Tag Archives: Riverdance

‘Riverdance’ 20th-Anniversary Tour — Some Pictures Of The Titchy Stage.

by Anura Guruge


My June 8, 2017 post on the
Manchester, NH show on June 7, 2017.


Cameras were not allowed into the arena BUT phones were — as if phones do not have cameras built-in! It is a travesty.

Deanna had her phone with her and took these pictures prior to the start. They clearly demonstrate the paucity of the stage.



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by Anura Guruge

‘Portland Pie Co’ (Manchester, NH) — Do NOT Bother Unless You Just Want Pizza.

by Anura Guruge




Riverdance — 20th Anniversary Tour‘, at the SNHU Arena, on June 7, 2017, was at 8pm. We decided to get there early to get some good parking and have dinner before the show.

Since the ‘Portland Pie Co.‘ was just a block away we decided to go there. We had been there, once before, a couple of years ago, with all four kids and it had been ‘OK’.

There was a 20-minute wait, though all the tables were not taken. I think it had to do with staffing.

It is nice enough inside and the house red wine is pretty damn good.

I ordered the ‘Fryeburg Fair Cheeseburger‘ without any bread and opted to UPGRADE with a fruit salad.

The two-patty cheeseburger sans a bun was pathetic. Emaciated and anemic. The burger patties at McDonald’s are twice as thick and ten times more flavorful. NOT IMPRESSED. It was insipid and unappetizing.

The fruit salad was a total bloody JOKE. 9 slices of apple, one grape and a sliver of peach. That was it. 98% apple. I couldn’t believe it.

Deanna had the ‘Steak and Bleu Salad‘ and was not enthused by the salad part!

Devanee had a pizza and that was fine.

Teischan had the ‘Nacho Grande‘ appetizer with the $3.00 beef burger upgrade. A lot of Nachos but, at best, there was probably half of a burger of meat. 


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by Anura Guruge

‘Riverdance’ 20th-Anniversary Tour (Manchester, NH, June 7, 2017) — Not The Same As The Original.

by Anura Guruge



It is NOT a reenactment of the original from 20-years ago. 

It was good, with some EXTREMELY brilliant dance segments (albeit, many of them NOT Irish), but the best way to describe it is that it was a watered down version.

Everything had been scaled back — starting with the stage. Even IF you hadn’t seen the original you would have been struck by how small the stage was. It was, at best, 70% the size of a normal stage at a theatre.

Please refer to this, June 11, 2017, post for pictures of the titchy stage.

Well, starting with the stage everything else was also on the small side. The orchestra was just 4 people, one of them the drummer. The huge, iconic hanging drum they had in the original was not to be seen.

More fiddle and flute segments, some of them quite long and less Irish dancing — or dancing in general.

A Russian dance segment, which was VERY, VERY good, which I do not remember from the original.

What I refer to as the “West Side Story” segment only had 6 dancers on stage, 4 Irish, one black and one Latino. The latter two were QUITE OUTSTANDING. The stars of the show — and they knew it!

Some good dance segments — from the original, and it was good to see them.

The lighting and graphics, as one would hope, was superior to what was used 20-years ago.

The kids in the audience loved it — including 11-year old Teischan.

The lady (a stranger) I sat next to, like I, had seen the original in Boston 20-years ago. We compared notes. She pointed out the scaled-back nature before I brought it up. So, I was not alone.

I can’t be 100% sure of this BUT I got a distinct feeling that the ‘twinkling toe’ sounds on the ‘board’ were LIP-SYNCHED! I hope I am wrong.

P.S., Cameras were not permitted in the arena.


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by Anura Guruge

‘Riverdance’ (20 Years) Will Be In Manchester, NH For Just One Performance — Wednesday, June 7, 2017.

by Anura Guruge


riverdance

Click to access the event page at ‘SNHU Arena’, Manchester, New Hampshire.


Watch a clip of ‘Riverdance’
with original creator and lead dancer Michael Flatley.


As many of you know, I like most things Celtic.

I saw the original ‘Riverdance‘, in Boston, probably 20 years ago. It was definitely in that time frame.

Since then I have seen ‘Lord of the Dance‘ twice, the first time with Michael Flatley. I have seen a third show based on the first two whose name I can’t remember.

I have the ‘Riverdance’ DVD and have watched it a few times, not counting the PBS reruns.

