Tag Archives: Paul Barrosse

3 Days Until “Vic & Paul & Dana’s Post-Pandemic Revue!”

Go to http://www.studio5.dance to procure your tickets to the funniest year-end party of this malevolent, maddening year. We’ll be having great fun for 5 nights in Evanston — and we hope you’ll join us! The cast is Covid-free, socially-distanced — and ready to entertain as if they wanted to erase all the bulls*it of the past 20-something months! (And they certainly do!)

See you all at Studio5. It’s going to be an event to remember.

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Practical Comedy for the Holidays!

It’s time again for classic improvisational sketch comedy! Time to get out of the house and gather in a comfortable cabaret with fellow human beings for a memorable evening of laughter, music, and adult beverages.

The Practical Theatre returns to the Chicago area with the latest in a series of hit holiday shows, Vic & Paul & Dana’s Post-Pandemic Revue, starring writer-actors Victoria ZielinskiDana Olsen, and PTC co-founder, Paul Barrosse.

Photo by Bradford Rogne Photography

Great, groovy music is provided by PTC musical director and Studio5 impresario Steve Rashid and his Studio5 All-Stars: Rockin’ Ronny Crawford on drums, Jim Cox on bass, and Don Stiernberg on every stringed instrument known to man. 

Vic & Paul & Dana’s Post-Pandemic Revue is a smart comedy cocktail, mixing sex, music, variety and vaudeville — while stirring in everything from marriage to quarantine to cancel culture, conspiracy, climate change, Olympian gods, William Shakespeare, Rod McKuen, Looney Tunes — and the fragility of major appliances. It’s an intoxicating comic combination!

There’s no better place to enjoy a comedy revue with your favorite friends than Evanston’s own Studio5, which has a cash bar, comfortable, socially distanced seating, state of the art sound and lights, and acres of free parking.

PROOF OF VACCINE REQUIRED: All Studio5 attendees will be required to show an ID and proof of a COVID vaccine. Photos of CDC cards are acceptable provided they are legible. Studio5 will be following local masking guidance at the time of performances. Tickets are non-refundable and non-exchangeable. Please be certain you can and are willing to comply with our policies prior to making your purchase.

Seating is intentionally limited to accommodate social distancing.

LOCATION

Studio5 Performing Arts Center, 60202

https://www.tickettailor.com/events/studio5performingartscenter

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Join the Practical Theatre Fun at Studio5 in Evanston!

Opening night is just 32 days away. Tickets on sale now!

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Studio5 in Evanston is the Place to be this Holiday Season!

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November 17, 2021 · 8:08 pm

Just 3 More Weeks to go “Into the Mist”!

Those wacky veteran vaudevillians, Morty & Mitzi, will be joining their fellow performers from 1927 for the next three Fridays, 4/16, 4/23, 4/30, before our online interactive virtual playground “Into the Mist” takes a pause.

That doesn’t mean the end of “Into the Mist”. After this pause, our brilliant, inventive friends at Studio5 in Evanston, Illinois will work out a new chapter of this bold new entertainment vehicle. After all, the show has garnered a lot of great press and audiences have responded. Check out this article that just came out on the home page of Downbeat Magazine — the premiere national jazz magazine since 1934! 

So, you’ve got three last chances to see what the buzz has been all about. Tickets for all three shows are now available on the intothemist.net site. 

Group sales incentives are now available, so if you or someone you know is part of a group of any kind (families, friends, coworkers) they'll get a 20% discount if they purchase 10 or more tickets. Anyone interested in a group ticket purchase of 10 or more should email Lauren at info@intothemist.net.

Get yourself “Into the Mist”. Morty & Mitzi will be waiting for you!

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The Practical Theatre Company Part 5: Brigadoon Returns!

sc0004b1d3When I first wrote the history of The Practical Theatre for this blog, I finished by saying, “The Practical Theatre in Chicago in the 1980’s — that was Brigadoon: a magical place that existed for a brief time and vanished. And I got the girl.”

sc0004fc38-bThat was true. I did get the girl. And because I emerged from that life-changing experience with Victoria Zielinski as my wife and collaborator, the Practical Theatre was ultimately due for a renaissance.

Alas, the PTC revival would take more than two decades.

The PTC had to wait as Vic and I raised our three wonderful daughters: Maura, Emilia and Eva. But by 2010, the year of our 20th wedding anniversary, with our girls old enough to spare their parents for a few hours a day — Vic and I began to consider whether we were still comedians who had something to say.

We decided it was time to bring the Practical Theatre back. Thus was born “The Vic & Paul Show.”

