with his entire crew

including the roadies

giving each a chance to shine

asked the audience to sing with him 

and graciously thanked all for being a part of this night

i’ve seen him with his band ‘the frames’

and with his partner as the ‘swell season’ duet

and this time

with a mix of irish, canadian, and american musicians

all playing as one

and i was amazed all over again. 

“music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy.”

-ludwig van beethoven

below is a live version of a song (fitzcaraldo)

that he performed in ireland with the frames,

definitely worth 6 minutes of your life.

hang in there until the end. 

roots.

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summers in the late 60s

mc5

grateful dead

play free concerts in the park bandshell

late summer 2017

grandsons free play in the same park bandshell

“dig into the roots of culture, and it will grow.

it’s like a grass that is growing, and it cannot stop,

and music is like the fertilizer for that.”

-burning spear

west park, ann arbor, mi, usa

(2 more days and 2 more parks to go)

 

band image credits: ann arbor news archives

breakfast with elvis.

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as i walked in, i looked around and asked out loud,

“is this elvis day or something?”

i heard a deep voice following me in who answered,

“you better believe it baby.”

and that is how we found ourselves sharing a breakfast space.

luckily, elvis read the sign, waited to be seated

climbed up on the counter and belted out hits

elvis worked the crowd and met a tiny dancer

and changed costumes before my second cup of coffee

it was a full breakfast.

“to me, john lennon and elvis presley were punks,

because they made music that evoked those emotions in people. “

-joey ramone

 

 

abracadabra.

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IMG_1152

grandies and a friend

open a magic trick shop

with tricks

priced according to

the level of awe factor

the magic box trick

or

the card tricks

available upon request

and don’t forget the

family discount option

performance art

at its finest

some days

it becomes a

whittled stick shop

and others

a painted rock shop

the transformation

and imagination

are

pure magic.

“magic is believing in yourself,

if you can do that,

you can make anything happen.”

-johann wolfgang von goethe

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