Shows That Caught Our Eye in Toronto the Week of December 14th, 2015
The holiday shows continue to pile in, but all hope’s not lost for those theatre-Scrooges out there! As always, we’re here to highlight our most anticipated picks in red text and give you a sense of what we’re most excited about. Here are the weekly picks under the cut:
Already Reviewed by Mooney on Theatre:
Click-bait and Switch The Second City presents its Fall MainStage Revue featuring sketches, songs and improv. Indefinite run, Tue-Thu 8 pm, Fri-Sun 7:30 pm, late shows Fri-Sat 10:30 pm. $16-$35. Show Info.
Wormwood by Andrew Kushnir (Tarragon Theatre). A man travels to Ukraine to the elections following the Orange Revolution and falls for a local woman. Soon he finds himself becoming an unexpected player in the country’s fractured politics. Previews from Nov 11, opens Nov 18 and runs to Dec 20, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm (select Sat mats at 2:30 pm on Nov 21, Nov 28, Dec 5; select Wed mats at 1:30 pm on Nov 25, Dec 2, Dec 9 and Dec 16). $28-$60, srs $45-$49, stu $29, rush $15. Tarragon MainSpace. Show Info.
Jacob Two-Two Meets The Hooded Fang by Mordecai Richler (Young People’s Theatre). A young boy struggles to be heard in this musical adaptation of Richler’s classic book. Opens Nov 16 and runs to Dec 20, see website for schedule. $10-$41. Show Info.
Jesus Christ Superstar by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice (LOT). Judas makes a choice between Jesus and the Roman rulers in this musical. Opens Dec 3 and runs to Dec 27, Thu-Sat 7:30 pm , mat Sat-Sun 3:30 pm (no shows Dec 24-26). Show Info.
Fancy Nancy: The Musical by Susan DiLallo and Danny Abosch (Lower Ossington Theatre). Stage adaptation for families of the picture book Fancy Nancy And The Mermaid Ballet by author Jane O’Connor. Opens Nov 7 and runs to Jan 31, Sat 11 am, Sun 11 am & 1 pm. $25-$45, family packs $84-$124. Show Info.
Dee Snider’s Rock & Roll Christmas Tale (Starvox Entertainment). A heavy metal band sell their souls to the devil in exchange for success but soon realize that fame is no match for the Christmas spirit. Opens Nov 17 and runs to Jan 3, 2016, Tue-Thu 7:30 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, Sun 5:30 pm, mats Sat-2 pm, Sun 1:30 pm. $40-$100. Show Info.
Peter Pan: The 20th Anniversary Family Musical Panto-Monium! (Ross Petty Productions). Petty makes his final appearance as the villain in the annual holiday musical panto production. Previews from Nov 27, opens Dec 3 and runs to Jan 3, 2016, see website for schedule. $27-$99. Show Info.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (Soulpepper). Michael Shamata’s adaptation of the classic holiday ghost story gets a staging. Opens Dec 3 and runs to Jan 3, see website for schedule. $39-$89. Show Info.
It’s A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play by Joe Landry (LOT). Frank Capra’s holiday film is adapted as a 1940s radio play. Opens December 3 and runs to Dec 24, Thu-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat 2 pm, Sun 4 pm. $45. Show Info.
The Phantom of the Opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber, Charles Hart and Richard Stilgoe (Cameron Mackintosh). Super-sized staging of the iconic musical about love and obsession in 19th century Paris. Opens Dec 8 and runs to Jan 23, Tue-Sat 7:30 pm, Sun 6:30 pm, mat Sat 2 pm, Sun 1 pm (see website for holiday schedule). $59-$210. Show Info.
A Disney Spectacular! (The Civic Light-Opera Co). This family show features a mashup of musical moments from Walt Disney movies. Opens Dec 9 and runs to Dec 20, Wed 7 pm, Thu-Sat 8 pm, mat Sun 2 pm (and Dec 19). $28. Show Info.
Tricks (Soulpepper Theatre/Magicana). Trickster/magician David Ben performs magic inspired by an eclectic range of people and events. Opens Dec 5 and runs to Jan 3, see website for schedule. $24-$69. Show Info.
And the Rest:
Magic, Famous People Players black light theatre company presents an all-ages seasonal production. Opens Nov 7 and runs to Jan 2, see website for times. $40-$68 (includes lunch/dinner). Show Info.
Spy School!: Mission Ridiculous. Written by Danny Wengle, Ken MacDougall, Brian Caws & the Cast, presented by Mysteriously Yours Dinner Theatre. James Bond and other secret agents go back to school in this interactive dinner-theatre show. Runs to Mar 26, Fri-Sat 7:30 pm (dinner from 6:30 pm), see website for other matinees & shows (no shows Dec 25-26). $45-$87. Show Info.
Mistletoe Magic. Famous People Players black light theatre company presents an all-ages seasonal production. Opens Nov 7 and runs to Jan 2, see website for times. $40-$68 (includes lunch/dinner). Show Info.
The Christmas Story. Church of the Holy Trinity presents a nativity pageant tradition that spans 78 years. Professional musicians and a volunteer cast present the story of the birth of Jesus. Opens Dec 4 and runs to Dec 20, Fri 7:30 pm (and Dec 12, 19-20), Sat-Sun 4:30 pm. $20, child $5 (suggested donation). Sign language interpretation available at some performances. Reservations are recommended via thechristmasstory.ca or call 416-598-4521 ext. 301 to reserve. The church is fully wheelchair accessible. Show Info.
