Tempo Toronto http://tempotoronto.ca Inspiration for Toronto's baby boomers Wed, 11 May 2011 09:51:53 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.0 Graffiti Culture in Toronto http://tempotoronto.ca/wellbeing/the-arts/graffiti-culture-in-toronto/ http://tempotoronto.ca/wellbeing/the-arts/graffiti-culture-in-toronto/#comments Wed, 11 May 2011 09:51:53 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4112
  • Toronto’s Peaceful Protest
  • Olde Yorke Towne
  • Returning artists
  • ]]>
    Understand Street Art and Graffiti – Mayor Ford

    by Ruth Wilgress (TorontoArtsGirl.com)

    Rob Ford spray washing graffiti in TorontoAs I walk the streets of Toronto I have often had various feelings about Graffiti art. Some images I have admired. Other times I have felt sorry for property owners that have had some horrible looking markings imposed on their buildings. There is a wide range of street art and graffiti exposed all over this amazing Canadian city. Sometimes these tags or art works leave me repulsed; however, many times I feel a great amount of joy and appreciation for these artistic creations. They are not associated with monetary value. I recognize that I can feel these contradictory emotions in an art gallery as well. It’s important that we realize that art evokes emotions of all sorts. Rob Ford has a recent campaign to clean up the graffiti in Toronto. I only hope that he thinks twice before he begins his venture to remove all of these art forms from the streets in Toronto. Graffiti is part of our modern day urban pop culture. Before we form opinions on the new pop culture we should be prepared to understand it first. It would be a shame to have Rob Ford put hard earned money toward the elimination of all of these creative forms of expression in Toronto without any understanding.

    There are few documentaries including the Exit Through the Gift Shop that give an insightful and interesting background on graffiti or street art. Exit Through the Gift Shop is a story of how an eccentric French shop keeper and amateur film maker attempt to locate and befriend Banksy a well known graffiti artist. The film contains footage of Banksy, Shephard Fairey, Invader and many of the world’s most infamous graffiti artists at work. There are so many different types of street artists that have incredible creative messages they are attempting to share with the world for different reasons..

    This brings us to the controversy as to what Graffiti art actually is, and tagging verses graffiti art is arguable. According to Wikipedia the actual word, singular graffito; the name for images or lettering scratched, scrawled, painted or marked in any manner on property. Graffiti is any type of public markings that may appear in the form of simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Graffiti has existed since ancient times, with examples dating back to Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire. In our modern day, paint, particularly spray paint, sticker art, wheatpasting poster art, stencils and marker pens have become the most commonly used graffiti materials. Marking or painting property without the property owner’s consent is considered defacement and vandalism, which is a punishable crime. Sometimes graffiti expresses social and political messages and a whole genre of artistic expression is based upon spray paint graffiti styles. Recently it has become a valuable art form worthy of display in galleries and exhibitions; to others it is merely vandalism.

    toronto graffiti walled Street art and graffiti, are a part of the outsider art movement – that being artists with no academic or formal training in visual arts. Art history has shown us for centuries the progression of visual arts. It has moved further away from the elitist viewpoint and towards an accessible expression for all. Back through history art was seen as a technical skill that only a few chosen and talented artists mastered. We may still see some of this today. During the Renaissance the wealthy commissioned, bought and determined what, was “good art” and this was the majority in most cases until the turn of the nineteenth century.

    As we move further into the twenty first century we have moved further towards more of a freedom of expression. Artists are taking more creative risks in hopes of being innovative and unique. The question of what makes art ‘real art’ still rises often. This challenge is often welcomed and modern art would say that question in itself is what makes art ‘art’. Art is a visual form of expression, inherit in all of us. Although some art connoisseurs still hold on to their traditional views with the disagreement, and feel only the highly skilled should be considered artists. Our transformative society has many who truly believe that any person who takes the opportunity to expresses themselves visually may be considered an artist. In the modern art world we see more innovative artists, and art has veered into the commercial world where rules are broken every day. Professional artists are in the position that they must learn to market their creative work in order to survive. Having talent and skill alone won’t pay your bills.

