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Rock Of Ages: The Musical

In: Dan, Patrick, Random Reads, The Arts

Ali and I were stoked to take in the opening night performance of Rock of Ages the musical, premiering at The Centre in Vancouver for Performing Arts. The show is currently running May 8 through 13th, and there are still tickets available! I’ll be honest, we’ve seen our fair share of musical theatre over the years and this is the first stage production that I whole-heartedly recommend people see in a long time. I really didn’t know what to expect going into the show as I had heard very little, with most of my knowledge stemming from the upcoming movie adaptation starring Russell Brand. Needless to say, I was effing stoked by all the amazing 80s and 90s rock music that made up the performance’s soundtrack.

I happened to bump into a coworker at the show who grew up listening to this genre of music and was so unbelievably excited to see the show with her sister that her energy instantly rubbed off on me. I went in with an open mindset, and a few memories of the songs she listed off that I figured I would enjoy myself. The show’s premise is relatively simple, and follows the template of most of today’s musicals. A young girl, Sherrie, played brilliantly by Shannon Mullen, moves to Los Angeles in hopes of making her dreams of becoming a star come true. He parents don’t approve, and as expected Sherrie has to fend for herself in this big, new, Rock n’ Roll-infused city. She finds herself in a local bar on The Sunset Strip, and meets a lowly worker, Drew, played incredibly by Dominique Scott, who is also trying to achieve his dreams of becoming a legendary rock star. That’s the basic premise and setting for the majority of the musical. Granted, the set is EPIC and provides the perfect backdrop, including a live rock band on stage for the entire show!

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Holy shit kids, I can hardly believe it – the NINTH season of So You Think You Can Dance is set to premier on Fox at 8/7c on Thursday, May 24th! I can’t believe this show has been on the air for eight years, and that my summer is once again going to be filled up with some crazy-as-heck Contemporary routines from Travis Wall! I wonder who else will be making a return to choreography list? Will there be a comeback of the legendary Mia Michaels? Will we get to fall in love all over again with lyric Hip Hop from Tabitha and Napolean (or Nappy Tabs if your SYTYCD alum)? Hot damn I hope so!

It feels like just yesterday that our girl, Melanie, took home the crown for season eight – a deserving winner! I was so happy to see the American public cast their votes for the dancer that truly earned the title, versus the production manipulation that Nigel Lythgo (Skeletor) forced on us each week. Do you remember that botched year when the writer’s went on strike and the producers decided to cram in two seasons back to back? What a disaster that turned out to be – both groups got screwed out of a complete US tour.

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I am willing to put it in writing that Oprah’s Lifeclass truly changed my life. It has been over a week since I attended Oprah’s Lifeclass the Tour in Toronto (which airs tonight), and I’m still experiencing the emotions I felt as the legendary talk show host walked out on the stage, a mere fifteen rows away from my Mom and I. But let me start at the beginning of this story.

On February 28, I received an email from Oprah’s Lifeclass announcing that Oprah herself would be taking her classroom on the road, making stops in St. Louis, New York and Toronto. I couldn’t believe my eyes, or my odds, as I might actually get a chance to see Oprah live in person after all – a dream I have wished for years, and one my mother has been dreaming of since the first day Oprah Winfrey’s talk show was broadcast in Canada. I was shaking when I saw there were tickets available, and after a quick call to my Dad and sister, we decided it was time to make my Mom’s dreams finally come true.

Less than two months later we were flying to Toronto and finding our place in line next to the rest of the 9,500 people who also had tickets. We honestly lined up at 10am for a show that was to begin at 4pm, as tickets for the four different assigned sections were still general seating once you made your way to your specific section. Needless to say it was pandemonium as every woman and man dashed for the best seats possible, as we all wanted to be as close as possible to Oprah. We were lucky enough to snag seats in the fifteenth row, next to some amazing girls that we had met while waiting (somewhat patiently) for the Toronto Convention Centre to let us in to the seating and stage area. The setup was breathtaking.

More on my experience after the jump…

Over the past few weeks I have published two articles surrounding author, Orson Scott Card, and one of his original novels, Ender’s Game, now being made into a major motion picture. My lack of research into the author was made quickly apparent by many of you, our loyal readers, indicating your distaste for Card and his anti-homosexual stance. Your notes and comments caused me to dig into this issue a little deeper, which in hindsight, I should have done in the first place.

I am now wrought with a personal struggle that I have yet to put my foot down on, and ultimately make a final decision as per my own feelings. While I appreciate everyone’s support, and completely agree that I should not be promoting individual’s who take an anti-homosexual stance, I also play my own personal devil’s advocate in any situation. Again, I state, I am not supporting Orson Scott Card, or his leveraging The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints to promote his opposition of legalizing same-sex marriage. I want to make that clear; however, I am struggling with the strict line of extremism that I worry I may be getting dangerously close to if I/we demand a boycott of his work entirely. Here me out on this one, before you jump to commenting.

