Eye-catching Toronto live theatre for the week of April 26, 2010

by George Perry

Shows that Caught Our Eye This Week

Here are all of the shows we wish we could get out and see this week! Take your pick from our list of great theatre escapes for the week of April 26, 2010:

** Shows marked with the double asterisks are the ones that make Megan, our editor, wish she could clone herself so she could check them all out.

A JEW GROWS IN BROOKLYN by Jake Ehrenreich (Mirvish). Ehrenreich performs his musical solo show about being the son of Holocaust survivors and trying to fit in. Opens Apr 28 and runs to May 16, Wed-Thu 7:30 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, mats Sat-Sun and Wed 2 pm. $25-$60. Panasonic Theatre, 651 Yonge. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.

A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM by William Shakespeare (Shakespeare in Action). This adaptation for young audiences features actors, puppets, acrobatics, music and more. Opens Apr 17 and runs to May 1, Mon-Sat (see website for times). $20, kids $15; Sat mat $12. Central Commerce CI, 570 Shaw. 416-703-4881, shakespeareinaction.org.

A YEAR IN THE DEATH OF EDDIE JESTER by T Gregory Argall (Eleventh House/Samuel French, Inc). The spirit of a comatose comic jokes about his bedside visitors and the state of his life. Opens Apr 30 and runs to May 8, Thu-Sat 8 pm, May 5 at 7 pm, mats Sat 2 pm. $35, stu/srs $25. Grace Community Church, 6670 Campobello. eleventhhouse.org.

ALMOST, MAINE by John Cariani (Little Tiny Things Productions). The residents of a small town look to find and sustain love on a cold night. Previews Apr 28-29. Opens Apr 30 and runs to May 15, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2:30 pm. $21. Tarragon Theatre, Extra Space, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827.

**APRIL FOOLS: A COMEDY CABARET (Winchester: Mind Over Body). presents satire, seduction and spectacle, featuring The Carnegie Hall Show by the National Theatre of the World, plus burlesque, aerial arts and more. Apr 25 Doors 7:30 pm. $20-$25. Revival, 783 College. aprilfools.eventbrite.com.

BURN THE FLOOR Mirvish presents the Latin and ballroom dance show. Opens Apr 22 and runs to May 1, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, mats Sat-Sun 2 pm. $25-$89. Canon Theatre, 244 Victoria. 416-872-1212, burnthefloor.com.

**BUZZ (Theatre Passe Muraille). Projects in development by Tee Schneider, Erik Martin, Puppetmongers, Ravi Jain, Greg Thomas, Precious Chong, Maja Ardal and others are presented for audience input. Opens Apr 27 and runs to Apr 30, Tue-Fri 7:30 pm. By donation. 16 Ryerson. 416-504-7529, passemuraille.on.ca.

BYE BYE BIRDIE by Michael Stewart, Lee Adams and Charles Strouse (Randolph Young Company). This musical is based on the life of Elvis Presley. Opens Apr 15 and runs to Apr 25, Thu-Sat 7 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $22. Bathurst Street Theatre, 736 Bathurst. 416-872-1111, randolphacademy.com.

DOUBLE VISION (Back Burner Productions). This double bill features Teenage Depression: An Adult Comedy by Ellen Ross Stuart, and a collaborative work entitled Secret Societies. Opens Apr 23 and runs to May 2, Fri-Sun 8 pm. $15. York University, Fred Thury Studio @ Vanier College, 4700 Keele. back-burner-productions.com.

EVE UNDERGROUND II: THE GOOD BODY by Eve Ensler (V-Day Toronto). Testimonials from around the world are used to examine the politics of the female form. Apr 24-25, Sat 8 pm, Sun 5 pm. $23, stu $18 (proceeds to METRAC). Annex Theatre, 736 Bathurst. ticketbreak.com.

**FRAGMENTS DE MENSONGES INUTILES by Michel Tremblay (Théâtre français de Toronto). Two teens from different eras mingle in parallel worlds and learn about love. Previews Apr 28-29. Opens Apr 30 and runs to May 15, Wed-Sat 8 pm, mats Sun 2:30 pm, May 8 and 15 at 3:30 pm. $32-$56, stu/srs $27-$40, Wed pwyc. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley. 416-534-6604, theatrefrancais.com.

