The weather’s getting seriously chilly… but the theatre scene in Toronto is staying hot! Here’s our listing of the shows playing in Toronto this week. If it’s highlighted in red with two asterisks before it, it comes highly recommended by our Managing Editor, Wayne!
Already Covered By MoT…
Arsenic And Old Lace by Joseph Kesselring (Stage Centre Productions). A man discovers that his spinster aunts are serial killers in this black comedy. Opens Oct 2 and runs to Oct 11, Wed-Sat 8 pm, mat Oct 5 and 11 at 2 pm. $27.50, stu/srs $22. Fairview Library Theatre, 35 Fairview Mall. 416-299-5557, stagecentreproductions.com.
The Boy With Tape On His Face by Sam Wills (Mirvish/Seabright Productions). Wills performs a unique blend of comedy with no talking and drama without words. Runs in rep with Julie Madly Deeply as part of Best Of The Edinburgh Festival. Previews Oct 1. Opens Oct 2 and runs to Oct 19, see website for schedule. $25-$79. Panasonic Theatre, 651 Yonge. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
**An Enemy Of The People by Henrik Ibsen (Tarragon Theatre). A doctor clashes with officials who want to cover up a public health risk to protect the economy. Previews Sep 16-23. Opens Sep 24 and runs to Oct 26, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2:30 pm. $15-$53. 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.
Escape From Happiness by George F Walker (Alumnae Theatre Company). A bizarre event in a dysfunctional family prompts an incident of brutality in this dark comedy. Opens Sep 26 and runs to Oct 11, Wed-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20, Wed 2-for-1, Sun pwyc. Alumnae Theatre, 70 Berkeley. 416-364-4170, alumnaetheatre.com.
Falstaff by Giuseppe Verdi (Canadian Opera Company). Falstaff’s life of pleasure comes crashing down when he attempts an ill-advised seduction scheme. Opens Oct 3 and runs to Nov 1, see website for schedule. $12-$339. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-363-8231, coc.ca.
**Hold Mommy’s Cigarette (Shelley Marshall). Marshall performs her solo dark comedy about life, mental illness and survival. Opens Oct 1 and runs to Oct 28, 8 pm every day. $20. The Full Bawdy Loft, 290 Carlaw, unit 202. 416-821-1754, holdmommyscigarette.com.
Julie Madly Deeply by Sarah-Louise Young (Mirvish/Seabright Productions). Young performs a musical solo tribute to Julie Andrews. Runs in rep with The Boy With Tape On His Face as part of Best Of The Edinburgh Festival. Previews Sep 30. Opens Oct 2 and runs to Oct 19, see website for schedule. $25-$79. Panasonic Theatre, 651 Yonge. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
**KURIOS – Cabinet Of Curiosities by Michel Laprise (Cirque du Soleil). The Seeker looks to his curio cabinet to give him access to a secret, invisible world in this show featuring acrobatics, music, dance and design. Opens Aug 28 and runs to Oct 26, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 5 pm, mat Sat 4:30 pm, Sun 1:30 pm. $50-$160. Grand Chapiteau Tent, Port Lands, Commissioners at Cherry. cirquedusoleil.com/kurios.
**The Mountaintop by Katori Hall (Obsidian Theatre/Shaw Festival). Dr Martin Luther King, Jr opens up to a young woman working at the Lorraine Motel on the eve of his murder. Previews Sep 27-30. Opens Oct 1 and runs to Oct 19, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $15-$35, Tue pwyc. Daniels Spectrum, Aki Studio Theatre, 585 Dundas E. 416-531-1402, obsidiantheatre.com.
Our Country’s Good by Timberlake Wertenbaker (Out of Joint/Mirvish). A lieutenant stages a play with a cast of convicts and marines on Britain’s new penal colony in 1789 Australia. Previews Sep 13-20. Opens Sep 21 and runs to Oct 26, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun and Wed 2 pm. $25-$99. Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
The Thing Between Us by Alison Lawrence (the mcguffin company). This comedic psychological drama looks at the relationship between two women over a lifetime. Previews Oct 2. Opens Oct 3 and runs to Oct 19, Wed-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm (no mat Oct 4). $30, srs $25, preview $20, mat pwyc. Theatre Passe Muraille, Backspace, 16 Ryerson. 416-504-7529, mcguffincompany.com.
