Sunday, February 25, 2007

jeanette winterson and the tree of meaning

Busy busy blog day here at the Lab - after a bit of a dry spell too.

Well...the genius has struck again.

Please please read this amazing article written by Jeanette Winterson for the Times Book Review,about a book called The Tree of Meaning by Robert Bringhurst. The book is about the necessity of story, it's relevance to culture and the danger culture is in; and the article talks about the importance of art and how capitalism INTERRUPTS our lives constantly. The book sounds great - the article is brilliant.

Wow, is she ever smart.

Here's the article e-ddress -
Please read it. It's good.

The tree image was found at -

new Speak coming up

The next speak is Monday, March 5th at It's Not a Deli on Queen West. Last time we had a lovely little blast in the raging snowstorm - a bunch of folks showed up, troopers that they are and we had a really good time.
The fabulous line up this installment consists of - Evalyn Parry, Jeffrey Canton and Marianne Apostolides!

SPEAK at It's Not A Deli
986 Queen Street West (at Ossington)
Time: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Admission: $5 to $10


Dear everyone -

As you may know, the audio division of the Lab - THE INFLAMMABLES - will be provoking nostalgia and cluppering their way through a few songs at the most marvelous upcoming RED - A Night of Live Performance. Taking place at Lula Lounge, located at 1585 Dundas St. W. between Brock and Dufferin, the evening of WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 28th - doors open at 7pm things get rolling at 8pm $12 at the door.

Hopefully, you already know that this RED is a special FUNDRAISING Night of Live Performance - doing it's best to raise a little cashola for the upcoming RED FESTIVAL, also known as Lisa is a Little Crazy. The Festival will feature 120 artists from all over the place, over 4 days. Yikes.

THE INFLAMMABLES are a loose and kooky wangle of musicians and non-musicians who delight in making music and non-music and good times. The audio division of Cardboard heart Imagination Laboratory, they experiment with musical storytelling, time-travel using song and toy instruments, and occasionally lip-syncing their way into your hearts. This time around THE INFLAMMABLES are Joel Brubacher, Lisa DiLiberto, and noah kenneally - and always the incredible Andrea Peneycad, with us in spirit.


flaming ukulele INFLAMMABLES image made by nk at the Lab

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

an exhibit of glimpses


For those of you in Toronto - the Lab has an exhibit of toy theatres from the wildly successful ongoing community-engaged project 'Glimpses of EXTRAORDINARY Lives' up at Alternative Grounds, a fair trade coffee shop on Roncesvalles.
If you're in town, wander on by and say hi to the fantastic team of folks behind the counter, and then check out the show on the back walls. The Lab is sharing the galleryspace for the month of February with the talented Elisha MacMillan - a cumulative and collaborative show.
Go take a gander and get caffeinated, or i recommend the Soy Rooibos Chai Latte!

Alternative Grounds can be found at
333 Roncesvalles Ave. (south of Howard Park)
easy to get to (if you're in Toronto) by taking the 504 streetcar from Dundas west Station


photo by Melanie Gordon, toy theatre by nk and Leah Houston at the Lab

Monday, February 5, 2007

A lot of things in the air

Hey all, if there are any -

Working working working, and the sun rises and sets and our lives carry on and the lives of others swirl around us and intertwine and launch off into new directions...i am overwhelmed by the constantness of everything, by the extreme juggling act my daily living has become.

I'm learning how to co-ordinate larger projects with Jumblies Theatre these days - doing my best to learn how to bring people together at the right times and help all involved towards a common, not-yet-visible goal - and at the same time trying to forge time to have my own small secret life on the interior. How to split my conciousness between these things, the large many-directioned collective and the sort-of small and personal quiet? A question, and another question --- these days it's always asking questions.

Like, how come we so easily disregard our old people?
And, does recycling really happen?
And, if so many of our stories follow along similar twists and turns, why is it so hard to listen to each other?


This just in from one of the wellsprings of inspiration in my life, Jeanette Winterson -

"For the first time ever, I have momentarily given way to despair. I look at my geo-thermal heating system, and my eco-bulbs, and my recycling, and my half a bag of rubbish per week, and all the trees and hedging I’ve planted – not just now but over the years, and I feel like I’ve done nothing – or rather the something that I have done is nothing.

But I know I can’t think like that. No matter how little, no matter how pointless it seems it has to be done, because as well as the direct impact, there is something harder to quantify, which is a spirit of change. And that only happens when more and more of us believe that our efforts are worth the effort.

If one more person says to me ‘Ah but China… meaning so what’s the point of anything we do, I will stuff their smug, knowing despondent face in a bucket of low-fat yoghurt.

HOW WE LIVE MAKES A DIFFERENCE. If we fall victim to the ideology of apathy we go straight down into that Dante circle of Hell reserved for those ‘who wilfully live in sadness.’ The sad shake of the head, the worldly-wise shrug of the shoulders, what can we do? Answer – everything we can do, big and small, and bring up the kids to do better. There might still be time. I believe in second chances and miracles, whatever the weather, whatever the science. Oh God, give it a go. Who is to say for sure that it’s too late?"

Go see her website if you like -

I must keep on, juggling like crazy and curving inward around that small quiet dark i keep lit by my little candle, both at the same time - and continue believing how we live makes a difference, in the face of it all.

Is that my revolution now?
Maybe, and keeping asking questions.