I spent some time looking around the beautiful information engine that is the Internet, and I’ll admit I was shocked at a lot of the postings I read regarding Card’s current lifestyle and anti-homosexual agenda.

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The Hunger Games: Movie Review

In: Dan, Movies

I don’t even know where to begin. I’m overflowing with excitement as I type this! The Hunger Games movie lands in theatres this week, Friday, March 23 and I was fortunate enough to see the film TWICE already! Two different opportunities came up through work and naturally I jumped at the chance. Having obsessed over the trilogy book series by Suzanne Collins, I was beyond excited to see the characters and settings come to life. I was fretting that key elements of the plotline that I personally thought were important) would be left out altogether, simply to make the film a bit more concise. Thankfully, I’m happy to report, this film adaptation is one of THE BEST I have ever seen! With a few additional key speeches from President Snow, played by Donald Sutherland (inserted by director and screenplay writer Gary Ross), the film was 100% true to the original novel.

Every. Single. Scene. Was. Perfect.

Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen couldn’t have been more perfectly cast. Her transformation from a poor and underprivileged teenager from District 12 in Panem, to ‘the girl on fire’ as a tribute in The Capital and 74th annual Hunger Games was utterly stunning. The two biggest surprises, in a good way, were Lenny Kravitz as Katniss’ stylist, Cinna, and Josh Hutcherson as Peeta Mallark, Katniss’ companion from District 12 throughout The Hunger Games. I was SO skeptical when I first heard that both of these men had landed their respective roles, as I had such a different idea in my mind after reading the books. Again, I am happy to report that these two men blew these roles out of the water and I quickly started questioning whether my own imagination had been wrong.

More of my review and find out which actor disrespected fans by playing Angry Birds at the screening I was at after the jump…

With The Hunger Games film adaptation of the first novel in the epic trilogy from Susan Collins coming out in theatres later this week, I just couldn’t resist putting this little Who’d You Rather article together! I’ll be covering the film for the site a little later this week; however, there are premiers and red carpets happening all across North America this week and we wanted to take part in some of the fun. What better way to celebrate a movie than to fawn over the male eye candy?!

I decided to focus on the two lead male actors in the film: Liam Hemsworth, playing Gale Hawthorne, the best friend of female protagonist, Katniss Everdeen, played by Jennifer Lawrence. The second actor is Josh Hutcherson, playing Peeta Mellark, Katniss’ partner from District 12 embarking on their quest into The Hunger Games. Seriously, just typing these last few sentences has be exploding with excitement! I can’t wait to see this movie in all its glory!

Check out their pictures & vote after the jump…

Book Review: Before I Go To Sleep

In: Dan, Random Reads

Imagine waking up each day and not recognizing the bed your laying in, the room that surrounds you or the man sleeping just inches away? You furtively sneak to the bathroom thinking you’re simply waking up after a one-night-stand, a little hazy on the details of the happenings of the previous night. Upon looking in the bathroom mirror the image reflected back isn’t the twenty-year old you, as your mind is thinking, but a forty or fifty year old version instead. Somehow your life has jumped ahead twenty some odd years, and you have no idea what has occurred in the years, or even day prior. That is the case of the protagonist, Christine, in S.J. Watson’s novel, ‘Before I Go To Sleep‘.

I wrapped up this book a few days ago, after receiving it on loan from a co-worker and I am still reeling from the conversations her and I continue to have about the novel. Watson’s portrayal of a woman suffering from traumatic amnesia after a horrific accident lands her in a coma, eventually awaking and experiencing a rapid decline in her short-term memory retention was so perfectly laid out it was like I was witnessing a close relative experiencing the emotions. The story gripped me instantly, from the first few pages, until the very last word of the book. I simply couldn’t put it down, desperately yearning to learn what would Christine would uncover about her life next, and wondering would she even remember it the next day. Naturally, Watson adds continuous layers to the main plotline that kept me turning the pages, with unexpected twists to the storyline when I least expected it.

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Our Valentines Day-themed pics were such a hit, we decided to do it for St. Patrick’s Day too. For one day of the year, everyone channels their inner Irishman to join in the festivities. Whether it’s enjoying a pint of green beer, sipping on a McDonald’s shamrock shake or wearing a splash of green, most people do a little sumthin’ sumthin’ on March 17. As a side note, did you know blue was the color originally associated with St. Patty’s day before green took over. Interesting, right? I just can’t imagine drinking blue beer. LOL. As if green liquid is any more appealing.

I personally love this day for a multitude of reasons. One, even if it’s midweek, people love to party this day. Two, I can pull out my awful Irish accent without too much judgment (too much being the operative words). And thirdly, green is one of my favorite colors. So, wearing a splash of green isn’t a lot of effort and actually suits my skin tone. Hopefully, you enjoy our pics. Can’t wait to snap our Easter-themed pics. I call the glittery bunny ears.

check out a few of our themed profile pics after the jump

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