Cheap Theatre in Toronto for the Week of January 14th, 2013

Five for Twenty (Or Less)

Trials, tribulations and judgment sneak up on us at various stages in our lives and for various reasons. Whether it’s a matter of roots, creed, belief-systems, or sanity, it’s the unfortunate way of the world in which we live that we’re subject to prejudice and assumptions. Below you’ll find some affordable theatre that may dabble in these themes or dabble with the ways people have gotten out of them.

CAFE DAUGHTER by Kenneth T Williams (Native Earth Performing Arts/Gwaandak Theatre). A Chinese-Canadian-Cree girl dreams of becoming a doctor in 50s rural Saskatchewan in this solo show based on a true story. Previews Jan 15-16. Opens Jan 16 and runs to Jan 20. $20, mat $15, elders/stu $10. Aki Studio Theatre, 585 Dundas E. 1-800-204-0855,

CATALPA by Donal O’Kelly (Blood in the Alley). A screenwriter tells the story of six Irish expats who undertake a risky trip to free rebels from an Australian prison in 1875. Previews Jan 15. Opens Jan 16 and runs to Feb 2. $20, preview $15, mat pwyc. Theatre Passe Muraille, Backspace, 16 Ryerson. 416-504-7529,

DOUBT: A PARABLE by John Patrick Shanley (UC Follies/Bygone Theatre). A feisty nun suspects a priest of improper conduct at a 60s Bronx Catholic school. Jan 17-19. $20, stu/srs $12. University College, East Hall, 15 King’s College Circle. 416-978-8849,

HELP YOURSELF by Kat Sandler (The Falling Baby Co-op). This dark comedy looks at a man whose job is to clear consciences by justifying his clients’ immoral acts. Opens Jan 11 and runs to Jan 19. $20, Thu $10, Sun pwyc. Red Sandcastle Theatre, 922 Queen E. 416-845-9411,

THE ACCIDENTAL DEATH OF AN ANARCHIST by Dario Fo (Victoria College Drama Society). A psychological puppeteer creates confusion at a police station after a suspect dies in custody in this political farce. Jan 17-19. $12, stu/srs $10. Isabel Bader Theatre, 93 Charles W. 416-978-8849,