Here is what’s going on in Toronto theatre this week. There are several great shows to catch for the week of March 24th, 2014. ** Shows marked with the double asterisks and in red are the ones that make Wayne, our Managing Editor, wishes he could exist in multiple parallel universes so he could check them all out.
Already Covered by MoT…
6 Essential Questions by Priscila Uppal (Factory Theatre). A woman reconnects with the mother who abandoned her 20 years before. Previews Mar 1-5, Sat and Tue-Wed 8 pm, Sun 7 pm. Opens Mar 6 and runs to Mar 30, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $27-$42, mat pwyc. Mainspace, 125 Bathurst. 416-504-9971, factorytheatre.ca.
**Arrabal Mirvish and BASE Entertainment present a dance-theatre show about the underground world of tango clubs in 1970s Argentina. Opens Feb 4 and runs to May 11, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun and Wed 2 pm. $44-$84. Panasonic Theatre, 651 Yonge. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
The Carousel by Jennifer Tremblay (Nightwood Theatre). Driving along Quebec’s north shore, a woman enters a maze of memories as she travels to be with her dying mother. Previews Mar 11-12. Opens Mar 13 and runs to Mar 30, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $25-$45. Berkeley Street Theatre, Downstairs, 26 Berkeley. 416-368-3110, nightwoodtheatre.net.
Dark Matter (Circlesnake Productions). Captain Marlow must retrieve the brutal Kurtz from a distant space colony in this adaptation of Joseph Conrad’s Heart Of Darkness. Opens Mar 14 and runs to Apr 6, Thu-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20, Sun pwyc ($10 reserved). The Storefront Theatre, 955 Bloor W. circlesnake.com.
**Lungs by Duncan Macmillan (Tarragon Theatre). A man and a woman discuss the ethics of having a child in today’s world. Previews Feb 25-Mar 2. Opens Mar 4 and runs to Mar 30, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sat-Sun 2:30 pm. $21-$53, rush $13. Extra Space, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.
Marry Me A Little by Stephen Sondheim (Tarragon Theatre). Sondheim songs surround a dialogue-free plot about the relationship between two lonely New Yorkers. Previews Feb 26-Mar 2. Opens Mar 5 and runs to Apr 6, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2:30 pm. $27-$53, rush $13. 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.
**New Ideas Festival (Alumnae Theatre). The annual showcase of new writing, works-in-progress and experimental theatre and staged readings. Opens Mar 12 and runs to Mar 30, Wed-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2:30 pm, Sat readings at noon. $15, Sat readings pwyc, festival pass $40. Studio, 70 Berkeley. 416-364-4170, alumnaetheatre.com.
New Jerusalem by David Ives (Harold Green Jewish Theatre). A Jewish philosopher’s radical ideas threaten his community’s safety in 17th-century Amsterdam. Previews Mar 15-19, Sat and Tue-Wed 8 pm, mat Wed 1 pm, Sun 2 pm. Opens Mar 20 and runs to Apr 13, Tue-Thu and Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, mat Wed 1 pm, Sun 2 pm. $30-$60. Toronto Centre for the Arts, Studio Theatre, 5040 Yonge. 1-855-985-2787, hgjewishtheatre.com.
Sixteen Scandals Second City presents its spring revue about our unhealthy fascination with political train wrecks, media fiascos and red-carpet meltdowns. Mar 6-May 28, Tue-Thu 8 pm, Fri 7:30 pm, Sat-Sun 7:30 & 10 pm. $25-$29. 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.
Under The Skin by Betty Lambert (Unit 102 Actor’s Company). Destructive tendencies are revealed as three characters deal with the disappearance of a young girl. Opens Mar 20 and runs to Mar 29, Mon-Sat 8 pm. $20. Unit 102 Theatre, 376 Dufferin. unit102theatre.com.
The Video Game Show Bad Dog Theatre Epic Wednesdays presents improv inspired by classic and current console games. 8 pm. Opens Feb 26, Opens Mar 26, Opens Apr 30, Opens May 28. $12, stu $10. Comedy Bar, 945 Bloor W. 416-551-6540, baddogtheatre.com.
Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak (Presentation House Theatre). A boy embarks on imaginary travels with animals in this adaptation of the iconic children’s book. Opens Mar 4 and runs to Mar 30, see website for schedule. $15-$29. Young People’s Theatre, Studio, 165 Front E. 416-862-2222, youngpeoplestheatre.ca.