    Some graffiti artists challenge the commercial world we live and the marketing statements that we see daily. Noise pollution is an issue in the urban areas with advertising and branding pasted everywhere on the streets. The quiet yet not so subtle visual pollution surrounds us everywhere as we go about our lives. It’s impossible to escape. Some graffiti artists see their creative process as a revolt against visual pollution. The overwhelming billboards and messages that pollute the streets in the city can leave us feeling inadequate and helpless at times. Some see the street art and graffiti art as a revolt against the arts in visual media marketing. Many graffiti artists challenge why the commercial world has control of visual art on the streets, and they want their own form of expression.

    The controversies that surround graffiti art continue to create disagreement amongst city officials/law enforcement and graffiti artists who wish to display and appreciate work in public and private locations. There are many different types and styles of graffiti and it is a rapidly developing art form whose value is highly contested.

    Graffiti has evolved into a pop culture existence often associated to underground hip hop music, b-boying, and a lifestyle that remains hidden from the general public. Graffiti can be used as a gang signal to mark territory or to serve as an indicator or “tag” for gang-related activity. There is a huge controversy in regards to the evolution of graffiti art, stencils, sticker art, wheatpasting / street poster art, and street installations. However, the ‘Street Art’ is typically used to differentiate this new movement from graffiti, vandalism, and corporate art. Many non profit organizations encourage creative self expression among youth and start mural projects among the street to beautify the dreary rural areas.

    There is a large amount of cross over between the two art forms, Street Art and graffiti. There is a growing respect and admiration for both. In New York City, Spring Street was one of the World’s most famous Street Art canvases. On December 15, 2006 the outside and inside of the building, was opened to the public in one final and mass display / installation of Street Art before the building was cleaned up and turned into apartments. We are beginning to see more people develop a respect for the artistic expression of the underserved people on the streets. Art should be more accessible to all.

    The Toronto Street is thy Canvas?

    The graffiti art sub-culture can be very risky and dangerous one. Many of these bombers or artists not only risk being caught by authorities vandalizing insulated concrete forms on public buildings, but they also risk their lives. The term bombing is done everywhere and can be as simple as a freedom of expression. These bombers often don’t feel like they have a voice in society. Tagging a signature can feel empowering to an individual and may feel like a legacy is being left behind. This can be crucial in the lives of people who feel lost or forgotten in the huge city of Toronto and its’ capitalism..The deceased graffiti artist known for his tag alpha in Toronto

    Such is the case for 18 year old Bardia Bryan Zargham in 2005. On a section of the CPR tracks in mid-town Toronto, the young man was struck by an oncoming train. Bardia Bryan Zargham was a graffiti artist and he was writing his tag. His was painting his graffiti name, Alpha on the side of a stationary freight car when a train hit him. Alpha was known as the King of the Bombers at the time. He was apparently good at writing his name in big letters in a few short minutes repeatedly. This was an unfortunate event. Rest in peace Alpha.

    More people are beginning to value and accept the beauty of graffiti and street art in Toronto. There is a move towards more regulated areas where it is more acceptable. This is true especially if the art form is respectful of private property. Local walking tours such as the Murals and Public Art in the Junction Triangle have organized a free walk in west Toronto that is bordered on all three sides by railways tracks and underpasses. This makes it an ideal place for public art. This walk on Saturday May 7, 2011 at 10am explores the painted murals, ghost signs, graffiti, and other public art throughout the neighbourhood. The appreciation for this Outsider art is increasing in interest.

    Related posts:

    1. Toronto’s Peaceful Protest
    2. Olde Yorke Towne
    3. Returning artists

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    Toronto Rooftop Patios http://tempotoronto.ca/out-about/toronto-rooftop-patios/ http://tempotoronto.ca/out-about/toronto-rooftop-patios/#comments Fri, 06 May 2011 20:30:41 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4102
  • ONE – at Hazelton Hotel
  • Yorkville’s Dimmi
  • ]]>
    Where to go

    by Christine Stoesser

    The warm weather teasers Toronto has been experiencing have also served as a reminder of just how many people populate our city. Toronto sometimes feels a little like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the latter being the winter, of course. It’s not that winter is all bad, but its chill can impose on socializing so much that even the most gregarious folks in Toronto find themselves tucked inside with a book or a movie—a lot. It’s easy to love Toronto in the spring: magnolias blossom, hearts open and friends reconnect. To bring your social life back into existence, and to experience Toronto from another point of view, there is nothing nicer than visiting a rooftop patio with friends on a breezy, balmy evening. Here’s a list of five rooftop patios in different corners of the city that offer great service, drinks and gorgeous views.

