There’s a lot of great theatre going on in Toronto for the week of May 12th, 2014. ** Shows marked with the double asterisks and in red are the ones that make Wayne, our Managing Editor, wish there were more hours in a day so he could check all of them out.
Already covered by MoT…
Bingo! by Daniel MacIvor (Factory Theatre). Drinking games and fear of life in their 40s drive the actions of five friends at their high school reunion. Previews May 3-7, Sat and Tue-Wed 8 pm, Sun 7 pm. Opens May 8 and runs to Jun 1, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $30-$45, previews $23, Sun pwyc. 125 Bathurst. 416-504-9971, factorytheatre.ca.
Business As Usual by Viktor Lukawski, Adam Paolozza and Nicolas Di Gaetano (ZOU Theatre Company/Independent Creators Cooperative). Success and excess take a once-successful corporation off the rails and into chaos. Previews Apr 12-16. Opens Apr 17 and runs to May 18, Thu-Sun see website for times (Runs in rep with Ralph + Lina and Death Married My Daughter). $23, 3-show pass $55. The Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen W. 416-538-0988, 3shows.ca.
Contractions by Mike Bartlett (Red One Theatre Collective). A ruthless office manager grills an employee about a policy breach in this dark comedy. Opens May 8 and runs to May 25, Thu-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20. The Storefront Theatre, 955 Bloor W. redonetheatre.com.
Death Married My Daughter by Danya Buonastella, Dean Gilmour, Nina Gilmour and Michele Smith (Play it Again Productions/Independent Creators Cooperative). A bouffon-inspired satire puts Man on trial when Ophelia and Desdemona are resurrected. Previews Apr 12-16. Opens Apr 17 and runs to May 18, Thu-Sun see website for times (Runs in rep with Ralph + Lina and Business As Usual). $23, 3-show pass $55. The Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen W. 416-538-0988, 3shows.ca.
Don Quichotte by Jules Massenet (Canadian Opera Company). This romantic French take on Spain’s greatest literary hero features Ferruccio Furlanetto in the title role. Opens May 9 and runs to May 24, May 9, 14, 17, 20 and 22 at 7:30 pm, May 11 at 2 pm, May 24 at 4:30 pm. $12-$332. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-363-8231, coc.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 2 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.
A God In Need Of Help by Sean Dixon (Tarragon Theatre). In 1606, four Catholics carrying a holy painting across the Alps are attacked by Protestant zealots and attribute their escape to divine intervention. Previews Apr 16-22. Opens Apr 23 and runs to May 25, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2:30 pm. $21-$53, 8 pm, Apr 26 pwyc, Fri-Sat rush $13. 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.
Hedwig And The Angry Inch by John Cameron Mitchell (Lower Ossington Theatre). An East German transgender musician moves to America to start a rock band and find love. Opens Apr 17 and runs to May 24, Thu-Fri 8 pm, Sat 8 and 11 pm. $49. 100A Ossington. 416-915-6747, lowerossingtontheatre.com.
The Last Confession by Roger Crane (Mirvish). This thriller explores the mystery shrouding the sudden death of Pope John Paul I in 1978. Previews Apr 19-26. Opens Apr 27 and runs to Jun 1, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun and Wed 2 pm (no mat Apr 19). $35-$119. Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
**The Lion King by Elton John, Tim Rice and Roger Allers (Mirvish). The musical based on the Disney film returns. Previews Apr 30. Opens May 1 and runs to Jun 15, Tue-Sat 7:30 pm, Sun 6:30 pm, mat Sun 1 pm, Sat (and select Wed) 1:30 pm. $35-$155. Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
Of Human Bondage by Vern Thiessen (Soulpepper). W Somerset Maugham’s novel is adapted for the stage in a tale of loss, lust, obsession and the pursuit of beauty. Previews Apr 15-23. Opens Apr 24 and runs to May 17, see website for schedule. $29-$74, rush $5-$23. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.
Of Shapes Transformed By Love by Kyle Capstick (Aim for the Tangent Theatre/Newborn Theatre). A night of myths and magic outdoors looks at a world ruled by the wilderness of the heart. Previews May 7. Opens May 8 and runs to May 17, Wed-Sat 9 pm. $20, stu/srs $15, preview pwyc. Majlis Multidisciplinary Art Garden, 163 Walnut. shapes.brownpapertickets.com.
