The Howard – BATV Contest to see RAMBO: LAST BLOOD

 

BATV RAMBO CONTEST

You are cordially invited to participate and win a pair of tickets to see RAMBO:LAST BLOOD.

Please state why you want to see this film – send your “Why I Want To See Rambo:Last Blood” entry to HowardBatv@aol.com.

PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR NAME AND HOME ADDRESS

WINNER WILL BE CONTACTED- First Come First Served. 

 

YOUR MEDIA PARTNER IS BATV

RAMBO: LAST BLOOD
RELEASE DATE:                      Sept. 20th, 2019
GENRE:                                       Action

SYNOPSIS:                              Almost four decades after he drew first blood, Sylvester Stallone is back as one of the greatest action heroes of all time, John Rambo. Now, Rambo must confront his past and unearth his ruthless combat skills to exact revenge in a final mission. A deadly journey of vengeance, RAMBO: LAST BLOOD marks the last chapter of the legendary series.

 Lionsgate in association with Millennium Media presents, a Millennium Media Balboa Productions and Templeton Media production, in association with Campbell Grobman Films, and in association with Dadi Film (HK) Limited.

 

 

CAST & FILMMAKERS:

Cast:                                       Sylvester Stallone, Paz Vega, Sergio Peris-Mencheta, Adrianna Barraza, Yvette Monreal, Genie Kim aka Yenah Han, Joaquin Cosio, and Oscar Jaenada

Directed by:                              Adrian Grunberg

Screenplay by:                          Matthew Cirulnick & Sylvester Stallone

Story by:                                   Sylvester Stallone

Based on:                                 The Character created by David Morrell

Produced by:                             Avi Lerner, Kevin King Templeton, Yariv Lerner, Les Weldon

 

 

WEBSITES & SOCIALS:

Facebook:                                 https://www.facebook.com/Rambo/  

Twitter:                                     https://twitter.com/RamboMovie

Instagram:                                https://www.instagram.com/rambomovie/

Hashtag:                                   #Rambo

 

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The Howard – Screening Invitation- “ABOMINABLE” Tix –

 

BATV CORDIALLY INVITES YOU TO THE HARTFORD SCREENING OF ABOMINABLE 9/21 – BOW TIE PALACE

To sign up for the advance screening of the animated film – ABOMINABLE on Saturday, September 21 at 10am at Bow Tie Palace, click here:

https://forms.gle/ngkR2jnXbC8eVw5Y9

PLEASE NOTE: By completing this form, your name will automatically be added to the advance screening RSVP list. Duplicate names will be deleted from the final list. An E-Pass will be emailed before the screening takes place and will be cross-checked with the final list. Seating is first come, first served and NOT GUARANTEED so please arrive early. When the screening is full, this link will be disabled.

YOUR HOST TV STATION IS BATV

SCREENING PARTNER- BATV

ABOMINABLE

In theaters September 27
Universal 

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ap0NRJD-2ts

 

Directors:            Jill Culton & Todd Wilderman

Writer:                 Jill Culton

Producer:            Suzanne Buirgy

Cast:                     Chloe Bennet, Tenzing Norgay Trainor, Albert Tsai, Eddie Izzard, Sarah Paulson, Tsai Chin, Michelle Wong

DreamWorks Animation and Pearl Studio’s co-production Abominable takes audiences on an epic 3,000-mile adventure from the streets of Shanghai to the breathtaking Himalayan snowscapes.

When teenage Yi (Chloe Bennet, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) encounters a young Yeti on the roof of her apartment building in Shanghai, she and her mischievous friends, Jin (Tenzing Norgay Trainor) and Peng (Albert Tsai), name him “Everest” and embark on an epic quest to reunite the magical creature with his family at the highest point on Earth.

But the trio of friends will have to stay one-step ahead of Burnish (Eddie Izzard), a wealthy man intent on capturing a Yeti, and zoologist Dr. Zara (Sarah Paulson) to help Everest get home.

 

 

 

 

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THE Howard ~ MOVIE SCREENING INVITE “ANGEL HAS FALLEN”

 

Screening Invite

ANGEL HAS FALLEN

YOU AND A GUEST OF YOUR CHOICE ARE INVITED TO A SPECIAL SCREENING OF ANGEL HAS FALLEN.

PLEASE GO TO LINK BELOW TO DOWNLOAD YOUR COMPLIMENTARY SCREENING PASSES.