    Hemingway’s:

    Hemingway's

    Known for their extensive wine list and delicious sweet potato fries, Hemingway’s is a mature yet down-to-earth watering hole that celebrates the cultures of Australia and New Zealand. Located in the upscale Yorkville shopping district, Hemingway’s is actually quite affordable, which might explain why it’s so busy, filled with people who have just finished working or shopping. If you love to meet new people and network, Hemingway’s might be your gem. Even though it’s busy, they still manage to provide great and attentive service. Hemingway’s is a fun and relaxed atmosphere where laughter abounds.

    Thompson Hotel:

    Thompson Hotel

    The Thompson Hotel is an international hotel franchise which just opened its Toronto location to oohs and aahs last year. You’ll pay a pretty penny for your drink, but the rooftop patio has one of the best views (at 360°) of Toronto’s skyline. This is the place to go if you’re feeling unenthusiastic about Toronto: the elegant glass decor which showcases and reflects the vast view will have you ogling the CN Tower through new, prideful eyes. This rooftop patio has certainly raised the bar in Toronto; can you think of another one with a pool, and not just any pool—it’s an infinity pool, that’s a pool that creates the illusion of going on forever.

    Vivoli:

    Vivoli

    They may have had to do a lot of flat roof repairs, but it all resulted in a rooftop patio with the greatest view of bustling Little Italy. Located on College St., and otherwise known as paradise for food lovers, Vivoli is an Italian restaurant that knows exactly how to make an authentic pizza. Their wine and beer list aren’t too shabby, either, and when combined with a patio that towers over everything else, Vivoli is always full of patrons enjoying their fare while people-watching, enjoying a bird’s-eye view of cultural street festivals, or simply enjoying the weather from on high.

    The Spoke Club:

    The Spoke Club

    The Spoke Club, located on King St. W., is a members only club which caters towards media and arts professionals. You’ll have to find a friend with a membership, join yourself or attend an event on the premises to experience it, but it’s well worth it because this is one of the most beautiful and private patios in the city. The rooftop garden house made of steel and glass puts a futuristic yet elegant spin on rooftop patios and the interesting layout and design of the place will indulge your senses and inspire the imagination. The garden is beautiful and well-kept, the bar is easily accessible and the cocktails divine. If you’re a culture junkie looking for a lively conversation, this may be the place for you, if you’re willing to do what it takes to get there.

    Murphy’s Law Irish Pub:

    Murphy's Law Irish Pub

    Located near the beaches on Queen St. E., Murphy’s Law is the patio to beat in the east end. It’s a low-key and casual establishment, offering plenty of beers (Irish and otherwise) on tap as well as a decent wine and cocktail list. This is the perfect place to catch up with friends you haven’t seen for awhile and to enjoy some fish n’ chips and a pint. Like all the fine establishments on this list, the selling feature of Murphy’s Law is its large patio. The beaches are removed from the behemoth structures which make up Toronto’s downtown, and Murphy’s Law is truly one of the tallest buildings in the area. The view is lovely, showcasing Lake Ontario and Toronto from a vantage point less urban than the other patios mentioned.

    Related posts:

    1. ONE – at Hazelton Hotel
    2. Yorkville’s Dimmi

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    iNice: The Aging App http://tempotoronto.ca/living/aging-application/ http://tempotoronto.ca/living/aging-application/#comments Fri, 06 May 2011 20:25:26 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4074
  • Tempo Toronto: what’s it all about?
  • ]]>
    Help Improve the Experience of Aging

    by Christine Stoesser

    Dr. Martin-Matthews, Dr. McDonald, Dr. Gutman and Dr. Wigdor

    If you’ve visited the ROM lately, you may have seen the ’House Calls with my Camera: Social Documentary Portraits by Dr. Mark Nowaczynski’, a photography exhibition that has been promoting awareness of the plight of the vulnerable elderly population.

    The displayed photographs of Dr. Nowaczynski were taken while making house calls to his own patients—John L., Barbara B., Joseph L. and Joyce A. The photographs are as human as they are haunting, for every human ages but no one hopes to grow old like this. The images may shock some audiences, for their subjects are lonesome and their quality of life unacceptable.

    One subject, John L., a 75 year-old Korean War veteran, was living alone in squalor and suffering from post-traumatic stress, dementia and heart disease. Joyce A. was alone, not eating, suffering many illnesses and unable to pay her bills—if her neighbour hadn’t noticed, who knows how her last days might have played out.