Ralph + Lina by Michele Smith, Dan Watson and Christina Serra (Ahuri Theatre/Independent Creators Cooperative). Two Italian lovers struggle to stay together in the face of WWII, forced immigration and old age. Previews Apr 12-16. Opens Apr 17 and runs to May 18, Thu-Sun see website for times (Runs in rep with Death Married My Daughter and Business As Usual). $23, stu $18, 3-show pass $55. The Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen W. 416-538-0988, 3shows.ca.
**The Road To Mecca by Athol Fugard (Soulpepper). A widow turns her property into an eccentric art installation in a conservative South African village in this drama about intolerance and the need for self-expression. Previews Apr 30-May 3. Opens May 5 and runs to May 28, Mon-Sat 8 pm, mat Wed & Sat 2 pm. $29-$74, rush $5-$23. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.
Roberto Devereux by Gaetano Donizetti (Canadian Opera Company). Jealousy and intrigue run through Queen Elizabeth’s court when her love interest falls for the Duchess of Nottingham. Opens Apr 25 and runs to May 18, Apr 25, 29, May 3 and 15 at 7:30 pm, May 10 at 4:30 pm, May 18 at 2:30 pm. $12-$332. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-363-8231, coc.ca.
**Sultans Of The Street by Anusree Roy (Young People’s Theatre). Four children from different social classes are trapped in a world of begging on the streets of Kolkata, India. Previews Apr 28-30. Opens May 1 and runs to May 15, see website for schedule. $15-$24. 165 Front E. 416-862-2222, youngpeoplestheatre.ca.
**Vitals by Rosamund Small (Outside the March/Theatre Passe Muraille). A Toronto paramedic deals with life, death and bureaucracy in this show based on interviews with EMS workers. Previews Apr 29-30. Opens May 1 and runs to May 25, Tue-Sun 7:30 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $25-$30. Starts at Roncesvalles & Garden Aves, 149 Roncesvalles. 416-504-7529, outsidethemarch.ca.
And the rest…
Avenue Q by Robert Lopez, Jeff Marx and Jeff Whitty (Lower Ossington Theatre). A college grad moves to NYC and copes with grown-up problems in this adult musical puppet play. Opens Apr 10 and runs to Jun 1, Thu-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm, Sun 4 pm. $49-$59. 100A Ossington. 416-915-6747, lowerossingtontheatre.com.
Big Ideas (Alumnae Theatre). Staged readings of works-in-progress by Chloe Whitehorn, Ramona Baillie, Mairy Beam and others. Opens May 13 and runs to May 16, Tue-Fri 8 pm. Free. Studio, 70 Berkeley. alumnaetheatre.com/WP/shows/big-ideas.
Blithe Spirit by Noel Coward (The Village Players). The spirit of his first wife pesters a man and his new spouse in this comedy. Opens Apr 25 and runs to May 17, see website for schedule. $20, stu/srs $16. Bloor West Village Playhouse, 2190 Bloor W. 416-767-7702, villageplayers.net.
Magic @ The Cage (Abracadabaret). Magicians, mind readers and mystery entertainers perform weekly magic and comedy. Opens Mar 4 and runs to Jun 29, Sun and Tue 7 pm. $15-$20. The Cage 292, Crimson Lounge, 292 College. 416-995-1736, abracadabaret.com/cage.
A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum by Burt Shevelove, Larry Gelbart and Stephen Sondheim (Scarborough Music Theatre). A sly Roman slave plots to win his freedom in this musical comedy. Opens May 1 and runs to May 17, Thu-Sat 8 pm, mat Sun 2 pm (May 17 at 2 pm, no eve show). $27, stu/srs $22. Scarborough Village Theatre, 3600 Kingston. 416-267-9292, theatrescarborough.com.
May One Acts (Sterling Studio Theatre). This festival focuses on a different playwright each week. Week 1 (May 6-11): James McClure. Week 2 (May 13-18): Woody Allen. Week 3: (May 19-25): John Patrick Shanley. Opens May 6 and runs to May 25, Tue-Sun 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm (no show May 19). $20, mat pwyc. 163 Sterling. sterlingstudiotheatre.com.
