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March, 2006 - Nr. 3


The Editor
Guten Morgen lieber Frühling
Ball Austria 2006
Two by Puccini
KW & Beyond
Scholtes Donates Organ
Zonta's Extravaganza
Dick reports...
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehört?
Mendelssohn Choir Presents
COC's Norma
Berg's Wozzeck
Kafka and Son
COC Inaugurates Opera House
TSO March Events
Celebrate Mozart Tour
German Events
Kerry Straton Conducts
Cologne Literature Festival
Students Get Active
Mozart in Augsburg
Successful Gardening Show
German World Alliance
Killam Research Fellowships
Munch In Hamburg
International Student Study
Operation Clean Sweep
World Cup Info Shop
Europe's Fastest Computer
Merkel: Equality

KW & Beyond

  by Irena Syrokomla

Irena Syrokomla

Ten Time Two at Theatre and Company in Kitchener.

Going to the theatre is always a pleasant break in the middle of Canadian winter, especially for a comedy like Ten Times Two as staged in downtown Kitchener. The deceiving warm spell of January was broken and the night I attended was a struggle through the snow blizzard.

Written by David Belke and directed by Linda Bush, this play is like a breath of spring, with its story of a courtship continuing from the first encounter in 1399 up to 2075. It starts with a brief encounter of Ephraim (Richard Quesnel, known to us from a memorable role as Uncle Peck in How I Learned to Drive) with a wench Constance (Alyson Scadron Branner) and being challenged to a wager by a Host (Trevor Copp) that he could win her love with little effort and in no time. When Ephraim comes back he learns that Constance is dead – and the only way to resolve the wager is to wait for second chance by meeting Constance again in the next incarnation – in 75 years. Hence the continuous story to a total of ten meetings for Ephraim and a sequence of ten new versions of Constance over 675 years, each different. Alyson Scadron Branner changes not only her attires but also her accent, her mannerisms and personalities. She is young, and a very promising actress she is! Over the centuries she is a lady-in-waiting, then a nun, a farm girl and a spy, among other personalities. Ephraim initially is just amused and keen on winning a bet, over time he gets more and more involved in his desire to conquer and experience the love of the woman he has been pursuing at 75 year intervals. At the end they meet in 2075 and finally have a chance to get to know each other and fall in love. The commentary by the Host is an additional element, sometimes comical, eventually more surprising than expected.

William Chesney’s stage design is sufficient to change the background of the meeting each time, the costumes by Denis Joffre are carefully chosen. Again Theatre and Company and Ten Times Two brings us a welcome break in winter, with professional acting, good theatre and our intention to come again and see more of what Mr. Scadron-Wattles will choose and present to us.

The next play scheduled for March 8 to 19 is Earshot by Morris Panych followed by Marion Bridge from May 18 till June 11. We highly recommend Theatre and Company as a professional quality theatre active beyond of the summer season and easily accessible to the Tri-City residents.


The Yalta Game and The Bear – Thouchmark Theatre in River Run Centre in Guelph.

These two one-act plays based on Anton Chekhov stories as adapted by Brian Friel complete the three shows staged by Touchmark Theatre this year. Mr. Douglas Beattie, the Artistic Director has been working hard to achieve this much, as I had an opportunity to see two other productions and express my admiration for his achievements in an earlier column.

Brian Tree & Rebecca Northan in "The Yalta Game and The Bear"   [Photo courtesy of Touchmark Theatre]The Yalta Game takes us to the seaside resort of Yalta in Russia and tells the story of a seasonal love affair of a young lady of about 22 and a middle aged (perhaps in his 40’s) bank clerk as it happens between walks on the promenade, observations of the activities of the other vacationers, games played with a pet dog, enjoyment of the scenery. It was supposed to be just that: an affair at the seaside resort, but then it turns into something more passionate. The couple begins to meet on a regular basis in Moscow, a deep attachment develops, and the story gets more complicated. Yes, of course, they are both married. It is not clear how it will end, this story from the tail end of the 19th century in Russia. Although there are no Russian accents or Russian elements besides the names of places – it is very Russian in the mood and character.

The Bear, the second of the one-act plays, is the story of a debt-collector visiting a young widow in order to secure an outstanding debt. When the woman-hating creditor, crude and overbearing, meets with the equally man-hating widow; the interaction develops into a vicious fight - suddenly the aforementioned debt-collector finds his opponent very exciting. Consequently instead of attacking the widow he begins to court her. And she responds.

The three actors in this production are: Rebecca Northan, who holds a long list of credits from various theatres, Brian Tree with his professional experience in classic Shakespearian plays from Stratford, and Thom Marriott, also from Stratford Festival. Their acting was excellent; let me say we wish to see them again. The directing of Douglas Beattie shows his usual care and attention to details. I will be looking forward to the next season and more productions from Touchmark Theatre.


Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber Music Society

It’s been 25 years since Jan Narveson initiated the Chamber Music Society and offered a Music Room at his residence in Waterloo. The Society is thriving with up to eight concerts a month, in a perfect location for intimate performances so much appreciated by music lovers. Penderecki Quartet presents their concerts there on a regular basis, a choice of artists playing Schubert, Liszt, Mozart, Dvorak, Smetana and Chopin.

In February Janina Fialkowska, a pianist extraordinaire, gave a concert in this setting playing Mendelssohn, Schubert and a selection of Chopin’s waltzes and a scherzo. The Music Room was filled to its capacity of 85, with plenty of mature music connoisseurs and a few young people, possibly from the Wilfred Laurier music program, in the audience. Fialkowska is famous for her interpretation of Chopin and this time her playing was exquisite as usual. And the Steinway piano was perfectly tuned for the occasion.

In March and later there will be more piano concerts, plenty of Vivaldi, Ravel, Grieg and others. Mr. Narveson can put you on his e-mail list and send you announcements of concerts, with tickets available through University of Waterloo Box office, Words Worth Books or 12th Night in The Waterloo Town Square. The tickets are in the range of $25 to $5, depending on the concert. Seniors get a discount, as do students.

We are very lucky to have the Music Room right here in our community, so enjoy. The website for Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber Music Society is or call 519-886-1673.


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