    “If we didn’t go to these individuals, they wouldn’t get any health care because they can’t come to us. They would fall through the cracks. These are hidden worlds, people who cease to exist who have no voice. One day this will be you and I. You are not looking at an exotic species in another world – you are looking at your future,” said Dr. Mark Nowaczynski.

    His photographs represent a problem that is only beginning to be addressed.
    On May 19, 2011, the ’ National Initiative for the Care of the Elderly (NICE)’ is holding a Knowledge Exchange at Hart House at University of Toronto. The featured topics are not the easiest to swallow: elder abuse and senior suicides.

    These information-sharing sessions will also address dementia, financial literacy and end-of-life issues. It also marks the launching of ‘The Aging Application’. The first of its kind, the online social platform has been designed to streamline geriatric care by providing 24/7 access to leading experts, knowledge and care management solutions. The event features Dr. Carole Estabrooks as keynote speaker on the importance sharing knowledge on this topic at a global level, and Dr. Marnin Heisel, a leading expert in suicide statistics among the elderly, will talk about prevention and awareness.

    Dr. Lynn McDonald, founder and scientific director of NICE and recipient of the Governor General’s Golden Jubilee Medal, says, “Enhancing and supporting networking and collaboration, as well as putting reputable research into practice, are essential in adapting to the unprecedented global aging trend, particularly with baby boomers now starting to reach 65.”

    NICE’s work in providing reliable aging information is at the forefront of a shift in the geriatrics community—in the last 18 months NICE has responded to over 300,000 requests for their invaluable information on managing aging issues like poverty, depression and the quality of life and death in a nursing home.

    You can help:

    • Learn about and Register for the Knowledge Exchange Online at: http://www.niceke.ca/ or call 416-978-0545

    • Follow the Event on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/National-Initiative-for-the-Care-of-the-Elderly-NICE/276356887489

    • Follow the Event on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Nicenetca

    Related posts:

    1. Tempo Toronto: what’s it all about?

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    Desserts under 150 cals http://tempotoronto.ca/at-home/cookingwithrose/dessert-shooters/ http://tempotoronto.ca/at-home/cookingwithrose/dessert-shooters/#comments Fri, 06 May 2011 19:22:49 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4069
  • Different Dessert for Thanksgiving
  • Dessert Tips for the Holidays
  • Miniature chocolate mud pies
  • ]]>
    Rose Reisman’s Shot-glass Desserts

    Rose Reisman's Shot-glass desserts

    Here’s the line-up …

    New York cheesecake with raspberry coulis

    Three-chocolate mousse

    Pumpkin brownie cheesecake


    New York cheesecake with raspberry coulis

    New York style cheesecake dessert shooter by Rose ReismanDacquoise chunks (meringue) for the ‘base’ and layers
    185ml low fat condensed milk
    550g light cream cheese
    60g sugar
    37ml lemon juice
    Lemon rind (from half the lemon)
    Raspberry coulis
    195g frozen, defrosted raspberries, well drained
    50g icing sugar

    1. Puree condensed milk, cream cheese, sugar, lemon juice and rind until smooth. Cool mixtures for at least 3 hours or overnight.

    2. Puree thawed raspberries (do not drain) and icing sugar in a food processor

    3. Layer shot glass with dacquoise, cheesecake and raspberry sauce.

    Three-chocolate mousse

    Three chocolate mousse by Rose Reisman

    White mousse

    White chocolate chip 70 g
    Unsalted butter 14 g
    Egg yolk 20 g
    Egg whites 60 ml
    Cream of tartar pinch
    Granulated sugar 40 g

    Milk Chocolate Mousse

    Milk chocolate chips 70 g
    Unsalted butter 14 g
    Egg yolk 20 g
    Egg whites 60 ml
    Cream of tartar 0.25 g
    Granulated sugar 40 g

    Espresso Mousse

    Semi sweet chocolate chip 70 g
    Espresso coffee 7 ml
    Unsalted butter 14 g
    Egg yolk 20 g
    Egg whites 60 ml
    Cream of tartar 0.25 g
    Granulated sugar 40 g

    Garnish: chocolate shavings or whole raspberries

    how to make three layer chocolate mousseFor all three mousses:

    1. Melt chocolate and butter until smooth. (for espresso mousse add coffee to chocolate)

    Cool slightly. Add egg yolks and beat until smooth.