Vic & Paul 2Inspired by the classic work of Mike Nichols and Elaine May, Vic and I began improvising extended comic scenes in our kitchen, including…

  • A dull, dispirited married couple that die in a car wreck and wind up stranded in Limbo.
  • A sad sack single guy from Cleveland trying to pick up a Chicago cougar in a hotel lounge.
  • A frontier bartender serving a whiskey tasting to a dusty California cowpoke.

There were times when our improvisations were so lively, so passionate, and so LOUD – that our girls would rush downstairs to see if we were okay. Were we really fighting? Arguing? Drunk?

They’d never seen us performing comedy sketches.

We polished our routines, edited our scripts, and wrote some songs. A Practical Theatre revue had to include music. That meant involving our long-time music director, Steve Rashid. We booked a series of shows in a tiny local bar called Push Lounge in Woodland Hills, California.

img_0040-2That leap of faith launched a tour that took “The Vic & Paul Show” to Chicago’s Prop Theatre and Mayne Stage in Rogers Park, to Cleveland’s 14thStreet Theatre — and iO West in Hollywood.

After that, we renewed a collaboration with our fellow Northwestern graduate and Mee-Ow Show alum, Dana Olsen, starting with Mr. Olsen’s Neighborhood at The Wilmette Theatre in 2012 — followed by “Mr. Olsen’s New Year’s Rockin’ Neighborhood” at 27 Live in 2013.

vpd-poster-bThen, Vic and Dana and I spent a solid year writing new material for “The Vic & Paul & Dana Show.” We were delighted that Steve Rashid and Rockin’ Ronny Crawford joined us for a Hollywood run at iO West in November 2015.

That show in LA revived a PTC comedy tradition that launched North Shore runs of “Mr. Olsen’s Holiday Party” in 2016, “Mr. Olsen’s Champagne Celebration” the following year and “PTC Radio Theatre On The Air” in 2018 – all staged at Bea and Steve Rashid’s fabulous Studio5 theatre in Evanston.

The Practical Theatre is alive and well at Studio5.

The PTC’s “Big Holiday Bag O’ Fun!” is the latest comedic chapter in a very funny history.

New Poster #8“Big Holiday Bag O’ Fun!” is a compendium of The Practical Theatre’s funniest sketches, dating from our “Mee-Ow Show” days at Northwestern University to “Bag O’ Fun” – our first improvisational comedy revue staged in the summer of 1980 at Evanston’s Noyes Cultural Arts Center – through “The Vic & Paul & Dana Show”.

Plus a few new bits written right up to opening night.

Brigadoon is back.

See you at Studio5!

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Two Weeks from a Big Bag O’ Fun in Chicago (or Evanston, to be exact.)

Screen Shot 2019-12-16 at 10.07.03 PMIf you haven’t gotten your tickets yet for The Practical Theatre Company’s Big Holiday Bag O’ Fun at Studio5 in Evanston, Illinois — now’s the time!

Tickets are going fast — so don’t delay.

It’s going to be the best party of the year. After an arduous political and social slog like we’ve all experienced in the past 12 months — we can all use a big, blow-out party with great music,  free-spirited laughs, and a great big, bag o’ fun!

Get your tickets now at: http://www.studio5dance/calendar

New Poster #8

 

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Holiday Fun Comes to Evanston: Practical Radio Theatre On The Air!

Radio Show Poster #2The Practical Theatre is coming back to Chicago’s North Shore with a classic radio show featuring grown-up comedy and great live music! Plus adult beverages! Join the fun as the PTC records two shows at Studio5 Performing Arts Center in Evanston for later broadcast on Chicago’s premier jazz station WDCB 90.9 FM.

VPD_-0009_High_ResFollowing their smash holiday engagements the past two years at Studio5, writer-performers Victoria Zielinski, Paul Barrosse and Dana Olsen return with Practical Radio Theatre on the Air, featuring music by Steve Rashid and his Studio5 All-Stars, with special appearances by Giggle Break’s Daniel Rashid and recording artist Eva B. Ross.

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Eva B. Ross

Practical Radio Theatre on the Air is a classic radio show format filled with high spirits, satire and song.Join the live audience and be an integral part of the show, sipping a smart cocktail in the comfort of the North Shore’s most intimate performance venue. Studio5 Performing Arts Center, located at Dempster and Dodge in Evanston, features comfy seating, great sight lines, state of the art sound and lights — and acres of free parking!

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Daniel Rashid

It’s another holiday happening to remember!

There are just 2 shows: Friday December 28 and Saturday the 29th. Tickets are on sale at Brown Paper Tickets.

There will be a cash bar for both shows. Doors open for cocktails at 7:30. Showtime is 8:00.

