Shows That Caught Our Eye in Toronto the Week of October 19th, 2015
As we inch closer and closer to Halloween, the spooky shows are just around the corner. In the meantime, we’re here to highlight those shows running this week that we’d most like to see in red text. Here are the picks:
Already Reviewed by Mooney on Theatre:
Buddy: the Buddy Holly Story. Lower Ossington Theatre presents the tribute musical by Alan Janes. This musical tells the story of the rock pioneer’s rise to fame, from his first hit in 1957 until his tragic death less than two years later. Opens Sep 24 and runs to Oct 25, Thu-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat 2 pm, Sun 4 pm. $50-$70. Show Info.
Click-bait and Switch The Second City presents its Fall MainStage Revue featuring sketches, songs and improv. Indefinite run, Tue-Thu 8 pm, Fri-Sun 7:30 pm, late shows Fri-Sat 10:30 pm. $16-$35. Show Info.
Empire. Spiegelworld presents burlesque artists, live musicians, foot jugglers, contortionists, daredevil roller skaters and others create a 21st-century circus/cabaret spectacle. Previews from Sep 1, opens Sep 8 and runs to Nov 8 (extended from Sep 27; final extension, must close Nov 8), Tue-Wed 8 pm, Thu-Sat 7 & 9 pm, Sun 7 pm. $45-$129. Show Info.
Motown the Musical by Berry Gordy (Mirvish). American dream story of Motown founder Gordy’s rise to music mogul who launched the careers of Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson and many others. Sep22-Nov 1, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Wed & Sat-Sun 2 pm. $35-$140, premium orchestra seats $150-$200. Show Info.
Superhero! A Bam! Zap! Pow! Murder Mystery. Mysteriously Yours Dinner Theatre presents an interactive dinner-theatre whodunit set at a superhero convention. Runs to Oct 31, Fri-Sat 7:30 pm (dinner from 6:30 pm), see website for mats. $37-$87. Mysteriously Yours Dinner Theatre 2026 Yonge Show Info
They Say He Fell by Nir Bareket (Pandemic Theatre). This memory play is based on Bareket’s recollections of events surrounding the death of his elder brother during the repartition of British Palestine. Previews Oct 2-4, opens Oct 7 and runs to Oct 18, Wed-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $25-$30, previews $15, mat pwyc at the door. Show Info.
Hana’s Suitcase by Emil Sher (Young People’s Theatre). An old suitcase from Auschwitz leads a teacher and her students on a historical journey. Opens Oct 5 and runs to Oct 30, see website for schedule. $10-$34. Show Info.
La Traviata by Giuseppe Verdi (Canadian Opera Company). A Parisian courtesan finds true love in this tragic Italian opera. Opens Oct 8 and runs to Nov 6, see website for times. $50 and up; under 30 $22-$35, limited standing room $12. Show Info.
And the Rest:
Under the Big Top. Famous People Players presents a black light theatre show for all ages about the magic of the circus. Opens Jun 26 and runs to Oct 28, Tue-Sat, call/see website for times. Show Info.
Toronto Cold Reads. Incubator reading series for new film, TV and theatre scripts. Portions of six scripts will be read by professional actors. Weekly, Sundays at 9 pm to Dec 6. Pwyc. 2nd floor. Show Info.
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. Opens Oct 7 and runs to Nov 1, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sat-Sun 2:30 pm (Wed mats at 1:30 pm on Oct 14, Oct 21, Oct 28). $55-$60, srs $45-$49, stu $29, rush $15. Tarragon MainSpace. Show Info.
Defending the Caveman by Rob Becker (I Love It Productions). This comedy looks at the ongoing misunderstandings between men and women. Previews Oct 1-2, opens Oct 3 and runs to Oct 31, Fri-Sat 8 pm. $40, stu $20, previews $15-$20. Show Info.
Sleepy Hollow by Adrienne Kress (Solar Stage Children’s Theatre). Ichabod Crane shares the tale of his spooky encounters in this kid-friendly ghost story play. Opens Oct 10 and runs to Oct 25, Sat-Sun 11 am & 2 pm. $16. Show Info.
Huff by Cliff Cardinal (Native Earth Performing Arts). Wind and his brothers are caught in a torrent of solvent abuse as they struggle to cope with the death of their mother. Previews Oct 10-11, opens Oct 13 and runs to Oct 25, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $15-$30, preview/Tue pwyc. Aki Studio Theatre. Show Info.
The Baby. Screenplay by Abe Polsky, adapted by Dan Spurgeon (Storefront Theatre). A social worker is assigned to a family where an adult male sleeps in a crib and acts like an infant in this “grindhouse” comedy based on a 70s film. Opens Oct 15 and runs to Nov 1, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20-$25. Show Info.
Finding Funny by Daniel Stolfi (You and Me Entertainment). Stolfi performs his solo show about losing his comedy mojo and seeking to rediscover what drove him to make people laugh in the first place. Opens Oct 1 and runs to Nov 5, Thu 8 pm (no show Oct 22). $15-$20. Show Info.
25 Questions For a Jewish Mother by Judy Gold and Kate Moira Ryan (Harold Green Jewish Theatre). Judy Gold weaves stories based on hundreds of interviews with Jewish mothers of various ages, ethnicities and occupations. Previews Oct 17-19, opens Oct 20 and runs to Oct 25, see website for times. $40-$79. In the Greenwin Theatre. Show Info.