    2. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy, gradually add sugar until stiff and sugar dissolved. Fold whites into cooled chocolate. Cool mixtures for at least 3 hours or overnight.

    3. Alternate mousse with white in middle in shot glass. Garnish.

    Pumpkin brownie cheesecake

    Pumpkin cheesecake shot-glass dessertLight cream cheese 240g
    Granulated sugar 40g
    cinnamon 1/4 tsp
    Pumpkin puree b80 g
    Egg whites 20 ml
    Cream of tartar 0.5g g
    Granulated sugar 20 g
    Garnish: toasted pumpkin seeds

    1. In food processor puree cheese, sugar, cinnamon and pumpkin until smooth.

    2. Beat egg whites with cream of tartar until foamy. Gradually add sugar until stiff peaks form. Fold into cheese mixture just until mixed. Cool mixtures for at least 1 hour or until firmer.

    3. Cool mixture for at least 3 hours or overnight.

    Related posts:

    1. Different Dessert for Thanksgiving
    2. Dessert Tips for the Holidays
    3. Miniature chocolate mud pies

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    Apply directly to your hips http://tempotoronto.ca/crone-ometer/fried-mars-bar/ http://tempotoronto.ca/crone-ometer/fried-mars-bar/#comments Fri, 06 May 2011 18:34:52 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4076 Deep Fried Mars Bars – really!

    Deep Fried Mars Bar!

    We saw this sensational poster on a recent trip to Sudbury. Had to share it.

    And I always thought that deep fried Mars bars were an urban myth! Seems they’ve hit the mainstream.

    No related posts.

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    National Theatre Live http://tempotoronto.ca/out-about/national-theatre-live/ http://tempotoronto.ca/out-about/national-theatre-live/#comments Thu, 05 May 2011 13:56:52 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4064
  • Hamlet live: at Cineplex
  • New York’s Theatre Scene
  • Announcing Expert Theatre Critic
  • ]]>
    Time to take in top-notch British theatre, in Toronto

    by Ron Singer

    “National Theatre Live” is the name of a phenomenal and groundbreaking theatrical initiative that has been taking place in Toronto since January 2009, but you’d be hard pressed to find overwhelming numbers of Torontonians who know about it. What exactly is it? It’s the best of British Theatre, performances of outstanding plays of all types and genres that are performed in repertory at the three theatres of the Royal National Theatre in London and broadcast live via satellite directly to a select number of cinemas and performing arts venues around the world, including the Cineplex chain here in Toronto.

    Think about it, some of the best plays from across the globe, featuring many of the world’s best actors and directors and produced by one of the world’s most reputable and successful repertory companies.. seen live, here in TO–without the tedious hassle of having to go to London, AND at a very reasonable cost per ticket.
    Thus, I find it difficult to understand why there are not far more people ”breaking down the Cineplex doors”, so to speak, in order to attend this spectacular series.
    If you haven’t been a fan, then take note, below are only some of the exciting productions that you have missed.

    • Phedre by Jean Racine starring a  nothing less than brilliant Helen Mirren playing the title role of Phedre in this savage play,
    • The Habit of Art, an extremely witty and articulate play by brilliant British playwright Alan Bennett,
    • A Disappearing Number by world famous theatre company, Theatre Complicite, a provocative, but superbly performed Hamlet,
    • the recent Broadway musical hit, Fela and most finally,
    • Frankenstein directed by famous film director Danny Boyle of Academy Award winning Slumdog Millionaire fame.
    • And upcoming, Checkov’s Cherry Orchard, Emperor and Galilean and A Woman Killed with Kindness.

    And as if that’s not enough to satisfy even the most dedicated theatre officianado, the Cineplex organization is now hooking up  with Broadway producers and beginning to bring in hits directly from productions currently running on the Great White Way. One of these is the award-winning  show starring Brian Bedford in The Importance of Being Earnest  and the second of these Broadway offerings is the present long-running musical, Memphis.
    Do not think that you’re  diminishing the importance of local theatre by supporting these foreign productions, you are, however, expanding your theatrical knowledge and experience, which can only serve to improve the quality of the theatre-going audiences in this City.

