Toronto Playlistings for the Week of February 3, 2020

Shows that Caught Our Eye in Toronto for the Week of February 3, 2020

I had one of those weeks. You know the one where the ‘To Do’ list just seems to go on forever and the week doesn’t seem long enough? That week. And this week doesn’t look much better. BUT… no matter how hectic my week is, I know it’s important to take some time for ‘me time’. And the best place for me time? Somewhere that I can turn off my technology, and where when the house lights go down I can sink into another world. So instead of a ‘To Do’ list, let’s focus on a ‘To See’ list!

This week our editor Lin is going to tell you what has caught her eye and is on her ‘to see’ list. Check out her ‘red‘ picks in our listings below!

Already Reviewed by MoT:

The Barber of Seville (Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W) by Gioachino Rossini (Canadian Opera Company). A barber helps a nobleman woo his true love in this Italian comic opera. Sung in Italian with English subtitles. Opens Jan 19 and runs to Feb 7, see website for schedule. $35-$225, box seats $350.
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Casimir & Caroline (Streetcar Crowsnest, 345 Carlaw) by Ödön von Horváth (The Howland Company). At a glitzy Toronto rooftop office party, two star-crossed lovers navigate clingy co-workers, the playboy boss and more in this play about love in the cold atmosphere of modern capitalism. Previews from Jan 14, opens Jan 16 and runs to Feb 9, see website for schedule. $25-$40.
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Come From Away (Elgin Theatre, 189 Yonge) by Irene Sankoff and David Hein (Mirvish). Newfoundlanders open their homes to stranded passengers following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Continuing at the Elgin after an 11-month run at the Royal Alex: Dec 13, 2019 to Mar 1, 2020, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Wed 1:30 pm, Sat-Sun 2 pm (see website for holiday performance schedule and other schedule exceptions). $39-$169, limited rush $25 (premium tickets also available).
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If I Could #Throwback Time (Second City, 51 Mercer). Second City’s 83rd sketch comedy revue basks in the neon glow of nostalgia, mining comedy gold from ancient treasures like old school video games, Power Rangers and Canada’s long, complicated history of sweeping social injustices. Previews from Sep 10. Opens Oct 10 and runs to Mar 1: Tue-Thu 8 pm; Fri 7:30 pm; Sat 7:30 & 10 pm. See website for more days and times, exceptions and to buy tickets. $28 & up.
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Jesus Hopped the A Train (Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House). When justice locks you up, what sets you free? Two notorious men await trial for murder, only to discover justice and goodness where it is least expected. Pulitzer Prize-winner Stephen Adly Guirgis delivers an uncompromising drama about contradiction, contrition, and hypocrisy. Previews Jan 23, opens Jan 30 and runs to Feb 23, see website for showtimes. $25 – $98.
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Marjorie Prime (Coal Mine Theatre, 1454 Danforth) by Jordan Harrison (Coal Mine Theatre). It’s the age of artificial intelligence, and 85-year-old Marjorie has a handsome new companion who’s programmed to feed the story of her life back to her. Previews from Jan 26, opens Jan 29 and runs to Feb 16, Tue-Sat 7:30 pm, Sun 2 pm. $47.50-$55.50, previews/rush $25.
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Mother’s Daughter (Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House). Soulpepper Theatre presents a play by Kate Hennig. The story of Bloody Mary and the battle for the Tudor throne is presented as a contemporary exploration of women and power. Previews from Jan 14, opens Jan 16 and runs to Feb 9, see website for schedule. $25-$98.
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The Second City Totally Likes You (Second City, 51 Mercer). The Second City aims Cupid’s bow at dating, sex, meet-cutes and meet-uglies in this hormone-charged show that marries classic archive material with brand new swipes at relationships. Jan 11-Mar 30, Mon 8 pm, Sat-Sun 4 pm.
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And Everything Else:

Black Girl in Love (with herself): Speaking the Unspeakable Tings (Fleck Dance Studio, 207 Queens Quay W) by Trey Anthony (Kuumba25). Playwright, producer, actor, creator, and stand‐up comedian Trey Anthony presents an uncensored show that tackles the “taboo” topics of miscarriage, infertility, fibroids and Black women and therapy. Feb 7 at 8 pm. $35-$45. Part of Kuumba25.
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Black Women in Theatre (Artscape Weston Common, 34 John). Piece of Mine Arts presents excerpts of works by Anne Marie Woods (aka Amani), Anyika Mark, Dian Marie Bridge, Korinn Annette Jefferies, Nicole Morgan, Paulina O’Kieffe, and Natassia Morris. Feb 6-8 at 7:30 pm. $20-$30.
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Bug (Theatre Passe Mureille, 16 Ryerson) by Yolanda Bonnell (Manidoons Collective/Native Earth Performing Arts). Poetry, prose & song explore an Indigenous woman’s journey through cycles of addiction and inter-generational trauma. Previews from Feb 7 opens Feb 13 and runs to Feb 22, see website for times. $17-$38 with PWYC option for matinee shows.
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Caroline, Or Change (Winter Garden Theatre, 189 Yonge). Musical Stage Company and Obsidian Theatre present the musical play by Tony Kushner and Jeanine Tesori. Set against the backdrop of the Kennedy assassination and the civil rights movement, the play uses fantasy and reality to explore a story about ordinary people facing extraordinary change. With a musical score that blends blues, soul, gospel, classical and traditional Jewish melodies, this modern masterpiece is a timely story of change for our socially conscious world. Starring R&B singer Jully Black in her musical theatre debut and renowned soprano Measha Brueggergosman. Previews from Jan 30, opens Feb 4 and runs to Feb 15, see website for schedule. $39-$129.
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Cymbeline (Junction City Music Hall, 2907 Dundas W). by William Shakespeare (Shakespeare BASH’d). The company presents their take on the Bard’s classic tale of jealousy, treachery and love. Feb 4-9, Tue-Sat 7 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $20-$25.
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Dance Matters – Series 2, Rebel Yells (The Citadel: Ross Centre for Dance, 304 Parliament).Dance artists Sara Porter, Lucy Rupert, Meagan O’Shea, Newton Moraes, & Clarke Blair present edgy, highly physical or unconventional work. Feb 8-9, Sat 8 pm, Sun 4 pm. $16-$20. A post-show catered reception and cash bar takes place on Saturday and a moderated discussion takes place on Sunday.
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Eden Planted (Harbourfront Centre Theatre, 231 Queens Quay W) . DanceWorks and Zata Omm Dance Projects present a new work by William Yong. Through the lens of technology and dance, this production contemplates the reconstruction of paradise, and the concept of perfection. Feb 5-8, Wed-Sat 8 pm. $36-$42.
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Exercice de l’oublie (Lesson in Forgetting) (Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley) by Emma Haché (Théâtre français de Toronto). A man with amnesia and his wife deal with the fallout from his condition. Feb 5-9, Wed-Fri 8 pm, Sat 3:30 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $20-$49, Wed-Thu PWYC.
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Far East Comedy Tuesdays (The Corner Comedy Club, 946 Queen E) Ernie Vicente hosts a weekly diverse stand-up comedy showcase. Feb 4, shows at 8 and 10 pm. $10.
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The Grasshopper (Tarragon Theatre Workspace, 30Bridgman) by Anton Chekhov is the second presentation in The Chekhov Collective’s Page to Stage Theatrical Readings of literary works. The Grasshopper is considered one of Chekhov’s most autobiographical works and caused a scandal in Moscow’s literary and art world when it was published. Feb 5 – 8 at 8pm. $18.
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Hansel & Gretel (Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145Queen W) The Canadian Opera Company presents Engelbert Humperdinck’s classic with a modern twist on his winter favourite with innovative digital storytelling and video projections that usher this classic straight into present-day Toronto. Feb 6 – 21, see website for show times. $45 – $350.
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Hookup (Bad Dog Company Theatre, 875 Bloor W). Bad Dog Theatre presents improvised romantic comedy based on the lives of two random audience members. Feb 8 at 9:30 pm, upstairs. $20, stu/arts workers $15.
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Immigrant Stories (John Candy Box Theatre, 99 Blue Jays Way 3rd Floor). Immigrant comedians tell stories about their experiences w/ Carol Zoccoli, Eric Selley, Joe Vu, Salma Hindy, Moe Ismail, Leonard Chan and more. Feb 8 at 9 pm. $15.
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Progress Festival (The Theatre Centre, 1115 Queens St W). 2020 marks the 5th edition of Progress – an international festival of performance and ideas presented in partnership by SummerWorks Performance Festival and The Theatre Centre. The festival is collectively curated and presented by a rotating series of Canadian organizations, operating within a contemporary performance context. Jan 30 – Feb 15. See website for schedule. $25/show, 3 Show Pass $60. Information on Access Tickets on website.
Festival Info

