Tag Archives: Extremely short new play festival

Weekend RoundUp: Live Local… it’s what we do.

Ok we always strive to live local – it’s why we love our urban hood – and this weekend it is easier than ever thanks to all the great merchants and artists kicking off the good times.

auntieloosThe event of the weekend has got to be Auntie Loo’s Treats Grand Opening – YES she is HERE – this Saturday but first ….

This is the final weekend for the Extremely Short New Play Festival. Ten plays under 10minutes each and they are all really good. Seriously, you should go. Nightly at 8pm til Sunday @ArtsCourt Theatre, 2 Daly Ave.

Thursday head down to SAW Gallery for Cafe Ex the showcase for independent experimental films.  Tonight’s edition features the work of award-winning film-maker and photographer Bridget Farr.  An Ottawa native Farr has screened films and worked all over the world and will be in attendance tonight to introduce & discuss 9 of her films. An outstanding opportunity to meet a local & international gem. Club SAW, 7pm

On Friday we keep it local again with Customer Appreciation Night at A Curious Shop. This wonderful boutique is co-owned by a Sandy Hill creative and is jam-packed with one-off, unique clothes and accessories that you simply will not find anywhere else!  If, like us, you keep it fresh & fun then this is the shop for you. The evening promises tasty treats, fire spinning, discounts, manicures and more. It’s all happening at 159 York St from 5pm.

Looking for a little hip hop to round off your Friday? Check out Rwandan-born Canadian artist Shad headlining at Ritual Nightclub with Vancouver’s We are the City and local Ottawa band Zoo Legacy.  Friday at Ritual Nightclub 137 Besserer st.

Saturday it’s the event of the weekend! Have you heard?  There is a new yummy scrummy bakery and they’re throwing a launch party!

Saturday 11am-4pm head to Auntie Loo’s Treats to discover just how delicious vegan cupcakes, scones, whoopie pies (and more) can be! The event poster cautions us to wear loose pants as there will be plenty of samples to whet your new local addiction. The Rideau Valley Roller girls are putting in an appearance, there is a BBQ and neighbouring businesses are joining in too. See you at Auntie Loo’s Treats 112 Nelson (across from Loblaw’s parking garage entrance) Unit101 C.

Finally on Sunday prep for party season at the Ottawa Vintage Clothing Show. In keeping with our love of all things unique and inventive we are sure there will be both quirky and glamorous finds for you to discover. Ottawa Convention Centre 10am-5pm.

ESNPF Review: Short Plays Deliver a Uniquely Entertaining Evening

nto_extremelyshort_brochThe Extremely Short New Play festival defies its comically long title with singularly brief stagings; 10 plays each under 10 minutes in length.

Though some works are stronger than others the overall quality of plays, direction and acting guarantees an evening of diverse entertainment. The playwrights do themselves proud with an impressive array of compositions; stand-outs include Jessica Anderson’s “Terminal Journey“, Pierre Brault’s “Coach of the Year” and a gut-wrenchingly personal account of loss accompanied by innovative staging and technology in Tim Ginley’s “There’s More to the Picture“.

AndrewAlexanderPhoto - EricCraig (Gorilla-Top Job) Colleen Sutton (Tammy-Out of Gas)

Comedic Roles – Colleen Sutton in Out of Gas & Eric Craig in Top Job
Photo: Andrew Alexander

The smorgasbord of theatre – with only 2 or 3 pieces not fully to my taste – left us exhilarated by the ability of the 4 cast member to create such varied and memorable characters. Brian Stewart appears in a staggering 7 performances – managing, with seemingly chameleon-like ease, to keep his characters fresh. Stewart’s sensitive human portrayal of Caleb in Terminal Journey came right on the back of the challenging two-hander Seeing which demanded a broad range of conflicting emotions as an unhinged haunted Intelligence expert grapples with dark thoughts. Maureen Smith and Colleen Sutton transitioned smoothly into and away from the historical characters in Loyal Opposition. Smith toe-tapping impatience was irritatingly authentic followed by her tense unmoving delivery of measured restraint while Sutton’s strengths shone in dramatic roles.

Eric Craig taking to the Ottawa stage for the first time is one to watch; bringing undeniable presence and subtle nuances to his roles we consistently lost the actor finding only the character on stage. As a duty-bound ticket attendant, a grunting primate, a mullet-headed moron or haunted long-haul trucker Craig is in equal measure empathetic, eerie, funny and riveting.   

The balance of comedy to drama demanded some difficult shifts; in particular with the slapstick Denial sandwiched between the night’s two most emotionally-charged works. The comedic pieces at the end of each set however keep the tempo flowing and unite the room with laughter.

Finally, it’s hat’s off to director John Koensgen who sets a fine pace throughout the evening and creates the virtual “space” allowing each time-compressed work to truly shine, for 10 minutes, at the Arts Court theatre.  

31 October – 10 November (Tues-Sat 8pm)
Arts Court Theatre, 2 Daly Ave.