if">(Posted March 23)
Minor Peewee RepB
Gloucester Blackhawks advance to Minor Peewee RepB final

Heading into the ODMHL's Minor Peewee RepB playoffs, the Gloucester Blackhawks mission was to win six games. So far they've won four and are only two more wins away from adding the ODMHL championship to the regular season crown they already have in the trophy case. See story

(Posted March 8)
Major Peewee RepB
Orleans Blues advance to Major Peewee final after knocking off top seed Gloucester Blackhawks

The Orleans Blues are heading to the Major Peewee RepB final after beating the Gloucester Blackhawks 1-0 on Thursday to win their first to four points semi-final series four points to two. See story

(Posted March 7)
Gloucester Rangers advance to Major Peewee 'AA' final
The Major Peewee 'AA' Gloucester Rangers have advanced to the finals of the Ottawa and District Minor Hockey Association (ODMHA) championships for the second year in a row after making short work of the Cumberland Barons in the semi-finals. See story

(Posted Feb. 19)
Gloucester Blackhawks add three more RepB regular season banners to their collection
The Gloucester Blackhawks clinched three more regular season RepB championships during the past week, adding the Peewee, Minor Peewee and Major Bantam banners to the Minor Atom East Division title they won last weekend. See story


(Updated daily)

Minor Hockey Scoreboard,
Atom, Peewee, Bantam, Midget

ODMHA Playoffs

Major Atom AA

(1)Rideau St. Lawrence 5 (8)Kanata 1
(1)Rideau St. Lawrence 4 (8)Kanata 2
(1) Tuesday, Dec. 309


Updated March 18

Orléans Ward
Bob Monette

Updated June 1

This week:
Rob Jellett

Orléans Ward
Bob Monette




(Posted 8:30 a.m., May 28)

OYP's 'Wizard of Oz' an all ages extravaganza
By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Dorothy and her friends prepare to enter the Emerald City during OYP's presentation of 'The Wizard of Oz' on this week at the Orléans Theatre on Centrum Blvd. Fred Sherwin/Photo

As movies go, The Wizard of Oz is one of those endearing classics that has managed to transcend generations.

Many a family has spent an evening curled up on the couch together to watch Dorothy, Toto, the Tinman, the Scarecrow and the Cowardly Lion follow the yellow brick road to Emerald City in search of the great and all powerful Oz.

But very few people have ever seen the story told on stage, which is too bad because The Wizard of Oz is suited perfectly for the theatre and even more so musical theatre as evident by the current OYP production being staged at the Orléans Theatre on Centrum Boulevard.

The OYP version stays true to the original story save for a few tweaks such as the Tinman being a Tinwoman, ditto the great and powerful Oz. So indelible is the impression the original 1939 movie leaves in one's psyche, several of the cast members during the Friday night performance suffered momentary gender confusion.

At one point, Jennifer Blodgett, who plays the Tinwoman, mistakenly refers to herself as the Tinman and then quickly corrects herself with Tinwoman and Tinperson.

Personally, I found the gender twists refreshing, especially the decision to cast the Wizard of Oz as a woman.

Another element that the younger members of the audience got a kick out of was the bunch of yellow squares and red tissue paper poppies that were handed out as everyone took their seats.

As the play proceeded, the audience members were encouraged to wave the yellow squares to symbolize the yellow brick road, while the tissue paper poppies were held aloft as Dorothy and her friends neared the Emerald City.

Each audience member was also handed a lyric sheet with an invitation to sing along to some of the songs which proved to be very popular.

Since most people are all too familiar with the story, I won't get into the plot except to say that the production is easy to follow along even for the youngest of audience members. As for the performance itself, the OYP gang did a bang up job. Overall their allocution was superb. Every bit of dialogue was audible even at the back of the house and the songs could easily be heard as well.

As for some of the individual performances, Laurel Chester made a perfect Wicked Witch of the West. She was mean and nasty and utterly despicable. From the moment she stepped on the stage you were hoping she would come to no good. James Perry was also superb as the Scarecrow. He seemed like a natural on the stage and was one of the strongest singers in the cast.

Jennifer Blodgett as the Tinwoman and Aileen Donati as the Cowardly Lion were also both quite good. The Cowardly Lion is my favourite character in "the Wizard" and Donati fit the role to a tee.

But my choice for future star in the making goes to Kayla Carman who played Dorothy. Carman's performance was absolutely outstanding. It seemed like she was made for the role. I especially loved the line when she's asked early on in the play whether she's a good witch or a bad witch and she responds, "I'm not a witch at all. I'm Dorothy Gale from Kansas."

Her stage presence blew me away and that was before she sang her first number. She had complete command of both the stage and the audience and appeared as though she'd played the role at least a dozen times before.

The rest of the cast were excellent as well including Katie Webster, who played the Glinda the good witch and Celia Hogan who played Toto. The chorus consisted of Caylin Finkelman, Megan Moffat, Keri Poupore and Victoria Sawyer.

Kudos also to director Clare Giuliani, stage manager Gabbie Virr, accompanist Patricia Messier and technical wiz Andrew Moore who came up with all the lighting effects and sound.

The Wizard of Oz ends today with two more performances at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. So if you want to catch one of the shows just follow the yellow brick road to the Orléans Theatre at 255 Centrum Blvd. Tickets are just $8 per person and they're available at the door.

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)


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Bob Monette

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