Eye-catching Toronto live theatre for the week of October 24, 2010

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 October 24, 2010:

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

7a*11d International Festival of Performance Art (7a*11d). Panels, workshops, films and performances by artists from around the world. Opens Oct 21 and runs to Oct 31, see website for schedule and locations. Pwyc-$12, many events free. 7a-11d.ca.

**A Raisin In The Sun by Lorainne Hansberry (Soulpepper). This drama looks at a black family living in 1950s Chicago. Opens Oct 20 and runs to Nov 13, Wed-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm, see website for additional performances. $40-$76, stu $32, rush $5-$22. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 55 Mill. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.

Acis And Galatea by GF Handel (Opera Atelier). The pastoral opera based on Ovid’s tale is performed in English. Opens Oct 30 and runs to Nov 7, Oct 30, Nov 2, 3, 5 and 6 at 7:30 pm, Nov 7 at 3 pm. $33-$146. Elgin Theatre, 189 Yonge. 416-872-5555, operaatelier.com.

Death Of A Salesman by Arthur Miller (Soulpepper). Having lost his job in his twilight years, a man confronts his failure to achieve the American Dream. Previews Oct 16-20. Opens Oct 21 and runs to Nov 13, Mon-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat 1:30 pm (see website for other times). $31.20-$75.33. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 55 Mill. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.

Festival Of Oral Literatures (Dan Yashinsky/Lisa Pijuan-Nomura). Spoken word and storytelling are blended with dance, theatre, puppetry and more, featuring Evalyn Parry, Chris Gibbs, the National Theatre of the World and others. Oct 21-24, see website for schedule and locations. $15-$30, some free events. foolfestival.ca.

**First Bite (Les Coquettes). The burlesque troupe performs a Halloween-themed cabaret show. Opens Oct 24 and runs to Oct 31, Sun 7 and 9:30 pm. $15-$30. Revival, 783 College. lescoquettes.com.

**Grindhouse Ghoulies: Halloween Spooktacular (Skin Tight Outta Sight/Great Canadian Burlesque). The troupe pays tribute to sleazy films of the 60s and 70s with Mysterion the Mind Reader and other guests. Oct 26, doors 9 pm. $15. Mitzi’s Sister, 1554 Queen W. skintightouttasight.com.

Homeland by Setareh Delzendeh (Godot Art Productions). Theatre, dance, live music and film are used to explore the definition of home. Opens Oct 28 and runs to Nov 6, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm. $10-$20. Theatre Passe Muraille, Backspace, 16 Ryerson. 416-504-7529, godotart.ca.

**Lenin’s Embalmers by Vern Thiessen (Harold Green Jewish Theatre). Two scientists chosen to immortalize Lenin gain influence in this absurdist dark comedy. Previews Oct 30-31. Opens Nov 2 and runs to Nov 20, Tue-Thu and Sat 8 pm, mats Wed and Sat 2 pm (see website for other days and times). $40.50-$64.50. MNJCC Al Green Theatre, 750 Spadina. 416-366-7723, hgjewishtheatre.com.

Les Fridolinades by Gratien Gélinas (Théâtre français de Toronto/Théâtre Catapulte). Sketches, songs and monologues are used to examine French-Canadian society. Some performances with English surtitles. Previews Oct 27-28. Opens Oct 29 and runs to Nov 7, Wed-Sat 8 pm, mats Sun 2:30 pm (and Nov 6 at 3:30 pm). $33-$57, stu/srs $28-$57, Wed pwyc. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley. 416-534-6604, theatrefrancais.com.

**Madhouse Variatons by Eric Woolfe (Eldritch Theatre). Horrific scenes from a mental asylum are re-enacted using puppets. Previews Oct 23-24. Opens Oct 26 and runs to Nov 6, Tue-Sat 8 pm (plus Oct 30 at 10:30 pm), mats Oct 31, Nov 6-7 at 2 pm. $20-$25, previews $15, Sun pwyc. Theatre Centre, 1087 Queen W. 416-538-0988, eldritchtheatre.ca.

Matchbox Macbeth adapted by Matthew Walker (Litmus Theatre). Four actors perform and eerie and magical version of the classic in a backyard shed. Opens Oct 21 and runs to Oct 31, Thu-Sun 7 and 9 pm. Pwyc ($10 sugg). Secret Venue in Little Italy. matchboxmacbeth.blogspot.com.

