Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Here's a little precursor to the musical Grease.  If you have the opportunity to see it live, go for it and then follow up with the DVD version of the 1978 movie.  It's just that good!!

What is the Word? Grease is the Word!!!

"Grease is the word....
It's got mood, it's got meaning!!!
Grease is the time, is the place, is the motion
Grease is the way we are feeling"

Front page of our program

My daughter received tickets to the musical "Grease" for her 18th birthday and I was thrilled to accompany her.  I asked if she wanted to go with a friend but she said, no, she preferred to go with me because I "knew" Grease.  I was, after all, the one who gave her the DVD version of the 1978 film starring Olivia Newton John as Sandy and John Travolta as Danny Zuko.  "A" was quite impressed with it.  John Travolta looked quite "hot", I think is the word she used.

So off to the Jubilee she and I went Saturday night.  Excitement mounting as we ascended the stairs, passing ladies in poodle skirts and leather jackets.  True Grease fans for sure.  We found our seats and were entertained by Eddie Mekka, of Laverne and Shirley fame.  His opening line was "What is the word?"  And we all knew it.  "Grease is the word"  the audience heartily replied.  Thus began the momentous Broadway musical rendition "Grease".

Eddie entertained for 15 - 20 minutes, teaching the audience the hand-jive, I still get mixed up with that, and some "do wopping".  Did you know the words  "schlemiel" and "schlimazel", from the Laverne and Shirley theme song, mean "loser" and "bigger loser"?  Nor did I!
While the audience was taking their seats prior to the show, "A" took a couple photos of the theater.  There's not a bad seat in the house.  No photography was allowed during the performance, however.
Grease is the story of high school seniors, their loves and dreams, dating, and rock and roll.  Opening scene, first day of school, on bleachers the T-birds and at a table the Pink Ladies.  Sandy (Alyssa Herrera) is introduced as Frenchie's (Ashley Rubin) neighbour and "Summer Loving" is remembered by both the guys and girls.  The musical follows the movie roughly with a few new songs interspersed, scenes and situations were portrayed a bit different.  "Sandra Dee" sung by Rizzo was performed in Frenchie's bedroom but Sandy's response to the girls making fun came later. 

At times the music was louder than the performers' voices and oft times Sandra's voice was drowned out.  Other than these minor technicalities, the cast was superb.  The actresses who portrayed Marty (Alicia Kelly) and Rizzo (Lauren Elaine Taylor) were perfect while all the female characters were well defined.  However, the T-birds were less so.  Unless you really knew the characters, the audience might have troubles differentiating between them, especially Sonny (Patrick Joyce), Doody (Marc Winski) and Roger (Brad Lawson).  Their acting was great, just their individuality didn't come through.

It was a perfect evening and the enthusiastic audience, older children and adults alike, appreciated the performance immensely.

“It’s a little like Laverne and Shirley. (Grease) is a family show. For 90 minutes you can forget all that news and stuff that is happening in the world. It’s gotta have a lot going to last that long. We got a whole third generation loving it now.”  said Eddie Mekka.

Grease, featuring Mekka (as DJ Vince Fontaine and as the lead singer in Beauty School Dropout), is a production of Broadway Across Canada.  It opened Nov. 9 and ran through Nov. 14 at the Jubilee Auditorium.  Watch for it on its country-wide tour.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Weekend Reflections at the Art Gallery

Becoming an art exhibit unto themselves, City Hall and the Clock Tower

for more pictures of this one of a kind gallery!

Reflections are all around us, in glass, in water, on chrome, and so much more.  There's a world wide group capturing alluring reflections from their corner of this vast globe.  Visit them here:  http://newtowndailyphoto.blogspot.com/

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Hot Air Balloons - Skywatch Friday

I was excited the day I saw this hot air balloon up close!  We were driving west on the Yellowhead freeway when this balloon was spotted.  It proceeded to lower itself and appeared to be about to land in the empty lot just to the right of us!

But then I saw these hot air balloons!  These photos were taken in Germany.  I won't include all of them, just enough to give you an idea of the extraordinary "air crafts" out there.

What do you think?  Not just full of hot air, these balloons are extraordinary!  Join some other high flyers and sky watchers here:  http://skyley.blogspot.com/


Imagine by John Lennon

(To listen to "Imagine" you will want to pause the playlist on the lower left-hand side of the screen.)

This day we remember those who fought for our country and our freedom.  A local radio station played this song of John Lennon's after observing two minutes of silence which was immediately preceded by the trumpet and reading of John McCrae's poem "In Flander's Fields".  Today and always may we remember with gratitude those choice men and women who fought for our country and those who still do.  I posted the poem and its history on The Gardening Life.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Edmonton Oilers

My family consists of many diehard Oilers fans.  We believe in the Oil!  
This year is a rebuilding year.  New coaching staff, new players, new energy. Sure, we have lost a few games, but we did BEAT the reigning Stanley Cup Champions, the Chicago Blackhawks, on their home ice, TWICE!  We play them again next Wednesday here, at home, at Rexall Stadium.  Let's see if the Oil can blow away Chicago again!

Next Game:  November 11 on the road against the Detroit Red Wings.  If you listen to "Hallsy" on Global, you'll know the Red Wings are flying!  Chances of beating them, not so good.  The following game, November 12, will play against New Jersey Devils who are not doing so well.  This could be a good confidence builder for the Oilers.  Perhaps another win on the road.  It can be done. 

We might even make the playoffs, folks.  We have the talent...Eberle, Horcoff, Gagne, Hemsky, Hall, Cogliano, Penner, the "Wall" (Khabibulin)....., to name a few, and we have the ability.  Stanley Cup might not be in our grasp this year but dedicated fans don't expect that.  This is a rebuilding time.  A time to work out the kinks, master skills, build a team.  A team that grows stronger in time and yes, we have the potential.  Next year, perhaps, the Stanley Cup!  What do you say Oil fans?  Can we do it?  Can our team make the playoffs?  Can we go the distance?  The Oilers need our support.  They need to hear we believe.  We need to believe.  It can be done.  GO TEAM!!!

PS.  What do you think of the Oilers Cheer Team?  Do we need one?  Will it rev up the crowd, build momentum, create the spirit?  What's your opinion?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Toy Story 3 on DVD and Blu-Ray

A Disney-Pixar Production Rated G (general audience) with DTS, Dolby Digital, English, French and Spanish subtitle options

#1 Animated Film of the Year

"When Andy prepares to depart for college, Woody, Buzz, Jessie and the rest of Andy's faithful toys wonder what will become of them.  But, when a mix-up lands tham at Sunnyside Daycare, they meet a host of new toys and soon discover a wild new adventure is just beginning!"  (synopsis from cover)

One of the best, and to some arguably the best Toy Story, this story is exciting, funny, a veritable toy box of entertainment!  If you have children, this is a must-have!  Mine are all but grown up and we all loved it!  Well worth it! 

Rated 5/5

PS  Did you know you can now buy Blu-Ray players with 3D?  If you use a projector, ie. home theaters, you need one with 3D capability too.