And the Rest…
Acceleration 2014 The School of Toronto Dance Theatre presents dancers from the graduating class performing works by Christopher House, Susie Burpee, Darryl Tracy and others. Opens Mar 26 and runs to Mar 29, Wed-Sat 8 pm. $20, stu/srs $15. Winchester Street Theatre, 80 Winchester. 416-967-6887, schooloftdt.org.
Around Dancemakers presents an exploration of the disconnect between symmetry, perfection, uncertainty and ambiguity. Previews Mar 26. Opens Mar 27 and runs to Apr 6, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 4 pm. $25, stu/srs $20, preview pwyc. Dancemakers Centre for Creation, 9 Trinity, studio 313. dancemakers.org.
Big Girl Panties (Sandra Shamas). Shamas performs her work-in-progress solo show about women after age 55 and blooming later in life. Opens Mar 20 and runs to Apr 5, Thu-Sat 8 pm. $25, rush $20. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Tallulah’s Cabaret, 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555, buddiesinbadtimes.com.
BeerProv: The Draft Jim Robinson presents young improvisers competing in a series of elimination games. Mar 27 9:30 pm. $12. Comedy Bar, 945 Bloor W. 416-551-6540, beerprov.com.
Blame Canada! (Canadian Musical Theatre Writers Collective). The collective launches with musical theatre performances by Thom Allison, Gabi Epstein and others. Mar 24 at 8:30 pm. $20-$25. Hugh’s Room, 2261 Dundas W. 416-531-6604, hughsroom.com.
Body Percussion Festival Harbourfront NextSteps presents dance, voice and movement arts with performances by GREX, Carmen Romero, SlapJazz Danny, Allison Toffan and others. Mar 28-30, Fri-Sat 7 pm, Sun 3 pm. $25-$30.50. Harbourfront Centre, Studio Theatre, 235 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000, harbourfrontcentre.com.
Cabaret Brise-Jour (L’Orchestre d’hommes-orchestres). Eight musicians borrow from the repertoire of Kurt Weill to look at the best and worst of the human condition. Opens Mar 25 and runs to Mar 29, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm. $25-$30, mat $50. The Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen W. 416-538-0988, theatrecentre.org.
Catch 23 Comedy Bar presents a weekly improv pit fight. Fri 8 pm. $10. 945 Bloor W. 416-551-6540, comedybar.ca.
Chicago by Fred Ebb, Bob Fosse and John Kander (Mirvish). A chorus girl is charged with murder in 1920s Chicago in this musical. Opens Mar 26 and runs to Mar 30, Wed-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, mat Thu and Sat 2 pm, Sun 1:30 pm. $25-$130. Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
The Company We Keep (Theatre 20). Host Bruce Dow presents selections from Canadian musicals. Mar 30 at 7 pm. $25. Alleycatz, 2409 Yonge. theatre20.com.
Cowboy Mouth by Patti Smith and Sam Shepard (Rhizoma Productions/Sterling Studio Theatre). A man goes on a sex- and drug-fuelled bender with a girl who wants to make him a rock star. Opens Mar 24 and runs to Mar 29, Mon-Sat 8 pm. $20, stu $15. Sterling Studio Theatre, 163 Sterling, unit 5. sterlingstudiotheatre.com.
Craig Ferguson: Hot And Grumpy Just for Laughs presents the Scottish comic and Late Late Show host in a live show. Mar 28 7 pm. $45.50-$65.50. Massey Hall, 178 Victoria. 416-872-4255, masseyhall.com.
Desperate Church Wives by Diane Johnstone (Under the Blood Productions). Church ladies are upset when a minister’s wife is busted for prostitution in this solo comedy. Opens Mar 20 and runs to Mar 29, Thu-Sat 8 pm. $15, stu/srs $10. Red Sandcastle Theatre, 922 Queen E. 416-845-9411, totix.ca.
Dichterliebe: The Poet’s Love Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie present 16 choreographies set to music by Robert Schumann, performed by Laurence Lemieux. Mar 27-28, Thu-Fri 8 pm. $20. The Citadel, Mimi Herndorf Studio, 304 Parliament. colemanlemieux.com.
**Elegies: A Song Cycle (Acting Up Stage Company). This celebration of the life and music of William Finn with biographical and fictional elements. Previews Mar 21-23. Opens Mar 25 and runs to Apr 13, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $30-$50. Daniels Spectrum, Aki Studio Theatre, 585 Dundas E. 1-800-838-3006, actingupstage.com.