**Monkey Sci-Fi Horror Theatre II (Monkeyman Productions). Two short plays by DJ Sylvis – Phoenix II: The Mongolar Maneuver and Dead Man’s Party – are performed. Opens Oct 28 and runs to Nov 6, Wed-Sat 7:30 pm (no show Nov 4). $15. Palmerston Library Theatre, 560 Palmerston. 416-737-1267, monkeymanproductions.com.

Moonshine by Jim Nolan (Toronto Irish Players). A village undertaker struggles to stage a Shakespeare play and fulfill his dreams. Opens Oct 21 and runs to Nov 6, Thu-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20, stu/srs $18. Alumnae Theatre, 70 Berkeley. 416-440-2888, torontoirishplayers.org.

**Night Of Dread (Clay & Paper Theatre). Puppets, stilt dancers and others perform and parade in an exploration of fear. Oct 30, parade assembles at 4 pm, departs at 6 pm. Pwyc ($10 sugg). Dufferin Grove Park, Dufferin S of Bloor. 416-316-4461, clayandpapertheatre.org.

Pinkalicious, The Musical by Elizabeth Kann, Victoria Kann and John Gregor (Vital Theatre). A girl turns pink after eating too many cupcakes in this family musical. Opens Oct 9 and runs to Dec 26, Sat 11 am and 1 pm, Sun 1 pm. $29.50-$39.50. Lower Ossington Theatre, 100A Ossington. 416-642-8973, vitaltheatre.ca.

Romeo And Juliet by William Shakespeare (Shakespeare in Action). This adaptation for young audiences sets the story in a modern, culturally diverse city. Opens Oct 15 and runs to Nov 6, see website for schedule. $15, stu/srs $12. Central Commerce CI, 570 Shaw. 416-703-4881, shakespeareinaction.org.

**Spent by Michele Smith, Dean Gilmour, Ravi Jain and Adam Paolozza (Theatre Smith-Gilmour/Why Not Theatre/TheatreRUN). This blend of clown and physical comedy takes an absurd look at the financial crisis. Opens Oct 29 and runs to Nov 28, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $18-$28, stu/srs $15-$24, Sun pwyc. Factory Theatre, Studio, 125 Bathurst. 416-504-9971, factorytheatre.ca.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee by William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin (Encore Entertainment). Overachievers vie for the championship in this musical comedy. Opens Oct 28 and runs to Nov 7, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $28-$32.50. Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge. 416-872-1111, encoreshows.com.

**The Andersen Project by Robert Lepage (Canadian Stage Company/Ex Machina). An artist explores questions of sexual identity and unfulfilled fantasies in this multimedia solo show. Opens Oct 21 and runs to Oct 30, Mon-Sat 8 pm, mats Wed 1:30 pm, Sat 2 pm. $20-$92. Bluma Appel Theatre, 27 Front E. 416-368-3110, canadianstage.com.

**The Girls Who Saw Everything by Sean Dixon (Ryerson Theatre School). A book club explores life and death, love, identity and belonging through an ancient epic. Previews Oct 13 at 8 pm. Opens Oct 14 and runs to Nov 12, see website for schedule. $18, stu/srs $14. Abrams Studio Theatre, 46 Gerrard E. 416-979-5118, ryersontheatre.ca.

The Middle Place by Andrew Kushnir (Theatre Passe Muraille). Based on Project: Humanity interviews, the stories of homeless youth are brought to the stage. Previews Oct 21-23. Opens Oct 26 and runs to Nov 13, Tue-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat 2 pm. $30-$35, preview $15, mat pwyc. 16 Ryerson. 416-504-7529, passemuraille.on.ca.

**The Rocky Horror Show Live! by Richard O’Brien (Lower Ossington Theatre). This funder for LOT features the classic rock musical. Oct 28-31, Thu-Fri 8 pm, Sat 8:30 pm, Sun 7 pm, plus late shows Fri-Sat 11 pm. $25, stu $20. 100A Ossington. 416-915-6747, lowerossingtontheatre.com.

The School Project by Steph Berntson, Julia Lederer and Haley McGee (Flashquiz). This interactive creation examines school and lessons. Opens Oct 20 and runs to Oct 29, Wed-Sat 8 pm. $10-$12. Bloor Collegiate, 1141 Bloor W. flashquiz.ca.

**Twisted Elegance by Jason Murray (Upstage Productions/pivotal(arts) theatre). A reclusive student must interact with a popular girl, forcing each one to examine their choices. Opens Oct 19 and runs to Oct 30, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $8-$12. Unit 102 Theatre, 46 Noble. twistedelegance.eventbrite.com.

