Tag Archives: improvisation

Sweet Home Chicago!

Come on,
Baby, don’t you wanna go home
Come on,
Baby, don’t you wanna go home
Back from the land of California
To my sweet home, Chicago.
 

The Vic & Paul Show came from California to sweet home Chicago – and it was good: a magical week of fun, friends, comedy & camaraderie.

Big thanks to Scott Vehill and Stefan Brun of The Prop Theatre for hosting us in their space – and to all of our Chicago friends (and all you out-of-towners) who made the trip to North Elston to share the fun with us.

Thanks especially to Tony Adler of The Chicago Reader whose fabulous article in the June 9th issue assured us of a successful run. (Click on the picture.)

Thanks, too, to Alex Baumgardner, who talked to me for this article in NewCity Stage. (Click on the graphic.)

Given the enthusiastic response to our limited Prop Theatre engagement, we’re planning a return to Chicago this December. This might be the year for comedy-loving Chicagoans to celebrate the holidays with The Vic & Paul Show.

Stay tuned for further details.

Victoria, Steve, and I would just like to say, “Thank you – and we love you” to everyone who showed up and laughed with us at The Prop last week.

More fun is on the way

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Last Call for “Vic & Paul”…

If, for some strange and inexplicable reason, you live in the greater Chicagoland area, and you haven’t yet made reservations to see The Vic & Paul Show, just click on the Brown Paper Tickets icon below:

Did you click it? Did you get your tickets? Thank you. We’ll see you at The Prop Theatre this week!

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Countdown to Chicago…

As of today, there are less than two weeks before The Vic & Paul Show opens in Chicago for a one-week engagement, June 9-12, at the Prop Theatre.

This past Sunday morning, May 29th, Vic and Steve Rashid and I had a great time on Rick Kogan’s WGN Radio show, The Sunday Papers. Journalist, author, and radio raconteur, Rick Kogan is a Chicago institution. He covered most of our big moments with The Practical Theatre for The Chicago Sun-Times and The Chicago Tribune back in the 80’s – and he was kind enough to invite us on The Sunday Papers to talk about The Vic & Paul Show. You can check out the podcast by clicking on this link: Vic & Paul on WGN

For tickets to The Vic & Paul Show go to: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/169351

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A May Day Reminder!

It’s May Day! And that means that “The Vic & Paul Show” will be coming to Chicago in a little more than a month.

Get your tickets now!

For reservations, go to: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/169351

After a 22-year absence from the Chicago area stage, Paul Barrosse and Victoria Zielinski, both veterans of The Practical Theatre’s hit comedy revues in the 1980’s, will perform in “The Vic & Paul Show”, an original two-person comedy revue with music that will play June 9-12 at The Prop Theatre.

It’s “An Evening of Comedy, Music, Marriage & Martinis” — a special week of grown-up fun somewhere between Nick & Nora and Nichols & May (if those famous couples were over-50 parents with grown-up kids).

Vic & Paul are joined by their musical director, Chicago area Emmy-winner Steve Rashid, who will accompany them on keyboards and perform his own brand of satirical songwriting. The show was directed by Chicago native Shelly Goldstein.

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Practical Theatre: The Last Laugh

I’ve finally wrapped up my four-part personal history of The Practical Theatre Co. To read the final chapter of the Practical Theatre story click here — or click on the graphic above. You can also find a link to all four chapters under “Landmarks” on the right hand side of the home page.

It only took me two decades to finish this project — so please enjoy!

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A Salute to Walter Cronkite

“And that’s the way it is.”

Those of us who are of a certain age remember the days when there were only three TV networks (and those two weird UHF channels) – and network news was the Big Deal every night. In those years, back when the network evening news was an important daily event, Walter Cronkite was the Big Man Behind the Anchor Desk.

Walter Cronkite, the anchorman of CBS Evening News, was the most trusted man in America. Seriously. He really was. And he deserved our trust. After all, it was Walter Cronkite who went to Vietnam and said, essentially, game over: we’re losing and we should get out. (Can you imagine Wolf Blitzer going out on that limb?)

So, what’s happened to TV news since the days of the legendary Walter Cronkite?

Here’s a musical reflection on the gradual ruin of television news from “The Vic & Paul Show”, written and performed by Paul Barrosse and Victoria Zielinski — with musical director Steve Rashid.

The show was directed by Shelly Goldstein and performed in June 2010 at Push Lounge in Woodland Hills, CA.

This is the final installment of clips from “The Vic & Paul Show” available for free on this blog and on YouTube. The entire show will be available very soon on DVD. If you’re interested in getting a copy of the DVD, let me know by e-mail or via comment to this blog entry.

I’ll send you a copy of the whole show for $5.00 – which should just about cover the cost. (It’s the cheapest, coolest, and funniest Christmas gift ever!) You can send me a check when you get the DVD.

And that’s the way it is…

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Austen vs. iPhone

“The Vic & Paul Show” photos by Robert Mendel.

It was not all that long ago that men and women in the throes of romance took pen in hand to write long, expressive letters to each other.

Your parents probably wrote love letters to each other. And if you’re anywhere over the age of 35, you and your loved one probably did a lot of letter writing, too.

That’s not necessarily the case today. I imagine that stationery sales are not what they once were. Modern lovers now proclaim their undying devotion via e-mail and text messaging.

Instead of Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s immortal prose…

How do I love thee?
Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach…

…today’s lovers are more likely to text:

do I luv u?
OMG!
xoxox
ILY, 6Y
Ur BF

The great romantic novelist Jane Austen, who was born on December 16th, 1775, lived and wrote in a world of quills and ink and letter writing. Her novels celebrate a time when people in love put their thoughts and emotions into words. Lots of words. Pages and pages of words. Relationships in the Age of Austen developed more slowly than today. There was time for reflection and expression. Lots of time. That was then

And now?

The first iPhone was introduced on January 9, 2007 – 190 years after Jane Austen’s death. An amazing technological marvel, the iPhone might also be the final death knell for romantic letter writing.

From what I’ve witnessed, texting is now the universally preferred method of communication between young people with a romantic interest in one another. In fact, they’d rather text than talk on the phone. I have two teenage daughters. Trust me. I’m not making this up.

So, when my wife Victoria and I were writing “The Vic & Paul Show” this year, we thought it would be fun to look back at the slower, more deliberate, literate and reflective expression of passion back in Jane Austen’s day – as opposed to today’s rapid-fire boy-girl TTYL texting.

“The Vic & Paul Show” was performed in June 2010 at Push Lounge in Woodland Hills with musical director Steve Rashid at the piano and directed by Shelly Goldstein.

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