Monthly Archives: March 2017

Soaring leaps, pedestrian incursions and long noses

Blair and I, ready for Pinocchio

IN FULL ANTICIPATION: Blair and I, on one of our father-son Culture Night outings, ready for Pinocchio. Disappointment was yet to come.


I tell you this with every confidence that my nose will be the same length when I’m done as it is now. I loved the National Ballet of Canada’s production of Pinocchio last Saturday night — as much as the NBC loved the first of my three tweets from the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto. I loved it as much as I hated it.

That’s where we parted ways in the Twittersphere, NBC and I. What I have to say here also runs the risk of the criticism being what you too will remember of my impressions, but bear with me and you’ll see “love-hate” is by no means the equivalent of “hate hate”. That said, I consider myself a discriminating consumer of art, and having had the privilege of taking in a reasonable share of opera and ballet productions at the Four Seasons Centre, also consider myself qualified to harrumph loudly when my artistic and cultural sensibilities have been affronted.

The surprise upon learning there were roles with speaking parts caused one eyebrow to arch, to be sure, unexpected as they are in a visual art space such as ballet. Yet they did not elicit a harrumph, artistic licence being recognized currency here. The ridiculously shallow twaddle representing “Canadian content”, on the other hand, was about as enriching as a Canadian $1 bill and a handful of pennies, and just as useful in moving the production forward. Dollarama fare presented brazenly to audiences that had paid Nordstrom prices.

Harrumph. Continue reading