Category archives for: Queer Doins

100 Percent Of Audience At Spamalot Performance There To Make Sure The Cast Recites The Words Perfectly

spamalot in ellsworthThere’s musical comedy, and then there’s “Spamalot.” The sublime lunacy of the Monty Python-inspired musical, written by Eric Idle and Neil Innes and based on the 1975 film “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” makes it perhaps the silliest musical of all time. That’s why directors Ken Stack and Mike Weinstein and musical director Scott Cleveland chose “Spamalot” as the first in-house production for The Grand theater in Ellsworth in more than five years. Stack, director of Acadia Repertory Theatre, and Weinstein, who directed last year’s Bangor Community Theatre production of “White Christmas,” knew that for The Grand’s first theatrical go-round in years they’d need to start off with a bang. “They wanted something that would be fun, that would excite a lot of people, and judging from early ticket sales that seems to be the case,” said Weinstein, a veteran of theater in eastern Maine. “I would also say that the vast majority of people who came out to audition were Monty Python fans. They understand the sensibility and the silliness of it.” Grand executive director Gail La Rosa Thompson made it a priority to bring musical theater back to The Grand stage. Weinstein eagerly jumped on board to direct, along with Stack, who designed the sets and offered initial artistic direction. (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

Striking Fairpoint Workers Unsure How To Do Nothing On Their Own Time

striking fairpoint workersThe parking lot at FairPoint’s call center on Riverside Drive in Portland was still empty at about 10 a.m. Friday. In the coming weeks and months, who might pull into those and other parking spaces at FairPoint offices around the state is one of the biggest questions ahead for about 800 of the company’s Maine workers who went on strike at midnight Friday. Throughout the morning, union officials said they did not see replacement workers heading to any of Maine’s FairPoint offices, but the company has said it has plans in place to continue service during the strike and previously lined up temporary employees. Randall Curtis, a picket captain in Bangor for the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, said he’s worried about new out-of-state hires crossing the picket line, especially since “this could last a day, a week or a month.” “The company has been saying all this time that they have a trained workforce in place. But if you call customer service, you’ll see that is not the case,” Curtis said. “Some don’t even know what company they’re working for. One said, ‘Thanks for calling Fairbanks,’ instead of FairPoint.” (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

University Of Southern Maine Faculty Member To Perform Brahms Third Racket

laura kargulSince 1989, Laura Kargul has directed the piano program at the University of Southern Maine School of Music and performed each fall in its Faculty Concert Series. I’ve attended at least half of these concerts, and I’ve already reserved my tickets for this Friday’s, which will mark Kargul’s 25th anniversary at USM. I am one of many who consider Kargul’s annual fall performance to be one of the high points of Maine’s cultural calendar. With a long history of bookings in the U.S., Europe and Asia, Kargul is known as a preeminent interpreter of 19th-century Romantic composers. For her 25th, she’s chosen a program of personal favorite works. Before intermission, she will perform several works by Robert Schumann and Johannes Brahms that are seldom heard today. The second half will feature the Sonata in B Minor by Franz Liszt, which has always been an audience favorite. (read more at The Forecaster)

Obama Takes Extreme Measures To Counter Ebola Threat, Like Refusing To Shake Hands On The Eighteenth Green Until It Blows Over

obama counters ebola threatWASHINGTON — Rising public anxiety about the Ebola virus has forced the White House to shift into crisis mode and cancel two days of planned political events as President Barack Obama strives to show he has control over stopping the spread of the deadly disease. Just three weeks ahead of critical midterm elections, Obama is facing increased pressure from Republican critics. They say he has been too slow to protect Americans, drawing parallels to what they have described as foot-dragging on dealing with the threat from Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. Democrats who are at risk of losing control of the Senate in the November elections are worried that public concerns over Obama’s management of Ebola could hurt them, too. Obama’s job approval ratings are at 39 percent, according to Reuters-Ipsos polls in the first week of October. “At a time in which his job approval rating is quite low and his party is suffering because of it, I think that this is just one more cut in what’s turned out to be the death by a thousand cuts for President Obama,” said Ross Baker, a political scientists at Rutgers. (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

Police Say Mexico Man Achieved The Rare 13th Step In The AA Program

wilfred merrillPARIS — Police said a 50-year-old Mexico man is charged with trying to strangle a speaker at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting Monday night. Wilfred T. Merrill of Mexico Avenue is charged with felony aggravated assault, refusal to submit to arrest, attempting to elude an officer, criminal speeding and operating after suspension, according to a complaint Mexico police filed with a court clerk.  Merrill was arrested on Route 2 in Rumford on Monday night, police Chief Roy Hodsdon said, and made an initial appearance in Rumford District Court on Tuesday afternoon. Hodsdon said Merrill was attending an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting in Mexico around 7:30 p.m. Monday when he assaulted an elderly man. After the two were separated, Merrill fled on foot. According to Hodsdon’s affidavit filed in Oxford County Superior Court in Paris, the victim told police he was speaking to the group when Merrill approached and tried to strangle him. There was no direct communication between the two before the assault, the affidavit said. (read more at the Lewiston Sun Journal)