I do like ‘Riverdance’ BUT if push came to shove would have to say I prefer ‘Lord of the Dance’.

I want to make sure that YOU don’t miss this. So, I am giving you a timely heads up. Tickets are available.

Enjoy.


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by Anura Guruge

CIRQUE ALFONSE ‘Timber’ At The Dartmouth (N.H.) Hop: Mesmerizing, World-Class Synergistic Blend Of Creativity, Acrobatics, Dance, Music and Athleticism.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.Hop50red

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by
Anura Guruge


Hop20132014coverRelated Posts:
1. The Hopkins Center Program For 2013/2014
>>July 16, 2013.

2. FREE sneak preview of 2013/2014
>>July 9, 2013.

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Think of it as an enchanting, ‘how-so-clever’, mix of:
Cirque du Soleil,
the French Canadian Glengarry Bhoys,

British Pantomime with occasional,
tantalizing touches of ‘Riverdance’
and some irreverent outhouse humor

thrown in for good measure!
……

‘Brilliant’ alone
does not do them enough justice.

If the Canadian government had any sense
(and therein may lie a problem)
they would immediately, and at once, declare
Cirque Alfonse a National Canadian Treasure.

Do you get the impression that I might have been ever so slightly impressed?
If so, you may be right.


P1060945
Click to ENLARGE.


ciralhopbanner


As a quick search on ‘circus’ on this blog (>>>) will show, we are no strangers to good circuses. We go to at least one big circus (typically Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey) a year, without fail, and usually try to get in two (maybe three). We have seen two Cirque performances and plan to see a few more soon. So, you have to go the extra mile to suitably impress me and Devanee when it comes to circus acts.

Cirque Alfonse did that with aplomb.

Bravo.

We have seen a lot of juggling by world class troupes but their multi-person, ‘William Tell’ (and they do have some Swiss blood), hatchet juggling was amazing.

Very clever.

90 minutes of non-stop entertainmentwithout an intermission.
I was amazed. I am no stranger to Canada and I have NEVER
seen a bunch of Canadians work this hard and this cleverly
in my 25 years of working for and with Canadian companies.
[The ‘Alfonse’ refers to the area, north of Montreal, that they hail from (and hale indeed they are).]

They are going to be doing 3 local performances next year. You really should go see them.

Click for their whole schedule.

Click for their whole schedule.


Not much more I can really say that will do them more justice.

It was at the Dartmouth Hop. That alone says it all. They had to be crème de la crème just to make the Hop cut. The Hop only serves the best. I saw a ‘trailer’ for this Circus when we attended the July 18, 2013 ‘Program Preview’ at the Hop. I bought the tickets for last night the day they came on sale … in July or August, I think.

So, you too should watch a video of them, provided by them,
just to get an appreciation. Of course, they are on YouTube.

Click to access YouTube video. We saw all of this and more last night. So this is very representative of the show.

Click to access YouTube video. We saw all of this and more last night. So this is very representative of the show.

Yes, it is amazing given that they are Canadian,
but they even have a halfway decent Website.

Click to access.

Click to access.


Another video.

At the very entertaining post-performance discussion, and all the pictures at the top were taken at that, I actually asked them about how they stop from getting dizzy. They do a LOT of non-stop spinning. Even the Dad — Grand-Dad. I was told, practice. Deanna was very impressed by the Dad and his ability to keep up with the kids.

Click to access another YouTube.

Click to access another YouTube.



The Dad smoked his pipe twice during the show. You could clearly smell the aromatic tobacco. First time in decades that I remember somebody actually smoking on stage. A sign of the time. They pretended to drink wine or hock. I think that that is permitted. 

I know that they are Canadian, but they were performing in the U.S. OF ‘A’, and I was surprised that they got away without using the (OSHA?) mandated safety lines etc. I will have to check. IT was good that they didn’t have to use the safety lines but I was under the impression that they were mandatory. Hhhhmmmm.

Also, they had the baby, the son of two of the performers, on stage at 9:30. Hhhmmmm. I know that there are U.S. OF ‘A’ laws about young children on stage. I am sure the Hop complied. Just struck me. Sorry. 

