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    Via BuzzFeed

    Whale-related News From Santa Barbara: One Man Stage Version Of Moby Dick And Environmental Group Sues Feds For Not Protecting Blue Whales

    Actor Conor Lovett and his director wife, Judy Hegerty Lovett, are bringing their one-man-play version of Moby Dick to Ventura’s Rubicon Theater next week. The Lovett pair are known for a producing a series of strong, minimalist one man shows in recent years, and Moby Dick is no exception. An rave-ish review in the Irish Times says of Conor Lovett, “He holds us spellbound as he catches the humour as well as the wisdom of Ishmael’s commentary, his pauses for thought, for memory, for finding the right word, reminding us that the story of this noble but melancholy ship, its crew, its quarry and its captain with the crucifixion in his face, is a story told by a man of honour and of mercy.”

    Also, the Santa Barbara-based Environmental Defense Center has notified the National Marine Fisheries Service that it will sue the agency for failing to implement a plan approved 11 YEARS AGO that was designed to help blue whale populations recover.

    Even though modern whaling was banned in 1966, and even though the blue whale was placed on the endangered species list in 1973, the largest creature ever to live on the planet earth still face many hazards; fishing gear, toxic waste and trash, and large ships. And while Santa Barbara channel is one of the best places in the world to see a blue whale, it’s also one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world, making it a likely place for blue whales to get hit by ships. The NMFS recovery plan would address many of these hazards.

    Whale-related Play In Calgary, Alberta Opens To Unimaginative Reviews (Hint: It’s A “Whale Of A Tale”)

    I searched and searched for pictures…and I finally found pictures.

    Justin Michael Carriere as Hector and Shawna Burnett as Kira in The Invention of Music, a new comedy by Clem Martini on the TransCanada Stage at Lunchbox Theatre, March 30 – April 25, 2009. Photograph by Benjamin Laird Arts and Photo.

    Justin Michael Carriere as Hector and Shawna Burnett as Kira in "The Invention of Music", a new comedy by Clem Martini on the TransCanada Stage at Lunchbox Theatre, March 30 – April 25, 2009. Photograph by Benjamin Laird Arts and Photo.


    So…it appears that the Lunchbox Theater in Calgary, Alberta, CA specializes exclusively in one act plays. This, according to their web sheet:

    A one-act play is a short play that takes place in one act consisting of one or more scenes. The “one-act” is often referred to as the “short story” of plays because the story is told in a concise and creatively efficient manner. One-act plays, as with full length plays, come in all genres: comedies, dramas and musicals. At Lunchbox Theatre we program mainly comedies and musicals as we provide a noon-time oasis for our busy audience members.

    First of all, let’s deconstruct Lunchbox Theater’s definition of one act play:

    A one-act play is a short play that takes place in one act…

    Seriously, God bless community theater. Especially when it’s community lunch hour theater. And especially when their current play is about whales! “The Invention Of Music” runs thru 4/25.
    First of all, the play is written by a dude named Clem Martini. It’s impossible to determine which name is better, his first or his last. And despite being a novelist, playwright, and university prof, Clem Martini does not appear to have his own wikipedia entry.

    Clem Martini, struggling to support the weight of the genius thats trapped in his head.

    Clem Martini, struggling to support the weight of the genius that's trapped in his head.


    “The Invention of Music” is supposedly a comedy about whales in rehab. There’s Frank, the finback, with a radio-receiver harpoon in his head.
    Son, youve got a harpoon in your head. (Photograph by Benjamin Laird Arts and Photo)

    Son, you've got a harpoon in your head. (Photograph by Benjamin Laird Arts and Photo)


    There’s Bill The Blue Whale, self-conscious about his weight.
    Hes fat, but hes also big boned (Photograph by Benjamin Laird Arts and Photo)

    He's fat, but he's also big boned (Photograph by Benjamin Laird Arts and Photo)


    There’s Hector, the happy humpback.
    Ive mostly only known Mexican guys named Hector (Photograph by Benjamin Laird Arts and Photo)

    I've mostly only known Mexican guys named Hector (Photograph by Benjamin Laird Arts and Photo)


    And there’s Kira, a female Orca, played by Shawna Burnett…whose range is demonstrated in these stills.






    Kira is in love with Hector.

    Louis B. Hobson, from SunMedia.ca, gives the 2.5 out of five stars. He calls the costume design “bargain basement,” but refrains from using the phrase “whale of a tale” (in the review, but not in the PREview).

    Bob Clark, of the Calgary Herald, gives it a 4 out of five, and calls it “imaginative, funny, and wise.” He makes reference to there being some whales “of a tale.”

    So the reviews round out to a 3.25 out of 5. I’m going to check the last minute deals at Travelocity.com now.

    Moby Dick, The Musical! April 22-25 At The Worthing Pavillion Theater

    Or should I say “theatre?”

    Worthing, according to google maps, is about 61 miles south of London in West Sussex. Here’s a promotional still:

    Here’s the 411:

    The girls of St. Goldley’s School are in trouble! Money for the school has run out and the place will have to close. The resourceful girls and their unflappable headmistress come up with a plan to keep the school afloat – a musical version of Moby Dick featuring the headmistress as Captain Ahab.

    Sounds saucy.

    Get your tickets here.

    Opera Version Of Moby Dick Set To Premiere In Dallas, Texas

    When I think “Moby Dick,” I think opera, and when I think opera, I think Texas. So I wasn’t surprised at all to read that an operatic version of the greatest book ever written would premiere this season in Dallas, Texas. The opera is composed by Jake Heggie with librettist Gene Scheer. Tenor Ben Heppner will star as Ahab.

    There have actually been other stage performances of Moby Dick: