Posts Tagged ‘call of cthulhu’

So in the six days since I last posted, I have:

– written a grant
– made a website, new Twitter account, and Facebook group
– found MORE chin hairs
– seen Nixon in China (short verdict: awesome staging, love the music, everything after the middle of the 2nd act doesn’t seem to do anything; in fact, the whole thing could be about 55 minutes long and be all the better for it. Also the singer playing Pat Nixon was much too hot to play Pat Nixon)
– hung out with an old friend I haven’t seen in 7 or 8 years
– been told which Battlestar Galactica character I am (Starbuck. Apparently. I’ve never actually seen BSG so I’m going on faith here)
– actually used a video clip from Fallen Voices
– had a four-hour rehearsal followed by six hours of teaching; survived
– possibly been on French-language TV
– had a remarkably successful pitch meeting
– cut down on both caffeine and alcohol to the extent that I’m actually meeting the bullshit Health Canada guidelines
– failed to podcast or blog, but used Twitter more

I don’t know when I’m going to get a podcast out. Normally I podcast on Monday nights, but I’ve got to check over the grant with Suzanne tonight, go to a workshop, then do all the printing and collating and stuffing into oversized enveloppes. And then hand it in tomorrow. Then work a lot Tuesday and Wednesday. So maybe Thursday?


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So if you’re following my Twitter stream, or if you’re my Facebook friend (or Ben’s), you know that Ben has been working feverishly on Call of Cthulhu: The Opera

This is because we’re applying for a grant in March and I had told him that we needed the completed score for that application.

I double-checked the forms today and, um, we don’t. At all. In fact, we don’t need a bit of the score, just a project description and examples of other work.

So Ben has put himself through all of that for no reason.

Fortunately he’s been really enjoying the writing and was too relieved that he doesn’t have to meet the deadline that he didn’t get angry at me. But in the future, I think I will read all official documents out loud two or three times before I assign any tasks.

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Inspired by this ninja cat, I made a ninja squid doll for some friends for Christmas.

If your sewing skills are a bit lacking, email me and I’ll make you one for $20 CAD + shipping and handling.

If your sewing skills are just dandy, here are the pattern and instructions for making your very own Cute-thulhu.


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This past Monday my collaborator Suzanne Kilgore and I re-wrote the libretto for “Call of Cthulhu: The Opera” (hopefully coming to the Toronto Fringe and/or Summerworks Festival, 2011).

Act 3, of course, takes place on board a disreputable semi-pirate ship in the south seas.  We felt the evil Sea Captain was starting to sound too PG Wodehouse-y, so the following line ended up being included:

Sea Captain: Put me in a halo and call me Mary!

That, of course, is not genuine sailor slang.

Here’s some genuine sailor slang:

WHIPJACK, a sham shipwrecked sailor, also called a TURNPIKE SAILOR.

BOOM-PASSENGER, a convict on board ship.

LAND-SHARK, a sailor’s definition of a lawyer.

JACK NASTY-FACE, a sailor.

SKATES-LURK, a begging impostor dressed as a sailor.


TRUCK-GUTTED, pot-bellied or corpulent.

YARMOUTH MITTENS, bruised hands.

SKY-SCRAPER, a tall man.

SCOTCH COFFEE, biscuits toasted and boiled in water.  (Editor’s note: EW!)

OH BE JOYFUL, a bottle of rum.

Source: John Camden Hotten’s  1864 masterpiece “The Slang Dictionary”, readable on Google Books.

I’m going to go sling the hatchet with an Oh Be Joyful.  Let’s hope no one gives me a pair of Yarmouth mittens, because then I’d have to hire a land-shark and he’s take all my money so I’d end up drinking Scotch Coffee and going about as a skates-lurk.

(I don’t know if any of this is useful in Call of Cthulhu, but it’s still awesome.)