‘The Trocks’ Truly Rocks The Hopkins Center Audience Last Night. The Laughter & Applause Was Non-Stop. An Amazing Tour de Force.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.Hop50red

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by
Anura Guruge


Related posts:
1.Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo’ June 29 – 30, 2013 
>>May 28, 2013.

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All the pictures of the dancers from their Website at http://www.trockadero.org/. Click on any of the pictures to ENLARGE.




The spoofs on the fabricated, way-over-the-top, Russian names was a work of art in its own right. The ‘Click and Clack, the Tappet Brothers’ of NPR “Car Talk” would be very jealous since these names made their efforts look insipid.


The Hop did it again. They set some very high expectations and then went onto exceed them with effortless elan. To say that they hit it way out of the ballpark with ‘The Trocks‘ wouldn’t even come close to capturing the unqualified success of last night’s performance.

I have not heard this much laughter from an audience since the last time I saw “Noises Off” – and that is considered one of the funniest comedies to hit the stage. We saw “The Producers” on Broadway a few years ago and this show sure had the audience in much more mirth than that clever comedy. There was this palpable, electric, kind of staticky, ‘rustle’ from the crowd right through the 2(+) hour performance – an energy you only feel at a show when the whole audience, as one, is totally captivated, sitting on the edge of their seats.

During the first intermission I heard a lady call it ‘hysterical’. At the end, an older gentleman sitting in front of us, stood up and shouted out ‘Thank You‘. During the ‘Swan Lake‘ act the lady behind us shouted out ‘Bravo‘, on average, every 90 seconds! And you can’t blame her for her unstinted joy and appreciation. This was a show that delighted one at multiple levels.

It was an astonishing creative synergistic mashup of above average classic ballet, farce, clever choreography, pantomime, pinpoint timing and incisive (insider) parody.

It was very clever and ever so entertaining. That they did, for their encore, a very convincing rendition of ‘Lord of the Dance‘ from Riverdance was just icing on the cake. The audience erupted in awe and appreciation. I have seen Riverdance (at least twice) and Michael Flatley in ‘Lord of the Dance‘ (in Vegas). This was up there. I know that Michael would have joined us in leaping to his feet to applaud.


'The Trocks' doing the Riverdance from over a year ago. They did not use a fogging machine last night (which was talked about in the post show discussion). They were much better last night than what you see here. Trust me, as Brit (and adopted Scot), I know my celtic dancing. Click to access YouTube video.

‘The Trocks’ doing the Riverdance from over a year ago. They did not use a fogging machine last night (which was talked about in the post show discussion). They were much better last night than what you see here. Trust me, as Brit (and adopted Scot), I know my celtic dancing. Click to access YouTube video.


The kids loved it. On the way home, my 12 year old instructed me that I had to give it a GOOD writeup. I hope I am meeting her request.

Deanna, who is a much harsher critic than I am, was beyond delighted. She loved it. Raved about it. I know she wants to see them again.

If you got to see them at The Hop this weekend you must know that you were privileged to be a part of something very special. If you didn’t get to see them try and catch another of their shows – but they are performing overseas for much of the rest of 2013. Lets hope that The Hop gets them back next year.

We stayed after the show for the post-performance discussion with the Artistic Director, Tory Dobrin. He was very personable and impressive. I asked the first question: ‘had they ever done Nutcracker and would they consider doing it in the future‘ (and I promise there was no double entendre in that question, though Deanna always assume that I am trying to be ‘cute’). The answers was that I wasn’t the first to have asked about the Nutcracker and no they have never done it and don’t plan to do it. He then went onto explain why. It has to do with his belief in ‘karma‘. The Nutcracker is a Christmas show and as such is only done during December. Since ‘every’ local community seems to have a production of the show, a ‘Trocks’ production would eat into these sales and they don’t want to do that. I can appreciate that.

Learned some interesting things from him. Only 40% of the 14 to 16 performers are from the U.S. They do not have any corporate sponsors or get any grants! So they survive entirely on monies made from performances (though I notice that they do seek donations on their Website). Since the non-U.S. dancers can’t collect U.S. unemployment they try to do as many performances a year as they can — and that means around 120 shows a year.


The post-performance discussion with Tory Dobrin who was an ex-dancer (and you could tell). Not sure who the young lady was. She was good. But, she never told us who she was. This is one of the rare shortcomings at The Hop. They can be remiss in introducing people. Click to ENLARGE.