All posts by Mirette Shoeir

Review: RHINOCEROS (Douze Citrons)

Thought-provoking Ionesco play arrives on the Toronto stage

Douze Citrons have chosen a timely moment to mount their production of Ionesco’s Rhinoceros at the Aki Studio. A quaint french town is turned upside down as its residents start changing into Rhinoceroses. The change happens slowly at first, and the animals seem to cause little harm, but soon life in the town comes to a standstill as more and more of its inhabitants transform. As the pressure mounts, the choice to remain human becomes less and less attractive. Continue reading Review: RHINOCEROS (Douze Citrons)

Review: Loot (Bygone Theatre)

British farce plays on the Toronto stage

Bygone Theatre fires off their 2018 season with Joe Orton’s Loot at Alumnae Theatre. I found this to be a production which shines on the technical aspects: the play is set in 1960s England and the set, props and costumes are all faithful representations of that era. The cast adopt English accents, which they maintain respectably well. Unfortunately, I felt that this attention to detail seems to have come at the expense of the humor and character depth offered by the play.

Continue reading Review: Loot (Bygone Theatre)

REVIEW: A Midsummer Night’s Dream (The Chekhov Collective)

The Chekhov Collective brings a new twist to the Bard’s classic comedy to Toronto audiences

I have seen A Midsummer Night’s Dream only once before years back and that production featured a large cast, an elaborate set, and costumes which is why I was looking forward to seeing this version by The Chekhov Collective at as intimate a space as The Citadel. Continue reading REVIEW: A Midsummer Night’s Dream (The Chekhov Collective)

2018 Progress Review: Race Cards (curated by The Theatre Centre & Little Black Afro Theatre Company)

What does it mean to be Black? Is it better to have an ill-informed conversation about race or no conversation at all? How do you feel when you hear (or hear yourself saying) the word diverse? Why did Rachel Dolezal feel the need to be Black- to go one step beyond cultural appropriation into something else? What does the desire to be polite play in racism? What were you expecting from a piece called Race Cards? Selina Thompson, the creator of Race Cards, an ever-expanding installation and archive taking place at The Theatre Centre as part of the Progress Festival, invites you to answer one of the previous questions on race. Continue reading 2018 Progress Review: Race Cards (curated by The Theatre Centre & Little Black Afro Theatre Company)

Review: I Cannot Lose My Mind & Once Upon a Black Boy (The Watah Theatre)

The Watah Theatre stages a double bill of work in Toronto

I was excited as I made my way to Streetcar Crowsnest to see a double bill- the premiere of I Cannot Lose My Mind and an excerpt reading of a work-in-progress entitled Once Upon A Black Boy– presented by The Watah Theatre. The folks at The Watah Theatre can usually be relied upon to present something challenging and unexpected and they did not disappoint. Continue reading Review: I Cannot Lose My Mind & Once Upon a Black Boy (The Watah Theatre)

Review: Lear (Groundling Theatre Company)

Photo from LearGrounding Theatre Company gives The Bard’s classic a feminist twist, on stage in Toronto

I literally said “Yowza!” when the volunteer usher handing me my program at the Harbourfront Centre told me that Groundling Theatre Company’s production of Lear is three hours long. However, I’m happy to report that the old adage holds true and time does fly when you’re having fun. When this stunning production ends you are left wanting more.

Continue reading Review: Lear (Groundling Theatre Company)

2018 Next Stage Festival Review: Leila Live! (Laugh With Leila Productions)

Photo of Leila by Stuart Lowe PhotographyI have forever been meaning to see (yet somehow always managing to miss) a show by Laugh With Leila Productions. So I was excited to discover that the self-styled Persian Princess with a cult following is back with a riotous new performance, Leila Live!, playing in the Factory Theatre Antechamber as part of the Next Stage Theatre Festival.

Continue reading 2018 Next Stage Festival Review: Leila Live! (Laugh With Leila Productions)

Review: RaPUNzel (Red Sandcastle Theatre)

Red Sandcastle Theatre in Toronto takes on the story of Rapunzel in their latest panto tale

Before seeing RaPUNzel at Red Sandcastle Theatre I had never been to a pantomime, was not sure what to expect. I wondered if there would be audience participation (my inability to find a date for the night meant I had no one to hide behind if that should be the case). Happily, though, I discovered that this is the sort of show that leaves you with your cheeks aching from laughter. Continue reading Review: RaPUNzel (Red Sandcastle Theatre)

Review: The Tenth Muse (Filament Incubator)

Toronto’s Filament Incubator presents The Tenth Muse, a play by Julie Foster

It is easy to walk past the black door of 56 Kensington Avenue and not notice it’s there. Yet downstairs in a small concrete basement, known as Kensington Hall (said with tongue in cheek one assumes) an exciting indie performance of budding playwright Julie Foster’s The Tenth Muse, presented by Filament Incubator, is taking place. Continue reading Review: The Tenth Muse (Filament Incubator)

Review: Wake Up And Smell The Coffee (LowDown Theatre Company)

Wake Up and Smell the Coffee posterToronto’s LowDown Theatre Company presents Wake Up And Smell The Coffee, a play by Eric Bogosian

I see a lot of theatre. And while Toronto offers a diverse fare with something for everyone you seldom come across a show that will enthrall you as LowDown Theatre’s production of Eric Bogosian’s Wake Up and Smell the Coffee at The Assembly Theatre. Continue reading Review: Wake Up And Smell The Coffee (LowDown Theatre Company)