ANGEL HAS FALLEN
Tuesday, August 20th at 7:00 PM at Bowtie Palace

To download passes: http://www.lionsgatescreenings.com/kdyCM90206

**Please note, seating is first come, first served and not guaranteed. Get there early! Each pass will admit TWO.**

 

 

 

ANGEL HAS FALLEN

RELEASE DATE:                      August 23rd, 2019

TRAILER:                                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4AQchYSxwc

GENRE:                                    Action

RUNTIME:                              114 minutes

SYNOPSIS:                              When there is an assassination attempt on U.S. President Allan Trumbull (Morgan Freeman), his trusted confidant, Secret Service Agent Mike Banning (Gerard Butler), is wrongfully accused and taken into custody. After escaping from capture, he becomes a man on the run and must evade his own agency and outsmart the FBI in order to find the real threat to the President. Desperate to uncover the truth, Banning turns to unlikely allies to help clear his name, keep his family from harm and save the country from imminent danger.

ANGEL HAS FALLEN is directed by Ric Roman Waugh from a screenplay by Robert Mark Kamen and Matt Cook & Ric Roman Waugh, story by Creighton Rothenberger & Katrin Benedikt, and based on characters created by Creighton Rothenberger & Katrin Benedikt. Lionsgate and Millennium Media present, a Millennium Films/G-Base production.

 WEBSITES & SOCIALS:

Facebook:                                 Facebook.com/AngelHasFallen

Twitter:                                     Twitter.com/AngelHasFallen

Instagram:                                Instagram.com/AngelHasFallen

Hashtag:                                   #AngelHasFallen

 

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The HOWARD ~ At Sea Travelogue ~ Part Two ~ Meet the RCCL “Anthem of the Seas” Family

THE HOWARDTravelogue 
Travel Review-Anthem of the Seas
Reviewer:        Howard Steven Frydman 

August 1, 2019

Part 2

Today is Friday – time 9:09 sea time. Position: 36*45.26N, 069*24.23 w. Speed 20.6 kts, Course: 138. Present air temperature: 81 f. Cruise Distance sailed 322 nautical miles. Sea Depth: 4450. At this very moment in time, As I now put pen to paper – I am at sea – aboard the luxury cruise line RCCL’s Anthem of the Seas. Visually, I am  transfixed at the back of my suite just watching the ship travel through the churning emerald green waves – oh so relaxing, so still, just a gentle sway of the ship. I could just do this all the Sea day long – I could but there is so much to do! As mentioned our RCCL family is calling…..ahh our sea family!

“Just like a member of the family- just like Aunt Jane and Cousin Joe, just like a member of the family, a part of the love, the laughs, those greetings at the peer – RCCL a part of our lives for so many years”. 

One of my most frequent inquiries from readers and repeat passengers, besides asking about the onboard activities and restaurants are the staff – “So? Who’s aboard your ship? Did you have so and so? Is this or that Captain or Cruise Director still there? –  if so you’ll just love them!” Some staff are like “Rock Stars” – celebrities within the cruise community with passengers scheduling their cruise just to be reacquainted with them. Families are important especially for when you are far from home – so it is my honor for you to meet some of my RCCL Anthem of the Seas Family (at least for this cruise).  

A time for introductions, a time to meet some of the royal family…

Our Genie – Miss Yen. 

Miss Yen and Howard Steven Frydman aka THE HOWARD

Passengers in Star Class suites are provided Genie service, one for approximately three suites.

Yes, as I have mentioned in the past, and for the last several cruises I do in deed have a genie- no she does not live in a bottle, or appear in a blaze of blue smoke. The RCCL “Genies” are a first in the cruising community- think of them as professional daily assistants – planning out your entire day of activities on board the ship, knowing your likes and dislikes. In my case, fresh fruit delivered in the am, peanut butter sandwich in the pm, to setting up a meeting with the Cruise director at the Chops Grille at 10am, scheduling your weekly entertainment with front row seats at the “Spectra” show, to assistance in negotiating a purchase in the shops – This Gal Friday does it all.

Our Genie, – Miss Yen, who we met on our past cruise, hails from the Southeast Asia country of Malaysia where before joining RCCL was employed in Hotel Sales Marketing and Hospitality. In preparation for her position as an official “RCCL Genie” she did extensive training at the “British Butler Institute” where she was first in her class. She speaks 5 languages including Mandarin and Cantonese. When asked what she most enjoys about being a Genie, Miss Yen remarked, “I so enjoy making my guests happy, and planning a customized experience for each guest”. Thank you Miss Yen – you are indeed magical!