    Related posts:

    1. Hamlet live: at Cineplex
    2. New York’s Theatre Scene
    3. Announcing Expert Theatre Critic

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    The Time of Your Life http://tempotoronto.ca/out-about/time-of-your-life/ http://tempotoronto.ca/out-about/time-of-your-life/#comments Thu, 28 Apr 2011 15:12:26 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4055
  • The Doctor’s Dilemma
  • The Cherry Orchard
  • Oleanna at Soulpepper
  • ]]>
    At Soulpepper Theatre

    reviewed by Ron Singer

    This is not a well known fact, but the playwright, William Saroyan, who wrote ‘The Time of Your Life’, is recognized as one of America’s great playwrights of the 20th century, alongside the likes of   Arthur Miller, Thornton Wilder and Eugene O’Neill.
    This play is Saroyan’s Pulitzer Prize winner and very much like Eugene O’Neill’s play,’ The Iceman Cometh’, it is set in a seedy bar and filled with characters longing for a better life.
    The major difference between O’Neill’s play in a bar and Saroyan’s, is the highly unusual qualities of Saroyan’s central character, Joe, (performed brilliantly by Joseph Ziegler), the champagne-guzzling, always calm, always quiet, always thinking, always bored, always eager, always superior, millionaire philanthropist (Saroyan’s description), who is very much at the centre of this play, as he generously hands out gifts and cash to many who enter the bar. In essence, and primarily via this character, Saroyan is saying, “Live to the fullest in the ‘Time of Your Life’”.
    Written by a perpetually optimistic Saroyan in 1939, as a dream-filled and loving ode to a corrupt, as well as economically and psychologically battered America, just prior to the start of World War Two, this play is in many ways, perfectly suited to our 21st century. Since it deals with people yearning to rid the world of evil and hoping for a better life, it is incredibly timely in this day and age where we also have our fair share of corrupt politicians, almost universal economic woes, unpredictable terrorist atrocities and a plethora of wars and revolutions.
    The acting is strong and there are far too many in this extraordinarily large cast to single out all those who deserve special  praise, but I can’t help but zero in on Stuart Hughes for his brilliant portrayal as Kit Carson. Whenever he’s on stage, the scenes vibrate with energy and interest.  Additionally, the direction by artistic director, Albert Schultz is solid and the set, costumes and lighting are highly appropriate.
    But, as strong as this production is, as relevant as the topic might be, as intriguing as Joe is as an eccentric character and as well written as this play may be, it is not going to be to everyone’s taste.
    In simplest terms, this is a very verbal play, with almost abstract-like writing at times and it’s chock-a-block full of “life can be beautiful” aphorisms and philosophising, such as, “This is such a good world. Why then do I feel so lonely”? Or “I’ve got a Christian conscience in a world with no conscience.” AND the production also moves at an extremely “unhurried” pace.

    Related posts:

    1. The Doctor’s Dilemma
    2. The Cherry Orchard
    3. Oleanna at Soulpepper

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    Shakespeare in Action http://tempotoronto.ca/out-about/shakespeare-in-action/ http://tempotoronto.ca/out-about/shakespeare-in-action/#comments Tue, 12 Apr 2011 15:33:06 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4058
  • Time Stands Still: on Broadway
  • National Theatre Live
  • Hamlet live: at Cineplex
  • ]]>
    The Diary of Anne Frank

    reviewed by Ron Singer

    Inspirational profile in Tempo Toronto. Toronto people: Ron SIngerI’ve barely got any hair left on my head and what’s still there is primarily grey. My wife of 45 years has a gorgeous head of pure white hair. And when we go to the theatre here in Toronto, we fit right in, since we’re pretty much in the age range of the average legitimate theatre-goer in this City. All by way of saying, the theatre-going population for the more traditional theatre companies in this City, (and Country) consists primarily of grey and white-haired folk…in other words, seniors. Not that there’s anything wrong with seniors, per say, BUT if we seniors constitute the majority of the present day theatre audience, and a younger audience isn’t being introduced to this art, then who will eventually take over from us once we stop going?

    And the answer to that question is; Shakespeare in Action, one of several professional theatre companies in TO, that brings exciting theatre workshops and productions into our schools and directly to our youth, our audience of the future. And one of this company’s recent productions was the Diary of Anne Frank, which I saw at a local high school, along with over 250 students.

    What a perfect choice of play for these teens, the now famous, true story of Anne Frank (played intelligently and note perfect by Sasha Cole), a Dutch Jewish teenage girl, who came of age during the turmoil of World War 2, while hiding from the Nazis in an attic with her family and several family friends. Almost all of the experiences in this confined living space involving this bright, spunky, highly articulate and outspoken teenager, were familiar topics and of great interest to this particular audience.

