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rotisserie chicken

The challenge: Oven roasted chicken or rotisserie chicken, which is better? I acquired a Deni Vertical Rotisserie a while ago - it's a long story - but had not got around to using it. My daughter pointed out that she had happy childhood memories of my oven roasted chicken dinners and wondered how rotisserie roasted chicken could possibly be better. We had two organic free range chicken to cook so voila- this was a perfect time to compare the two methods.

Luc Roderique and Kayla Deorksen: Photo by David Blue

Othello by William Shakespeare
Directed by Bob Frazer
Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival
Howard Family Stage at Vanier Park
June 24 to Sept 17, 2016

Vancouver, BC:  In my review of the Bard on the Beach 2009 production of Othello, I commented that Othello ranks as number one favorite on my list of Shakespeare's tragedies. Despite some pushback from those who champion Macbeth or Hamlet, I still favor Othello because the complexity of the characters of Iago and Othello leave so much room for interpretation and debate. With a stellar cast on Amir Ofek's...

Beef burek

Balkanika
691  9th Avenue, Manhattan, New York
Ph: (212) 974-0300

One objective of our New York Week with Kids was to introduce them as many different cuisines as possible. Balanika was our choice for Balkan/Mediterranean cuisine and it proved to be an excellent choice.

 

Theater banner for the Show

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
by Simon Stephens based on the novel by Mark Haddon
directed by Marianne Elliott
The National Theatre Production
Ethel Barrymore Theatre, New York.
June 25, 2016

New York Theatre:  I am so happy that I picked this play to see when a time slot opened up on my New York Week with Kids trip. I am fortunate to see a lot of really good theatre but this production was a standout in every aspect. The script adaptation from Haddon’s novel was very well done, the acting...

Marriott  Courtyard and Residence Inn at New York Central Park

Marriott Courtyard New York Manhattan/Central Park,1717 Broadway, NY, NY.

I have found my new favourite hotel for future New York visits. Unlike my regular brief visits to New York as a theatre, food and wine writer (NY Spring 2014), this New York visit had a special purpose. My grand-daughter is part of a youth choir which has the exciting opportunity to perform in a program at Carnegie Hall and I decided to join my family in Manhattan for a full week of exploring New York from the perspective of family tourism.

Our criteria for choosing a hotel for this...

Andrew Chown, Hailey Gillis. Photo by David Blue.

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
Directed by Kim Collier
Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival

Shakespear's tragic tale of young love doomed by outside forces they are powerless to control, is a timeless drama beloved of diverse audiences around the world. The Vancouver rain was pounding on the big tent in Vanier Park as we listened to Artistic Director Christopher Gaze tell us that this pair of star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet, will soon take their lives. An interesting choice to have Gaze start the play proper seamlessly from his welcoming statements, and joined for the last...

Italian Dreams Cruise on the Crystal Serenity

When I took this picture of the Crystal Serenity, I was luxuriating in the pleasures of a ten night "Italian Dreams" cruise. After spending two glorious days in Venice, we embarked on the Serenity, calling at ports from Kotor in Montenegro to Taormina, Sorrento and others finally disembarking in Monte Carlo. The icing on the cake for me of this luxury cruise, was ballroom dancing every night in the spacious Palm Court or the Stardust Club. I loved that Crystal experience even more than I enjoyed an autumn cruise along the Eastern Seaboard from New York to Halifax on the...

The Arts Umbrella Musical Theatre Troupe in The Drowsy Chaperone. Photo by Tim Matheson

The Drowsy Chaperone
Music and Lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison  Book by Bob Martin and Don McKellar
Directed by Andy Toth   Musical Direction by Erin Hope-Goldsmith  Choreography by  Erika Babins
The Arts Umbrella Musical Theatre Troupe at  Waterfront Theatre, Granville Island
May 21st, 2016

Vancouver, BC:  I just spent a delightful couple of hours with a friend at the Waterfront Theatre on Granville Island watching the students of the  Arts Umbrella Musical Theatre Troupe perform The Drowsy Chaperone. I first saw this musical almost ten years ago, shortly after it opened at the...

Colleen Wheeler and Scott Bellis. Photo by Emily Cooper

Good People by David Lindsay-Abaire
An Arts Club Theatre Company production at
Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage.
Although I enjoy almost every form of theatre I most love plays that leave me with an idea or question to mull over on my way home. In Good People there were two words that echoed in my mind as I drove home. The first was choice; the second was perspective.  These two concepts resonated strongly within me partly because  the conflict between the protagonist, Margie (Colleen Wheeler) and her one-time boy friend, Mike (Scott Bellis), perfectly illustrated points made at...

Gorgonzola fondue

Hamilton Street Grill
1009 Hamilton Street
Yaletown

To entertain a visitor from Calgary who, like a true Albertan, enjoys a great steak, I chose the Hamilton Street Grill for dinner. It's a ten minute walk from my downtown apartment but on searching my reviews, it has been quite a while since I dined there.

Ironically, although a great steak dinner was in our plans, the gorgonzola fondue and mushroom tart on the starter menu caught our attention and almost simultaneously we both said "let's sample the appetizer menu rather than just having steak."

Audra McDonald, George Farmer in Broadway production. Photo by Evgenia Eliseeva.

Planning a theatre visit to London this summer? If so be sure to see Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill, playing at Wyndham's Theatre, Charing Cross Road, from June 25 to September 3rd, 2016.  I loved the show when I saw it in New York shortly before it closed in 2014. Audra McDonald is reprising her role as the jazz singer Billie Holliday.

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