**FRIDAY NIGHTS WITH DIASPORA DIALOGUES (Diaspora Dialogues). The series presents an excerpted play reading of A Song For Tomorrow by Christina Wong, plus readings by authors. Apr 30 at 7 pm. Free. Palmerston Library, 560 Palmerston. diasporadialogues.com.

FROM MARGIN TO CENTRE (Mayworks Festival). Marginalized identities take centre stage with works by Karine Silverwoman and Alexis Mitchell, Zena Lord, Belladonna and others. Apr 30 at 7:30 pm. $5-$15 sliding scale. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. mayworks.ca.

GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS by David Mamet (Soulpepper). A group of real estate salesmen struggle to make it in their cutthroat industry. Opens Apr 22 and runs to Jun 5, see website for schedule. $37-$70, stu $29; rush $20 (stu $5). Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 55 Mill. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.

**HANA’S SUITCASE by Emil Sher (Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People). An old suitcase from Auschwitz leads a teacher and her students on a historical journey. Previews Apr 18-20. Opens Apr 21 and runs to May 21, call or see website for schedule. $10-$20. 165 Front E. 416-862-2222, www.lktyp.ca.

HEART STRINGS by Reynold Nathaniel (Mole Productions). Two men fight over a rare gift. Opens Apr 27 and runs to May 25, Tue (and Apr 24) 8 pm. Pwyc-$32. Maple Leaf House, 2749 Lake Shore W. 416-668-5329.

IF WE WERE BIRDS by Erin Shields (Groundwater Productions). A man’s lust for his wife’s sister leads to horrific consequences in this adaptation of Ovid’s myth. Previews Apr 14-20. Opens Apr 21 and runs to May 23, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2:30 pm. $33-$39, srs $28, stu $21, previews $20, rush $10. Tarragon Theatre, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.

ISOLATED INCIDENTS The Free Concert Series in the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre presents solo classical bharatanatyam and contemporary dance by Nova Bhattacharya. Apr 29 at noon. Free. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. coc.ca.

IT WILL WORK! (Mayworks Festival). The struggles of working-class peoples are celebrated through dance, spoken word, music and more. May 1, doors 7:30 pm. $10-$15 sliding scale. The Garrison, 1197 Dundas W. mayworks.ca.

JERSEY BOYS by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice (Dancap Productions). Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons become pop icons in this musical. Opens Aug 21 and runs to Jun 30, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mats Sat-Sun and Wed 2 pm. $25-$95. Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge. 416-644-3665, dancaptickets.com. NNNN (Susan G Cole)

LAST OF THE RED HOT LOVERS by Neil Simon (Encore Entertainment). A faithful man tries for an extramarital fling in this comedy. Opens Apr 22 and runs to May 2, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $28.50, mat $27. Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge. 416-872-1111, encoreshows.com.

**MARAVILLA: THE HEROIC MONOMYTH (Second City). presents a comedic show for all ages that looks at a hero’s journey using music, puppetry and aerial acrobatics. Opens Apr 25 and runs to May 9, Sat-Sun 11 am. $12, family 4-pack $40. 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.

NO GUARANTEES / NO REFUNDS DanceWorks CoWorks and Love You Long Time Collective present eclectic works by Tanya Crowder, Jonathan Osborn and Allison Peacock. Apr 29-May 1 at 8 pm. $18, stu/srs $14. Winchester Street Theatre, 80 Winchester. danceworks.ca.

**PINK INK ZINE LAUNCH (Mayworks Festival). The annual zine launches with readings and rants by queer youth. Apr 28 at 7:30 pm. $5-$10 sliding scale, free for youth. Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen W. mayworks.ca.

**PIRATE VIDEO CABARET: CABARET ROYALE (Clinton’s). presents Rhiannon Archer, Terry Clement, Alana Johnston, Jared Sales, Nile Seguin and Kristeen Von Hagen. Apr 26 8:30 pm. $5. 693 Bloor W. piratevideocabaret.com.