**Unity (1918) by Kevin Kerr (Ryerson Theatre School). A small town in Saskatchewan is hit with the Spanish Flu after WWI. Previews Oct 20 at 8 pm. Opens Oct 21 and runs to Nov 13, see website for schedule. $18, stu/srs $14. Abrams Studio Theatre, 46 Gerrard E. 416-979-5118, ryersontheatre.ca.

Already Reviewed by MoT

Aida by Giuseppe Verdi (Canadian Opera Company). The tragic opera is performed in Italian. Opens Oct 2 and runs to Nov 5, Oct 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 27, 30, Nov 2 and 5 at 7:30 pm, mats Oct 2 at 4:30 pm, Oct 24 at 2 pm. $62-$281. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-363-8231, coc.ca.

**Billy Twinkle: Requiem For A Golden Boy by Ronnie Burkett (Factory Theatre). A puppeteer evaluates his life and rekindles his passion after losing his job. Previews Sep 24-26. Opens Sep 28 and runs to Oct 31, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $25-$48, previews $15-$25, Sun pwyc. 125 Bathurst. 416-504-9971, factorytheatre.ca.

**Death In Venice by Benjamin Britten (Canadian Opera Company). The opera based on Thomas Mann’s novel is performed in English. Opens Oct 16 and runs to Nov 6, Oct 16, 19, 22, 25, 28 and Nov 3 at 7:30 pm, mats Oct 31 at 2 pm and Nov 6 at 4:30 pm. $62-$281. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-363-8231, coc.ca.

**The List by Jennifer Tremblay (Nightwood Theatre/Canadian Stage). A busy woman neglects a friend’s request and inadvertently causes her death. Previews Oct 11-13. Opens Oct 14 and runs to Nov 6, Mon-Sat 8 pm, mats Wed 1:30 pm, Sat 2 pm. $22-$49, limited Mon pwyc. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley. 416-368-3110, nightwoodtheatre.net.

Love, Loss, And What I Wore by Nora Ephron and Delia Ephron (Michael Rubinoff/Daryl Roth). Mary Walsh, Margot Kidder, Sharron Matthews, Andrea Martin and others perform stories about women. Previews Jul 16-20. Opens Jul 21 and runs to Sep 4. Opens Sep 10 and runs to Oct 30, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mats Wed and Sat 2 pm. $35-$65. Panasonic Theatre, 651 Yonge. 416-872-1212, lovelossonstage.ca.

**Revelations by Jason Morneau and Damien Gulde (Agawa Sapphire Productions). Four strangers visiting a therapist become the four horsemen of the apocalypse. Opens Oct 17 and runs to Nov 2, Sun-Tue 8 pm (except Oct 17 and 31 at 3 pm). $10-$12. Bad Dog Theatre, 138 Danforth unclemaoandtheredstarreview@yahoo.ca

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 Dec 19, 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.

**The Clockmaker by Stephen Massicotte (Tarragon Theatre). A man is intrigued by a married woman who brings a broken clock to his shop. Previews Sep 14-21. Opens Sep 22 and runs to Oct 24, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mats Sat-Sun 2:30 pm. $23-$44, Fri & Sun rush $10. 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.

**The Great War: The History Of The Village Of The Small Huts, 1914-1918 by Michael Hollingsworth (VideoCabaret). This satire looks at conquest and the absurdity of war. Previews Oct 26-28. Opens Oct 29 and runs to Dec 5, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $15-$30. Cameron House, 408 Queen W. 416-703-1725, videocab.com.

The New Electric Ballroom by Enda Walsh (MacKenzieRo). Three sisters in a remote fishing village in Ireland are obsessed by dark memories. Opens Oct 8 and runs to Oct 24, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $26, Sun pwyc. Tarragon Theatre, Extra Space, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, mackenziero.com.

**Priscilla Queen Of The Desert The Musical by Stephan Elliott and Allan Scott (Mirvish). Three friends take a battered bus across the Australian outback, looking for love and friendship. Previews Oct 12-24. Opens Oct 26 and runs to Jan 2, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sat-Sun and Wed 2 pm. $20-$130. Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.

**Wicked by Stephen Sondheim and Winnie Holzman (Mirvish). The hit musical revealing the backstory of the witches of Oz returns. Opens Oct 20 and runs to Nov 28, Tue-Sat 7:30 pm, mats Sat-Sun and Wed 1:30 pm. $35-$129. Canon Theatre, 244 Victoria. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.

*Listings based on NOW stage listings*