Each night’s performance begins with an opening set of songs by Eva B. Ross before the radio show gets underway — but the fun begins as soon as you get there!Studio5+Seats+Eva

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Your hosts at Studio5: Impresarios Bea & Steve Rashid

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A Glorious Hike in Yellowstone Park

IMG_5707My intrepid and indomitable wife Victoria and I traveled to Yellowstone National Park in August of 2017 (just before the total eclipse) and hit the many wonderful trails with gusto.IMG_5449

We enjoyed our walks through the various geyser basins – making sure to get up at the crack of dawn and arrive at each of these phenomenal landscapes early in the morning.

In the lonely morning quiet, we could appreciate the eerie, awesome geothermal sights and sounds — before the inevitable onslaught of loud, excited tourists.

We also loved our hikes in the fabulous areas beyond the amazing geyser basins – especially the day we hiked the south rim of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River.

We expected to experience one particular hike – but fate intervened – and we had to embark upon another. But we were, delightfully, not disappointed.

Here’s our account of the hike we were able to take that day…

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My PyeongChang Diary (Part 7)

Those who know me know that I like meat. I’m an unrepentant carnivore.

26So, naturally, I have spent much of the scant recreational time I have during the Olympic Games in search of the best Korean barbeque available in the PyeongChang area.

Living in Los Angeles, I’m acquainted with the tradition of Korean barbeque – but I figured that, being in the motherland, I could treat myself to the very best. My first two attempts at local Korean BBQ dining were good – but neither was a meat-eater’s home run.

1aAnd then, last night, I found — and enjoyed — Korean BBQ heaven.

Our cameraman Corey found the place. It was a 20-minute cab ride from our Phoenix Park hotel – but we were hungry for adventure (and barbequed beef) so we were down for the excursion.

What follows is a pictorial progression through a beef lover’s Korean BBQ pilgrimage. Vegan’s need not apply…

2a

This is the downstairs dining area. You’ll note that there are only Koreans here at this point in the evening. That is absolutely a good sign. We’ve come to the right place.

5This night was Korean Lunar New Year. And the South Koreans were enjoying one of their biggest annual holidays. (See Vietnam’s Tet.) Does the Tet Offensive ring a bell?

We didn’t realize it when we set out, but the restaurant would get very, very busy — and we would have to wait a while to be seated, unlike these folks who shared a special Asian room, with no chairs.

(No shoes, please.)

After dinner, we’d be unable to get a cab ride home because of the busy holiday, but that’s another matter.

The whole evening took 5 hours. But, all in all, it was well worth it!

2

The first step in traditional Korean Barbecue is to visit the butcher and buy your cuts of meat.

8

This woman knows her meat. She explained that the steer we’d be eating was raised organically, with no hormones, grass fed — and A #1. She was not bullshitting.

We bought our beef BEFORE we cooked it. That’s the way it goes. You buy your meat first, then you get seated — and your drinks and everything else are billed later. Meat is Job #1.

With cameraman Corey in the lead, we hauled out cuts of beef to the upstairs dining room after a 20-minute wait. We were famished — but we anticipated beefy, tasty, spicy joy in our near future.

11

The upstairs dining room. It’s getting busy. The meat is about to get cooking…

12

Unlike our cold, steel and glass hotel in Phoenix Park, this Korean BBQ place features warm wood and delightful crystal chandeliers — which we would later learn are from the United States!

13

Seated across the table from me are my AP, Agatha, and my EP, David. We’re all hungry.

15

First come the condiments: onions, garlic, chili paste, peppers, sea salt & other culinary joys.

16

Next, they fire up the tabletop grill. The main meat-lovers event is about to go down…

24a

As the meat grills, you combine ingredients into your bowl — in my case, chili paste, peppers, onions and garlic — so you can plunge your beef bits deep into this spicy heaven.

Next, Corey pulls down the exhaust fan. Otherwise, we’ll all be asphyxiated….

17

Our waiter provides some assistance. Everyone is helpful. They all want us to have a great time.

20

As our first beef course sears on the grill, our crew poses for a pre-meal photo. We’ve all been working hard — and we’re eager for a great meal. Luckily, David & Corey are Korean BBQ experts.

Corey took over as grillmaster. For those of you who know me from Greek Easter — you can appreciate how much I respect Corey’s Korean BBQ chops!

23

Each cut of beef was better than the next — and the last course was the best of all…

Corey was far too modest. His grilling of that last fabulous cut of beef was superb. But our meal was not yet complete. Corey had another great idea…

28

At Corey’s suggestion we ordered this. Somehow, all of this tasty goodness boiled down into an incredible, sweet beef and veggie soup.

27

And finally, here’s our host. Jean went to college and spent a lot of time in Los Angeles (as have a lot of educated South Koreans we’re met). She returned to South Korea a year ago  and started running this restaurant — recognized on Trip Advisor as the best in PyeongChang.

I’m awarding her an Winter Olympic Gold Medal for the Best Korean BBQ.

All hail, Jean!

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