Elephant Empire Comedy Bar presents the sketch troupe w/ Hannah Spear, Andrew Gardner, Matt Lemche and Peter Stevens, performing fast-paced sketch and a one-act play. Opens Mar 5 and runs to Mar 26, Wed Wednesdays 8 pm. $8. 945 Bloor W. 416-551-6540, comedybar.ca.
Fleur De Sel York Dances presents two programs of original works choreographed and performed by emerging artists. Mar 27-28, Thu-Fri 7 pm. $12. York University Accolade East Bldg, McLean Performance Studio, 4700 Keele. 416-736-5888, dance.finearts.yorku.ca.
The Gigli Concert by Tom Murphy (Soulpepper). An unstable Irish millionaire hires an English self-help guru to teach him to sing like an opera star. Previews Mar 28-Apr 1. Opens Apr 5 and runs to May 16, see website for schedule. $29-$74, rush $5-$23. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane. 416-866-8666, youngcentre.ca.
Gimme One Riddim Harbourfront NextSteps presents a dance-theatre production by Jasmyn Fyffe and Natasha Powell about the emergence of ska music in Jamaica. Mar 27-29, Thu-Sat 8 pm, mat Fri 1:30 pm. $18-$30. Enwave Theatre, 231 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000, harbourfrontcentre.com.
he:she Peggy Baker Dance Projects presents contemporary works and live music with choreographies by Peggy Baker and Paul-André Fortier. Opens Mar 28 and runs to Apr 6, Wed-Sat 8:30 pm, Sun 4 pm. $28, stu/srs $23, Mar 29 pwyc at the door. Betty Oliphant Theatre, 404 Jarvis. brownpapertickets.com/event/515859.
I Seen You On TV The National Theatre of the World presents improv by comics seen on Canadian TV shows and ads w/ Gavin Crawford, Ennis Esmer, Mark Little, hosts Naomi Snieckus & Matt Baram and others. Opens ? ?, Mar 26 8 pm. $18. Drake Hotel, Underground, 1150 Queen W. 416-531-5042, iseenyouontvmarch.bpt.me.
Les Improbables Supermarket presents a biweekly show with competitive improv en français. 7 pm. Jan 14, Jan 28, Feb 11, Feb 25, Mar 11, Mar 25, Apr 8, Apr 22, May 6, May 20, May 27, Jun 3. $5. 268 Augusta. 416-840-0501, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Me Talking To Myself In The Future by Marie Brassard (Infrarouge/Buddies in Bad Times Theatre). In the future, a dying old woman drifts among the thoughts of someone in the present. Opens Mar 26 and runs to Apr 6, Tue-Sat 8pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $20-$37, Sun pwyc. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555, buddiesinbadtimes.com.
Mes Singeries Vocales (Horsing Around 50) by Bruno Coppens (Théâtre français de Toronto). Coppens performs his comedic cabaret to celebrate his 50th birthday. Opens Mar 26 and runs to Mar 30, Wed-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 3:30 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $30-$57 Wed pwyc, limited rush $20. Berkeley Street Theatre, Upstairs, 26 Berkeley. 416-534-6604, theatrefrancais.com.
Minotaur by Kevin Dyer (Young People’s Theatre/Polka Theatre/Clwyd Theatr Cymru Theatre). A cryptic text message from his soldier dad sends a boy on a quest in this fusion of Greek mythology and modern themes. Previews Mar 24-26. Opens Mar 27 and runs to Apr 13, see website for schedule. $15-$24. Young People’s Theatre, 165 Front E. 416-862-2222, youngpeoplestheatre.ca.
Nature Studies For Dancers And Musicians The Free Concert Series in the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre presents a look at the methods and inspirations of choreographer Peggy Baker. Mar 25 at noon. Free. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. coc.ca.
Now Who’s Crazy Now? (Elly Litvak). Litvak performs her solo show about living with and recovering from mental illness in support of Family Outreach and Response. Mar 27, doors 6 pm. $30. 3030 Dundas West, 3030 Dundas W. ticketscene.ca/events/10101.
Old Love by Norm Foster (Sirius Theatrical Company). Repressed emotions surface for a woman and her late husband’s employee at the husband’s funeral. Opens Mar 20 and runs to Mar 30, Thu-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $25, stu/srs $20. Mimico Presbyterian Church, 119 Mimico. siriustheatrical.com.
Open Art Surgery Breakin’ Convention and Harbourfront NextSteps present a hip-hop/urban dance showcase following a choreographic residency for street dancers. Mar 29 at 8 pm. $10. Fleck Dance Theatre, 207 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000, harbourfrontcentre.com.
