Skip to main content


Showing posts from September, 2015

Flamenco En Rouge!

The passion of Spain’s native dance takes center stage this Saturday night as Flamenco En Rouge brings the heat to the Company House in Halifax. Recently we spoke with Martine Durier-Copp of the troupe about what audiences can expect.
What got you into Flamenco? There is a universal nature to flamenco, akin to the blues. It speaks of human experiences and emotions in a way that cuts across national boundaries and language. I first saw flamenco in Spain in my late teens, and it left me speechless. The raw emotionality, the drama, the expressiveness resonated in a way that no other art form had. My continued, frequent travels to Spain have only intensified that passion. And, as you may know, Flamenco was declared a Universal World Heritage by UNESCO, underlying its universal appeal!
Are they the same reasons you do it today? Totally, but with life’s experience, with time and maturity, one can further understand some of the pathos and more tragic elements of flamenco jondo (deep) in a way th…


Irish quartet Kodaline are bringing their infectious brand of pop-rock to North America this fall, including a stop in Halifax, Nova Scotia tonight. Recently we caught up with drummer Vinny May.
What are the band members' roots? Well we are all from Ireland, myself, Mark & Steve all grew up in a suburb of Dublin called Sword,s and Jay is from a place called Straffin, which is just outside Dublin.
How long has the band been around? We've been playing music together since we were 15, but I guess Kodaline was born once Jay joined the band back in 2012.
How has the group evolved since that time? I guess when we figured out that we could do this for a living we took music more seriously! We dropped everything else we were doing at the time, college, jobs etc and just focused on song writing and becoming better musicians!
How would you describe your sound today? This is such a hard question to answer, Kodaline sounds like 4 friends that love making music together! No bullshit, heartfelt…

Leaving Wonderland

Exploring the journey from grief to joy, Leaving Wonderland is set against the backdrop of a small Nova Scotia college town beset with student drinking and partying. Recently we spoke with playwright Shelley Thompson about the production, which runs from September 24 to October 4 at the Neptune Studio Theatre in Halifax.
What are your own roots? I was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, but left when I was 19 to go to RADA (Royal Academy of Dramatic Art) in the UK after a year of teaching piano to raise the money. I'd always been an anglophile: travelled there with my choir when I was 14 and 17, obsessed with Shakespeare, in love with the literary history of that country. I still am. I came to Nova Scotia on holiday in 1991, fell in love with it, and when I had my child while still living in London, decided with my husband (Ed Thomason, AD at Festival Antigonish) that we wanted a chance to bring him up in a rural Canadian town. That was Wolfville - one of the loveliest towns in the…


Until October 10, the Theatre Arts Guild in Halifax presents Bernard Slade’s classic comedy Same Time, Next Year. Recently AE spoke with producer Rayna Smith-Camp about what audiences can expect.
How long have you been involved in theatre, and in what capacity? As happens for many performers, my interest in theatre peaked while I was in high school. During those years, I brushed up my Shakespeare playing Desdemona, tended to the Von Trapp children in The Sound of Music, and danced the highland fling in Brigadoon. I moved on to work with the Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Nova Scotia for five years, as a performer, assistant director, stage manager, and choreographer. My home away from home for the past ten years has been Theatre Arts Guild, where I have enjoyed on going experiences as an actor, a stage manager and an assistant stage manager, and now, a Producer. I was invited to be part of the Artistic Committee years ago and for the past three seasons have been the Artistic Director.


Opening this Wednesday, Halifax’s Vocalypse and Montreal’s Bradyworkspresent the world premiere of Ghost Tango,a riveting new chamber opera that tells the poignant story of a Canadian woman trapped in Argentina’s Dirty War. Recently we spoke with Canadian Super-Diva Janice Jackson about what audiences
What inspired you to put together this production? I was inspired to put together this production of Ghost Tango, through my work with Tim Brady, a virtuoso guitar play and composer from Montreal. I had worked with Tim on two pieces for soprano and large ensemble and because the work was so successful we decided that we wanted to produce and present an opera together. Tim then asked a librettist, Douglas Burnet Smith, whom he had worked with on previous productions, to write a libretto with a small cast of characters. Douglas has been interested in Argentinian history and culture for many years and decided to write a libretto, entitled Ghost Tango, about a woman who is kidnapped and tortur…

Shrinking Violet

The Atlantic Fringe Festival in Halifax continues this week with Shrinking Violet, the compelling story of one young woman’s struggles with an eating disorder. Recently, AE spoke with writer Anna Fraser and director Victoria Houser about the production.
What are your roots? Vicky - I'm a graduate of Ryerson Theatre School, and am now a Toronto based actor/director/producer. I grew up in Halifax where my early acting career began at Neptune Theatre School. I've worked with local artists such as Martha Irving, Jeremy Webb, Garry Williams and Samantha Wilson. Anna - I'm also a Ryerson Theatre School graduate, and began writing Shrinking Violet in 2010 during my high school years. I'm now a Toronto based actor / playwright / producer.
How long have you been involved in theatre, and in what capacity? Vicky - I've been involved in theatre for as long as I can remember, and grew up taking classes and acting in the youth shows at Neptune Theatre here in Halifax. My professional…

Water Choke

Halifax’s Atlantic Fringe Festival continues this week with Water Choke, a collection of stories, moments and perspectives concerning suicide, sexual abuse and survival in a normative masculine society, written and performed by Elliot Maxwell
What are your own roots? I was born in Calgary, AB. When I was 13, I moved to Aberdeen, Scotland and lived there until I graduated from high school. I would say both Scotland and Canada fortify my roots. Moreover, I would say I've always been a storyteller. Ever since I was six, I've loved writing folk tales, and making up movies and acting them out by myself in my backyard. Storytelling is in my bones. 
How long have you been involved in theatre, and in what capacity? I first got involved in acting at summer camps when I was 7, and in productions when I was 12. I recently graduated with a BAH in Drama from Queens. There I became impassioned about theatre and the emotional consequences of incredible theatre. I was grateful to be involved in m…

Once You’ve Found It

Debuting tonight at the Atlantic Fringe Festival in Halifax, Once You’ve Found it is the story of one man’s decision to be either thrown into the depths or continue life without knowing what could’ve been. Recently we spoke with writer Donovan Jackson about what audiences can expect.
What are your own roots? In general, my roots originally come from Winnipeg where I was born and raised. I've lived in Halifax for a little bit and eventually replanted myself in Toronto to continue growing.
How long have you been involved in theatre, and in what capacity? For almost ten years now. It started in high school (grade 10) when I was literally taken by the wrist and pulled into the school's general audition for the production that year. Since then it has mostly been on the stage until university where I dabbled in design, stage management and production.
What inspired this particular production? I was in between projects. While I was looking for the next one, I was considering what I was rea…

The Story of a Sinking Man

Starting this Thursday, the Atlantic Fringe Festival takes over Halifax for 11 days. This year, the annual gathering kicks off with Morris Panych's The Story of a Sinking Man, the tale of Nash, whoselife hasn't amounted to much - or so he discovers when he suddenly finds himself slowly sinking to death in a mud puddle. Recently we spoke with actor Andrew Chandler about the production.
What are your own roots? I grew up in Waverley, NS, just outside Halifax. My folks were both in medicine, but loved the arts, which is why my brother and I both studied music, I suppose. That’ll learn them. I did a Bachelor of Music in Percussion at Mount Allison University, where I played in the pit band for the school musical, and found I was envying the performers ONstage, more than my role below it. So, I started doing more and more acting, and eventually went on to study Musical Theatre at Sheridan Institute in Oakville, Ontario. I lived in Toronto for a few years, Vancouver for a few months, …