**RECONCILIATION by Sky Gilbert (The Cabaret Company). A country dweller and his urbanized brother clash over lifestyle, sexuality and their father’s inheritance. Previews Apr 14. Opens Apr 15 and runs to Apr 25, Wed-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $15-$25, Sun pwyc. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555, artsexy.ca.

**RED MACHINE: UNDER THE KNIFE (The Room/HATCH). Four abstractions of an event are interpreted by different areas of the brain in this work-in-progress presentation. Apr 24-25, Sat 8 pm, Sun 4 pm. $12, stu/srs $10. Harbourfront Centre, Studio Theatre, 235 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000, harbourfrontcentre.com.

RENT by Jonathan Larson (Toronto Youth Theatre). New York artists struggle to make ends meet in the shadow of the AIDS epidemic in this musical. Opens Apr 28 and runs to May 8, Wed-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat 2 pm. $28-$35, stu $23-$28. Lower Ossington Theatre, 100A Ossington. 416-915-6747 ext 221, torontoyouththeatre.org.

ROCK OF AGES by Chris D’Arienzo (Mirvish). This arena-rock love story takes place LA’s Sunset Strip and features hits from the 80s. Previews Apr 20-May 9. Opens May 11 and runs to Jun 6, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, mats Sat-Sun 2 pm. $28-$99. Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.

**ROCK.PAPER.SISTAHZ.9 (bcurrent). The annual arts festival features poetry, spoken word, music, staged readings, dance, film and more. Opens Apr 9 and runs to Apr 30, see website for full schedule and offsite events. $9.99, pass $49.99; some pwyc events. Artscape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie. 416-533-1500, bcurrent.ca.

SECOND CITY presents Reach For The Bronze, a comedic look at Olympic fever, Canadian culture and ice sports. Mon 8 pm. $12. 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.

SILENT WORDS by Ashley Wright (Theatre Crave). Deaf actor Chris Dodd performs this solo show about a boy with a musical gift who loses his hearing. Previews Apr 15. Opens Apr 16 and runs to Apr 25, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $20. Tarragon Theatre, Extra Space, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827.

SING FOR YOUR SUPPER – COLD READING SERIES (Red One Theatre). New scripts will be read at this monthly series. Apr 27 at 8 pm. Free. Lower Ossington Theatre, 100A Ossington. singforyoursuppertoronto@gmail.com.

SO THE STORY GOES by SweLL (Mayworks Festival). The queer performance troupe explores questions of gender, sexuality, desire, culture and class. Apr 27 at 8 pm. $12-$20 sliding scale. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. mayworks.ca.

STAGING WAGNER’S DER FLIEGENDE HOLLÄNDER FOR OUR TIMES (The Opera Exchange). This in-depth look at Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman features lectures and panel discussion with COC members and others. May 1 from 9:30 am to 4 pm. $25, stu $5. Edward Johnson Building, Walter Hall, 80 Queen’s Park. 416-306-2377, coc.ca.

SUNDAY NIGHT LIVE! (Comedy Bar). presents a weekly sketch show w/ the Sketchersons and guests. Sun 9 pm. $8. 945 Bloor W. comedybar.ca.

THE DOOR PRIZE SHOW (Zelda’s Living Well). presents a weekly talent contest w/ hosts Richard Ryder and Shelita Buffet. Wed 8 pm. Pwyc. 692 Yonge. 416-922-2526, zeldas.ca.

**THE DREAM by Brian Kennington (Bear Productions). This contemporary musical spin on Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream features the music of Three Dog Night. Previews Apr 21-22. Opens Apr 23 and runs to May 8, Mon-Sat 7:30 pm, mats Wed and Sat 1:30 pm. $25, stu/srs/mats $20. Walmer Centre Theatre, 188 Lowther. 647-702-6488, bearproductions.org.

THE FLYING DUTCHMAN by Richard Wagner (Canadian Opera Company). A cursed sailor looks for love to save him in this German opera. Opens Apr 24 and runs to May 20, Apr 24, 28, May 11, 14, 17 and 20 at 7:30 pm, May 2 at 2 pm, May 8 at 4:30 pm. $62-$292. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-363-8231, coc.ca.

