I Am a Wild Turkey

Today our acting class went on a field trip.

Now if you’re keeping track you’d tell me, Becky, it’s Tuesday, you have acting class on Mondays you silly girl! Why yes, that is correct, however field trips are BONUS so they happen whenever…! So far my week had been quite theatrical…

We went to Manitoba Theatre Centre and saw the play Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike by Christopher Durang. Its a Chekhov inspired comedy and I don’t really have any idea what that means not being familiar with Chekhov’s work but you may know what it means, so it’s there for you. If you don’t know either, then comedy is the important word.

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As part of our class we had to read the plays script either before or after the play so that we can compare the two and how things were different. I chose to read it before and reading it I was a little apprehensive. It seemed a little much. Everything was very over the top and sometimes the jokes seemed, well, not funny. There were a few moment when I laughed but mostly I just thought, well this is kind of weird… So going into the play I was interested to see how live acting and sets would change the play.

As we were going as a theatre department (I think there were three or four classes that went) we bused out together from the school. That was fun, I don’t think I’ve been on a group “field trip” since like 2009… I’m getting old folks… I was in grade eleven in 2009. So we field tripped out and then at the theatre got a behind the scenes tour!

I’ve never gotten to go behind the scenes in a proper theatre before so I was very interested to see everything that was going on. We got to see administration, rehearsal hall, the literal behind the stage area, props room, set construction room, costuming, all sorts of areas! It was very interesting. There’s part of me that likes to keep the magic of theatre and films complete and not know the hows but the other part of me always wins because its just so freakin curious about how everything works and where everything is and when and why and everything. I thought they did the tour really well, we got to see a lot of places and the tour guide was very thorough in all the question answering and we got to as the director of MTC’s next main stage production of The Woman in Black for a bit and it was all a grand ol’ time!

Then was play time! We were up in the balcony, which was fun, I’ve never sat up there before! I kind of liked being able to look down and absorb the whole stage in one look. While being close is great because you can see detail of facial expression and sets and it fills your vision so you are in the play, you do also notice different things sitting further back. I noticed more big picture things: The set as a whole, how other characters reacted during others lines, things like that. I liked it.

 

The play was very good. It was the kind of play where the actors could make or break it and they made it. It was very sharp and funny and sometimes verging on ridiculous but it kept a balance. The Manitoba Theatre Centre website describes the play so:

Siblings Vanya and Sonia are left with little but each other after sacrificing their adult lives to care for their ailing parents. But when their sister Masha, an aging actress, arrives with unsettling news and her 20-something boy toy Spike in tow, their static lives are thrown for a loop. (x)

Interestingly Spike was the character I was most surprised by. Somehow reading I expected him to be a little less naive… That being said, the way he was played wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t what I had imagined in my head when reading it. It’s interesting how we can all read the same play, my class, the director, the actors, we all read the same thing and yet can visualize different things based on upbringing, environment, company, even mood! It’s kinda neat!

I really did enjoy the play though especially because it wasn’t one I would have gone to of my own accord. I tend to just go to the plays I recognize or am familiar with. This one I read the description (before knowing my class would go see it) and thought, ehh, doesn’t really sound like my kinda play. And traditionally it wasn’t, but branching out is good and it was funny and I think that’s my first time going to see a comedy. I’ve been to see mostly classical literature adaptions so far… (Jane Eyre, Sherlock Holmes, The Heart of Robin Hood)
[Apparently I didn’t blog about Sherlock Holmes, sorry Sherlock!]
But anyway, seeing comedy was fun!

It was a good audience too. They were there for comedy and they laughed. In fact, they gafawed. They clapped in blackouts and after Vanya’s grand monologue (my favourite part of the play, such a massively long, yet fantastical speech. Vanya goes off on a rant about change and reading it I loved it but seeing it, it was performed so well. Steven Sutcliffe did it with such passion and range of emotion as Vanya remembered both the good and bad of the past). I think audiences make up such an important part of a play, you can feel an audience that isn’t with you and it makes everything harder, it’s like you’re physically dragging the audience along with you. This audience didn’t even need to be beckoned to they were there and they were along for the ride.

After the play there was a talkback too and the whole cast came out and answered some questions and  stuff and it was very cool. It’s always fun to see them out of character after having seen them as this particular person for two hours. it was a good cast.

 

Overall, an unexpectedly pleasant surprise! I thoroughly enjoyed it!
(even though I didn’t get the Chekhov references!)

-B

Spring has Sprung!

I have quite recovered from the vicious attack I received yesterday and spent most of today watching “Fiddler on the Roof” (come on, it’s a three hour movie!).

