Tons of Money: Theatre Scarborough set to dish out the laughs with this hilarious stage comedy

 

imageRecently I have decided, as a blogger, that in order to fully appreciate the many outlets of entertainment that there is to offer, I must look outside the boundaries of Downtown Toronto. As fantastic, memorable and breathtaking as my previous shows were and continue to be, it is important to shine light on the exciting new productions that are destined to be outright hits with the public.

My tastes in theatre are extensive…be it suspense, comedy, thriller, Improv or musical…there is a unique element of each that can be appreciated. But lately I have been in search for a play that not only has a gripping storyline, but is laced with cracking comedy and added suspense. You know what I mean? But where could I possibly find this?

Well, the wait is over everyone! Through the expertise and creative minds of the theatre company, Scarborough Players, I present to you…TONS OF MONEY; a hilarious new comedy about death, inheritance and the means to have it all.

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Created by famous, British writers Will Evans & ValentineTons of Money was first performed in 1922 in the renowned Shaftesbury Theatre in London, UK. After over 2 years of dominating the West End, the farcical play was hailed by critics as a comedic triumph, as it created amusement around what would usually be seen as a tense situation.

The play was then revived and directed by Alan Ayckbourn in 1981, and since then has been adapted into film and television movies. But what is the backstory and what makes this play so popular and timeless?

Tons Of Money tells the story of Aubrey Henry Maitland Allington; an inventor so down on his luck, that his debts are accumulating by the day. But when things are about to get worse and tip Aubrey over the edge, a sudden monetary inheritance is awarded to him, which could eventually bring him out of his drowning debt.

imageHowever, he feels he has only two options; TAKE THE MONEY and have to use it all to pay off those pestering creditors or REJECT IT and continue to live a life of struggle.

But is that his only solution? Aubrey’s wife Louise comes up with an idea that will knock you off your seats. Her husband’s cousin George Maitland, was assumed to have died abroad; with very little people ever knowing what actually happened to him. But the creditors don’t know that…do they? Although not the most conventional method, she concludes that the only way they can enjoy the inheritance to the fullest without it being snatched from their clutches, is for Aubrey to fake his own death…and with so, leaving in his last will and testimony, that his assets go to his cousin George.

imageBut how can this be possible? George is assumed dead. So how can he collect such a inheritance? Part Two of Louise’s plan is for her newly “dead” husband to resurrect himself as his cousin, and accept his new-found fortune; unbeknownst to his debt collectors, who would naturally have to wipe the slate clean.

Sound smooth sailing? Think again. With an act so gutsy and destined for mishaps, Aubrey and Louise get themselves into side-splitting, hilarious scenarios, where each lie could either make them or break them.

Tons of Money promises to be a night full of laughter and suspense, where the audience will be anticipating each move of our lead characters. Not to mention, the many surprises that lie in wait, along the way. The entire Scarborough Players crew  and cast, alongside the artistic excellence of director Jeremy Henson, producer Linda Brent and stage manager Teresa Bakker, will without a doubt bring this feel-good story to life in their own wonderful way.

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If you are like me, and cannot wait to see this show, then here is all the information you need:

TONS OF MONEY will be performed at the Theatre Scarborough c/o Scarborough Village Theatre, located at 3600 Kingston Road, Scarborough, Ontario, M1M 1R9.

The show will run from opening night on April 7th until April 22nd 2017.

Tickets are priced at $22 and can be purchased by in person at the theatre, by calling the Box Office on (416) 267-9292 or simply reserving you tickets online by clicking HERE.

Tickets are already flying out the door, so get yours booked NOW before its too late.

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On a final note…stay tuned for my post-opening night review, and watch me work my magic.

LOVE: The Entertainment Fairy.

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Feel Good Show of The Year: The Night Joe Dolan’s Car Broke Down

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Last night I had the opportunity to attend the opening night of the Irish based comedy THE NIGHT JOE DOLAN’S CAR BROKE DOWN, by renowned theatre company The Toronto Irish Players.

The live performance took place at the beautiful, comfortable Alumnae Theatre, 70 Berkeley Street, Toronto.

