by Wayne Leung
Mirvish has been the dominant presenter of commercial theatre in Toronto for decades. Indeed, before the arrival of Aubrey Dan’s upstart Dancap onto the scene a few years ago Mirvish was the only major presenter of big broadway-style shows in Toronto.
The healthy competition from Dancap has forced Mirvish to up their game; their past couple seasons have arguably been their strongest in years.
The Mirvish 2011/12 season seems to continue the upward trend. It features an exciting and eclectic mix of musicals and plays.
THE SUBSCRIPTION SERIES
The Railway Children
The Mirvish season will kick off with the previously-announced North American premiere of the UK production The Railway Children. The production will be housed in a new semi-permanent venue in Roundhouse Park at the foot of the CN Tower and will feature a vintage steam locomotive.
(beginning May 3, 2011 at the Roundhouse Theatre)
Kim Cattrall (Sex and the City) will come home to Canada to perform in a transfer of the hit West End production of Noël Coward’s Private Lives before heading to Broadway.
(September/October 2011 at the Royal Alexandra Theatre)
Long before there was Mamma Mia, ABBA’s Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson collaborated with lyricist Tim Rice on Chess; a tuneful musical/political allegory set against the backdrop of the Cold War.
(September/October 2011 at the Princess of Wales Theatre)
Mirvish knows that Toronto loves it’s Disney Theatricals. Adapted from the classic Disney film as well as the original P. L. Travers novel, the North American tour of Mary Poppins will be landing in Toronto and that’s just supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
(November/December 2011 at the Princess of Wales Theatre)
The Blue Dragon
Robert Lepage has taken Toronto by storm in recent years with his 9-hour epic Lipsynch at Luminato, his aquatic opera The Nightingale and Other Short Fables at the Canadian Opera Company and his Cirque du Soleil collaboration Totem to name just a few. Toronto theatre-goers still can’t seem to get enough. Mirvish will present The Blue Dragon; a layered, multi-media play set in contemporary China.
(January/February 2012 at the Royal Alexandra Theatre)
War Horse, a British National Theatre production, features the work of South Africa’s Handspring Puppet Company in the telling of a World War I epic about a boy and his horse.
(beginning February 2012 at the Princess of Wales Theatre)
The dawning of the age of aquarius may have long come and gone but who doesn’t love this iconic musical from the ‘60s? Mirvish brings the national tour of the recent Broadway revival of Hair to Toronto.
(March/April 2012 at the Royal Alexandra Theatre)
BONUS (NON-SUBSCRIPTION) SHOWS
2 Pianos 4 Hands
Ted Dykstra and Richard Greenblatt return to Toronto for one last encore of their landmark play 2 Pianos 4 Hands from October 29 through November 20, 2011 at the Panasonic Theatre.
Mirvish will present the North American Premiere of this UK “horror play” (think horror movie live on stage) at the Panasonic Theatre beginning April 1, 2011. Ghost Stories will feature an all-Canadian cast.
Good Mourning Mrs. Brown
Following his successful run of How Now Mrs. Brown Cow in Toronto last season, Irish actor Brendan O’Carroll brings his character Agnes Brown back to Toronto in Good Mourning Mrs. Brown just in time for St. Patrick’s day (from March 8 through 29, 2011 at the Princess of Wales Theatre)
Women Fully Clothed: Older & Hotter
Four Canadian funny-ladies; Kathryn Greenwood, Robin Duke, Jayne Eastwood, and Teresa Pavlinek bring their unique brand of comedy back to Toronto in Women Fully Clothed: Older & Hotter at the Royal Alexandra Theatre from June 14 through 19, 2011.
So there ya have it folks; the new Mirvish theatre season.
What do Mooney on Theatre readers think? Are you buying a subscription? Which shows are you interested in going to see?
For more information on the Mirvish 2011/12 season visit www.mirvish.com
– Nicolas Dromard as ‘Bert’ performs “Step In Time” with the National Tour Company of MARY POPPINS. ©Disney/CML. Photo by Joan Marcus.
– Original UK Production of Chess – Photo by Keith Pattinson
– War Horse – Photo © Simon Annand