Our Cruise Director:

Mr. Dan Whitney aka “Dan Dan the Man”.

Dan Whitney and Howard Steven Frydman

Let me tell you this man is so quick witted and funny, a pleasure to just talk with, and I just liked him the minute I met him and so will you!  – no wonder he has been a RCCL family member for close to 30 years starting off as a nightclub DJ on October 13th, 1990 on the Song of America. 

 

 

 

RCCL cruise director Dan Whitney

“In my youth, all I ever wanted to do was be a DJ – I loved it. I started off on college radio and then was a local radio personality on KEWC radio in Spokane, Washington. RCCL staff so happily saw in me that I was destined for a bigger career in entertainment at sea – as a Cruise Director- and yes I love what I do, meeting and entertaining folks from around the world, it brings me great joy” states Dan. 

In fact, Cruise Director Dan has been around the world on over 20 different RCCL cruise ships, working on every class in the fleet and many within each class and a few that are no longer with RCCL. Indeed, Dan is a true world traveler, akin to the likes of Phileas Fogg, Dr. Who, and even Santa Claus – but to those who know him – a dear part of the RCCL worldwide family.

Dan currently oversees a team of close to 160 activities members who provide everything from daily bingo, trivia contests, teen activities, dance nights, men’s belly flop contest, nightly productions, and he even edits and publishes the daily “Cruise Compass” which list the entire daily activities. As host of the classic “Name that Tune” at sea game show, from the contestants, backed up by the RCCL singers and dancers – this is a clever, inspired, and oh-so funny production – and I blame Dan for the entire show! As you may surmise – Dan is absolutely PHENOMENAL as the host – I laughed till I cried – let me tell you! I was so proud that I not only had an opportunity to meet Dan but to see him perform on stage. One last thought- Dan, some day when you least expect it – someone will come up to you and say – “we’re starring you – Dan Whitney in your own television series” – we need to share Dan’s laughter with the world. Bravo!

RCCL Genie Miss Yen, Howard Steven Frydman and RCCL cruise director Dan Whitney

 

Our Executive Chef:

Chef Anand Vijayakumar

Chef Anand Vijayakumar and Howard Steven Frydman

According to Chef Anand, “If you really want to make a friend, go to someone’s house and eat with him – the people who give you their food give you their heart.”

Indeed Chef Anand aboard the Anthem of the Seas has made a friend in me – Howard Steven Frydman.  Chef Anand who is from India, started his career at India’s famed Hotel President as Chef De Partie, with his culinary training taking place at the American Culinary Federation and the Royal Culinary Academy. Chef Anand states, “My desire to be a chef started earlier as a child, where my mother taught me to prepare vegetarian dishes and gave me inspiration to create so many innovative and original food-fare”. Chef Anand started his career with RCCL in 2008 where he was quickly promoted from Senior Sous Chef, to Executive Sous Chef to Executive Chef now aboard the Anthem of the Seas which he states is his “dream job”.  We are now proud to present one of Chef Anand’s recipes so you at home can also sample his delicious culinary vision. Bon Appetite- enjoy! 

Chef Anand’s Recipe: JERK CHICKEN

Ingredients

o 3 tablespoons dark rum
o 2 tablespoons water
o 1/2 cup malt vinegar
o 10 green onions, chopped
o 4 garlic cloves, peeled, chopped
o 2 tablespoons dried thyme
o 2 Scotch bonnet chiles or habanero chiles with seeds, chopped
o 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
o 4 teaspoons ground allspice
o 4 teaspoons ground ginger
o 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
o 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
o 2 teaspoons salt
o 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
o 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
o 1 cup ketchup
o 3 tablespoons soy sauce
o 2 3- to 3 1/2-pound chickens, halved lengthwise, rinsed, patted dry
o 1/2 cup fresh lime juice