As it was opening night, a lot of pressure is put on the cast and crew to deliver an outstanding performance; something that sets the bar and gets the media talking. As I moved through the waves of theatre-goers in the entrance hall, you could feel a warm energy travelling through the crowd; one of excitement and appreciation.

The crew prepared the many people for a wonderful night, as they mingled with the public and spared the time to, as we say in Ireland, have a bit ‘a’ craic. Since moving to Toronto, I have genuinely not met many Irish people, so to attend a show that allowed all of us to come together and reconnect in many ways, is something to be enjoyed & be proud of.

But what about the show? What was it about? Did it live up to expectations? And would I recommend it to all my followers?

For those unfamiliar with the Irish legend that is Joe Dolan, he was a singer who dominated the music charts from the 1960’s to 1990’s with his array of catchy show-tunes, and was the Number One entertainer in the era of popular show-bands. Not only was he the only Irish singer to have consecutive number 1’s in every decade of his music career, but he had hoards of female fans following his across the country; thanks to his wit, charm and killer moves. Despite passing away in 2007, Joe Dolan still holds a place in people’s hearts and his songs never fail to get everyone up and swaying their hips, as if they were him.

imageAnd this is where our story opens. THE NIGHT JOE DOLAN’S CAR BROKE DOWN opens in the Glenaduff Inn, County Cavan, in Ireland. It’s St. Stephen’s Night and ten people sit within its four walls, having the craic and knocking back drink after drink. Not only is it the festive season but everyone has gathered for the surprise birthday of a man known as The Horse Munley (Ian McGarrett). A group of young ones, headed by thoughtful and cheerful Jane (Sinead Ni Bhraoin) are ready to celebrate the 60th Birthday, and use any excuse to order up another round of shots. Accompanying Jane are Sheila (Mairead Clancy); the wise-cracker of the bunch, John (Ryan Francis); the party lad just looking for a good time, Mary (Rebecca De LaCour); a loveable character with a fiery side, and Paul (Sean Gilheany);…we all have a friend like Paul…the quiet one who turns casanova, after a few drinks.

Providing the music on this cold night is resident musician Steve (Bill Poulin) and keeping alcohol flowing is barman Barney (Stephen Flett). The only other people in the pub are husband and wife duo PJ & Angela (played by Jamie Johnson & Kelly Marie Murtha).

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As the “liquid courage” keeps coming, the pub-goers start to get a little brave, resulting in hilarious showdowns and cracking one-liners; delivered by the entire cast. Non-drinker housewife Angela decides that trying a few shots wouldn’t do any harm, despite the warning looks from her over-bearing, outspoken husband. Meanwhile, a secret is being kept locked up by Jane, which she eventually reveals; turning the night upside down.

But just when you think the night could not get more dramatic, an increasingly drunk Angela reveals a scandalous secret that not only shakes the pub, but brings with it a feisty love triangle, that will have you crying with laughter.

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As family affairs and love lives are thrown about for all to see, our party goers depart ways…but what happens next turns the whole thing up a notch. A knock comes to the door, and who is it, but none other than Joe Dolan (played by Hugo Straney). After the initial shock wears off, the Horse Munley and barman Barney are treated to their own private show with Joe Dolan. As he belts out all his classic songs, the night starts to sail smoothly, and you cannot help but sing along with the songs we have all come to know.

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I am not one for spoiling the surprise, but as the night comes to a close and the sun rises, news arrives to the pub, that the audience will not see coming… a clever and memorable twist to a fantastic show.

So what did I think of it? Do you need to ask? It was phenomenal, and exactly what Toronto needs right now. It is the perfect addition to the theatre scene and even though this production is the Canadian debut of the popular play, you will be blown away by how effortlessly the storyline comes to life; thanks to these talented actors and stage professionals.

imageEvery actor was perfect in their role, and I could not fault them in any way, as they delivered high-quality, memorable and touching scenes, mixed with comedic magic. However, the characters that I immediately fell in love with, were ‘say it as ya see it’ Sheila (Mairead Clancy) and the hilarious, crowd-pleaser, which was Mary (Rebecca De La Cour). Also Stephen Flett in his role as Barney will have you laughing from beginning to end, making you wish you had barmen like him in your home town.