Baobab by Hélène Ducharme (Young People’s Theatre). An ancient tree gives birth to a boy who is destined to save a village from drought in this story inspired by West African legends. Opens Oct 13 and runs to Oct 23, see website for schedule. $19-$24. Show Info.
Beckett Trilogy (Canadian Stage). Three female-focused works by Samuel Beckett – Not I, Footfalls and Rockaby – will be performed in rep. Opens Oct 13 and runs to Nov 1, Tue-Sun, see website for times. $30-$69. Show Info.
Pyramus and Thisbe. Canadian Opera Company presents the contemporary opera by Canadian composer Barbara Monk Feldman and two Baroque works by Claudio Monteverdi (Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda & Lamento D’Arianna). Opens Oct 20 and runs to Nov 7, see website for times. $50 and up; under 30 $22-$35, limited standing room $12. Show Info.
The Trouble With Mr. Adam by Gord Rand (Tarragon Theatre). A high school volleyball coach falls in love with his star player in this dark comedy. Previews from Oct 20, opens Oct 28 and runs to Nov 29, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm (and Sat mats at 2:30 pm on Oct 31, Nov 7, Nov 14). $28-$60, srs $45-$49, stu $29, rush $15. Tarragon ExtraSpace. Show Info.
Ben Jonson and the Masque Toronto Masque Theatre presents a look at the masque tradition as it existed during the Jacobean era, featuring excerpts from Jonson’s work. Featuring Larry Beckwith (tenor and violin), Derek Boyes (actor) and Katherine Hill (soprano and viola da gamba) and other guests. Oct 20 at 7:30 pm. $20 (pre-register). Show Info.
Age of Arousal by Linda Griffiths (Factory Theatre). An ex-suffragette runs a secretarial school in 1885 England. Previews Oct 20-22, opens Oct 23 and runs to Nov 8, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $35, preview $25. Show Info.
Bararm & Snieckus (The National Theatre of the World). Matt Baram and Naomi Snieckus perform their hybrid theatre piece incorporating sketch, improvisation and comedy to satirize the male/female dynamic. Previews Oct 21, opens Oct 22 and runs to Nov 1, Wed-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $20. Show Info.
Lakeboat Unit 102 Actors Company presents the play by David Mamet. An Ivy League college student takes a summer job with hardened sailors aboard a steel freighter in the 70s. Previews Oct 14, opens Oct 15 and runs to Oct 31, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat. $20, pwyc Tue and Oct 16.
The Other Side of the Cubicle by Kent Lam (Bay Street Performers). Six characters seek happiness and balance in the corporate and creative world. Opens Oct 21 and runs to Oct 25, Wed-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $50, mat $25 (benefits Arts for Children & Youth). Show Info.
Armide by Jean-Baptiste Lully (Opera Atelier). The doomed love affair of a Christian knight and a Muslim princess plays out against a backdrop of obsession, jealousy and magic. Oct 22-31, see website for schedule. $38-$191. Show Info.
Orestes by Euripedes (Theatre Erindale). Modern version of the Greek play that looks at events that follow Orestes’s murder of his mother to avenge his father. Previews Oct 22, opens Oct 23 and runs to Nov 1, Thu 7:30 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm (and Nov 1). $18, stu/srs $12. Show Info.
Bitchcraft. Pure Carbon presents a collectively created immersive theatre show. The Crucible meets Mean Girls in this collective creation about a high school girls’ sleepover party with a drinking game, Ouija board and personal dramas. Oct 22-25, Thu-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $15-$20. Show Info.
Tell Me What You Want, What You Really, Really Want. Videofag presents Chad Dembski in his multidisciplinary performance piece that looks at the question of how we share time together. Oct 22-24, Thu-Sat 8 pm. Pwyc. Show Info.
The Love Project. Stand Up Dance and Meagan O’Shea present dance performance that explores elements of healthy relationships. Oct 23 at 7 pm. $40, 18 and under $20 (funder for the show’s school touring production). Show Info.
Night of Dread. Clay and Paper Theatre presents the annual pageant/parade to mock and banish our collective fears, featuring towering puppets, fire spinners, marching bands and more. Special musical guests The Shuffle Demons. Oct 24, assembly 4 pm, parade starts at 6 pm. Pwyc ($10 sugg). Show Info.
Danny, King of the Basement. Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre for Faith, Justice & the Arts, Keep the Promise and Campaign 2000 present a staged reading of the play by David S Craig, about an underprivileged boy who uses imagination to help his better-off friends with their problems. Followed by a panel discussion on child poverty issues. Oct 24 at 2 pm. $15-$20 (all proceeds benefit Keep the Promise). Show Info.
Legally Blonde: The Musical by Laurence O’Keefe, Nell Benjamin and Heather Hach (Lower Ossington Theatre). A sorority girl makes it to law school in this musical based on the 2001 film. Opens Oct 22 and runs to Nov 22, Thu-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm, Sun 4 pm. $50-$70. Show Info.
Butcher by Nicolas Billon (Why Not Theatre/Butcher’s Block). A mysterious old man appears at a police station wearing a foreign military uniform and a meat hook in this play about a past that won’t stay buried.Opens Oct 24 and runs to Nov 15, see website for times. $22-$30. Part of the November Ticket @ Theatre Centre ($60 for all three shows). Show Info.
The Oyan! Project. Multidisciplinary collaboration of poetry, music and dance between composer Franghiz Ali-Zadeh and dancer Sashar Zarif alongside live musicians. The production portrays a mystical journey of spiritual ascent throughout the body, mind and emotions. Oct 24-25, Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $50 and up. Show Info.
Listings based primarily on NOW! Stage Listings