Preparation

1. Boil rum and 2 tablespoons water in small saucepan for 3 minutes.
2. Transfer rum mixture to blender; add vinegar and next 12 ingredients and blend until almost smooth. Transfer 2 tablespoons jerk seasoning to small bowl; mix in ketchup and soy sauce to make sauce. (Jerk seasoning and sauce can be made 1 day ahead; cover separately and refrigerate.)
3. Arrange chicken in large roasting pan or baking dish. Pour lime juice over; turn to coat. Spoon jerk seasoning over chicken and rub in. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours, turning occasionally. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated.)
4. Preheat oven to 350°F or prepare barbecue (medium heat). Remove chicken from jerk seasoning marinade; sprinkle with salt and pepper. If roasting chicken in oven, arrange chicken, skin side up, on rimmed baking sheet. Roast until chicken is cooked through and juices run clear when thickest part of thigh is pierced with fork, about 50 minutes. If grilling chicken, place chicken, skin side down, on grill rack, cover, and grill until chicken is cooked through, turning occasionally and adjusting heat if browning too quickly, about 50 minutes.
5. Cut each chicken half into pieces and serve with sauce.

 

ANTHEM OF THE SEAS FAMILY:

 

Howard Steven Frydman and Harvey Leon Frydman – Coastal Kitchen Restaurant

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lastly, let me also send out BIG HUGS to one of the dearest RCCL friends I know – Miss Megan Barbe. Megan – thank you for all your kindnesses to me over the years – you are one special lady!

Special thanks to everyone at RCCL and Anthem of the Seas!!

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“THE Howard” ~ At Sea Travelogue ~ Part One ~ RCCL “Anthem of the Seas” ~ Bermuda and Caribbean Cruise

 

THE HOWARDTravelogue 
Travel ReviewAnthem of the Seas
Reviewer:        Howard Steven Frydman 
August 1, 2019

Part 1 

Just sit right backAnd you’ll hear a taleA tale of a Royalful tripThat started from this Cape Liberty Cruise port, Aboard this mighty RCCL ship”.

Anthem of the Seas

Yes siree “we be going” on another sea cruise, another luxurious, relaxing, all exciting jaunt far far away from all our cares and woes on the most excellent ocean liner, our dear friend – Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines – Anthem Of The Seas. This time around we are heading out on a 12 Night Adventurous Bermuda & Caribbean Cruise, island hopping to Kings Wharf, Bermuda, Philipsburg, St. Maarten, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and Labadee, Haiti. It is currently July 30th, my embarkation begins in two days – packing has commenced.

Some of you have asked – how do you pick the cruise line that’s right for you? Firstly, just like a shoe, you need to try several on to see how they fit. Luckily, I enjoy trying on shoes, in this case cruises. As many know, I have traveled all over the world on cruise ships, and I have throughly enjoyed the RCCL family of cruise lines – Celebrity, Azamara and of course Royal Caribbean Cruise Line. 

Cruise lines nowadays do offer something for all types of guests. Some lines are geared more to families with young children and very active cruisers, others to adults or millennials. I personally enjoy an emphasis on wellness, 5 star cuisine, Broadway style entertainment and having a truly Royal time from the minute I step on board and being treated like a member of the family.

The Royal Caribbean cruise liner ‘Anthem Of The Seas’. The ‘Anthem Of The Seas’, a 4,905-passenger ship, is billed as the most technologically advanced cruise vessel ever. It boasts fast internet speeds, an all-digital check-in process, a skydiving simulator at sea and the first bumper cars at sea.

Speaking of family, I must state, that Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines for the past several decades has treated me, as with all their passengers, like family. I am so appreciative of that fact and their continued kindness. They are indeed a trusted family member when it comes to cruises. At this time, I personally want to thank our dear friends at RCCL, Lyan Sierra-Caro, Michelle Aerts-Byrd and Megan Barbe for their gracious assistance in planning all my RCCL cruises. I would also be remiss if I didn’t send out a special hug of appreciation to the one and only Megan Barbe who not only finds me the perfect cruise destinations, but faithfully checks up on me regarding my health, and remembers me on my birthday and during the holidays- now that’s family! 

As I mention in all my Cruise Travelogues – here are some general rules to follow in regards to pre-cruise preparations. I stress- don’t over pack luggage, fold clothes lightly (they will only get re-wrinkled), remember your passports, fill out cruise documents, setup limo service, stop your mail, prepare medications and other assorted sundry items such as  toothbrushes, shaving razors, clean underwear and socks, sunglasses and finally – to remembering to clean out the refrigerator. One thing I want all you new cruisers to take note- your cabin is small – as stated- don’t over pack with ten suits, 20 pairs of shoes and four suitcases – you will find there is NO ROOM for all this useless falderal – just take your basic essentials!  On most cruises there are usually one to two formal nights- gals a beaded top and slacks will suffice and gents one nice pressed suit will do ya quite nicely. 