Spring has officially sprung, although we may have skipped spring and jumped straight into summer because it was 20°C today! Nice summery weather with a totally clear blue sky and lovely warm bright sun! We had our first barbecue of the year! And Charley is quite enjoying all the warmth (having been born in winter time this is all nice and new to him!)

I got out a bit in a t-shirt and shorts with my camera and found some proof of our spring so I’ll share that with you!

 

Well talk to you tomorrow,
-Becky

Puppy Discoveries

Now that it’s as close to spring as it may ever get in Winnipeg (ie: freezing overnight and bi-weekly flurries of fresh snow…) I’m getting all these new experiences, what with having a dog and all!

My family got our first dog mid-December this past year. The only pets we’d had before that were hamsters and goldfish so it was a bit of a, uh, step-up shall we say.

When we first got him Charley was an adorable little handful of fluff. He was a cuddle-monster, and still is, but then he was also only six weeks old.

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Now, he is a small horse!

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Looking desperately for his Nick who has gone outside!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Along with having a small, sixty pound horse in spring-time come certain joys, such as the moment when a winter-born puppy discovers things like grass, puddles, and mud for the first time, and the wiping of said-horse when he wishes to come back inside…

Not only does Charley love the mud puddles in our backyard but he frequently (and by frequently I mean every single time he goes outside) gets his chain caught in the slats of the deck (and this isn’t because it’s a short chain, it’s because he pulls to get out of the yard past where the chain will reach, he can move freely within the whole yard with it). We then have to go rescue him as he sits on the deck or on a mud-pile throne and barks pitifully. Unfortunately, as soon as we get near him to help, he is just so overcome with joy at the sight of one of his humans outside, he jumps all over us and gets his mud on us too. Yay…

Then, once he’s done mudifying himself, he barks to come in and we have to wipe him off. Charley HATES being wiped off. He won’t stand still (unless he’s eating at the same time which is the ideal situation right now) and he bites at our hands and the towel so once more, in the struggle to get him clean (after also untangling him from the deck) we have become covered in his mud.

Today as I was attempting to wipe him off it occurred to me that that can be kind of like how we (especially as Christians) can treat Jesus. And yes, I’m going to talk about “Jesus-stuff” now, so here is your warning if you’re not cool with that.

Maybe its more of a teen/young adult thing but I’m quite happy to go off and do my own thing (play) in the world (backyard) but sometimes I get caught up in stuff that isn’t great (the deck) and then suddenly I’m like, Wait God, I need you! I know I ignored you when I wasn’t at church (outside instead of inside) but I’ve got myself in a bit of a pickle out here and need some help! (the barking)

So God, because he loves us comes over to where we are in our need we’re really excited and we’re just like Yes, this is great! and we repent and God takes our sin without complaint (dirt and mud) and releases us again to make our own decisions and we may decide to come back in (come back to Him) right away, or we may be like, Thanks for getting me out of that one, I’m just gonna jump in this mud-puddle some more okay?! and God lets us, he’s given us free-will and he lets us do our thing but eventually we’re like okay, I wanna come back in now and God lets us back in and he gives us spiritual food and shelter and all the things we need and he takes our sin. Sometimes we can fight this because having our sin forgiven means actually having to repent of it which means admitting it’s there and that it was actually sin. Personally I can find that very difficult sometimes and I can try to argue with God and try and convince myself more than anyone, that it’s not a big deal, it doesn’t need to be dealt with, or not right now at least because I like it, it’s kind of fun… and it goes on this way as if somehow I feel that God is going to let me go to just chill with my sin. But that my friends is when the Holy Spirit, who works with our conscience, steps up to take a turn.

When Charley won’t let me wipe him off and he’s fighting too hard for me to get him clean I just leave him with about two feet of chain attached to his collar and closed in the door. Everytime he tries to go play he remembers he can’t and eventually he’ll let me wipe him off because he knows after I do I’ll let him go play around the house. The Holy Spirit acts kind of like that, we go around but there’s this little niggle in the back of our head whenever we do the thing we know we shouldn’t and eventually we either ignore it to the point where we go back outside where we can get dirty again but are still bound by the chain, or we let God take our sin and take the dirt and grime away and it’s only then that the grip, the chain is taken off and we’re free. He knows that we may want to leave again and that we may sin again but he releases us to go and lets us come back every time because he loves us.

So Charley, I may be covered in your grime, and I may know that every time I let you outside you’re probably going to get stuck and then bite me when I try to wipe you off but I will continue to let you go out because I love you.

Talk to you all tomorrow!
– Becky