Radical Vitality, Solo and Duets (Bluma Appel Theatre, 27 Front E). Compagnie Marie Chouinard, Canadian Stage & TO Live presents dance works choreographed by Marie Chouinard. Feb 5-9, Wed-Thu & Sat 8 pm, Fri 7 pm, Sun 2 pm. $49-$111.
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The Red Nose Cabaret (Sweet Action Theatre, 180 Shaw #106). A night of clown and physical comedy with host Sir Porridge. Feb 8 at 8pm. $15-$20.
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Secret Life of a Mother (Streetcar Crowsnest, 345 Carlaw). Crow’s Theatre, Theatre Centre and SLOM Collective present a play by Hannah Moscovitch with Maev Beaty and Ann-Marie Kerr. A playwright writes an exposé of modern motherhood; one of her real-life friends performs the story, and through it her own motherhood secrets surface. Previews from Feb 6, opens Feb 8 and runs to Feb 23, Tue-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $20-$55.
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She The People (CAA Theatre, 651 Yonge). Second City presents the sketch revue dedicated to roasting the patriarchy, which is entirely created, designed and performed by women. Feb 4-9, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $35-$59.
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Slut Parade: A Sex Positive Comedy Show (Comday Bar, 945 Bloor W). Comedians share their best and worst stories of the sex and dating world, hosted by Allie Pearse. Feb 6 at 8 pm. $15 advance, $20 door.
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The Snow Queen: A Freezing Pantomime (The Tranzac, 29 Brunswick). NAGs Players present a traditional English Pantomime by Alex Stamp based on the classic fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen. Opens Jan 30 and runs to Feb 8, Thu-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat 1:30 pm. $5-$20.
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Taking Liberties (Campbell House Museum, 160 Queen W). Taking Liberties Collective presents a play by Dave Carley. Taking Liberties looks at five decades in the life of a city, when ordinary citizens make extraordinary choices. The drama focuses on civil libertarian issues, including censorship, freedom of expression and journalistic ethics. Previews from Feb 5, opens Feb 7 and runs to Feb 23, Wed-Sat 7:30 pm, mat Sat 4 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20-$30. In the Ballroom.
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This is How We Got Here (Aki Studio, 585 Dundas E. #120) by Keith Barker (Native Earth Performing Arts). Struggling after a tragedy, a quartet of sisters and spouses meet a mysterious fox with a curious gift. Previews from Jan 26, opens Jan 29 and runs to Feb 16, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm. $20-$30, previews $15, Tue PWYC.
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This Was the World (Tarragon Theatre Extraspace, 30 Bridgeman) by Ellie Moon. A play about old power and new ideas, academia and decolonization, language and authority. Directed by Richard Rose, featuring R.H. Thomson. Previews from Jan 28, opens Feb 5 and runs to Mar 1, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2:30 pm. $22-$65.
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UofT Drama Festival: A Weekend of Competitive Theatre (Hart House Theatre, 7 Hart House Circle). Hart House Theatre and the U of T Drama Coalition present the U of T Drama Festival: A Weekend of Competitive Theatre. The three nights of original one-act plays feature students from multiple colleges from the three U of T campuses. Feb 6-8, Thu-Sat 7:30 pm. $12, stu/srs $10.
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We Will Rock You (Meridian Hall, 1 Front E). Annerin Theatricals presents the musical by Ben Elton featuring the music of Queen. Feb 7-8, Fri-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm. $72-$128.40
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Yas Kween (Bad Dog Theatre Company, 875 Bloor W). A night of comedy featuring women of colour, hosted by Nelu Handa. Feb 6 at 9:30 pm. $10.
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Some listings based on NOW! Stage Listings.