It's been quite an interesting experiment this season when they added live music to the Toronto Cold Reads line-up (generally the music act gets three songs at the start of the evening and then three more after the intermission). Each has been quite different (I've gone 4 times), but good in their own way. I particularly liked Abigail Lapell and got both her downloads and have Hide Nor Hair in pretty much constant rotation at work.
This week was Skye Wallace. She is definitely another real talent to watch. It seems as though she normally plays and records with a band, but she was doing it all solo today. I only bought Living Parts, since it had the song "Middle Class Ontario" about growing up in the suburbs of Toronto, and I can relate to growing up (with world-class angst) in the suburbs of Michigan (though presumably a couple of decades earlier). If I like the way the full band sounds, I may buy a download to her newest album Something Wicked. Watching her on stage she reminded me a girl I knew in high school* or rather I knew her a bit. She played guitar and had a boyfriend who also played guitar. I was just not cool enough to hang out with them, and basically I stopped spending time with them (before I did anything too embarrassing like try to split them up). I chatted very briefly with her (Skye, that is) after the evening was over. She has put her stuff into storage, as she is touring a lot. She is off to Italy for two weeks (how exciting!) and then she has a show at the Monarch Tavern in Toronto on May 20th, though I will be out of town myself (and in Montreal) on that date.
I was quite surprised to win the writer's challenge. I need to come up with an idea that incorporates sandpaper and a bedroom stargazing portal. I have an idea, but it is very, very dark (like one of the super grim X-Files shows) and I think it might actually be too much. (I just wrapped up Freud's write up of the Psychotic Doctor Schreber, and that is clearly an influence.) Nonetheless, they basically have to put up my piece next Sunday, so I'll need to keep my calendar clear. Since it was a small crowd overall, I agreed to be cast (and ended up reading the stage directions and the voice of a ghost for this week's winner). I also made a bit more progress on rewriting Corporate Codes of Conduct, so all in all it was a worthwhile trip, even though I got pretty wet on the way home.
The other news is that Sing-for-Your-Supper has been postponed until May 8. While I kind of wanted to see my piece tomorrow, this way I can recruit more people to turn up, and it also means I will have pieces read back to back on May 7 and 8! Definitely a high point in my breaking into the arts scene in Toronto...
* I've been spending more time lately delving into my high school yearbooks and dredging up a lot of repressed memories. It's not so much that I want to go back to the past (I much preferred university to high school and then grad school, at least the first time round, was better than university) but a couple of my plays revolve around high schoolers, so I want to at least remember what it was like for me. Whether the plays will have to be updated to a more current generation is a different issue.