Another reminder when going on a cruise – turn on the “airplane mode” on your phone, laptop or tablet – believe you me, you do not want to come back home and see a 500 dollar telephone bill for roaming charges – second, make sure all water is turned off and you have jiggled the toilet handle so no water is continually running – a mistake could be very costly! 

From my home in Connecticut- it will usually take my Hunter limousine driver about two hours and 30 minutes to the Cape Liberty Cruise Port and then onwards to the RCCL Cape Liberty cruise passenger terminal. As usual, a porter will load my luggage from limo to transport cart.  Easy Peasy. In fact the entire embarkation process will take less than 10 minutes. Please remember to complete your RCCL Online Check-In process at home with photo and passport info. 

Bottom line – you ARE the cruise – you ARE  what you make of a cruise. You ARE joining a family of other cruisers. Take a deep breath – exhale – ahhhhh – be relaxed, be renewed, be royal- on a Royal Caribbean Cruise Line Cruise. And so I embark onto the “Anthem of the Seas!”

Relaxation here I come…….the adventure begins!

Next – part two- 

Meeting our RCCL Genie and getting cruise reacquainted with Anthem of the Seas.

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The Howard ~ “The 40 Dollar A Day HOWARD FOOD CHALLENGE”

 

Food Reviewer: Howard Steven Frydman

The 40 Dollar A Day Howard Food Challenge-

Who doesn’t like a challenge, a dare, a welcomed proposition – can you really do this or that  and follow all the rules. Well a challenge has most recently come my way via the editor of the  Messenger Magazines, Mr. John Karas. Over a recent discussion of local restaurants, we began with the query, could one actually spend no more than a certain dollar amount and still be able to have three delicious hearty meals, breakfast, lunch, dinner and a snack? I said an unequivocally – Yes! The amount agreed upon – $40.00. The restaurants – my choice but no fast food, and they had to be hometown favorites. Let the challenge begin.

Our first hometown – the beautiful New England hamlet of Bloomfield, Connecticut. I have always maintained that to dine, one should “eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.”

Mr. Isaac Suttar - Isacc’s Bagel Cafe

Mr. Isaac Suttar – Isaac’s Bagel Cafe

BREAKFAST:

Being that this is indeed my hometown- the choice is simple – Isaac’s Bagel Cafe, situated on 16-B Mountain Avenue, Bloomfield, CT, and owned and operated by “the nicest man you will ever meet” – Mr. Isaac Suttar. The time – 7:35am. A queue has already formed, folks from throughout are in line for their morning cup of hot coffee and a “nosh”. From local college students to politicians, this is the morning meeting place to hear the “latest” and “the” best place to “Eat Breakfast Like a King”.

My order today consists of the Isaac Breakfast Special- Western Omelette; three fresh eggs, served with a heaping helping of diced ham, onions, tomatoes, peppers and blanketed with cheddar cheese. The omelette is accompanied with an extremely generous portion of red bliss potato home fries and served with either toast or a famous Isaac Bagel. As you can imagine, the breakfast is mouth watering delicious, and oh so filling. The Total for my Kingly Breakfast- 7.99.  I have 32.01 dollars to go.

 

Stratos Livanis and Maria Rosu Livanis Bloomfield Village Pizza

LUNCH:

Some say my office away from the office is our next foodie destination, in fact besides being written up in several publications for its superb offerings, it was a “Foodie Friday” choice on Connecticut TV Ch. 61. The restaurant of course is the celebrated “Bloomfield Village Pizza”, 34 Tunxis Avenue, owned and operated by the husband and wife team of Stratos Livanis and his wife, “The Empress Of Pizza” herself Chef Maria Rosu Livanis. Besides their world class pizza, they are also becoming well known for their weekly Frutti Di Mare- “Friday Fish Fry”. Chef Maria – is a true “world” chef with her influences coming from such countries including those of Greece, Romania and USA – her food – is fit for the royalty in all of us!! Ahem- so this being Friday, the time 12:05pm. I’m now readying for a princely luncheon- I order the following: “The Whiting Fish Seafood Dinner” – a platter consisting of three massive fried, hand breaded Whiting, served with hand cut French Fries and a garden salad. Lip smacking good. The Total for my Princely Luncheon is 12.99. I now have exactly 19.02 left – can I do it?