Man To Man/Licking Knives by Manfred Karge/Melanie Hrymak (Headstrong Collective). Double bill of solo plays. Previews Dec 9, opens Dec 10 and runs to Dec 20, Wed-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $25, stu $20, preview $15. TPM Backspace. Show Info.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (Humber River Shakespeare Co). The timeless tale of greed, ghosts, salvation and hope comes to life onstage. Opens Dec 5 and runs to Dec 20: Dec 5 at 2 pm, Dec 10-11 at 7 pm, Dec 19 at 2 & 7 pm, Dec 20 at 7 pm. $20, child $10. See website for performances outside Toronto. Show Info.
The Christmas Story. Church of the Holy Trinity presents a nativity pageant tradition that spans 78 years. Professional musicians and a volunteer cast present the story of the birth of Jesus. Opens Dec 4 and runs to Dec 20, Fri 7:30 pm (and Dec 12, 19-20), Sat-Sun 4:30 pm. $20, child $5 (suggested donation). Show Info.
Krampus the Original Christmas Curmudgeon by Roger Rousseau (Solar Stage Children’s Theatre). Santa’s mean sidekick comes to tell a little girl that she’s on the naughty list in this seasonal show for ages 4 and up. Dec 12-Jan 3, see website for schedule. $16. Show Info.
Parfumerie by Miklós László (Soulpepper Theatre). Shop clerks who don’t get along at work exchange anonymous love letters as pen pals. Opens Dec 11 and runs to Dec 27, see website for schedule. $29.50-$58. Show Info.
The Nutcracker. The National Ballet of Canada celebrates 20 years of performing the holiday classic ballet choreographed by James Kudelka. Opens Dec 12 and runs to Jan 3, see website for schedule. Prices start at $37 and vary based on peak and off-peak performances. Show Info.
The Second City: Unwrapped. Satirical songs and sketches that cut through the tinsel to the unfrosted truths about the holiday season. Previews Nov 23 & 26, opens Nov 30 and runs to Jan 1, see website for days and times. $20-$35, stu $16. Show Info.
A Christmas Carol. (By the Book Productions). John D Huston plays Charles Dickens in A Christmas Carol exactly as Dickens performed it in the 1860s. Accompanied by The MadriGALS a cappella renderings of the now-forgotten carols Dickens would have heard on the street corners, pubs and churches of his day. Dec 14-15 at 7:30 pm. $25, stu/srs $20. Show Info.
Tails From the City by Marjorie Chan (Common Boots Theatre). A young girl goes on a magical winter adventure when she follows a raccoon family out of her yard in this outdoor all-ages show. Previews Dec 10-12, opens Dec 14 and runs to Dec 30, daily at 7:30 pm (no shows Dec 13, 20, 24-26), plus matinees at 4:30 pm Dec 19, 21 & 23. $30, srs $22, youth 25 & under $12, preview pwyc. Show Info.
Kim’s Convenience by Ins Choi (Soulpepper). The popular play about a Korean family in Regent Park struggling with their past returns to the stage. Opens Dec 6 and runs to Dec 26, see website for schedule. $29.50-$89. Show Info.
Alligator Pie (Soulpepper Theatre). Adapted from the children’s poems of Dennis Lee, this family-friendly production celebrates imagination and invention. Opens Dec 16 and runs to Jan 3, see website for schedule. $24-$45. Show Info.
ATG’s Messiah. (Against The Grain Theatre). The company teams with dancer/choreographer Jennifer Nichols to reimagine Handel’s classic oratorio as a barefoot, costumed, choreographed musical work. Opens Dec 16 and runs to Dec 19, Wed-Fri 8 pm, Sat 2 pm. $25-$79.50. Show Info.
Elizabeth-Darcy: An Adaptation of Pride and Prejudice by Hallie Burt and Kate Werneburg (Burt & Werneburg). Two women play all the parts and go through the venue’s historic rooms in this remount of the Fringe play based on the Jane Austen novel. Opens Dec 16 and runs to Dec 20, Wed-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20. Show Info.
One Hell of a Creskins: An Absurd & Filthy Holiday Party. (Fabergé Fruits Collective). Henri Fabergé revisits his Feint Of Hart rock opera/ comedy/ performance series with a mix of scripted comedy, improvisation and musical cabaret set in a fictional Edwardian-era naval academy. Dec 16, durational performances from 9 pm to midnight, followed by a dance party with DJ Lee Paradise. $15. Show Info.
The Chasse Galerie by the Red One Theatre Collective (Storefront Theatre). This production is inspired by a French-Canadian folk tale about a bewitched canoe and a deal with the devil. Opens Dec 17 and runs to Dec 31, Dec 17-22 and 28-31 at 8 pm. $20-$25. Show Info.
The Mummers’ Masque by Dean Burry (Toronto Masque Theatre). Vocal soloists and musicians dramatize the Newfoundland tradition of door-to-door caroling. Dec 17-19 at 8 pm. $20-$50. Show Info.
Seismology by Brandy Leary (TPM/Anandam Dancetheatre). Work-in-progress staging of an interdisciplinary journey into our experiences of environmental decline. Dec 18-19 at 7:30 pm. Pwyc at the door. Show Info.
Jacques and the Bean Stockmarket! by Jane A Shields and Rosemary Doyle (Panto Players). Family-friendly Holiday pantomime show. Dec 18-Jan 3, daily to Jan 2 at 8 pm, mats Dec 27, Jan 2-3 at 2 pm (no show Dec 24-25, Dec 30 and Jan 1). $25, child $15. Show Info.
Sistahfest: Reasoning With My Sisters. Sistahfest is a multi-discipline arts and culture festival showcasing female actors and singers from across the GTA. Upfront Theatre Foundation presents a play by Masani Montague. The play addresses issues such as domestic violence, sexual assault, teenage pregnancy, child custody and polygamy. Dec 19 at 6 and 8 pm. $20-$30. Show Info.
Listings based primarily on NOW! Stage Listings