So Firda and I have been busy in the last couple of months going to shows (music and otherwise) and I thought I would recap some of the shows for my adoring public (all two of you).
(A) Feist with Hayden at the John Labbatt Center (London, Ontario) – October 24, 2008
This was the second time we’ve seen Feist, and the first time we’ve been to the John Labbatt Center in London, Ontario (which is one of the bigger venues in the area). We decided to purchase tickets for the show since Hayden was opening for her and we are huge fans of Hayden (even though we’ve only seen him a couple of month earlier). Hayden was the opener and sadly wasn’t on stage for very long (30 minutes at the most) and most of the audience wasn’t really into his music – which is the curse of the opening band. Unlike most all of the Hayden shows I’ve seen before he was playing with a full band (whom happened to be Cuff the Duke for those of you privy to indie Canadian bands). He was still quite good, but I prefer him playing solo shows. Feist was also good, but the show didn’t vary much from the show we saw earlier in 2008. As well we weren’t impressed with the venue. The had lights that were shining directly on the exits at all times, which was annoying and distracting. Not my favorite place to see a performance.
(B) Penn and Teller at the Center in the Square (Kitchener, Ontario) – November 10, 2008
We found out about this show from an acquaintance through his Twitter feed. From what I understand Penn and Teller don’t do many shows outside of Vegas anymore so we though, what the hell – I’ve enjoyed the stuff I’ve seen – it should be a good show, and it certainly was. I’ve seen some of the skits/illusions they’ve done before on TV and various other media, but it’s much more entertaining to see live. I enjoyed the venue (we’ve been there before) but we were close to the back and some of there show required you to be close up – so screens would have been nice, especially for Tellers skits (since he doesn’t talk for the whole show). All in all it was enjoyable – plus all of the money we spent went to charity (since about 100 people were crashing a corporate function with all money for these extra tickets going to charity).
(c) Emm Gryner with Brittlestar at the Stratford Legion – December 5, 2008
Firda and I has planned to see Martha Wainright in Kitchener this night but then we found out Emm Gryner (who Bono from U2 has heaped praises upon) was playing 5 minutes away from us and we changed our minds. The tickets were super cheap and the location was just right. Brittlestar (a local band) opened and while they weren’t our cup of tea they were pretty good at what they did, and they were having a good time doing it. The whole band was joking around and you knew a lot of their friends and fans were in the audience cheering them on. Emm’s set was fantastic, though a little short. She played 5 or 6 songs before (one of these songs being a cover of Revolution by the Beatles) and ending her “official” set. She came back on for an encore, where she did two songs with Brittlestar and ended the night with her cover of Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar On Me” (which is likely her most popular cover). It was a nice intimate show, with all the proceeds going to a local charity (P.L.O.W. = Public Library on Wheels).
(d) CBC “A Christmas Carol” at St. James Anglican Church (Stratford, Ontario) – December 6, 2008
The CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) performs annual readings all across Canada close to Christmas times. A CBC celebrity performs the reading with various other members of the community. Our celebrity this year was Barbara Budd (from the CBC radio show “As It Happens”), plus we were graced by the presence of Shelia McCarthy (who plays Sarah Hamoudi on the CBC TV show “Little Mosque on the Prairie”). The other three readers were from the Stratford Festival Players. Though the church pews were quite uncomfortable the readings were exceptionally good. As Michael Fox (the master of ceremony) mentioned in his opening comments “We are planning on making this the greatest reading of A Christmas Carol performed in all of Canada”, and it just might have been. Plus again all of the money raised goes to two local charities.
And thus ends my post. We have a couple of shows coming up in the new year!