Everything about Great Canadian Baking Show, eh?

The Great Canadian Baking Show is unapologetically entertaining

The real world can be a pretty nasty place sometimes. I don’t know about you, but I find myself looking for an escape from the bad that seems to clog up the news and news feeds on social media. I’ve found the perfect respite from all that on Wednesday nights thanks to The Great Canadian Baking Show on CBC.

I love food—baking and ooey, gooey desserts in particular—so The Great Canadian Baking Show ticks those boxes immediately. But the series is so much more than just that. Based on the UK hit of the same name, the CBC’s remake—courtesy of Proper Television—is a sugary sweet, entertaining confection that just makes me happy. A lot of that comes from co-hosts Daniel Levy and Julia Chan. The pair, who are friends, scored themselves the gig of a lifetime with The Great Canadian Baking Show. The opportunity to meet Canadians from across the country, sample their baked goods and hang out for a couple of months? Where do I sign up? You can’t fake the enjoyment the pair derive from making cheesy quips in an attempt to get the other to roll their eyes. This Wednesday’s Bread Week episode gives Chan the chance to shine. And the fact Levy isn’t afraid to taste more than a morsel of gluten-y goodness establishes him as a bona fide bread expert in my eyes.

Judges Rochelle Adonis and Bruno Feldeisen don’t glower at the contestants like Demon Chef Alvin Leung on MasterChef Canada does. Nor should they. This is not that series. The Great Canadian Baking Show is definitely more relaxed, swapping stainless steel and hard edges for pastels and real wood in a pastoral setting. There is a playful, dainty soundtrack accompanying the proceedings, lending a calming air. Yes, folks are being eliminated—it is a competition after all—but even that is done gently and with a “keep your chin up” attitude.

The Great Canadian Baking Show may not be your cup of tea—see what I did there?—but I find it to be a calming oasis amid the noisy negativity we’re besieged with.

The Great Canadian Baking Show airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on CBC.

Images courtesy of CBC.

 

 

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Dan Levy and Julia Chan bake up fun on CBC’s The Great Canadian Baking Show

Never underestimate the power of social media. That’s what Schitt’s Creek co-creator, executive producer, writer and star Daniel Levy learned when he tweeted his love for The Great British Bake Off and announced he’d be honoured to host a Canadian version of the culinary competition if that was ever in the cards.

“I had tweeted, quite naively, that if it ever came to Canada that I’ve love to throw my hat in the ring,” Levy says with a smile. “Almost immediately I started getting these responses, ‘It is for sure coming to Canada.’ ‘It’s happening.’ And then I inevitably got the call asking me if I would actually be interested. I said yes.”

Levy fulfils his dream on Wednesday when The Great Canadian Baking Show debuts at 8 p.m. on CBC. As if helming the homegrown version of your favourite program wasn’t enough, Levy does it with one of his best friends in Julia Chan; the former Saving Hope actress (who went by Julia Taylor Ross) joins him as narrator and co-host.

“We are great friends and were watching The Great British Bake Off together and Dan got involved,” Chan recalls. “Dan threw my hat in the ring, I got a call, went through the process and, apparently, we have good chemistry.”

“Watching this show and kind of colour commentating through the whole process, I was like, ‘I have a friend, she’s never hosted before but I think she would be a great, fresh voice for the show,'” Levy explains.

The Great Canadian Baking Show is fresh on a couple of levels. First, unlike other culinary competitions such as Top Chef Canada and MasterChef Canada, this is all about the baking. That, for watchers of those other shows, is often the hardest challenge put towards competitors thanks to the unforgiving science behind baking. You can fly by the seat of your pants when searing a steak. Not so when baking a multi-tiered cake. Second, The Great Canadian Baking Show is light-hearted and fun. If Wednesday’s debut is accurate, we’re in for one heck of an enjoyable ride. Levy and Chan are natural hosts, walking amongst the 10 home bakers, tasting here, asking questions there and genuinely having a good time.

Of course, the program isn’t all crumpets, tea and giggles. Each of the eight episodes contains three rounds—the Signature Bake, Technical Bake and Show Stopper—judged by baking legends Rochelle Adonis and Bruno Feldeisen. At the end of each episode, one home cook will be eliminated. This season’s 10 competitors represent a thick slice of Canada, from Regina CFO Vandana Jain to Victoria animator Jude Somers, from Toronto human rights lawyer Corey Shefman to Montreal graphic designer Sabrina Degni. All have a passion for baking and a flair for drama on a platter. Wednesday’s challenges force the 10 competitors to up the ante with regard to cakes and the results are stunning.

And while Levy is a longtime fan of The Great British Bake Off, he’s not so great in the kitchen, admitting to just one item in his culinary repertoire: frittata.

“I don’t have any culinary experience, but I do have a lot of opinions,” he says with a laugh. “That’s something that I can bring to this. I can’t bake a thing, but I can eat.”

The Great Canadian Baking Show airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on CBC.

Images courtesy of CBC.

 

 

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Link: Boat Rocker acquires Proper Television, Proper Rights

From Katie Bailey of RealScreen:

Link: Boat Rocker acquires Proper Television, Proper Rights
The business that high-profile producer Guy O’Sullivan built and fostered for 13 years will have new life going forward, as news broke Monday (September 25) that Boat Rocker Media has acquired the company. Continue reading.

 

 

 

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CBC announces hosts and judges for The Great Canadian Baking Show

From a media release:

CBC today announced the team of hosts and judges for THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW (8×60), the public broadcaster’s homegrown take on hit format The Great British Bake Off. The series will be hosted by actor and writer Daniel Levy (Schitt’s Creek, The Hills: The After Show) and actor Julia Chan (Saving Hope, A Kid Like Jake), who will keep the judges buttered up and bakers laughing even when the going gets tough. Judging which competitors measure up are acclaimed pastry chefs Bruno Feldeisen, former executive pastry chef for the Four Seasons in New York and Vancouver and a multiple James Beard Award nominee; and Rochelle Adonis, the Quebec-raised, European-trained creator of a flagship tea shop and confectionary brand in Australia. Produced by Proper Television, THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW starts filming in Toronto this week following a nationwide search for Canada’s top amateur bakers, and will premiere Wednesday, November 1 at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT) on CBC.

Based on the beloved British format, THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW brings together 10 amateur bakers from across the country to compete in a series of themed culinary challenges as they celebrate their diverse backgrounds, families and communities. Each episode will feature three rounds including the Signature Bake, the Technical Bake and the Show Stopper. After the bakes are tasted and critiqued, the judges will decide who will become the week’s Star Baker and who will be sent home. The final three bakers will compete for the Great Canadian Baking Show title.

THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW is presented with Robin Hood. The Robin Hood Baking Family consists of a portfolio of leading baking brands.

While waiting for the Canadian series, CBC audiences can whet their appetite with the most recent season of the British series (Season 7), which will air as THE GREAT BRITISH BAKING SHOW starting Wednesday, August 23 at 8 p.m. ET (8:30 NT) on CBC. Season 6 is available to stream now at cbc.ca/watch.

THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW is produced by Proper Television in association with CBC and Love Productions. The executive producer is Cathie James, and the series producer is Marike Emery. The format is owned by Love Productions and distributed by Sky Vision. In addition to the original British series, the format has been produced in 23 territories including America, Australia, France and Ireland.

 

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