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Barbara Popel

Theatre Reviewer

Barb Popel is a frequent film-goer (hooray for the ByTowne Theatre!) and avid theatre-goer (almost 100 plays per year). She also attends quite a few classical music concerts. Not sure when she sleeps. Quoting a friend, she says, “I don’t support the arts; the arts support me.” Photo by Andrew Alexander.


Theatre Review: Calpurnia at the National Arts Centre

Barb Popel: “I was eager to see Calpurnia. So too, obviously, was the audience on opening night. It was the first night of the “Rolling Thunder Ottawa” motorcycle convoy and the NAC building was in the middle of the police “Red Zone”. Nevertheless, there were quite a few people in the audience. Most of the audience laughed at the funny bits, especially in the second act, and almost all of the audience gave the actors a standing ovation.”

Magic in the Dark: What’s playing at Ottawa’s independent cinemas—May 1 to 15

A jam-packed two weeks at the ByTowne and the Mayfair! My favourite film from 2021 has finally come to Ottawa, as well as some award winners, interesting films that fly under the radar, and the last movie in a Ukrainian Film Festival whose net proceeds will go to a Ukraine charity. Rounding everything out are three classics.

Magic in the Dark: What’s playing at Ottawa’s independent cinemas—April 1 to 15

The Academy Awards on March 27 were… interesting. If you ignore the drama in LA’s Dolby Auditorium and focus on the drama in the films, you can catch many of the nominees and winners at Ottawa’s two independent cinemas, the ByTowne and the Mayfair. Plus they have a breakout Canadian film, several “prestige” films, and a must-see film from the vault. Here are my recommendations from now until April 16.