People City Bad Dog Repertory Players present unscripted shows that give an improvised glimpse into 1970s Toronto. Opens Mar 19 and runs to Apr 2, Wed Wednesdays 9:30 pm. $12, stu $10. Comedy Bar, 945 Bloor W. 416-551-6540, baddogtheatre.com.
Rain: A Tribute To The Beatles (Mirvish). This multimedia show recreates performances from the 60s and 70s. Opens Mar 25 and runs to Mar 30, Tue-Fri 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun and Wed 2 pm. $32-$119. Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
Road by Jim Cartwright (Theatre @ York). In 1980s England, the unemployed residents of a small town use sex, religion, nostalgia, suicide and drink to escape their bleak reality. Previews Mar 23-24. Opens Mar 25 and runs to Mar 29, daily at 7:30 pm, mats Wed and Fri at 1 pm. $17, stu/srs $12, preview $5. York University, Joseph G Green Studio, 4700 Keele. 416-736-5888, theatre.finearts.yorku.ca.
**ShakesBeer (The Classical Theatre Project). The company performs The Complete Works Of Shakespeare (Abridged) in a pop-up theatre tavern setting. Opens Mar 29 and runs to Apr 5, Sat 6:30 and 9 pm. $49. Artscape Wychwood Barns, Covered Street, 601 Christie. 416-915-6750, shakesbeer.ca.
Shakespeare Forgive Us IV We Happy Few Shakespearean Improv Company presents an improvised play in the style of the Bard plus stand-up by Jess Beaulieu and sketch by Bitches Leave. Opens Mar 27 8 pm. $5. Comedy Bar, 945 Bloor W. 416-551-6540, comedybar.ca.
Singular Sensation: A Music Theatre Open Mic (Jennifer Walls). Sing showtunes with a live band and see previews of upcoming works at this weekly show. Mar 17-Jun 30, Mon 10 pm. Free. Statler’s, 487 Church. 416-922-0487.
Slings And Errors (Second City Training Centre). SCTC students put on a completely improvised play in the style of Shakespeare’s most famous works. Mar 29 at 3 pm. $10. Second City, 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.
Soulpepper Cabaret Series (Soulpepper Theatre). The company presents the first in Soulpepper’s Song/Book Series – The Moon. Mar 29 at 8:30 pm. $15-$18, stu $10. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.
A Spectacle Of Play (Hercinia Arts Collective). This compilation of new and remounted works feature circus art forms including aerial silks, hoop, trapeze, clown, puppetry and more. Opens Mar 21 and runs to Mar 28, Thu-Fri 8 pm, Sat 9 pm. $20-$25. The Bat Cave, 1173 Dundas E. herciniarts.com.
Toronto Storytelling Festival (Storytelling Toronto). Urban celebration of traditional and contemporary storytelling featuring various styles and languages for all age groups. Opens Mar 28 and runs to Apr 6, see website for schedule and venues. $5-$25, some free events. torontostorytellingfestival.ca.
The Trial Of Ken Gass by Bobby Del Rio (Hlibka Entertainment Inc). In a Kafkaesque series of interrogations, theatre star Ken Gass is put on trial for crimes he is not aware of. A different actor plays Gass each night. Opens Mar 22 and runs to Apr 3, Sun-Thu and Sat 8 pm, mat Sun 2:30 pm. $15, Sun pwyc. Big Picture Cinema, 1035 Gerrard E. 416-466-3636, guestlistapp.com/events/233787.
**Trudeau And The FLQ: The History Of The Village Of The Small Huts, 1963-1970 by Michael Hollingsworth (VideoCabaret/Soulpepper). This history play looks at the Quebec separatist movement and Trudeau’s pirouette to power. Previews Mar 27-Apr 2, see website for schedule. Opens Apr 3 and runs to May 10, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mats Fri and Mon 1 pm, Wed 1:30 pm. $25-$55. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane. 416-866-8666, videocab.com.
U Of T Festival Of Dance U of T Dance Coalition presents a showcase by students performing a variety of dance styles. Mar 28-29, Fri-Sat 7:30 pm. $12, stu/srs $10. Hart House Theatre, 7 Hart House Circle. harthouse.ca/festivalofdance.
Uptown Abbey (Mysteriously Yours… Dinner Theatre). Trouble follows an English lord and his American wife in this interactive dinner-theatre mystery. Opens Feb 7 and runs to Apr 5, Fri-Sat 8 pm, see website for full schedule. $40-$85. 2026 Yonge. 416-486-7469, mysteriouslyyours.com.
**Play listings based on NOW stage listings