    The material that teens would find easy to identify with include scenes of tense family squabbles, Anne’s keen, witty or sarcastic observations of the adults, comments that deal with Anne’s  physical and psychological growth and development, as well a most genuine, touching and brilliantly-staged and acted sexual awakening scene between Anne and the attractive teenage boy in the attic. In fact, virtually all of this play with its message of hope and positive thinking and its image of a very strong, intelligent and caring heroine, was directly in tune with this audience.

    When you add the fact that almost every artistic and technical aspect of the production was beautifully handled by this professional company, which includes excellent direction by Michael Kelly, superb acting by a truly talented ensemble of 10 (Bruce Beaton, Cindy Block, Joe Bucci, Shaun Clarke, Kaitlin Janisse, Chris Karzmar, Dan Karpenchuck, Alexis Koetting and Catherine McNally), an exquisitely designed, very appropriate claustrophobic set and effective lighting (Glen Davidson), music\sound (Thomas Ryder Payne) and costumes (Lori Hickling), then you’re almost certain to get the kind of dreamed-for, ideal, positive results that I witnessed that morning in that high school auditorium. The kids were hanging on to every word and action emanating from that stage. They were living their life through Anne. They were experiencing 1st hand, live, what theatre does best, it invites and encourages you to share meaningful emotions, in the moment. AND this young audience was also presumably learning to like theatre and what it has to offer them.
    Bottom line? Companies like Shakespeare in Action are not as visible or high profile as many of our other professional companies here in town, but these lesser known companies that dedicate themselves primarily to youth, obviously serve an invaluable purpose.
    They’re introducing theatre to the next generation while educating and developing a future theatre audience.

    Related posts:

    1. Time Stands Still: on Broadway
    2. National Theatre Live
    3. Hamlet live: at Cineplex

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    From Confusion to Clarity http://tempotoronto.ca/inspiration-for-over-fifty/the-blueprint/ http://tempotoronto.ca/inspiration-for-over-fifty/the-blueprint/#comments Tue, 05 Apr 2011 19:15:35 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=4035
  • Corporate Karma: How business can move forward by giving back
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    In 7 words or less

    Ian Chamandy & Ken Aber, The BlueprintKen Aber and Ian Chamandy form the powerhouse behind The Blueprint. This is not a product or service, but a dynamic and innovative process that allows businesses and individuals to enact great vision by “stripping away layers of varnish until the real wood is revealed”. Spend just 30-minutes in their company, and you instantly want them to help you create a new blueprint for your business. They’re irresistible.

    They are fun, they are dynamic, they are highly intelligent. Being seasoned in business, and highly successful in their own right, they are also extremely good at what they do, with an amazing track record behind them.

    Implemented right, The Blueprint is one way to get to profitability sooner.

    Ian Chamandy is a proud strategist, quick to cut through the chaff to get to the wheat. Equally adept at business planning, Ken Aber is the type to listen and observe, then, in concert with his partner, lead businesses to find their cores, their corporate DNA: in other words, a brilliant tactician with a strategic mindset. What a dream team!

    By the end of The Blueprint business planning process, an entire organization (or an individual) can succinctly answer the “Why should I chose you?” question in seven words or less. Two or three words are even better.

    It’s not as simple as creating a catchy ‘tag-line’, although that is one salient part of the process. It’s more about getting to the core dialogue of a business and creating a plan, a business architecture, so that everyone involved in a business changes their perception of a company’s core proposition in mere minutes, and starts living the company story in every moment. This is a radical change that penetrates deep into the heart of corporate culture – in the best of possible ways.

    Getting on for seven years ago, Ken and Ian started having a conversation about business planning – in the upper level of Balzac, purveyor of excellent coffee in Toronto’s Distillery District. They realized they had a shared passion for strategic planning, and shared frustration about the conventional planning process. They intuitively knew there was a better way to go about this – a way in which people would be so inspired by the plan that they are similarly inspired to implement it, and live and breathe it every moment of their working lives.

    Business planning is broken

    To better understand how the business planning process was broken – and if you’ve ever spent two or three days with fellow executives in an off-site strategic planning meeting, bored out of your mind, and convinced that you could spend your time better, you would understand the ‘broken’  description – this pair stripped it down to its simplest terms.