 

 

Emiddio Botta – Pasticceria Italia Bakery

SNACK:

Our next stop brings us too “the” most celebrated baker in Connecticut, the one and only  Emiddio Botta of the world famous Pasticceria Italia Bakery, situated at 10 Wintonbury Mall in of course – the beautiful hamlet of Bloomfield, where Emiddio and his staff of busy bakers, craft around the clock, the most mouth watering treats you have ever tasted from hand dipped cannolis to tiramisu. During the holidays, folks are literally lined up out side the bakery awaiting freshly made pies, Italian cookies, breads, and cakes galore including  Whip Cream Cakes, Ricotta Cakes, Chocolate Mousse Cakes,Tiramisu Cakes, German Chocolate Cakes, Napoleon Cakes, Rum Cakes, Cappuccino Cakes, Strawberry Cheese Cakes and so much more. It’s 3:45pm and it’s time for a snack. Emiddio suggests I try one of his signature pastries- “The Lobster Tail” – Light, flakey and oh-so decadently delicious, and filled generously with a scrumptious Chantilly cream. A customer takes note of my snack choice and then orders a whole dozen – a great choice. The cost for my Lobster Tail Snack: $3.50. Remaining funds now total 15.52.

 

Paulo DaRocha – Elizabeth’s

Dinner:

The time 8pm. I now make my way to Bloomfield’s latest culinary entry “Elizabeth’s Restaurant”, located at 774 Park Avenue, and serving up some of the freshest and most creative Italian and Portuguese inspired cuisine you have ever encountered. Head Chef and Restauranteur, the highly regarded Paulo DaRocha, has brought his native Brazilian love for fresh “ frutos do mar” – seafood – and the Elizabeth’s franchise to Bloomfield. My friends, this is indeed a fine dining choice in a sophisticated glamorous setting that excites and inspires the pallet. As stated, we will eat dinner like a pauper this evening – well not exactly, but we will eat as the setting permits – smart and sophisticated. Our dinner menu choice- The Elizabeth’s Seafood Pizza – medium. This perfectly baked oval pie is brimming with clams, shrimps, scallops, and lovingly draped with Romano and mozzarella cheese, Italian herbs, and served on a fresh garlic and olive oil sauce- absolutely outstanding. The cost for my dinner – $14.95. – Did I do it??

You bet I did it – it was close but I won the challenge with a total of $0.57 left. Some had said it could not be done, and I did worry if 40 dollars would get me through, yet as they say – “the proof is in the pudding”. Special thanks to publisher John Karas for offering the challenge. I now offer you to take up this same culinary challenge – please take the opportunity to meet Isaac, Maria, Emiddio, and Paulo and tell them you are at their restaurant because you are taking the Howard Challenge. Enjoy!

Howard Steven Frydman is General Manager and Executive Director of BATV – Channels 5, 95 & 96 and a member of the CCC. Please feel free to contact Mr. Frydman with your thoughts and ideas at TheHoward24@gmail.com.“The

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The Howard ~ Theater Review – “The Wizard of Oz” – Seven Angels Theater

 

 

Reviewer:             Howard Steven Frydman akaThe Howard

Production:                       The Wizard of Oz
Theater:                              Seven Angels Theater
Writer:                                L. Frank Baum
Book:                                   John Kane
Music/Lyrics:                    Harold Arlen & E.Y. Harburg
Director:                             James Donahue 

The Howard’s Exhale – “A Childhood Film Favorite comes to vibrant life- Oz-tastic!

Lavishly and authentically recreated, we offer bows and applause-to Seven Angels Theater in Waterbury, CT  for their current masterful musical reproduction of the 1939 MGM Technicolored film  – The Wizard of Oz, considered “one of the greatest films in cinema history”. Offering fantasy, a sentimental score by Harold Arlen and E. Y. “Yip” Harburg and such memorable characters  as The Tin Man, The Cowardly Lion and The Scarecrow- take a most fantastic walk down the Yellow Brick Road from Munchkinland to the Emerald City in an effort to defeat the Wicked Witch of the West and help our beloved Dorothy, and Toto too, return to her home somewhere over the rainbow. My friends – this production has heart, it has brains, it has courage – it’s an Emerald Gem!