We Walk Among You by the Ensemble (Artichoke Heart Collective). Desperate to save his son, a doctor performs experiments in an abandoned hospital and encounters an otherworldly creature. Opens Oct 2 and runs to Oct 12, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $15-$25. Tarragon Theatre, Extra Space, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.
**Wicked by Stephen Schwartz and Winnie Holzman (Mirvish). The hit musical about the backstory of The Wizard Of Oz returns. Previews Sep 3. Opens Sep 4 and runs to Nov 2, Tue-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat-Sun and Wed 1:30 pm. $36-$139. Ed Mirvish Theatre, 244 Victoria. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
And the rest…
The Art Of Building A Bunker by Adam Lazarus and Guillermo Verdecchia (Factory Theatre/QuipTake). Elvis finds himself surrounded by a diverse group of characters as he endures workplace sensitivity training. Previews Oct 11-15. Opens Oct 16 and runs to Nov 2, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $23-$45. Factory Theatre, 125 Bathurst. 416-504-9971, factorytheatre.ca.
Birth by Tom Arthur Davis (Pandemic Theatre). In a future society where people don’t age or die, the government must regulate childbirth. Opens Oct 1 and runs to Oct 17, Wed-Fri 7:30 pm (and Oct 18). $25. Campbell House Museum, 160 Queen W. uniiverse.com/pandemictheatre.
The Book Of Mormon by Trey Parker, Robert Lopez and Matt Stone (Mirvish). Two naive missionaries go to a volatile region in Uganda in this religious satire musical. Previews Sep 16. Opens Sep 17 and runs to Nov 30, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7:30 pm, mat Sat 2 pm, Sun 1:30 pm. $49-$130. Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.
**A Brimful Of Asha by Ravi Jain (Why Not Theatre/Soulpepper). An Indo-Canadian man learns that his Indian vacation is a wife-seeking scheme by his parents. Opens Oct 7 and runs to Oct 11, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Wed & Sat 2 pm. $25-$55. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane. 416-866-8666, youngcentre.ca.
Brotherhood: The Hip Hopera by Sébastien Heins (b current AfteRock Plays). This solo music video tells the story of a superstar duo’s climb to success, breakup and epic reunion. Previews Oct 10-12. Opens Oct 15 and runs to Oct 25, runs in rep with The Femme Playlist, see website for schedule. $15-$50, ltd Sun pwyc. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555, buddiesinbadtimes.com.
Circle Mirror Transformation by Annie Baker (Play Practice Collective). Personal dramas emerge when four lonely New Englanders enroll in a community theatre course. Opens Oct 8 and runs to Oct 18, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm. $20. The Storefront Theatre, 955 Bloor W. secureaseat.com.
Concord Floral by Jordan Tannahill (Why Not Theatre/Suburban Beast). Teens flee a mysterious plague they have brought upon themselves in this re-imagining of Boccaccio’s Decameron. Previews Oct 12-15, Sun 4 pm (Community potluck, $10), Tue-Wed 8 pm. Opens Oct 16 and runs to Oct 26, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $15-$20. Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen W. 416-538-0988, theatrewhynot.org.
**The Femme Playlist by Catherine Hernandez (b current AfteRock Plays). Hernandez uncovers the realities of living as a queer woman of colour in this multidisciplinary show. Previews Oct 11-12. Opens Oct 14 and runs to Oct 25, runs in rep with Brotherhood, see website for schedule. $15-$50, ltd Sun pwyc. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555, buddiesinbadtimes.com.
Golden Ages: The Fully Improvised Musical (Kliffer Entertainment). An orchestra and improvisers perform a show set in a particular era and based on audience suggestions. Oct 9 at 8 pm. $15. Annex Theatre, 730 Bathurst. klifferentertainment.com.
