Cirque du Soleil: Banana Spheel

Cirque de Soleil Banana Spheel image

Story Don Graham
Photos Dominique Lemieux/Cirque de Soleil

I have to start by admitting that when I was first presented with this task I was not sure what to expect. I knew the show had trouble in Chicago, got revamped for New York, where the reception and reviews were much better, and here it was at the Canon Theatre in downtown Toronto. Cirque and vaudeville? Seemed like strange bedfellows so I was interested to see what the result would be.

While standing in the crowd waiting to be let into the theatre, there was a commotion behind us as a gentleman was pushing his way through the crowd yelling something about needing the washroom. He REALLY seemed liked he had go, but once he got to the front of the room he turned and flashed a big grin and we knew he was part of the show. Turned out he was Claudio Carneiro, a big part on the ensemble. But more on him later.

The opening dialogue between the two hosts, well-played by the aggressive Daniel Passer and the hard-done by, Wayne Wilson sets the stage for the evening ahead. Lots of sight gags and slapstick humour. And the stage is set as well, for The Schmelky Spectacular, the role of the hardnosed arrogant boss, Schmeckly, excellently played by Danny Rutigliano. His assistant Margaret played by Shereen Hickman, has great comedic timing and offsets Schmelky’s brashness.

"Experience Hendrix" Coming To Canada

Experience Hendrix

Coming to Canada for the first time…

Thursday, October 28th - 8 p.m. at the Sony Centre, Toronto


Billy Cox (Band of Gypsys & The Jimi Hendrix Experience) ● Steve Vai ● Jonny Lang ● Kenny Wayne Shepherd ● Eric Johnson ● Robert Randolph ● Living Colour ● Ernie Isley • Chris Layton (of Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble) ● David Hidalgo & Cesar Rosas (of Los Lobos) • The Slide Brothers (a/k/a Chuck & Darick Campbell of Sacred Steel) ● Mato (of Indigenous)

For the first time in its history, Experience Hendrix, the concert tour that has dazzled sold out audiences, revisiting the music and inspiration of Jimi Hendrix with an all-star line up of music greats, will perform, for the first time, in Canada… Four dates have been announced: October 28th at the Sony Centre in Toronto, 29th in Quebec City (Grand Théâtre), 30th in Montreal (Place des Arts) and November 1st in Ottawa (National Arts Centre).

Tickets: $89.50, $74.50, $59.50 (taxes included plus facility fee and service charge where applicable) at the Sony Centre, 1 Front St. E., Toronto and Ticketmaster at (416) 872-2262 or at


For further information, contact: Rob Bennett ● RBI Productions (416) 686-6052


Bring On The Ukes, Bring On The Fun-New indie doc focuses on the wonderful world of the ukulele

The Mighty Uke

By Bill Delingat

Just when someone’s about to ask:” Whatever happened to Topp?” dude pops back onto the radar. Gary Topp aka T Dog, Topper or just plain Gary has been well known in the International Music and entertainment scene for 40 years. Currently, he’s best known for his bleeding edge
CIUT radio Show and promoter of some of the most eclectic shows the T.Dot’s ever seen.

An avid filmgoer and indie supporter Topp is bringing a unique opportunity for freaky fun to the Toronto Film scene with the presentation of “Mighty Uke. The Amazing Comeback Of A Musical Underdog”.

Think of a ukulele and you probably imagine grass skirts, slide guitar and kitschy lyrics, but far from being just a Hawaiian novelty instrument, the uke has a rich history and has profoundly affected music around the world. Originally brought to Hawaii by Portuguese immigrants, the tiny instrument first captured the musical imaginations of the Hawaiian royal court in the 1880’s. With the dawn of the radio broadcasting age, ukulele music owned the airwaves. Broadway produced ukulele musicals. Hollywood produced ukulele movie stars. The little instrument was so inexpensive and easy to play that by the early twenties the uke was the most popular instrument in the American home and the first musical voice for millions of children. Over the next thirty years the uke was number one, and then, with the rise of rock and roll guitar, faded into nerdy obscurity. Until now.

