Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Musical So Nice, I'm Seeing It Twice

Cath and I had a rollicking good time revisiting Fellowship! The Musical a couple of weeks ago; and we're going again tomorrow night.
Yep, I like it that much.
There is an interview (along with the behind-the-scenes video I mentioned earlier) by Backstage on the website, check it out. It includes a few clips from the show.
I am now longing for a revisit of the originals -- both the book (admittedly, in my top books of all time category), and the films. I wonder if work would notice me disappearing for a couple of weeks...
Just my thoughts,

Don't miss FELLOWSHIP! Now playing at the Falcon Theatre!The Critics are Raving!
"Laugh Loudly and enjoy yourself! With a romping score by Allen Simpson and funny lyrics by the strength and combined efforts of the comedically gifted cast..." - Backstage
"The cast is all-around splendid...McCrary's direction, Spear's choreography, and Simpson and Rouse's musical direction... couldn't be better."
"Manically madcap!...creatively kooky..." - Tolucan Times
"...sublimely silly spoof..." -LA Times
"Every player is a comedic gem!" -Backstage

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Just Look On the Bright Side of Life...

Peter Chattaway has an rather interesting comparison of SPARTACUS, THE LIFE OF BRIAN and the life of Jesus.

Pretty nifty introspection from someone who is a fan of all three of those stories.

As for me, I'm one of those guys that when push comes to shove, would probably say, "Oh, that Spartacus?! Well, of course I'm not that one. Are you looking for that fellow over there? Yoo hoo, Sparty, I think these guys are looking for you. He's so shy."

But that's just me.

Just my thoughts,


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

On the Wrong Tract

A humorous yet insightful site I look at on a regular basis is “Stuff Christians Like,” where Prodigal Jon takes by the numbers things that, well, Christians like.

Such as: Making up prayer requests, because everyone else has one.

Or throwing out disclaimers before recommending something secular.

Or taking the college years off.

Today’s post was about “making tracts that look like money.”

You know, the five dollar bill in the grocery store parking lot that you pick up thinking “I’m going back in for some Ben & Jerry’s!” only to discover that it isn’t a fiver, but rather a “do you know Jesus?” missive.

Lots of folks responded to his post, including one guy that took Prodigal Jon to task, claiming that tricking folks into the kingdom can only be positive, especially since Jesus was doing such tricks all the time.

Which led to this response from me:

Jon – good, though provoking post.

If I may add to your response to Colin's argument about "tricking,": First off, let's be honest and use the right word - "lying."

"Hey, guy who's out of work and wondering where the next meal is coming from, here's five bucks for you... NOT! Hee, hee, sucker! Okay, now let me tell you about the love of Jesus..."

Contrary to Colin’s belief that Jesus lied his butt off to people, hoping to dishonest them into heaven, He never did that. In fact, He made clear that the father of lies was not the Father of Heaven, but rather the guy working against heaven.

(And make no mistake, the guy who is out there lying for G-d is in actuality working for the devil, whether he knows it or not.)

Once we’ve convinced ourselves that it is okay to be a little deceitful as long as the goal is good – evangelism in this case – then it becomes easier to become more deceitful.

Have a couple of people been turned on to G-d by a disingenuous tract? Sure.

Have even more people, by the boatload even, been turned off to the whole idea of a two-faced Christianity by dishonest tracts? Yep.

In the history of restaurants, have one or two waitresses found the “tip” of a misrepresentative tract to contain the words they needed at the moment? Maybe.

Have hundreds, if not thousands, of wait-staff declared that they would never darken the door of a “worship house” that trains its congregants to be cheap and condescending? Oh yeah.

And from there, we start believing the lies we tell to trick people into Jesusification.

“Believe in Jesus and you will never have a problem again.”

“Believe in Jesus, and you can sin all you want and not worry about the afterlife, because G-d loves a grateful sinner!”

“Believe in Jesus and you will make lots and lots of money, because that is the root of all happiness!”

Slippery slope. Slippery slope.

That’s my response, and those are just my thoughts,


Friday, June 05, 2009

Must See Theater and Must See TV!

When Cath and I road trip, we have a required set of music that must be listened to.

The Monkees.

Little Shop of Horrors.

Big River.

And the cast album of Fellowship! The Musical Parody of “The Fellowship of the Ring!”

Fellowship is back, and opens tonight at the Falcon Theater in Burbank. (Go here for a behind the scenes vid of Fellowship.)

When it first ran, I saw the show multiple times, and never got tired of it.

Gotta laugh at Frodo, who keeps leaving the ring lying around; or the Balrog and his cabaret number (the band used to be larger, but he got hungry); or that other hobbit that no one remembers (“Which one are you again?).

Take this moment of insight (in song), when Gimli the dwarf and Legolas the elf realize that they just might have more in common then they thought:

Gimli: So your men look like women!
Legolas: And your women look like men!
Gimli: It’s true.

Hee hee.

I’ll be seeing it next week, and I’m sure multiple times after that.

Why not opening week? Well, I may have mentioned:

Releve Studios is showcasing: Must See TV!

See the blog below for more details.

Cath said the rehearsal last night rocked the house.

And when it is all done on Sunday, I get my wife back! Woo hoo!

Just my thoughts,


2009 Relevé Studios Recital

It's our 2nd recital ever and we're so excited.
Last year we had 59 students on stage ... This year, there are 175!! Wow!
If you are in the area, come by and support our amazing students.

Click HERE for info. Or HERE for tickets.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Angry Funny - Angry Moving

I finally got to read Susan Isaacs’ ANGRY CONVERSATIONS WITH GOD: A SNARKY BUT AUTHENTIC SPIRITUAL MEMOIR, a compelling and intimate chronicle of her relationship with the Almighty.

This witty book takes the notion of a “personal relationship with G-d” to its logical conclusion, as Susan takes her Heavenly Partner to couple’s counseling. Makes sense – if you want your relationship to work, you have to work on it.

Her journey through family, career and search for love are all part of her spiritual journey – and in addition to being funny, her story has a way of digging in and becoming emotionally moving as well.

(When she stood on the subway platform telling her beau that she would not be riding with him to his job at the WTC on the morn of September 11, well, I couldn’t sleep until I saw how that chapter turned out. And the next one. And the next one.)

I have to warn you though, if you are a protestant Christian in America, chances are you will see either yourself, or the church you attend in this book. And it will make you cringe a little.

As it should.

Also, if you are the kind of Christian that likes your books neat and tidy, filled with bon mots that prove yet again how good we are (while the world is evil), this isn’t your book.

Susan’s journey is real, honest and oh so very frank. Warts and all are on display – Susan’s, the church’s, and even G-d’s (or at least the G-d we think we know).

If you are like me, you will start out laughing along with Susan; then you will get a wee bit uncomfortable with where this ride seems to be going; and you won’t breathe that sigh of relief again until the very last chapter. (And you will be praying that she doesn’t stop before then – or this book might well be a tragedy!)

And, if you are like me, you will be glad you took the journey, as Susan’s counseling sessions with G-d might just save you some therapy expenses of your own.


My friend, Cheryl McKay’s book is out: NEVER THE BRIDE.

I haven’t found the time to read it yet, but Catherine has and loved it. Her review will come as soon as she gets a spare moment from the Releve recital.

Just my thoughts,


Monday, June 01, 2009

Catherine on the Interweb

Cath is featured in this BADD video -- a spoof on A&E's Intervention.


-Her proud hubby