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Hope on a Rope

The Laramie Project 

Review by Sean McQuaid 

Humans like to find meaning in stuff — and as an unreasonable facsimile of a human, your pensive prattler is no exception. Watching ACT’s production of The Laramie Project at the Guild, a serious play trying to make sense of a serious real-life crime, I caught myself reading profundity or poetry into random things around me as the evening wore
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The power of music

PEI Symphony Orchestra

Review by Ivy Wigmore

Maestro Shapiro warned us. The PEI Symphony Orchestra director introduced the November performance, Vishtèn and Shostakovich, by informing us that if we thought the only purpose of music was to relax us, we were mistaken. He spoke of the power of music to communicate, and the authenticity of the voices we were to hear that afternoon.

We started not
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Ladies in Waiting

Waiting for the Parade 

Review by Sean McQuaid

Your postwar prattler has always had a soft spot for World War II — as an artistic subject, anyway. The real–life historical conflict may have been a tragic disaster that killed millions and damaged millions more, but there’s lots to like in that era's artistic output and the war has inspired many period pieces in subsequent decades. 

One
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Plant Feud

Plant Feud
Little Shop of Horrors 

Review by Sean McQuaid 

Little Shop of Horrors isn’t pretty, but it grows on you. Ye olde reviewer isn’t sure at this late date which he saw first — Roger Corman’s original 1960 sci-fi black comedy about a man-eating plant, or the 1982 Alan Menken/Howard Ashman stage musical version that blossomed into a film of its own in 1986 — but both shows initially left me a
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So much music

Elgar's Enigma

Review by Ivy Wigmore 

On October 16, the PEI Symphony Orchestra ushered in their 2016/2017 season with “Elgar’s Enigma,” under the direction of conductor Mark Shapiro. This season, which celebrates the 50th anniversary of our beloved hometown orchestra, opened with Felix Mendelssohn’s “Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage,” reflecting on two poems by Goethe.

One of the greatest
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A women’s world

Belles Soeurs: The Musical

Review by Sean McQuaid

Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman,” sang Tammy Wynette in 1969. Michel Tremblay’s innovative 1968 theatrical black comedy Les Belles-soeurs expressed a similar sentiment more sweepingly and bitingly, arguing it’s pretty much always hard to be a woman—at least as embodied by the ladies of Tremblay’s 1960s working class Montreal. 

Tremblay’s
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Like Father, Like Son? Sorry

Review by Jerry Laird

When I found out I was going to the Victoria Playhouse to cover a show I felt like I going on vacation, I was going to Victoria by the sea.

The drive is spectacular with rolling hills, a patchwork of fields with round bales scattered across the countryside and at one point, across the fields, we could see the Confederation Bridge.

When we turned off the highway it was
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To shell and back

Island Fringe Festival:
Nutshell

Review by Sean McQuaid 

Your withered wordsmith knows youth is a vital component of any thriving theatre scene, so it's reassuring to see creative young Island thespians doing fine work like Nutshell. Staged in the outdoor patio area at the Beanz coffee shop as part of the Island Fringe Festival, this dark comedy is a co-production of UPEI's venerable Vagabond
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