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Savouring the City

Remind me why we live in Calgary? Sometimes the long winter, the traffic [and construction!] the slow spring, the slowing economy, now the smoke, make that difficult.
And then there are weekends like this –

  • taking a course – at the highest levels – from a specialist, in person. You can’t do this in the many smaller more rural places and the difference between asking questions in person and watching YouTube …
  • Hearing transcendent, moving, elevating music, again, in person, not virtually
    • At the Jack Singer, the Calgary Philharmonic presented Yefim Bronfman playing devilish Prokofiev – Bronfman bouncing off the stool at 60+, followed by the mellifluous Mahler #4 – an ethereal visit to other realms. New conductor Rune Bergmann displays mastery in preparing and organizing the able forces of an excellent orchestra to weave this elegant fabric
    • Nellie Breen Park, in Inglewood, Saturday scene of a family event organized by “a small town within a city”. Kids doing sidewalk murals in chalk, running to play on equipment cushioned by a mystery base that allows them to fall unhurt and adults shepherding. All bubbling while Freak Motif – son Evan is part of this funk band – grooves out over the moving assembly, friends meeting friends. The music, big on beat and high on horns from 8 players, gives a happy joyous touch to the gathering.
  • Then Ghost Opera. To the Grand Theatre, itself a unique performance space in the heart of downtown with a bar/ restaurant surrounding an open second story well, metalwork protecting the view of patrons from there. Fronting for the auditorium, what awaits inside defies description. Ghost Opera is the most unusual intersection of puppetry, play and opera.

Calgarians know this as a hotbed of puppets. With Ronny Birkett on one hand and the Old Trout Workshop the other providing creative sparks in droves, imaginative work like this surfaces once every couple of years. An ancient story of haunting is brought to life by full size puppets of spectral dimensions maneuvering around the stage by means of gravediggers. The singers – opera is a story/song medium – are beside them giving voice to their angst. Stage left is an orchestra bearing down on the modernistic score composed by VERONIKA KRAUSAS, text by LIBRETTIST: ANDRÉ ALEXIS. The effect is eerie and compelling theater, easily the most interesting combination of arts seen this year… If you can possibly catch it, do. The run ends June 8 at the Grand.
All this in one weekend. There’s much to savour in this city. Other cities too if you just peek under the conventional main stream media. Which would have you in a major league sports arena or sitting in front of a screen.
The solution? Find out and get out!
That said, we’re on the road again soon. More about that shortly…


Doug Bouey
Catalyst Strategic Consultants Ltd.

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What’s Our Business?

Bringing out the best in you, your company and your people.

Doug Bouey, President
Catalyst Strategic Consultants Ltd.

Calgary, AB // Phone: 403.777.1144


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