THE MAN IN THE MIRROR (Acting Up Stage Company). Louise Pitre, Thom Allison, Adam Brazier and others perform a tribute to Michael Jackson. Apr 26 at 8 pm. $25-$55. Bathurst Street Theatre, 736 Bathurst. actingupstage.com.

THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO by WA Mozart (Opera Atelier). The popular comedic opera is performed in English with English surtitles. Opens Apr 24 and runs to May 1, see website for schedule. $30-$150. Elgin Theatre, 189 Yonge. 416-872-5555, operaatelier.com.

THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE by Gilbert & Sullivan (Toronto Operetta Theatre). The popular operetta set on a pirate ship gets a staging. Previews Apr 27. Opens Apr 28 and runs to May 2, Fri-Sat and Tue-Wed 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $39-$78. Jane Mallett Theatre, 27 Front E. 416-366-7723, torontooperetta.com.

THE QUEENS by Normand Chaurette (Alumnae Theatre). Six noblewomen scheme to ally themselves with the new king in 15th-century England. Opens Apr 16 and runs to May 1, Wed-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20, Wed 2-for-1, Sun pwyc. 70 Berkeley. 416-364-4170, alumnaetheatre.com.

THE TRIAL OF JEREMY HINZMAN by Oonagh Duncan and Josh Bloch (Foundry Theatre Company). The documentary play about the American army deserter seeking refuge in Canada gets a reading. Apr 26 at 7 pm. Pwyc. The Rearview Mirror, 193 Baldwin. firstdrafttoronto@gmail.com.

THRICE UPON A TIME… by Jacqueline Gosselin (DynamO Théâtre). This acrobatic show tells the story of three youths forced to face their fears. Opens Apr 18 and runs to Apr 29, see website for schedule. $15-$20. Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People, 165 Front E. 416-862-2222, www.lktyp.ca.

TIR NA NOG: A VISITOR’S TALE by Ker Wells (Humber Theatre). A stranger is killed by fearful villagers in this play inspired by the 2007 taser death at Vancouver Airport. Apr 22-25, Fri-Sat 8 pm, mats daily at 2 pm. $15, stu/srs $10. Theatre Centre, 1087 Queen W. 416-675-6622 ext 3080.

**TROUT STANLEY by Claudia Dey (Heart in Hand Theatre). Eccentric twin sisters meet a stranger in a stolen cop uniform in this murder-mystery romance. Previews Apr 21 at 7:30 pm. Opens Apr 22 and runs to May 2, Thu-Sat 7:30 pm, Sun 6 pm. $18, stu $15, preview $12. Bread & Circus, 299 Augusta. heartinhandtheatre.com.

WOMAN IN A MONKEY CAGE by Berni Stapleton (Royal Porcupine Productions). Stapleton’s play about the last woman alive is presented along with staged readings of works by Megan Liley and Rosmary Doyle. Opens Apr 7 and runs to Apr 28, Wed 7 pm. $15. Clinton’s, 693 Bloor W. 416-978-8849, uofttix.ca.

Shows Reviewed by MoT:

** Shows marked with the double asterisks are the ones that make Megan, our editor, wish she could clone herself so she could see them all.

firstdrafttoronto@gmail.com.

**Crosscurrents (Performance Spring Festival). The play development series features staged readings of works by Nina Lee Aquino, Byron Abalos, Daniel MacIvor and others, plus artist talks and more. Opens Apr 4 and runs to Apr 25, see website for schedule. Pwyc ($10 sugg). Factory Theatre, Studio, 125 Bathurst. 416-504-9971, factorytheatre.ca.

Second City For Mayor (Second City). presents its latest sketch comedy revue about city politics, secret girlfriends and more. Limited run, Tue-Sat 8 pm (and Sat 10:30 pm), Sun 7 pm. $24-$29, stu $15. 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.

**This Is What Happens Next by Daniel MacIvor and Daniel Brooks (Canadian Stage/Necessary Angel). MacIvor performs his solo show about addiction, divorce and life in the modern world. Previews Apr 12-14. Opens Apr 15 and runs to May 8, Mon-Sat 8 pm, mats Wed 1:30 pm, Sat 2 pm. $20-$45. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley. 416-368-3110, canadianstage.com.

*Listings based on NOW stage listings*