chewdiasm the event


Rialto Theatre

Sunday May 5, 2019

I have been posting about this evening periodically all week, so if you missed it you only have yourself to blame. As anticipated it was a hilarious evening viewing the full length documentary that has already entertained audiences internationally and won awards in the process. Having been filmed in, as well as being about Montreal, it was long awaited and attended by a capacity crowd that filled not only the complete main floor but also the balcony of this iconic theatre.

YidLife Crisis won the 2017 IAWTV Award for Best Non-English Series and has been nominated for 4 Canadian Screen Awards.

Jamie Elman and Eli Batalion the creators of Yidlife Crisis are no “new kids on the block” they are seasoned entertainers who have been producing and starring in this Jewish web series since 2014.

Eli Batalion is a writer, producer, actor, and composer for film, tv, and stage. He holds a B.A. in Liberal Arts from Brown University, and an M.B.A. from Ecole Des Hautes Etudes Commerciales in Montreal, QC.

Jamie Elman, a native Montrealer, is a graduate of Mc Gill University and has appeared in many of television’s most acclaimed series, which includes one of my favourites, Curb Your Enthusiasm. He has also starred in a number of feature films since 2013 and done extensive voice work for video games and animated films including the blockbuster, Frozen. He is also an accomplished blues and jazz pianist and singer.

The duo is fun to watch because they come across as natural and unpretentious. Their comment, “We are probably related to most of the audience” is strangely possible. The team involved in the making of this film are to be congratulated.

Everything about this evening was done in style. The biggest problem I have experienced with events at the Rialto was where to park. The planners arranged to have a fleet of drivers for valet parking. The next biggest problem I had foreseen was that food was going to be served. I envisioned a buffet style meal and the need to get out of the way of the stampede to the buffet. The planners had prepared box lunches that we picked up on our way in. Each box contained a smoked meat sandwich, cole slaw, a karnatzel, and a potato knlsh. What about vegetarians? Different boxes with appropriate food.

The film was an interesting documentary on the history of Montreal, the landmarks, the restaurants, the changing demographics and the adjustment to life in the “new world” for immigrants arriving here at the turn of the century with no knowledge of either of the two spoken languages.

The show closed with the duo performing their own arrangement of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah and the Beatles’ Hey Jude.

If you weren’t there have no fear. My blog will post all future dates for showings of Chewdiasm.  For the best info on concerts, movies, or plays always look at

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Join Jamie Elman & Eli Batalion – aka Montreal’s homegrown “YidLife Crisis” – for a celebratory night of food, history and shtick at the highly anticipated PREMIERE of their hit documentary film “CHEWDAISM: A Taste of Montreal.”

Telling the story of the last 100 years of Jewish Montreal through six meals in one carbohydrational day, CHEWDAISM has already played over 20 international fests in a matter of months. Finally, it’s the HOMECOMING for the hometown crowd, and the only place where the people and the food in the documentary will be presented live…in the FLEISH!

There will be special guests, live MUSIC and, you guessed it, FOOD! (Admission comes with a deli-ish meal and dessert)

Tickets by Eventbrite

  • Regular (in Advance)Regular admission, including meal + dessert Sales end on May 4 at 11:59 PM C$25.00
  • Student (in Advance) C$18.00 Special discounted student price. Student ID must be presented at box office on the night. Sales end on May 4 at 11:59 PM


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Ripped Off By The Oil Companies

Every day the price of gas goes up regardless of any factors. The government (which is supposed to protect us) doesn’t care because the higher the price the more tax collected for them. To most people a car is not a luxury, it is essential so that they can get back and forth from work. Any goods that we purchase are shipped by truck to the retailers so the price of merchandise must be raised to compensate. With Summer coming the petroleum industry is gearing up to rape us at the pump. Write to your member of parliament and tell them that enough is enough.

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Bad Love CD Launch

Dawn Tyler Watson

With the Ben Racine Band

Petit Café Campus

April 11, 2019

Tonight was magical as Dawn Tyler Watson hit the stage backed up by Ben Racine and his band. She not only launched the new album but also did songs from every genre from Gospel to blues, ballads, R&B, Rock and everything in between. She just keeps on getting better and better every time I see her. The energy is incredible as she starts off in high gear and just keeps on building like the Energizer rabbit. She makes hard work look like fun.

I have been a fan of Dawn Tyler Watson from the first time I saw her perform at a music festival on the West Island sometime in the 1990’s. I have watched her perform on the main stage at the Montreal Jazz Festival in front of 100 000 fans. I have seen her in a small intimate bar on St. Denis accompanied only by a pianist and she constantly delivers. Tonight she owned the stage. Her vocals were superb and her stage presence, as always, commands attention. She did a 70 minute opening set and followed up, after an intermission, with a 60 minute set. She came back on stage after the break by herself and performed one Gospel number A capella before bringing the band back on and doing a duet with Ben on guitar and vocals.

As always the room was full of friends aka fans some of whom came from New York and Vermont. It reminded me of another era more than fifty years ago when another entertainer could sell out a 3000 seat concert hall using only word of mouth to promote the event. It was a party and you had to be there. His name was Leonard Cohen.

