Gems: Barbara Hannigan does comedy Photo: Elmer de Haas

Gems: Barbara Hannigan does comedy

Jenna Simeonov

Canadian soprano, conductor, and general Renaissance woman Barbara Hannigan has been on my mind lately, largely because she’s in Toronto October 7th and 8th to conduct and to sing with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Hannigan’s website has tons of video gems available to view, one of which stuck out as a must-share.

Larry Weinstein directs Hannigan and Mark McKinney (Kids in the Hall) in Toothpaste, a soap opera by Alexina Louie and Dan Redican. Hannigan does her own singing, of course, and McKinney’s “voice” is provided by Canadian baritone Doug MacNaughton; Alex Pauk conducts the Esprit Orchestra. The story is simple: woman gets lazy when it comes to screwing the cap back on the toothpaste, and man is upset about it. Now that’s relevant art.

There’s also the sequel, Burnt Toast, also a must-see. It’s the 8th episode in Louie and Redican’s series of shorts by the same name, which is about the highs and lows of romantic love. Burnt Toast is where we found the episode with Colin Mochrie lip-syncing to Russell Braun while wielding a leaf blower.



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