Elvis is IN the building!

In Focus column by Andrew Tripp, Sept. 17 Boundary Creek Times.

The new school year is well underway, and with it comes one of my favourite BCSS events, which is the annual play performed by that school’s senior drama class.

This year’s production is All Shook Up, featuring songs made popular by Elvis Presley. Based on William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, the musical made its Broadway debut in 2005 and ran for 233 performances.

Set in the 1950’s of the American Midwest, the story of life in a small town is a true “comedy of errors”, with mistaken identity creating a tangled web of misplaced affections, made even more enjoyable by the play’s numerous dance numbers.

I always enjoy watching the cast develop their stage chops as rehearsals intensify, some of the players transforming themselves from shy “wannabes” to confident, polished performers over the course of an arduous schedule set by the director, my wife Sarah. About half way through rehearsals, usually in early November, I am summoned to the theatre to do the actors’ headshots, a rewarding gig for me, as I watch the young adults transform into serious thespians in my viewfinder. I’m pleased that director Tripp prefers black-and-white portraits, which, at the risk of sounding self-absorbed, look great on the video monitor in the theatre’s “foyer”.

I have a feeling this is going to be the best play that Sarah and the talented BCSS kids have presented in her four years as drama teacher, so come on out on Dec. 9, 10, 14 or 16 and get ready for some raucous jailhouse rock!

~~~

I just finished writing an article for Route 3 magazine, produced by the same publisher responsible for this fine publication, about the historic houses in the area. Each home is a poignant reflection of life in West Boundary as is was just after the turn of the 20th century, and it’s a pleasure to know that many of these buildings have been lovingly restored or, at the very least, transformed into state-of-the-art living spaces.

I was fortunate enough to be able to feature my own residence in the article. Built circa 1916, it was added onto in the 1950s, yet, for the most part, is exactly as it would have been when it was constructed. It is rumoured that it was a Sears or Eaton’s kit home, shipped possibly from Winnipeg, and assembled by the builder who also worked for one Chester Charlton. Anybody who knows otherwise, I’d love to hear from you!

~~~

Since I became the local reporter, I have had many conversations that began with the prefix “off the record”! People I used to chat with freely about a variety of topics now seem a bit less willing to open up, or vent about something going on in the community. It’s a natural response on their parts, I suppose, but one which will hopefully dissipate with time. I must admit I smile whenever I hear that prefix, as do those that I am conversing with.

It’s as though we are acting out a scene in a TV show rather than engaging in real dialogue, so it always seems a little bit funny.

Off the record or otherwise, I am enjoying our conservations, and please, keep ‘em coming!

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