Madeleine Tommins as Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz with Toto (Mylo)

On this sultry early summer day, the Seven Angels theater is literally packed, free ice cream day aside, the theater is full of families, young and old to see this musical version of The Wizard of Oz. Observing tender tots dressed in either full Dorothy Gale regalia, from blue and white gingham dress to red ruby slippers, cowardly lions in tails, Reynolds-wrapped tin men, and scruffy scarecrows makes one think there is an “Oz-Con” taking place here instead of a musical being presented. Who knew, OZ was such an upswing affair, as I overhear a young boy adorned with “faux paws” and fighting off invisible “Winkies”, repeatedly say to his dad “I’m a mean old lion”! 

As a child of the somewhat innocent ‘60’s, I so recall our entire family gathering around our old black and white Zenith Television to watch “the event” – “The Wizard of Oz” starring Judy Garland, Ray Bolger, Bert Lahr, Jack Haley, Billie Burke, Margaret Hamilton and Frank Morgan as The Wizard. It wasn’t till many years later that I was able to see the film as intended in vibrant color, and in its entirety- or so I thought. Unbeknownst to many – the film because of running time issues, actually had planned songs and dialogue missing. 

What makes this production an exceptional experience, Seven Angels has quite rightly utilized the 1987 Royal Shakespeare Company’s rendition, which uses the original screenplay, dialogue, original unheard songs such as “The Jitterbug”, and various song introductory verses rarely ever heard including that from “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” –  When all the world is a hopeless jumble, And the raindrops tumble all around, Heaven opens a magic lane, When all the clouds darken up the skyway, There’s a rainbow highway to be found, Leading from your window pane, To a place beyond the sun,  Just a step beyond the rain, Somewhere over the rainbow…” Absolutely beautiful and not to be missed by Ozaficionados. 

Madeleine Tommins as Dorothy, Justin Torres as Scarecrow, Carey Cannata as Tin Man.

Pam Amodio as Miss Gulch/Wicked Witch, Joe Stofko as Uncle Henry, Cristin Marshall as Aunt Em/Glinda.

A good cast is worth repeating-  let me justly say I was mighty impressed with our Seven Angels Cast and ensemble, including: Madeleine Tommins as our courageous Dorothy; Justin Torres as The Scarecrow; Carey Cannata as The Tin Man; James Donahue as The Cowardly Lion (perfectly cast – he reminds one of a young Bert Lahr);  Cristin Marshall as Glinda – (your creative bubbly bubble entrance was oh too cute) and Joe Stofko as the stoic Uncle Henry.

Cast of Seven Angels “The Wicard of Oz” and Howard Steven Frydman.

Our witchipoo aka “The Wicked Witch”, Pam Amodio, reminded me more of Nanny “Euphengenia Doubtfire” at times, which is a good thing, witches can be scary for an audience mostly of young children. But in another world, we had wished she had given it a bit more of the ‘ol Margaret Hamilton-esque slant, especially when provided the gem “I’ll get you my pretty and your little dog too”- wow now that’s a line! 

And now for the coveted “ Howard Noticed You Awards” this time we honor two-  firstly Mr. Robert Melendez as the Oz Guard, this up and coming actor is a “scene stealer” when on stage, singing/dancing/acting, and that hair of his has a mind of it’s own- good job. Second- the well renown and acclaimed actor – Mr. Scott Kealey as “The Wizard of Oz” and “Professor Marvel” – folks literally traveled from throughout New England to see Scott in performance- and so did I – excellent- a hearty applause of appreciation!

Seven Angels Theater production of “The Wizard of Oz” is beautifully crafted for the stage, and brought forth joyful tears to this reviewer and a grateful audience. Enjoy!

Madeleine Tommins as Dorothy, Howard Steven Frydman, and Scott Kealey as The Wizard of Oz.

“The Wizard of Oz”  is currently being produced at Seven Angels Theater. For tickets call the box office at 203-757-4676, online at SevenAngelsTheatre.org, or at the box office at 1 Plank Road, Waterbury. Free Parking. Just off I-84.  GPS directions use: Hamilton Park, Waterbury.

Howard Steven Frydman is General Manager and Executive Director of BATV – Channels 5, 95 & 96 and a member of the CCC. Please feel free to contact Mr. Frydman with your thoughts and ideas at TheHoward24@gmail.com.

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