Author Archive

Curiouser and curiouser!

May 31st, 2010 by Jill Roberts

Beguiling performances, expert timing and an absolutely ingenious set make Théâtre Tout à Trac’s version of Alice in Wonderland a show worth catching at this year’s Calgary International Children’s Festival.

The players combine live action and clever puppetry to make this retelling of Lewis Carrol’s classic work action-packed and visually engrossing. Every inch of the backdrop – a large bookshelf – comes to life in one way or another, effectively conjuring the world through the looking glass. Masterfully executed, the illusion persists for the entire hour and change.

Suggested ages are six and up, but even younger children may appreciate the performance. My three-year old was completely enthralled, despite being a little disconcerted when the Cheshire Cat appeared to come apart and float around the stage.

Because that’s just plain weird.

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Children’s Fest Next Week

May 24th, 2010 by Jill Roberts

The 23rd annual Calgary International Children’s Festival, running May 25 to 29, promises to be entertaining for both the young and the young at heart. With musical acts like Black Violin, a violin duo fusing hip hop with classical music, a host of terrific live theatre events, workshops in Capoeira, sculpting, and more, plus open-air fun in Olympic Plaza (get your face painted in a giant whale), there really is something for everyone.

Every performance has an age guideline too, to help you decide which shows are best for which kids. I’m looking forward to seeing Alice in Wonderland next week, and hopefully I’ll be able to sit still for the entire performance.

Tickets are selling fast, so if you’re hoping to catch a specific event, check out the website

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The Barley Mill at Eau Claire

April 26th, 2010 by Jill Roberts

Sitting on the patio of the Barley Mill with a friend or two is a great way to pass the time on a sunny afternoon.

The location offers lots of opportunity for people watching, with wedding guests clomping and strutting about the nearby Sheraton, shoppers and patrons of the several restaurants and bars milling about, and people taking in Prince’s Island Park. (more…)

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I felt the Velvet

April 21st, 2010 by Jill Roberts

Velvet looks fabulous, sits inside the Lougheed Block (it`s part of the Grand Theatre), and is a member of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Resort family, which includes Cilantro, Divino, and The Ranche. Its textured brick walls, slick lighting and original artwork (including a gigantic chandelier made out of broken wine bottles) make it a chic dining destination.

But strangely, the night I visited, Velvet was completely devoid of patrons. Where was everyone? Puzzled, my friend and I nevertheless enjoyed being the sole focus of the entertaining wait staff. (more…)

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Haida Manga art at the Glenbow

November 23rd, 2009 by Jill Roberts

Say Haida Manga three times quickly… kinda fun to roll off the tongue, but even more rewarding to see how this remarkable fusion of two far-flung yet complementary styles are invigorating both traditional Haida art and modern Japanese comics.

A giant mural of Michael Yahgulanaas’s graphic novel, Red, pages all torn out and assembled like a totemic puzzle, grips viewers of his Haida Manga exhibit in the Glenbow. (more…)

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November 17th, 2009 by Jill Roberts

Named after Joaquim Murietta, legendary bandit and “Robin Hood of El Dorado,” Murietta’s bar and grill delivers a stimulating combination of charm and substance. The restaurant is perched on the second story of Stephen Avenue Mall, hewn from the bones of the historic Alberta Hotel.

We arrived late, cold, hungry, in uncomfortable shoes and without reservations. Lucky to get a table, we were soon pouring over the alluring menu, and seated graciously next to the fireplace.

Offering “something tailored to every taste,” Murrieta’s ample menu had us drooling over nearly everything.

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