One Night Stand (Toronto Burlesque Festival). Headliners Immodesty Blaze from the UK and Medianoche from NYC join local burlesque artists at this gala show. May 16 at 9 pm. $40-$75. Virgin Mobile Mod Club, 722 College. one-night-stand.eventbrite.ca.
Rent by Jonathan Larson (Lower Ossington Theatre). NYC artists struggle to make ends meet in the shadow of the AIDS epidemic in this musical. Opens Apr 3 and runs to Jun 8, Thu-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm, Sun 4 pm. $49-$59. 100A Ossington. 416-915-6747, lowerossingtontheatre.com.
Reveal Me Burlesque (Red Herring Burlesque). Virgin vixens and professional peelers put on a show. May 14, doors 8 pm. $10. Rivoli, 332 Queen W. aprofessionaldistraction.com.
**rock.paper.sistahz festival (b current). This arts festival features theatre, comedy, spoken word, visual art and more by d’bi young, trey anthony, Catherine Hernandez and others. Opens May 11 and runs to May 18, see website for schedule. $tba. Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas E. bcurrent.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.
Snow Bride by David James Brock (Romantic Animal Theatre Posse). Alone on the night before her wedding, a cocaine addict reflects on her past and hopes for a new life. Opens May 8 and runs to May 18, Thu-Sat 8 pm, mat Sun May 18 at 2 pm. $20, stu $15, mat pwyc. The Box Studio, 89 Niagara. brownpapertickets.com/event/621926.
The Speedy (UnSpun Theatre/Harbourfront World Stage). This performance installation tells the story of a schooner that sank in Lake Ontario 200 years ago, and the lives and secrets that went down with it. May 15-18, Thu-Sun 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $29. Enwave Theatre, 231 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000, harbourfrontcentre.com.
Spring Into Song: Selections From Broadway’s Best (Etobicoke Musical Productions). This revue pays tribute to great musical theatre shows from Broadway’s history. May 16-18, Fri-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $23. The Assembly Hall, 1 Colonel Samuel Smith Park. 416-248-0410, e-m-p.ca.
A Spring Showcase (Scarborough Music Theatre). The company presents songs from Broadway plus pop, jazz and opera. May 13 at 8 pm. $15. Scarborough Village Theatre, 3600 Kingston. 416-267-9292, theatrescarborough.com.
Stars Of David based on a book by Abigail Pogrebin (Harold Green Jewish Theatre/Angelwalk Theatre). The book about Jewish identity based on interviews with Gloria Steinem, Leonard Nimoy, Fran Drescher and others is adapted to a musical production. Previews May 10-13, Sat and Tue 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. Opens May 14 and runs to Jun 1, Tue-Thu and Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, mat Thu 1 pm, Sun 2 pm. $25-$65. Toronto Centre for the Arts, Studio Theatre, 5040 Yonge. 416-733-0545, hgjewishtheatre.com.
Toronto International Circus Festival (HarbourKIDS/Zero Gravity Circus). This all-ages weekend features aerial acrobatics, stunts, comedy, music and clowns, plus workshops and interactive kids’ programs. May 17-19, see website for schedule. Free. Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000, tocircusfestival.com.
Virginia Aldridge, BSc by Elise Newman (O Muse Plays for Parents Series). Live reading of the play about an aspiring biologist’s travels in a casual, baby-friendly setting. May 12 at 1:30 pm. $10. Bebo Mia, 1 Munro. omuse.ca.
Watching Glory Die by Judith Thompson (Canadian Rep Theatre). Thompson performs in her solo show about three women linked by shared helplessness in the face of tragedy. Previews May 15-16. Opens May 17 and runs to Jun 1, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $30-$42, previews $18. Berkeley Street Theatre, Upstairs, 26 Berkeley. 416-368-3110, canadianrep.ca.
We Are Not Afraid Of The Dark by Tine Van Aerschot (The Theatre Centre). This monologue show about survival, life and love is inspired by Van Aerschot’s conversations with late theatre artist Tracy Wright. Opens May 14 and runs to May 18, Wed-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $25-$30. 1115 Queen W. 416-538-0988, theatrecentre.org.
WeeFestival (Theatre Direct). This theatre festival is dedicated to engaging children ages zero to six and features performances by Helios Theatre, Teotro do Biombo and others. Opens May 12 and runs to May 19, see website for schedule and venues. $10-$14. weefestival.ca.
**Play listings based on NOW stage listings.