In My Head Blog

Canadian musical theatre is alive, damn it!!!

Hi there friends,

So I rarely have big causes or projects I believe in enough to write a blog about them.  But this one is so worth it.

I think many of you know… or maybe you don’t….  I shouldn’t assume that people keep up with my comings and goings…. who do I think I am???   But you peeps in the business of “show” know this; and in case you DIDN’T know, I’m on the board of directors of an extraordinary company called The Musical Stage Company.

This year, we’re taking on a really exciting challenge that will “take a village” and we’re looking for people who believe in musical theatre to help get us to our goal.

You may have seen my postings about singing in their concert UNCOVERED: STEVIE WONDER & PRINCE a couple of weeks ago.  It was an amazing night.  Well that was one of the many fabulous projects The Musical Stage Company has going on.

Well, I’m the first artist they have ever had on their board and I’m going into my 3rd year.  I have been a fan of Mitchell Marcus, who created the company and is its Artistic Director, since it’s 3rd year – 2006 (originally Acting Up Stage).… [Continue reading]


EXCLUSIVE DEAL FOR FANS

Okay, y’all.  I’m so excited to get to share this with you.

So I’ll be one of the featured singer’s in the wildly popular concert UNCOVERED: Stevie Wonder & Prince, that is produced by The Musical Stage Company.  It’s Toronto’s foremost exclusively musical theatre company.  I believe in this company so much, I sit on the board as the first and only artist.

Every year they do a concert that features the music of the greatest artists of the 20th/21st centuries.  Elton John, Joni Mitchell, the Beatles, etc.  This year the artists are Stevie Wonder and Prince.  No slouches.  It started off as a one night deal at the beautiful Koerner Hall, but the popularity has grown so great, they have expanded to 4 nights at Koerner Hall  – Nov. 4-7 – and 2 nights at the Toronto Centre for the Arts (now the Meridian Arts Centre) – Nov. 8 & 9.

The roster of artists is a who’s who of Canadian theatre and music:

Jully Black (Juno Award Winner)

Jackie Richardson (Gemini and Dora Award Winner)

Divine Brown (Juno Award Winner)

To name just a few.

But when I expressed how my fans have been, particularly the Killjoys fans, Mitchell Marcus (MSC Artistic Director) suggested we offer something special. … [Continue reading]


LIFE CHANGES NOW

It’s been a while since I wrote.  I didn’t mean for it to be.  So much has happened in the last two years.  (I don’t think it’s been two years but that is what a big part of this blog is about.)

Most of you already know that my mother just passed away. The weirdest part of that is the fact that in a period of 2 1/2 years plus 3 days, my whole immediate family has died.

MILTON ALLISON (1929 – 2016)

My dad died of gastric (stomach-ish) cancer on Dec. 4, 2016, my brother died of lung and bone cancer on Oct. 7, 2018 and my mother has just died of cancer on June 7, 2019 – 8 months to the day after my brother.

My dad was an amazing man.  He was nicknamed the “mayor of Winnipeg”.  Everyone seemed to know and love him.  He loved people – he loved talking to them, helping them, learning about them.  He was a porter for VIA Rail for 38 years and loved every second of it. I remember him polishing his shoes, getting ready to go on a run and he’d be happily humming away.

He loved getting to know new people and travelling. … [Continue reading]


MARY POPPINS

So I directed a production of Mary Poppins at Young People’s Theatre in Toronto that opened on Nov. 8, 2018 (3 days ago) and I had to post something. I have been inspired to share some thoughts about it.

First of all, I always love working at Young People’s Theatre (YPT) because the entire crew, administration staff, custodial staff, box office staff are the nicest, most generous people ever.  And they are lead from the top by Allen MacInnis  (Artistic Director) and Nancy Webster (Executive Director) who are two of the most decent, thoughtful, funny, creative, helpful human beings in the business. Allen has been a friend for several years but in the last few years has become an unofficial directing mentor and he and Nancy have been two of my greatest supporters.

One of the many things I love about Allen is that he wants his theatre to reflect the cultural landscape of Toronto, so multicultural casting is always of the utmost importance.  As an actor/performer/now director of colour, I couldn’t be more on board with that.

Jump back in time with me for a second (insert flashback music).  I saw my first shows at Stratford when I was 14. … [Continue reading]


CHOOSE JOY #1

Hi y’all.  I always mean to be consistent with the blogs because I quite love writing them, and then I don’t write.  What is that about?  I think so many people have that occurrence where there is something you like to do but you never give yourself the time or take the time to do it.  Well . . . .this is it.  Anyway…. Here I am.  I have so many things in my head but I don’t know where to start.

It has been the most unusual and wonderful and sad year.  I don’t remember the last time I’ve been this busy professionally.  The year started off with the filming of KILLJOYS Season 4 at the end of January.  This season I had lots of fun things to do in this season which is unfolding now so I can’t talk about details or they will have to kill me.  Juuuuuust kidding.

While I was filming that, I was planning and directing Micah Barnes new Las Vegas-themed stage show, MICAH BARNES AT THE SANDS, which went up on May 14 and was a big success. I was also prepping/planning for the production of Stephen Sondheim’s A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC that I directed for Randolph College for the Performing Arts in August.… [Continue reading]