Dawn, this is your party. Enjoy the ride.

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Blind Date

Created By and Starring Rebecca Northan

Blind Date

Centaur Theatre

April 9-28 2019

Who would have thought that a ten minute improve skit could turn into a 90 minute play and celebrate its tenth anniversary and its’ 800th show. Ms. Northan says, “there is always a handful of people who are convinced that the “date” is a plant in the audience. They are not.” I can vouch for that as I was seated next to the gentleman who ended up on stage this performance and provided us with many laughs. This is a play that has no script and can be seen over and over with different results. I could see it over and over. Congratulations to the entire Blind Date team, who in February 2019 also launched their first international Blind Date company in Oslo, Norway with the theatre group Det Andre Teotret.

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Broadway Cafe

April 6, 2019

Segal Centre

April 6, 2019

Hosted by Adam Capriolo and Anton May

As always this event presents semi-professional talent at the highest level. Anyone who wants the opportunity to perform in front of a live audience can bring sheet music or select sheet music from scores of sheet music provided by the theatre. The hosts entertain magnificently while managing the traffic of the performers as they take moments to discuss keys and such with Chris Barillaro who accompanies each artist tirelessly and flawlessly. They have the next performer waiting in the “on deck” for continuity. Tonight’s concert lasted four hours and when the midnight curfew arrived there were still artists waiting to perform. To highlight any of the performances was impossible. One by one the voices were top of the line. I always feel when I attend Broadway Cafe that I am exploiting the system with a ten dollar admission price. The evening would be cheap at many times the price. Next Broadway Cafe May 11, 2019. Be there.

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Dawn Tyler Watson launches new album MAD LOVE on April 11th

“Watson, in a nutshell, smokes. She has a kit bag full of smooth moves, and a personality that lifts off the page.” “One of Canada’s true Blues treasures” 

Blues Review Magazine

(Montreal) One of the greatest voices in contemporary blues Dawn Tyler Watson will be presenting her new album MAD LOVE with a launch-concert at Le Petit Campus, Thursday, April 11th at 8pm. The world-class singer-songwriter will be at her best as she performs 12 new songs backed by the power-house, horn-driven Ben Racine Band.

For this 5th album, her 2nd with the band, Watson dug deep. Her songs are more introspective than ever, inspired by a tumultuous past few years yielding ever-growing success as an artist,coupled with her own personal heartbreak.

Since having been crowned the winner of the 33rd International Blues Challenge in 2017 in Memphis, TN (the first Canadian ever and only the second female artist to do so), the multi-national and internationally decorated performer has been busy touring Canada, the US & abroad and has upcoming dates in France, Brazil, and Sweden as well.

Working with guitarist and arranger Ben Racine and Maple Blues Award nominated producer Frankie Thiffault, the team accessed a variety of styles within the Blues genre that reflect Watson’s rich creative palette. Featuring tracks with Canadian Blues elite guests Steve Marriner (Monkyjunk) and Steve Hill, MAD LOVE is her most accomplished work so far.

This newest collection of songs is now ready to be unleashed on a record that’s full of Soul infused Rhythm & Blues, with a title that conjures the good, the bad and the ugly of love.

MAD LOVE the album drops April 11th at Le Petit Campus 8pm

(57, rue Prince-Arthur, Montréal)

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Daughters of Mile End

Labyrinth Stage Productions

Written and produced by Pearl Lottner Rothenberg and

Claudia Litvak Polachek

Directed by Rachel Glait

DB Clarke Theatre

Thru April 6

An amazing evening of theatre performed by an all female cast portraying four friends at various stages of their lives between the 1950’s and present day. The adult actors are all excellent in their roles as are the children who exhibit promise of solid careers in the future. The set design and the lighting make it easy to segue from time zone to time zone. Being a story about children of Holocaust-surviving, immigrant Mothers one might expect the play to be quite sombre, yet there were several laugh-out-loud moments. You will leave the theatre feeling good.

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The Shoplifters

Centaur Theatre

Thru April 7, 2019

Written and Directed by Morris Panych

Starring Ellen David and Marie-Eve Perron

As the shoplifters

With Michel Perron and Laurent Pitre

As the security guards.

I have nothing but praise of the highest order for all four characters. They deliver the playwright’s lines with staccato rhythm and have the audience laughing for the entire time, some of the time just by their expression. The set is award worthy and kudos to the entire creative team. Worthy of special mention is Ken MacDonald for the originality of set design. A great time to enjoy an evening at the theatre.

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How Black Mothers Say I Love You

Black Theatre Workshop


How Black Mothers Say I Love You

By Trey Anthony

Directed by Tamara Brown

Continuing till March 16, 2019

Centaur Theatre

I am at a loss for words to describe the pleasure I experienced as a member of the audience for this dynamic drama. Four extremely talented actors carry the script with flawless delivery and take your emotions on a journey from music and laughter to the sadness of reality as we examine the bond between a Mother and her children. Kudos to the author and the director for coming up with a winner.  This one is not to be missed.

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