The fact that it was Mother's Day last weekend wasn't lost on Yuk Yuk's Downtown, where stand-up Kate Davis riffed on her motherhood status in her headlining gig.The scratchy-voiced Davis didn't regale us with tales of spilt milk, though. Her best bits were ripe, raunchy and refreshingly upfront about female sexuality. She's a cool, fast-talking, savvy performer who exudes confidence onstage - no self-deprecation here. She explained the ins and outs of dildos, why you shouldn't give blow jobs with a stuffed nose and what it'd be like if we went into heat like cats. Other classic bits included a smart deconstruction of "low self-esteem songs" by women, ending in a blue message to LeAnn Rimes.
Davis is pretty unique - I can't think of another mother of three who's a stand-up. The audience agreed. They greeted her set with cheers.
Last Monday's indie theatre Harold Awards, held at Hugh's Room, began with a qualified whine. Hershel (aka David Gale, who co-hosted with Randy Vancourt), long-lost cousin of late theatre enthusiast and heckler Harold Kandel, showed up from the Old Country - Winnipeg, he said - to comment on the theatre scene and insult the audience. Gale later told viewers that he had a good pedigree for co-helming the evening: Harold once told him to get off the stage.
The awards went to 14 supporters of indie theatre, participants both onstage and behind the scenes. You've seen the work of multi-talented theatre artists Ruth Madoc-Jones, Ross Manson, Donald Carr, Djanet Sears and director Andy McKim.
But just as important is the offstage work of Artword Theatre's Ron Weihs and Judith Sandiford, the Toronto Arts Council's Jim Garrard, producer Derrick Chua, production manager Lyn Joyce, publicist Grant Ramsay, the Creative Trust's Jini Stolk, costume designer Mary Jo Carter Dodd and technical director Shanna Miller.
Rebecca Brown copped the Ken McDougall Director's Award.
Best line of the night? Mayoralty candidate Barbara Hall, who gave Stolk her award, promised that if she's elected she'll triple taxes for non-supporters of the arts and give all the money to independent theatre.