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As the EFFING RAGWEED SEASON has starting early (goddamn wet hot spring grumble grumble), I am only keeping myself sane and alive with a dazzling array of allergy medicines and a fair amount of alcohol. Thank the Invisible Pink Dragon that Aerius went generic this year – it’s now only costing me 80 cents/day to not want to claw my itching eyes out with my nails instead of $2.50.

Anyway, part of my regimen includes a Benadryl or two at bedtime to keep me from waking up at 2 AM and sneezing 58 times in a row. There is one side effect. I’m not entirely sure if it’s an up-side effect or a down-side effect – Benadryl gives you CRAZY dreams.

The other night I dreamt that I was spending a weekend in a haunted hotel in New Orleans. (Note: I have never actually been to New Orleans, even though my mother is sort of from there.) Why I was there I don’t recall. Ben wasn’t there, though my friend Celeste’s ex-boyfriend who is also called Ben was. I don’t remember very much of what you might call the “set-up” of the plot – I remember getting to the hotel and that I was wearing a totally hot red dress. I really, really want that dress. I should find someone who can draw, describe it to them, then figure out how to make it.

In that way that only places in dreams can be, the hotel was also a mall and quite a lot of the dream was boring I’m-going-to-the-restaurant-oh-no-I-can’t-get-in stuff. But some of it was genuinely weird and sort of fun. There was some running away from zombies, some running away from maniacs with knives (in which I was joined by my friend’s ex), a trippy elevator ride in which the elevator left the building and floated around in the clouds, and I believe I was slated to perform “Call of Cthulhu: The Opera for One Person”* at some point but missed it, probably due to being chased by a maniac with a knife or a zombie.

Anyway. After whatever adventures happened over the weekend, the entire guest population of the hotel left and walked along the riverbank. Is there a river in New Orleans? As we walked in the dawn, some people who may or may have not been wearing coolie hats were setting up some really beautiful miniature houses on the riverbank. In my dream, this was an activity traditionally associated with New Orleans. Is there a place where people do that? If so, I am going there on my next vacation. They were gorgeous 3-4 foot tall houses. As they finished, some boats sitting in the middle of the river set off some fireworks which somehow or other looked amazing against the dawn sky. The whole crowd marvelled.

Then a giant tsunami washed over us. I was just reminding myself to stay on my back and just float when I woke up.

I defy you to psychoanalyse this dream. Clearly it is pharmaceutical in origin. At least I hope it is.

*I am actually working with my friend Suzanne on “Call of Cthulhu: The Opera”, but it calls for quite a large cast. Look for it summer of 2011.

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So, as my fabulousness increases logorithmically each day, I am constantly finding new outlets for my seemingly inexhaustible creativity.

Or something like that.  Maybe it’s more like, “I keep finding new ways to futz around with fun projects”, but keeping in with the idea of marketing oneself with extreme arrogance the first version will stand.  Anyway.

More stuff I’m doing:

– Are you extremely rich?  Then come to Powerball 2010, where you can hear me sing Roy Orbison’s “Only the Lonely”as a coloratura opera aria in Italian, and the fabulous Suzanne Kilgore sing the same in German in the style of Wagner.  This is a project with performance artist Derek Liddington, who’s also doing something similar for Nuit Blanche, except with Bruce Springsteen songs.  And as I am the one tasked with adapting the song into arias, I can tell you that the Orbison is much easier, since its note:word ratio is much lower that Springsteen’s, if not actually reversed.

– The same Ms. Kilgore and myself are co-writing “Call of Cthulhu: The Opera” and I am going to play Cthulhu.  Because coloratura is SUPPOSED to be scary, and while I enjoy playing fragile young girls with mental health issues, the occasional role as an evil deity intent on eating the world is a nice change.  Look for it summer of 2011.  Oh, and it will feature an all-female cast.

And, of course, Fallen Voices: 3 operas for 2 people is a go for September of this year.

So until I am discovered by the Met and made super-famous, I have a few things to keep me busy.  Speaking of “being discovered by the Met”, the recording session went very well last night, and I will hopefully have something to post by the end of the week.

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