Toronto Monologue Slam: March 2014

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March  2nd marked another installment of Toronto’s monthly Monologue slam.  The event, which fittingly coincided with the 86th Annual Academy Awards, saw a number of talented performers competing for a one hundred dollar cash prize, the title of the months monologue slam champion, and the opportunity to defend their title in the following months slam.

 The competition was hosted by the very charming and charismatic Krista Morin, who has not only been a past judge, but has also competed  and won a number of past slams.  There was never a dull moment with Morin as the MC for the night, from comedy, to singing and even a few unexpected acrobatics, she definitely kept things entertaining between performances. MV5BMjUzMDA3NzYyM15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMTgxNjIxOA@@._V1_SX640_SY720_

Also of note were the three high profile judges on the panel.  Every month the slam features “an expert panel of the industries agents, teachers, directors, casting directors, producers and actors". This month featured actor Olunike Adeliyiik who is also co-producer, along with Andre Newell of, the monthly slam. Olunike who has bee on Flashpoint and Saw3D, had this to say about why the slam was created:
The Toronto Monologue slam was developed to give actors a chance to experiment and showcase their craft to friends, colleagues, and industry professionals, while generating professional relationships and opportunities that will enhance and potentially advance their careers… the event is about creating and environment for actors to practice and improve their performance techniques on a regular basis. Our goal is to create a space where actors can network and support each other, but most importantly learn.
Also on the Judging panel was actor Adrian Holmes whose been features in popular shows like Fringe, Smallville, Supernatural and even worked alongside Hollywood heavy weights such as Halle Berry in Golden Globe nominated “Frankie and Alice” and most recently “Elysium” with actor Matt Damon.

 

Actor, director, and teacher Stephen Parker was the third and final judge on the panel. Steven Parker has an extensive body of work that covers theatre, film, and television, including Murdoch Mysteries, Stargate - SG1, the Lion in the Streets, and Julius Caesar. He is also the instructor and studio manager Lyric East.

The set up is simple, up and coming talent perform an interesting and moving piece that they have chosen and prepared in front of the very capable panel of judges and in an intimate and supportive environment and after the judges have provided all the contestants with important and notes, feedback, encouragements, opinions, and experience, the three best performers are chosen to move on to the “remix round" where they pick blindly from an array of themes which they then have to incorporate into the piece they just performed.  With no time to prepare for the second round the actors are thrown onto the stage nearly unprepared and forced to make “choices” on the spot.

Needles to say it makes for some very interesting round two performances. Just to give you an idea of what to expect this months slam had actor Dan Fox performing his Shakespearean piece as if he were a cracked out Rob Ford giving an Oscar performance speech. Dan spared nothing in his final performance and had the audience buckling with laughter, who knew Shakespeare could be so electrifying in patois.  But it was the talented Rachel Cairns who stole the show.  The young actress performed a piece about an angsty and feisty actress working a job as shoe shiner, which she wrote herself, and when asked to perform the piece as a crack addict on their death bed, it was clear to see that her “actor instincts” were on fire as she made impressive choice after choice, keeping the audience in boisterous laughter and shear amazement.  Its no wonder that the Rachel took home the title as this months Toronto Monologue slam champion and the One hundred dollar cash prize.  I am looking forward to seeing her defend her title next month against a new crop of talent and repeat competitors.

 

If you’re a young talented individual in the GTA area looking for an opportunity to practice a piece for an audition, improve your craft, meet industry professionals, get some unprecedented feedback on your performance technique, or just have some fun on an inviting stage, I encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity.  There are very few opportunities like this anywhere.  Its like a mini acting class with some of the most talented professional in the industry today. The one hundred dollar prize is really just the proverbial cherry on the already tantalizing proverbial cake. Or just sit in the audience and enjoy the show, either way your in for an eventful experience.  For more in formation on the next Toronto Monologue Slam (TMS) visit www.toslam.com.  See you at the next slam and happy slamming.

 

In and Out
Babs.