All posts by Maighdlin Mahoney

Maighdlin is a Vancouverite turned Torontonian who graduated the summer of 2015 from Randolph Academy as a singer, actor and dancer. She first came across the idea while watching The Wizard of Oz movie for the 50th time, when she was about 3 years old. She is the co-founder and co-artistic director of NonExistent Theatre, a new theatre company that challenges conventional casting and provides opportunities to emerging artists. while also attending the University of Toronto. Oh, and she ran into Bernadette Peters in a coffee shop once.

Review: Century Song (Nightwood Theatre)

Neema Bickersteth in Nightwood Theatre's Century SongCentury Song is a massive collaborative work, now gracing the Toronto stage

Nightwood Theatre‘s Century Song, a collaborative production with Volcano, Richard Jordan Productions UK, Moveable Beast Collective and Crow’s Theatre, is a one-woman multimedia piece that heavily features opera and projection design. With a distinctly non-narrative form, there is a huge amount of beautiful work to be found in its 50 minute runtime.

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Review: Instructions (To Any Future Socialist Government Wishing to Abolish Christmas) (Coal Mine Theatre)

INSTRUCTIONS (TO ANY FUTURE SOCIALIST GOVERNMENT WISHING TO ABOLISH CHRISTMAS) is an electric two-hander examining the shifting and suspect forces that drive the global financial system. Written by Canadian playwright Michael Mackenzie Directed by David Storch Starring Diana Bentley and Ted Dykstra Produced by Christopher Hayes Set and Lighting Design by Steve Lucas Costume Design by Anna Treusch Sound Design by Samuel SholdiceToronto’s Coal Mine Theatre presents a new play by Canadian playwright Michael Mackenzie

The title of Coal Mine Theatre‘s current show, Instructions (To Any Future Socialist Government Wishing to Abolish Christmas), keeps it’s cards close to it’s chest. As an audience member with no prior knowledge, I had no idea what I was sitting down to watch. As the show cleverly and gradually unfolded, I was constantly realizing that even when I thought I knew what I was watching, the tables would turn. Instructions kept me guessing as it revealed calm to be chaos, and peeled back the eternal layers of finance and personal relationships to reveal their loaded centres. Continue reading Review: Instructions (To Any Future Socialist Government Wishing to Abolish Christmas) (Coal Mine Theatre)

Review: Refuge (Nightwood Theatre)

Photo of Raïs Muoi and Jason Weinberg in Refuge by John LauenerToronto’s Nightwood Theatre explores the trials and tribulations of refugees seeking asylum

Nightwood Theatre‘s production of Refuge, now playing at the Tarragon Extraspace, takes on the topical issue of Canadian Immigration, both the system and the people it aims to serve. In a refreshingly raw production, it captures the deeply rooted hopes and fears of refugees and born Canadians in our collective struggle to find safety and a sense of home.

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Review: The Dialogues of Leopold and Loeb (Alumnae Theatre)

6040415_origAlumnae Theatre presents Brad Walton’s new play, The Dialogues of Leopold and Loeb, in Toronto

The Dialogues of Leopold and Loeb, a new play by Brad Walton playing at Alumnae Theatre, follows the personal relationship between prodigies turned murderers Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb. While the subject matter garners interest, the script and performances were stiff and the duration of the play was unnecessarily long.

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Review: Killer Joe (Coal Mine Theatre)

Killer_Joe_2Coal Mine Theatre’s Killer Joe, on stage in Toronto, has “humor and courage”

As soon as I entered the Coal Mine Theatre, I was immersed in the dirty, trailer park world of Killer Joe. The audience was packed in, a hairsbreadth away from the action, with discarded take out containers at our feet and plastic ceiling tiles overhead. Was it always comfortable? No, but we were forced to take a hard look at the grit and violence of a world that society would often prefer to ignore. The cast and crew did a good job of authentically creating that world, especially considering a few of the curve balls in the script.

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Review: Pyaasa (Theatre Passe Muraille)

Anusree Roy, the written and performer of PyaasaPyaasa is a “stunningly real theatrical experience” on the Toronto stage

Pyaasa, playing now at Theatre Passe Muraille, opens on a shadow-covered stage, which contains only a rusted metal bucket. For the next 50 minutes, the only other entity, prop or otherwise, to grace the stage is Anusree Roy, the playwright and sole actor. As exemplified by these first moments, Pyaasa goes on to tell a complex story with striking simplicity, creating rich characters and a world that is supremely real.

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Review: Villette (Amicus Productions)

Photo of Amicus Production's Vilette Charlotte Brontë’s classic novel arrives on the Toronto stage at the Papermill Theatre

Villette, presented by Amicus Productions, is a tribute to the 200-year anniversary of Charlotte Brontë’s birth, written specifically for Amicus Productions by frequent collaborator Chris Coculuzzi. I applaud the company’s investment in the piece and the community environment it creates. The show in itself, however, was not as enjoyable as the clear enthusiasm and dedication inspiring it. Continue reading Review: Villette (Amicus Productions)

Review: The Trial of Judith K (Thought for Food Productions)

Cast of Trail of Judith K

This take on Kafka’s The Trial leaves Toronto audiences perplexed at the Theatre Passe Muraille

The Trial of Judith K, presented by Thought for Food Productions at the Theatre Passe Muraille Back Space, is based loosely on Franz Kafka’s unfinished novel The Trial. Unfortunately, The Trial of Judith K feels uncompleted in many ways as well, making it hard to follow or get invested in, even though it is a thematically interesting show.

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Review: Elle (Theatre Passe Muraille)

Elle

Toronto’s Theatre Passe Muraille presents Severn Thompson’s nuanced and clever play, Elle

“You cannot inhabit without being inhabited.”

Such is the resounding message of Elle, playing now at Theatre Passe Muraille, the defiant tale of a French aristocrat stranded on an island off the east coast of Canada. While our heroine survives by sheer force of will and grasps onto her sanity with only her sharp wit, Elle explores how a land inevitably changes a person, deeply and irreversibly.

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Review: Tails from the City (Common Boots Theatre)

Tails from the CityTails From the City, on stage in Toronto, is “enjoyable for kids and parent alike”

Christmas in Toronto doesn’t always live up to the picturesque standards. We’re often left with grey slush instead of fluffy white snow, and the necessary parkas cover up cute Christmas attire. Tails from the City, presented by Common Boots Theatre at Evergreen Brick Works, takes the reality of Christmas in the city and spins it into a whimsical, charming tale of a young girl’s Christmas Eve adventure.

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