    Who are you?
    Where are you going?
    How are you going to get there?

    “This is effective for organizations, charities, individuals or even people like politicians”, said Chamandy. “We have a conversation that revolves around why I should choose, you, donate to you, work for your organization, or vote for you. Even why I should hire you. It’s the single most important question in business. You may have the greatest product, service, people or business, but if you cannot answer the ‘Why should I choose you?’ question, you are going to fail.”

    Clarity and brevity are all that really matter

    Ken Aber & Ian Chamandy The BLueprintHow Blueprint works is to hold between four and six half-day sessions with a leadership team (or individual) to guide them through the Blueprint process. Well described on their website, the four components are Core Proposition (what defines you at the ‘DNA’ level), Business Architecture, Core Dialogue (which allows everyone in the company to articulate answers to questions in ways that are meaningful to them) and the Company Story.

    According to Aber, all of this is arrived at following “three or four hours of Ian and I, in a collaborative process of course, asking questions and saying “bull” to most of the long-winded answers, until we have stripped away all the layers of varnish. We believe that business leaders have all the answers, and that The Blueprint is the process for extracting it, getting to clarity quickly and creating succinct core propositions, core dialogues and company stories.”

    Ask any of their clients, and they will tell you that it works. And it works extraordinarily effectively. If only they’d been around 20 years ago when I was a senior executive in a software company: we could never quite put our finger on our core differentiator. The Blueprint would have been perfect.

    Blueprint: core propositions that work

    United Van Lines – a higher standard of care
    Interiors Inc. – opening sooner
    Famous People Players – we inspire people to achieve more
    A cancer charity – more birthdays

    Related posts:

    1. Corporate Karma: How business can move forward by giving back

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    Stuffed Leg of Lamb http://tempotoronto.ca/at-home/stuffed-lamb/ http://tempotoronto.ca/at-home/stuffed-lamb/#comments Sun, 03 Apr 2011 20:36:49 +0000 admin http://tempotoronto.ca/?p=3997
  • Stuffed Chicken Breasts
  • Whole Stuffed Fish
  • Holiday Stuffing & Cranberry Sauce
  • ]]>
    Leg of Lamb Stuffed with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

    by Rose Reisman

    One of my favorite cuts of meat, leg of lamb has only 7 grams of fat per 3½-ounce serving. Be sure to trim any extra fat. The stuffing is out of this world.

    Recipes for Easter, recipes for Passover, stuffed leg of lamb with olive tapendad

    Serves 6
    2 lb boneless leg of lamb, butterflied
    3 tsp crushed garlic
    ²/³ cup beef or low-sodium chicken stock
    ²/³ cup red wine
    1 ¼ cups sun-dried tomatoes, rehydrated
    ¹/³ cup sliced black olives
    ¹/³ cup goat cheese
    2 tsp olive oil
    ½ tsp dried basil
    ¼ cup chopped fresh basil or parsley

    1. Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Spray a roasting pan with cooking oil.

    2. Place the lamb on a rack in the roasting pan. Spray the lamb with cooking oil and rub with 2 tsp. of the garlic. Pour the stock and wine in the bottom of the pan.

    3. Purée the tomatoes, olives, cheese, oil, remaining 1 tsp. garlic and basil in a food processor. Spread half the mixture over one side of the lamb and fold the lamb in half to enclose the filling. Place the remaining mixture in a bowl to serve later.

    Lamb with Tapenade4. Roast the lamb for 15 to 20 minutes per pound or until done to your liking. A meat thermometer should register 135˚F for medium-rare. If the pan liquid evaporates, add more wine or stock.

    5. Let the lamb rest for 10 minutes before carving. Slice thinly and pour the pan juices over the lamb. Garnish with fresh basil. Serve the extra sun-dried tomato stuffing on the side.

    Nutritional Analysis per Serving Calories 460, Protein 40 g, Fat 18 g, Saturated Fat 5 g, Carbohydrates 9 g, Cholesterol 220 mg, Sodium 260 mg, Fiber 2 g, Prep Time: 15 minutes, Cook Time: 30 minutes. Make Ahead: Prepare stuffing up to 3 days in advance and refrigerate.

    Related posts:

    1. Stuffed Chicken Breasts
    2. Whole Stuffed Fish
    3. Holiday Stuffing & Cranberry Sauce

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