**Helen Lawrence by Chris Haddock (Canadian Stage/Arts Club Theatre Co/Banff Centre/NAC). Vancouver struggles to reorganize itself after World War II in this drama combining visual art, theatre, live-action filming and computer-generated simulations. Opens Oct 12 and runs to Oct 15, Sun 1 pm, Tue-Wed 8 pm. Opens Oct 16 and runs to Nov 2, Tue-Thu and Sat 8 pm, Fri 7 pm, mat Sat-Sun and Wed 1 pm. $30-$99. Bluma Appel Theatre, 27 Front E. 416-368-3110, canadianstage.com.
Life On The Line: Women Strike At Eaton’s 1984-5 by Patricia McDermott (Act II Studio). This historical play about the 6-month strike is presented as part of Ryerson Social Justice Week. Oct 7 at 7 pm. Free. Ryerson Student Centre, SCC 115, 55 Gould. ryerson.ca/socialjustice.
Madama Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini (Canadian Opera Company). A geisha marries an American naval officer in this tragic Italian opera. Opens Oct 10 and runs to Oct 31, see website for schedule. $12-$339. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-363-8231, coc.ca.
Marilyn – After by Nonnie Griffin (Buddies in Bad Times Theatre). Griffin portrays Marilyn Monroe as an older person recounting her life story in this solo show. Opens Oct 10 and runs to Oct 19, Tue-Sat 7:30 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $26. Tallulah’s Cabaret, 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555, buddiesinbadtimes.com.
Nightmares… Are Scary! This Halloween-inspired sketch comedy revue puts the audience in the middle of an inescapable nightmare. Oct 9-11, Thu-Sat 8 pm. $10. Fraser Studios, 76 Stafford. nightmaresarescary.ca.
Piece of Mine Festival (Natasha Adiyana Morris). Showcase of works in development by black playwrights. Opens Oct 7 and runs to Oct 12, see website for schedule. $10-$15, passes $25-$50. 918 Bathurst Centre for Culture & the Arts, 918 Bathurst. pieceofminefest.com.
The Princess & The Pea adapted by Derek Genova (Solar Stage Children’s Theatre). Prince Tommy must choose between two princesses in this musical show for ages 3 to 10. Opens Oct 4 and runs to Oct 25, Sat-Sun 11 am & 2 pm. $16. 4950 Yonge. 416-368-8031, solarstage.on.ca.
The Soaps – The Live Improvised Soap Opera Improvisers create a new episode each night of an ongoing story of drama, romance, intrigue, plot twists and betrayal. Opens Oct 10 and runs to Nov 14, Fri 8 pm. $10. Bad Dog Comedy Theatre, 875 Bloor W. 416-491-3115, baddogtheatre.com.
The Songbook Series (TPM After Hours). The soundtrack to Les Misérables is featured as part of the late-night cabaret series. Oct 10 at 10:30 pm. $tba. Theatre Passe Muraille, 16 Ryerson. 416-504-7529, passemuraille.on.ca.
Terrific Women Comedy styled as a 70s cable access show w/ Natalie Norman, Dawn Whitwell, Jordan Foisy, Beggar’s Canyon and hosts Steph Kaliner & Sara Hennessey. Oct 7 9 pm. Pwyc. The Ossington, 61 Ossington. theossington.com.
To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee (Young People’s Theatre). Racial injustice in Depression-era Alabama is seen through the eyes of a child in this adaptation of the novel. Previews Oct 6-8. Opens Oct 9 and runs to Nov 2, see website for schedule. $15-$30. 165 Front E. 416-862-2222, youngpeoplestheatre.ca.
Twist & Shout (Famous People Players). Memories of juke boxes, drive-in movies and early rock ‘n’ roll are part of this all-ages black-light theatre show. Opens Aug 25 and runs to Oct 25, see website for schedule. $40-$65. 343 Evans. 416-532-1137, fpp.org.
What Makes A Man by Jennifer Tarver (Canadian Stage/Necessary Angel). Four actors portray different aspects of the life and songs of poet/singer Charles Aznavour. Previews Oct 5-8, Sun and Tue-Wed 8 pm. Opens Oct 9 and runs to Nov 2, Tue-Thu and Sat 8 pm, Fri 7 pm, Sat-Sun and Wed 1 pm. $15-$49. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley. 416-368-3110, canadianstage.com.
Play listings based on NOW! stage listings.