The History of the Toronto Humane Society

Toronto Humane Society Poster

Music Fundraiser Planned for Toronto September 13, 2010

The establishment of The Toronto Humane Society was inspired by an anonymous $2 donation to aid an old, worn-out white workhorse. In November 1886, a Toronto resident sent a letter about the horse, a familiar sight on city streets, to the World, a Toronto daily newspaper. “Why,” he asked, “don't we have a society for the prevention of cruelty?” was the comment added to the letter by 22-year-old reporter John J. Kelso when it was published in the World. In answer to his question, an anonymous donor sent the $2 donation to the newspaper office the following day. The fund kept growing until $74 had accumulated.
John Kelso's presentation to the Canadian Institute on February 19, 1887, marked the launch of the humane and children's aid movement in Ontario. In his speech, Kelso pointed out there was no society of the kind in Toronto and proposed the establishment of a general humane association with the following objectives:
• Stop cruelty to children
• Rescue children from vicious influences and remedy their conditions
• Put humane literature into schools and homes
• Induce children to be humane
• Encourage everybody to practice and teach kindness to animals and others
• Stop the beating of animals
• Stop overloading street cars and wagons (which were then pulled by horses)
• Stop the working of old horses
• Stop driving galled and disabled animals
• Introduce drinking fountains for horses
• Prevent the clipping of horses, docking of tails

Toyna Kennedy Live

Tonya Kennedy

Friday September 10, 2010
Cook Country Saloon

Cashbox Magazine In Print Again

Cashbox Elvis Edition

Bruce Elrod, President of Cashbox Magazine, has announced that the hard cover of Cashbox Magazine will be available 6 times a year, and will be able to be purchased as a subscription on the website.

The issue this month is in commemoration of Elvis Presley, The King of Rock ‘n Roll, and will feature stories, photos and related advertising all in conjunction with the anniversary of his death on August 16, 1977. For over three decades, stories and rumours of his death have still been headline news.

Cashbox Magazine will also feature Charts; a position they were famous for over the years, actually being the medium that created the term ‘With A Bullet’ to describe a fast climbing hit song.

Cashbox Magazine has been resurrected online with branches in North Carolina, Nashville, Tennessee and Toronto, Canada. Plans to open in the United Kingdom are currently underway, which will include Ireland, Scotland and England.

Richie Hayward of Little Feat Passes Away From Liver Cancer

Richie Hayward Little Feat

Richie Hayward drummer for the legendary band, Little Feat, passed away on August 12, 2010.
In August 2009, Richie Hayward announced that he had recently been diagnosed with liver cancer and would not be at work indefinitely. A benefit concert was organized and a website created where fans unable to attend could donate towards his treatment costs. Hayward lived in Canada, outside of his native USA, and did not have health insurance. Little Feat have announced that their drum technician Ford will take his place.
Steve Lukather (guitar player and singer from the band TOTO) on his Facebook page said: "I am saddened by the news that we lost yet another soul brother and legend Richie Hayward, drummer from Little Feat. He was a giant, an original and a great cat. God bless him and his family.. I will miss him, we all will."

The other one from Little Feat: "Respected by many as a musician, loved by more as a person. R.I.P. Richie."
A Facebook tribute page has just been created: We love you Richie Hayward and we always will.
At this hour, no Press Agency or Newspaper has confirmed this.

Buenavista Social Club proudly presents Eliades Ochoa live in Ottawa !!

Eliades Ochoa

Cuba’s Grammy Award winning Buenavista Social Club proudly presents an intimate and interactive evening with legendary guitarist and singer Eliades Ochoa. One of the key members and contributors of the Buenavista Social Club will be performing live with his 6 piece band at Barrymores Music Hall, Saturday August 21, 2010.
Elides Ocho's sound is a mixture of salsa, country, and traditional rock all blended into a unique style that is today being inspired by Cuban and Latin artists all over the world.
Elides Ochoa and his group have toured over 40 countries, performed live for over 5 million fans and released several recordings, keeping the sounds of traditional Cuban music alive for audiences all over worldwide.
Eliades Ochoa’s performance at Barrymores Music Hall will allow fans a rare intimate and interactive experience with the legendary performer. This “One Night Only” performance is his second appearance in Canada for 2010.  

For Additional Information:
Buenavista Social Club -
Eliades Ochoa -
Listen to Chez 106 FM to win free tickets -
Eiades Ochoa Video -
Venue Details:
Barrymores Music Hall - 323 Bank Street, Ottawa, ON

Bieber set to star in a film about his life

Justin Bieber

By The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Justin Bieber is adding movie star to his resume.
Paramount Pictures, MTV Films and Bieber's record label, Island Def Jam, say the 16-year-old pop star has signed on to appear in a feature film about his life and career.
The yet-to-be-titled movie is set for release on "Valentine's weekend" of 2011, the companies said Tuesday.
Bieber will also be producing the film, along with mentor Usher, manager Scooter Braun and Island Def Jam Music Group chairman LA Reid.
The movie will offer a "VIP backstage pass" into Bieber's life and will feature 3D footage from his "My World 2.0" concert tour.
The ubiquitous teen sensation is also bringing his life to readers: HarperCollins announced Monday that it will publish his memoir in October.

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