Dating In A Disposable World (Zee Cre8tive) – 2010 Toronto Fringe Review

By Adam Collier

Dating In A Disposable World is running at the Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse as part of Fringe. A company called Zee Cre8tive is producing the show.

Production notes frame the one-woman performance as cabaret – consisting of singing, dancing, and comic acts. So my expectation was that Dating In A Disposable World might be a light (maybe even flighty) take on its title.

Dating In A Disposable World has far more texture and depth than its billing as a cabaret suggests.

Zalia Joi takes the stage as its performer. By my count she plays five characters. Three of them include: a desperate broken-hearted pixie named Tiffany; a folk storyteller with all the mannerisms of a mystic, and; a headstrong young woman that has become emotionally confused after the death of her husband.

Together these three characters comprise, what I was struck as, a timeless portrait of the fear, seduction, remorse and nearly endless dilemmas that epitomizes dating. Again, referring to the production notes, Dating In A Disposable World is a “an edgy 21st century” work. But other than a brief character interlude of a car repairman, I’m not sure I got the specific connection to contemporary life. (A fellow theatergoer I talked to after the performance was also a bit puzzled by the car repairman character.)

Ms Joi, from Australia, has a deep resource of talent. She wrote a good portion of the songs, and effortlessly glides from character-to-character. Her voice is very strong (Ms Joi opens the show accompanying herself on acoustic guitar), and I got the impression she really enjoys this work.

One couple in the audience had come-up from Pittsburgh for the Fringe. They really enjoyed it.

I gave it an enthusiastic round of applause.


Dating In A Disposable World is on at the Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse (79 St. George Street, just south of Harbord)

The final performance of this show was at 7:00PM this evening.