But an extra round of applause must be, without a doubt, given to the sensational Hugo Straney (Joe Dolan). With his wonderful vocal ability and fantastic range, he hit every note in a way that would make the late singer’s fans think he was right in the room with them all. Add all of this to the singer’s signature white suit, cheeky wink and the well-known snake-hips, he had the whole crowd wooing and wolf-whistling throughout…proving that this actor and performer is no “average Joe.”

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Lastly, I must acknowledge how wonderfully creative the set design of the Glenaduff Inn was on stage, which was all down to set designer James O’Meara. He put together such a realistic stage that at one point I felt like jumping up onto the set with them, and ordering my favorite drink.

If you wish to laugh your way into next week and go to a feel good show; laced with typical Irish humour, gags and classic phrases, then this is the show for you. The Irish are known around the world to be a very welcoming nation, up for a laugh and always a joke to tell. And this theatre group and production are the perfect example of this.

Last night was an absolute SELL OUT, so I’d encourage you all to GET YOUR TICKETS NOW before it’s too late. With many other days already selling out, you should get your tickets reserved before the show ends.

THE NIGHT JOE DOLAN’S CAR BROKE DOWN plays at the Alumnae Theatre from February 16th until March 4th 2017.

Tickets can be reserved online by clicking http://torontoirishplayers.com/wp/.

Great Show…Great Night…Great People.

5 STAR RATING 

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Rowan: The Hidden Gem of the East End

imageYesterday, on my day off from work, I decided to do a bit of sight-seeing, jump on a streetcar and travel to the outskirts of the city of Toronto, to embrace my inner globetrotter.

My travels took me to the quiet, peaceful and stylish neighborhood of Queen Street East. With its astonishing number of quirky, unusual, and individualistic stores, I felt like I was in a whole new land. Being in downtown Toronto all the time, it can be hard to see past all the same popular franchises that are in every country. But as I walked down Queen Street towards the Beach District, I was blown away by the wide selection of independent stores to chose from. From handmade jewellery to independent and affordable clothing lines…it has it all.

But I was in search of something specific; something that no other business could offer. And what this was…was the perfect skin treatment for home use.

In the past, I’ve tried them all. I’ve bought the leading French brands, which ended up too strong for my skin, the drugstore brands which were inexpensive but useless, and of course…I even made my own, with an array of ingredients. Did any of them work, not all all.

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But yesterday I came across a beautiful little shop called ROWAN: Homespun Market & Apothecary, located at 2196 Queen Street East, and all my wishes came true. Not only did they make homemade skin masks, created entirely from natural ingredients, but they had their own entire skin, hair and body-care range called Wildwood.

The store also had on display a wide range of essential oils, sage products, literature, beverages, teas, and jewellery & ornaments created by local designers.

With its clean, rustic decor and white, wood displays, I could not help but feel relaxed and at home as I browsed the items on sale. With its hanging herbs and and quartz crystals, I felt like I was in a place of comfort; full of magic and mystery.

As I looked at the Wildwood range, which were laid out cleverly on a shelf; carved into the letter W, I found what I was looking for. Looking at the list of natural ingredients, I finally decided that the Wildflower and Pink Clay Mask was for me.

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As the very helpful and kind lady at the register cashed my product, she informed me of several workshops that happen on the premises. Not only does the store create wonderful lines, but you can now learn it all from the very best as well.

Bidding farewell to my new favorite beauty haven, I raced to get home and try it out. As the product consists of a clay, powdered substance, only 1 teaspoon of product is required with 1 teaspoon of water. Mixing the 2 together in a small bowl, this created a watery/creamy paste, which I then applied to my face and neck.

As per recommendations, I left the mask on for 10 minutes, and during this time, you can feel the pinkish, brown clay harden quickly on your skin. Not only do you feel that its working, but with the wildflower components…it smells lovely and refreshing.