Undecided Maine Voters Waiting For Debates For Guidance On Farting And Chewing Gum At The Same Time

Susan CollinsDAMARISCOTTA, Maine — Jim Stewart of Casco, who remembers standing in a ballot box in 2004 wrestling with whether to vote for John Kerry or George W. Bush for president, must be among the tiniest subset of a subset of the Maine electorate: He can’t decide between Republican Paul LePage and Democrat Mike Michaud for governor. There is little political common ground between Republicans and Democrats in Maine, especially when it comes to the gubernatorial race, but Stewart considers himself someone for whom party labels don’t matter. He’s hoping to hear something later this week that convinces him to vote for LePage or Michaud when the two appear together on stage — along with independent Eliot Cutler — for this year’s first televised gubernatorial debate. “I’m looking forward to the debates,” Stewart, a longtime unenrolled voter, said. “I want to hear what they have to say.” The first televised debate is scheduled for Wednesday evening. Two more are scheduled for next week, including an Oct. 20 event hosted by CBS 13 and the Bangor Daily News. (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

Terry Pegula Gives The NFL One Star On Yelp

terry and kim pegulaORCHARD PARK, New York — Terry and Kim Pegula now own the Buffalo Bills on paper. Tom Brady still owns them on the field. The New England Patriots quarterback passed for 361 yards and four touchdowns Sunday in a 37-22 win over Buffalo at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Brady is now 23-2 in his career against the Bills. “You’ve got to give credit to the whole offense,” Patriots coach Bill Belichick said. “We did a decent job of blocking up front, gave Tom enough time. The receivers made some good plays. Tom made some good reads and some good throws. It took everybody working together out there today. It’s not a one-man band.” Wide receiver Brandon LaFell caught two touchdown passes and Stephen Gostkowski kicked three field goals of more than 40 yards as the Patriots (4-2) claimed sole possession of first place in the AFC East. (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

Boxing Champ Just Glad To Be Fighting People Indoors For A Change

boxing in lewiston maineLEWISTON — Brandon Berry looked at the new belt around his waist. “It feels good,” Berry said. “It feels like it belongs here.” With his unanimous decision win over Eric Palmer at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee on Saturday night, Berry improved his professional boxing record to 8-0 and earned his first title, the Northeast Junior Welterweight title. Berry was the winner of the six-round fight on all three judges’ scorecards: 60-55, 60-54, and 59-55. Berry said a key to the fight was consistently landing his jab. “(Palmer) had his moments of course, but right from the opening bell I got that jab going,” Berry said. “Skeet (Ken “Skeet” Wyman, Berry’s trainer) has preached it for years, and now I’m a firm believer. That jab makes things happen.” (read more at the Kennebec Journal)

Local Woman Suffering From Hunger Really Shows The Gravity Of The Problem

hunger in maineCASCO — The person who worries about being hungry, who doesn’t always have enough food or enough money to pay for food during the entire month — that person could be your neighbor. It was a neighbor, a resident of Sweden, who stood before the microphone at a recent fundraiser for area food pantries and spoke about something many people would be ashamed to admit. Teri Johnson spoke about her experiences as one of Maine’s “working poor.” Those people who are employed, but struggling to pay for four weeks of food along with monthly bills. These households often go without food for awhile or worry about how to afford the next meal. “We are not food secure. We are over the income for food stamps. We are working our butts off, and we are still food poor,” she said. “Food is a necessity. Food is expensive,” Johnson began, adding, “Food is the need to cure hunger insecurity.” (read more at the Bridgton News)

Senate Candidate Bellows Releases Ad Showing Support From Stephen King For Universal Healthcare And Free Sematary Plots For Pets

Shenna BellowsPORTLAND, Maine — Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Shenna Bellows touted her support for a universal health care program and decried incumbent Republican Sen. Susan Collins’ votes to repeal the Affordable Care Act during a Thursday morning news conference in Portland. The event took place the same day the Bellows campaign took to the airwaves to play up one of its star supporters, native Mainer and bestselling author Stephen King. In the latest campaign television advertisement, King, a longtime donor to liberal candidates and causes, calls Bellows a “breath of fresh air” and said he has “never worked so hard or hoped so strongly for a change in leadership.” During Thursday’s news conference, Bellows sought to differentiate herself from Collins on the topic of health care, saying Maine’s senior senator — who has a wide lead in fundraising and polling — fell in line with her party in votes to repeal President Barack Obama’s signature Affordable Care Act. (read more at Bangor Daily News)

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