All posts by Allison Gerson

Review: The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? (Soulpepper)

Photo of Albert Schultz and Raquel DuffyChallenging Edward Albee play brought to the Toronto stage by Soulpepper

The Goat or, Who is Sylvia?,  Edward Albee‘s 2002 Tony Award winning play currently being presented by Soulpepper, is challenging. It’s about bestiality. That’s not a spoiler. The title gives it away, and we find out that Sylvia really is, in fact, a goat early on. For me, the challenging part wasn’t the goat per se. The hard part was being forced to think about how I react to ideas or behaviours far outside my realm of “normal.” Continue reading Review: The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? (Soulpepper)

Review: Other Side of the Game (Cahoots Theatre/Obsidian Theatre)

Photo of Ryan Rosery, Virgilia Griffith, Ordena Stephens-Thompson, Shakura Dickson, and Peter Baily in Other Side of the GameToronto’s Cahoots and Obsidian theatres co-produce writer Amanda Parris’ debut play

Other Side of the Game, currently being performed at Aki Studio, is the first professionally produced play by Amanda Parris. She is definitely someone to keep an eye on in the future. Her play is a powerfully written piece that gives voice to the often-unheard stories of Black women in Toronto. Continue reading Review: Other Side of the Game (Cahoots Theatre/Obsidian Theatre)

Review: The Diana Tapes (What Will The Neighbors Say?)

Photo of Jorge Morales Pico and James ClementsWWTNS?​ presents The Diana Tapes, a play by James Clements, in Toronto

I’m definitely not a monarchist, but even I admit to being captivated by the story of Diana, Princess of Wales. The beautiful young woman swept away by the prince. The fairy tale wedding. The troubled marriage. The dramatic car crash in Paris. Who can resist the inherent drama of her life? The Diana Tapes, being performed by What Will The Neighbors Say? Theatre Company at the Red Sandcastle Theatre, focuses on a crucial episode of Diana’s life – the 1992 publication of Andrew Morton’s biography, Diana: Her True Story. Continue reading Review: The Diana Tapes (What Will The Neighbors Say?)

Review: The Aliens (Coal Mine Theatre)

Photo of William Greenblatt, Noah Reid, and Maxwell HaynesThe Aliens, by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, arrives on the Toronto stage

On the surface, The Aliens (currently on stage at Coal Mine Theatre) doesn’t seem to have a lot going on. There’s not much of a plot, not a lot of action, and not a lot of dialogue. But like a skillful artist can do with just a few lines on paper, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Annie Baker creates a rich emotional world with seemingly little. Continue reading Review: The Aliens (Coal Mine Theatre)

Review: Bandits in the Valley (Tapestry Opera)

Photo of Stephanie Tritchew, Jacques Arsenault, and Keith KlassenFun and accessible opera takes to the Toronto stage

I have always been a little intimidated by opera. I don’t know a lot about music. It’s often in a language I don’t speak, I have a hard time following the plot, and tickets are often very expensive. But Bandits in the ValleyTapestry Opera’s new whimsical short opera being performed the Todmorden Mills Historic Site–was a fun, accessible, and free way to experience the art form in a lovely and novel setting. Continue reading Review: Bandits in the Valley (Tapestry Opera)

Review: She Stoops to Conquer (Guild Festival Theatre)

She Stoops to Conquer is great outdoor theatre in the Toronto east end, a summer must

She Stoops to Conquer, currently being presented by Guild Festival Theatre, embodies many of the things I love about summer in Toronto. While others may head to the cottage, I am happiest travelling around the city to watch theatre outside. Both the setting, Guild Park in Scarborough, and the company were new to me. And I was happy I got the chance to expand my theatrical and geographic horizons. Continue reading Review: She Stoops to Conquer (Guild Festival Theatre)

I ate the sandbox (ProductionsByKJ) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

I ate the sandbox produced by ProductionsbyKJ and playing at the Toronto Fringe Festival is a great example of what the Fringe is all about. It’s a one woman show written and performed by Khadijah Jamal, and it is her acting debut. Jamal attended the festival last year for the first time in ten years. It inspired her to write a script. When she saw an ad for the Fringe lottery on her Facebook feed, she took a chance, entered, and was accepted. This show is the result. Continue reading I ate the sandbox (ProductionsByKJ) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

Seasons (Sol Express) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

Photo of Melissa Marshall

Seasons produced by Sol Express playing at the Toronto Fringe Festival is not your typical Fringe show. Most of the performers are members of L’Arche Toronto, a community of people with intellectual disabilities who live and work together. In Seasons, they explore life through the lens of the four seasons in an hour of movement, music, poetry, film, and clown. It’s an incredibly moving work.

Continue reading Seasons (Sol Express) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

Lantern Tales from the Ottawa Valley (Tales from the Four Winds) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

Photo of Norman PerrinLantern Tales from the Ottawa Valley produced by Tales from the Four Winds and playing at the Toronto Fringe Festival is an hour of storytelling and fiddling. The show opens on a blank stage holding a table, two chairs, and two mugs. A fiddle starts to play a folk tune and then Norman Perrin and the fiddler, Dr. Tom Hamilton, enter. Perrin invites the audience to join him for a cup of tea while he spins yarns inspired by the lives of his ancestors in rural Ontario.

Continue reading Lantern Tales from the Ottawa Valley (Tales from the Four Winds) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

Life’s a Betch (Sketch Betch) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review

Photo of Nora Saliken, Miguel Gauthier, Eitan Shalmon, and Katherine O'Brien

Life’s a Betch is a sketch comedy show performed by Sketch Betch at the Toronto Fringe Festival. The troupe is made up of four performers who met while studying at the Second City – Miguel Gauthier, Katharine O’Brien, Nora Saliken, and Eitan Shalmon. They were joined on stage by musical director and keyboardist Carmen Braund, who provided the perfect background music for each scene.

Continue reading Life’s a Betch (Sketch Betch) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review