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When the timer was up, I removed all traces of the clay mask, with cold-lukewarm water, making sure my skin was properly cleansed and patted dry. And what of the results? They were everything I was hoping for. My skin felt so smooth, firm and nourished that I immediately got my housemate to try it as well; with equally pleasing results.

imageROWAN is a fantastic store that everybody needs to visit. Not only is the skincare luxurious, but it is healthy, non allergenic and completely natural. There is definitely something in the Wildwood range for all, as they now offer soaps, creams and even dry shampoo. With all the media surrounding commercial dry shampoos, made from artificial ingredients and their role in increased hair-loss, experts are actually now encouraging customers to buy dry shampoo made with natural ingredients; in order to combat this issue. And now you know where to find one.

If you, like myself, are looking for all the natural alternatives; for an affordable price, then a trip out on the 501 east streetcar to ROWAN is what’s needed.

All information on the Wildwood range can be found by clicking HERE

Information on upcoming workshops can be found HERE.

For great products and great customer service, get down to 2196 Queen Street East today, and see it all for yourself.

Have a magical day my fairy followers.

 

Thank You For Being A Friend: The Golden Girls Experience

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When you hear the words The Golden Girls, I doubt there is one person whose mind will not travel back to the mid 80’s to early 90’s TV sitcom, that had people all across the globe laughing from beginning to end.

imageIt was definitely a show ahead of its time and paved the way for future shows headed by an entire female cast. The wonderful thing about this story-line was that it was, and still is so relative today.

We get all get old, we all still have our trials and tribulations, our ups and downs…but one thing is for sure; no matter what age you are, you can still have a sense of humor. Just like these 4 mature ladies, all they needed was each other to have a good time, and everything after that was filled with joy and laughter.

imageThe story of the Golden Girls follows 4 women (3 widows and 1 divorcee), Blanche, Rose, Dorothy and Sophia, as they all share a house in Miami. What could go wrong? Well, with four very different personalities, the cast had its viewers bent over laughing, as each woman approached the many mysteries that come with getting older, clashing with each other along the way.

Writer Susan Harris was quoted saying, “it was a demographic that had never been approached.” With Rose’s naive, simple nature, Blanche’s man-hungry promiscuous lifestyle, Dorothy’s sarcastic and quick wit, and Sophia’s brazen attitude…the show was a delight for all.

But in 1992, the world sighed sadly…as the monumentally, groundbreaking sitcom came to an end. So what now? Well, thanks to the genius of Joseph Patrick Presents, the girls are coming back to the stage in the form of puppets…in the live-tribute stage production (named appropriately after the series’ theme song)…THANK YOU FOR BEING A FRIEND.

With the same humor of the original series, striking puppets with an uncanny resemblance to the female TV cast and a set that will take you back to the warm, charming home of these 4 single women…this production has already proven itself to be an absolute cracker of a show; with rave reviews coming in from critics all over Toronto.

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If you, like myself, are a huge of The Golden Girls and live theatre, then this is the one for you. Get ready to laugh your little heart out and have all your comedy cravings satisfied, as THANK YOU FOR BEING A FRIEND is now performing at Toronto Centre For The Arts from February 10th until March 5th 2017.

The cast promises “an evening of laughter, spectacular put-downs and familiar friends…delivering all the classic dialogue, razor-sharp gags and taboo-breaking stories you’d expect.”

What more could you want? Wait, there’s more! As everyone knows, the 4 memorable ladies always loved to have a gossip and regroup at the kitchen table, over a nice slice of cheesecake. At the Toronto Centre For The Arts, you can join in on the fun, as they are offering VIP seating with your own table, tablecloth and cheesecake included…so you can really enjoy the live experience.

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Don’t wait until tomorrow…GET YOUR TICKETS NOW. Tickets can be purchased at the theatre box office or can be purchased online in advance, by clicking HERE.

Joseph Patrick Presents never fail in giving the public a wonderful array of shows, and this is no exception. With that cold, snowy weather outside, what better way to warm yourself up, than with a bit of Golden Girls.

On behalf of Joseph Patrick Presents, Toronto Centre For The Arts and this wonderful cast, I would like to thank you all for supporting live theatre, and most of all…Thank You For Being A Friend.

Enjoy my little followers…Love: The Entertaiment Fairy xxx