Okanagan Symphony Orchestra Gets Wordy With Verdi

Okanagan Symphony Orchestra Gets Wordy With Verdi

If I told you wife Elaine and I voluntarily spent two hours of our Friday evening listening to choral outpourings of grief, funeral marches, incendiary strings, and convulsing drums, you might think we attended one of the darkest musical dramas on the planet. On the contrary, we became engrossed in a Latin Mass for the Dead that is classically known and universally revered as Giuseppe Verdi’s “Requiem.” Many have called it an opera in church clothing, while others say it…

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Okanagan Symphony Orchestra Flies High Performing the Music of Harry Potter

Okanagan Symphony Orchestra Flies High Performing the Music of Harry Potter

On the last Sunday of October, the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra (OSO) magically transformed itself into a spellbinding 4-H Club and saluted the wondrous wizardry of Harry, Hermione, Hedwig, and Hogwarts. That was the scene, three days before Halloween 2018, as Kelowna Community Theatre had a packed cauldron for an afternoon matinee of the OSO Family Special: The Music of Harry Potter. As expected, there were bewitching costumes worn by orchestra members as well as Musical Director Rosemary Thomson channeling Professor Sybill…

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The Fastidious Fortitude to Forego Fast Food

The Fastidious Fortitude to Forego Fast Food

Can you think of anything you haven’t done for 21 years? For me, it has been THAT LONG since I’ve consumed any menu items at The Arches, The Whopper, The Colonel, The Bell, The Hoagie, The Wendy, The Carl, and The Meats. The Chick – never been inside one of your establishments. Based on marketing expenditures and deliciousness, these are The Big Kahunas (TBK) of fast food. They are powerful. They are prevalent. They are dominators in an on-demand, have-it-your-way…

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Okanagan Symphony Orchestra Brings its A-Game for the Three B’s

Okanagan Symphony Orchestra Brings its A-Game for the Three B’s

On the last full day of Summer 2018, the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra (OSO) kicked off its 59th season with a splendid triple-threat rendition of “Bach to the Future” at Kelowna Community Theatre. Actually, Bach was just the first German composer out of the barn on this rainy Friday evening. His works were followed by those of Beethoven and Brahms and culminated in the concert’s marquee banner, OSO: The Chase Wines Masterworks I – the Three B’s! These Three B’s were…

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Carmen Captivates at Kelowna Community Theatre

Carmen Captivates at Kelowna Community Theatre

Carmen – nice to finally meet ya. Sorry about what happened in Act IV. En garde, toréador. That was some spectacular opening-night performance by Opera Kelowna and its midsummer production of Carmen Thursday evening at Kelowna Community Theatre. This three-hour, full-throttle opera was a four-act masterpiece that totally deserved the full-fledged standing ovation it received during final curtain call. Here’s some advice for Okanagan residents without major plans for this coming weekend. Turn off Netflix on Friday or Saturday night…

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Paddleboarders Take a Spill for Pihl and BrainTrust Canada

Paddleboarders Take a Spill for Pihl and BrainTrust Canada

Okay – that was a lot of water-logged family fun.           On a super overcast August Sunday morning at Rotary Beach Park, BrainTrust Canada held its 4th Annual Pihl Law Paddle for Prevention and board-shorts battle to the buoy and back. All the requisite aquatic tools were provided for this competitive beach jamboree – beautiful-and-calm Okanagan Lake, seven paddle boards and paddles, seven paddling lanes, seven stationary buoys, and the seventh-heaven smooth sounds of emcee and…

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Mamma Mia! is ABBA-Lutely a Musical Delight

Mamma Mia! is ABBA-Lutely a Musical Delight

If Alex Trebek and Jeopardy came to Kelowna this month to tape a week of shows, this back-and-forth gamesmanship would be a possibility: Colin – “I’ll take ABBA songs for six hundred, Alex.” Alex – “what charming romantic comedy musical featuring an ABBA hit parade of songs and dancing queens will be rockin’ Kelowna Community Theatre for 11 August performances?” Colin – “what is Mamma Mia!?” Alex – “well done, Mayor.” Colin – “thanks, Alex, you’re a Super Trouper.” Okay –…

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Okanagan Covertec Redefined Our Outdoor Spaces

Okanagan Covertec Redefined Our Outdoor Spaces

Who knew that engineered acrylic panels and aluminum beams could be turned into something so refined and resplendent in an outdoor environment? For the past two summers, wife Elaine and I had been wondering what we could do with our back yard patio and what we playfully call the “upper lanai.” Both were west-facing, outdoor-living areas that we needed to get more at-home-use bang for our Okanagan buck.         From June through Labor Day, the blistering afternoon…

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O’Neill Gives His SEAL of Approval at Armed Forces Day Banquet in Amarillo

O’Neill Gives His SEAL of Approval at Armed Forces Day Banquet in Amarillo

How’s this for a high-profile headline:  “Last Saturday night I got to shake hands and chat with the Navy SEAL Team Six Member who put three bullets in Osama bin Laden.” That’s exactly what happened on Saturday, May 19 when I was invited to attend the Armed Forces Day “Celebrating Freedom & Honoring Service” Banquet in Amarillo, Texas. Armed Forces Day is a national holiday to recognize and honor those who are serving and those who have served in the…

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Packing Heat at the 2018 Amarillo Pioneer Gun Show

Packing Heat at the 2018 Amarillo Pioneer Gun Show

Talk about being a fish out of water. Last weekend I hiked up my city-boy britches and attended a real-life gun show. There’s a first time for everything. This pistol-packin’ Smith & Wesson soiree was known as the 2018 Amarillo Pioneer Gun Show hosted at the Amarillo Civic Center. I was in the Texas Panhandle courtesy of compadre Jack Barnes and his Foundation: America – Celebrate, Honor & Serve. A-CHS had a booth with the mission of “Fill The Bucket…

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