May is Busy for Lightbulb Heart!

May 10 — I’ll be back at Epic Books for Books Aloud at 10:30AM. Books Aloud is an ongoing Friday morning song and storytime led by the likes of Lisa Pijuan-Nomura, Karen Ancheta, Sue Littleton, and me! Locke St. is under construction, so please leave extra time for parking.

Rehearsals, rehearsals, rehearsals…

**NEW!** May 19 — promoting the Mind Play Theatre Festival on Centre Stage with Lyla Miklos on 101.5 FM The Hawk

**NEW!** May 21 — Storytime at Donut Monster, 10:30 AM

May 25 — I’m helping to coordinate the First Annual Hamilton Silly Walk. We’ll meet at Gore Park for silly micro-workshops and silly stretching and then silly walk our way to City Hall. My friend Shahzi had the idea for the walk when she saw a news piece about a town in Hungary that does one for April Fool’s Day. We’re doing it to raise awareness of Mental Health Month and for our own sanity. After last summer’s Easy-bake Road Trip, this kind of playing feels like second skin. We’re hoping to expand the event in 2020 to include a full day of silly events. #sillyhamont

May 29 — I start taking a month long Creative Process course taught by Hamilton collage artist and storytelling dynamo Lisa Pijuan-Nomura!


May 31 and June 01 — Lightbulb Heart makes its official performance debut at Mind Play Theatre Festival!  Although I’ve been in the theatre for almost 3 decades, this will be the first public performance of work under my own umbrella. I’ll be performing Karaoke Visiting Hour, memoir monologue about the only time I’ve ever sung karaoke and my 12 year boxing match with muscle tension dysphonia. If you want to find out how I’m starting to win that fight, please join me and 6 other companies for Hamilton’s premiere mental health play festival at The Staircase.

Yay, May!

Festival News!

Karaoke Visiting Hour was officially accepted as an entry in the Mind Play Theatre Festival 2019! Mind Play Theatre Festival is Hamilton, Ontario’s premiere mental health theatre festival. I was delighted to work front of house for the Festival in 2018 and thrilled to present Karaoke Visiting Hour, my memoir monologue about losing and finding one’s voice in an unlikely place.

CW for the monologue: suicidal ideation, mental health, violence

Read more about the MindPlay performance of Karaoke Visiting Hour.

In my car I’m going to Carolina

The Weather Channel forecasts that it will be 30 degrees (F) warmer tomorrow in North Carolina than here in Southern Ontario…

I’m happy to report that I will spend the remainder of winter working on a production of Lauren’s Yee’s In A Word for Bulldog Ensemble Theater in Durham, NC! It’s a beautiful play and I’m excited to be reunited with colleagues I love and trust. Directed by Jules Odendahl-James and featuring Thaddeus Edwards and Matthew Hager, In A Word runs March 21-April 07 at The Fruit.

Four more days until sweet, sweet sunshine…


Todd Rosenlieb Dance & Virginia Ballet Theatre Ensemble Concert – May 04 & 05, 2018

img_0889I had a mini-start last week in Norfolk, VA with my dear friend and choreographer Heidi Anderson. Together, we hit all three Easybake goals: storytelling, art/hospitality, and devised work. Heidi choreographed a beautiful staging of the children’s book Miss Rumphius and I told the story while five gifted dancers brought her vision to life. Heidi gave the dancers “seeds” of movement and worked with them to find natural sequences and gestures that suited their individual bodies. I am so proud of everything we presented at TR Dance and am in love with the family Todd Rosenlieb has assembled!

I worked my day job remotely and Heidi and I spent non-rehearsal nights doing Strengths work. She is a GALLUP Certified Strengths Coach and everything I learned feeds directly into this newly hatched plan o’mine!  (If anyone’s interested, my top 5: Developer, Empathy, Connectedness, Positivity, Arranger.) I am so very thankful for Heidi’s long friendship, her gifts of time and energy, and for finally being able to collaborate with her. I hope to return to VA at the end of the summer to work on movement for the easybakeheart project!

And now…

I’m currently in New York trying to finish my day job well and churning out easybakeheart workshop materials at night. Some things are still in flux and I hope to hit Austin in August or September. This is happening, y’all!

some things take decades to bake

1979. El Paso, Texas. I stress eat Easy-Bake Oven cake mix in the quiet dark of my childhood bedroom closet. Far more of those salty-sweet chemical concoctions make it to my mouth dry and straight out of the packet than would ever see the inside of a tiny baking pan and heat of a single light bulb.

2017. Hamilton, Ontario. I stress eat Lindor chocolates in my car. The quiet, aloneness, and compressed space of my Honda Civic feels familiar and ancient.

I took a writing workshop last February that involved an outline of my body on a sheet of butcher paper and free-association drawings that evoke formative life events and dead people I have loved. A disproportionate amount of real estate is dedicated to 10 lbs of sunshine yellow and chocolate brown plastic. There is literally an Easy-Bake Oven where my heart and lungs should be.

Tiny Me understood some things about how she was made. She loved the things Now Me loves. Quiet. Being outside. Rain. Books. Swingsets. Stories. Observing people. Making things. I want to honor the choices she made that brought us both life and joy and give her grace for the choices that still give me grief.

So…I gave notice at my job and will spend June and July in my Civic, working my way through the midwest, gulf states, and central and eastern south with the following goals:

  1. See old friends and read to their new tiny people (I am also considering setting myself up in parks with a sandwich board promoting story times, so if you have ideas for Mobile Storylady names, let me know!).
  2. Have big conversations with people about creating interdisciplinary art communities and hospitable audience spaces.
  3. Workshop stuff with a few theatre makers on the ideas of self-compassion and the innate wisdom of our tiny selves.

I’ll be documenting highlights here as #3 makes its way (hopefully) into something that more people than just me can eat. (People, places, blog roll from roadtrip here)