All posts by Keira Grant

Review: L’elisir d’amore/Elixir of Love (Canadian Opera Company)

Canadian Opera Company’s Elixir of Love, now on stage in Toronto, is “good, simple fun”

The backdrop for the Canadian Opera Company’s new production of L’elisir d’amore (Gaetano Donizetti, 1832) glides us into a small, unspoiled pastoral village. It seems impossible that war could ever disturb such a place, but it is 1914 in small town Ontario… Continue reading Review: L’elisir d’amore/Elixir of Love (Canadian Opera Company)

Review: Caminos 2017 (Aluna Theatre/Native Earth Performing Arts)

Photo from CaminosThis festival celebrates Pan-American, Indigenous, and Latinx voices on stage in Toronto

The 2017 Caminos festival, produced by Aluna Theatre and Native Earth Performing Arts is a week-long festival of new performances centering on Pan-American, Indigenous, and Latinx voices. The festival offers diverse performances in a variety of media, including theatre, dance and music. Continue reading Review: Caminos 2017 (Aluna Theatre/Native Earth Performing Arts)

Review: A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare in the Ruff)

A large, translucent golden sphere lashed between two trees was visible well away from the seating area for Shakespeare in the Ruff’s 2017 production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. I am always amazed by the level of spectacle this small company is able to produce with minimal props and set. I have been a patron of Withrow Park Shakespeare in both its incarnations. In the late 90s, I attended productions of the original “Shakespeare in the Ruff”, which became defunct in the early 2000s after a 25-year run. Inspired by the original company’s efforts to create a community centred, accessible outdoor theatrical culture in Toronto, Shakespeare in the Ruff re-emerged in 2012. Continue reading Review: A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare in the Ruff)

In Sundry Languages (Toronto Laboratory Theatre) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

Photo of Amy Packwood, Clayton Gray, Joy Lee-Ryan, Sepideh Shariati and Gloria Gao

In Sundry Languages produced by Toronto Laboratory Theatre playing at the Toronto Fringe Festival is a creative collaboration that explores themes of belonging, exclusion, language, culture, and race. The six cast members speak six different first languages and come from six countries of origin. They are all now “Canadian”, but this identity does not come without complexities, tensions, and pain. Continue reading In Sundry Languages (Toronto Laboratory Theatre) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

Weirder Thou Art (Physically Speaking) 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival

Photo of Stephen Flett, Ronak Singh, Philip Krusto, and Anne Shepherd

Weirder thou Art produced by Physically Speaking playing at the Toronto Fringe Festival emerges from the Bouffon school of theatre. Bouffon, the French word from which the English word “buffoon” originates, is a form of clowning that emphasizes jester-style mockery of human foibles, and can include slapstick comedy, exaggerated bodily features, farce, burlesque, and satire. Continue reading Weirder Thou Art (Physically Speaking) 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival

Jay & Shilo’s Sibling Revelry (Triplets Theatrical)

Photo of Joseph Zita, Justin Bott, Hailey Lewis, and Jennifer Walls

Jay & Shilo’s Sibling Revelry by Triplets Theatrical playing at the 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival is a great opportunity to expose your youngest family members to the theatre. Fun, short and sweet, my 5-year-old perpetual motion machine stayed engaged the whole time and was actually a little bit disappointed when the musical comedy ended as soon as it did. Continue reading Jay & Shilo’s Sibling Revelry (Triplets Theatrical)

Palestineman (symbols and details theatre) 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival

Sam Khalilieh is not kidding when he says Palestineman, produced by symbols and details theatre playing at the Toronto Fringe Festival, is a lecture no one asked for. Although he gets behind a podium with water and lecture notes, from there the show really doesn’t resemble your undergraduate sociology class.

Continue reading Palestineman (symbols and details theatre) 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival

Review: The Jazz Singer (Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company/Dancap)

Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company and Dancap’s reimagined production of The Jazz Singer is an extremely savvy example of social justice storytelling at the theatre, which deftly preserves the timeless and meaningful points of the original story, while shedding that which no longer serves it.

The original 1920s musical is loosely based on the real life of legendary 20s crooner Al Jolson, who made his name on stage performing in minstrel shows in blackface. Continue reading Review: The Jazz Singer (Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company/Dancap)