All posts by Angela Sun

Angela Sun is a Toronto-based fat East Asian performer, theatre creator, poet, and writer. She is currently a member of the environmental theatre company, Broadleaf Theatre. In her spare time she enjoys reading and writing about art, feminism, pop culture, identity, body image, mental health, and social justice. Ironically, she fell in love with Canadian theatre after seeing a televised production of Kristen Thomson’s I, Claudia on CBC. (She finally saw the remount on stage 5 years later and was over the moon.) You can follow her exploits on her sporadically-updated Twitter @21sungelas.

Review: Hocus Pocus (Soulpepper Theatre)

Magician David Ben dazzles audiences as part of Soulpepper Theatre’s Family Festival in Toronto

Photo of David Ben in Hocus Pocus by Cylla Von TiedemannAlthough I have seen my fair share of magic performances on YouTube or at street festivals, Soulpepper Theatre‘s Hocus Pocus is the first full-length magic show I have seen live and I am happy to say that I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Magician David Ben, a seasoned performer with fantastic showmanship and a wry sense of humour, has created an entertaining production that appeals to kid and adult audiences alike.

Continue reading Review: Hocus Pocus (Soulpepper Theatre)

Review: Wasteland (Sex T-Rex)

Photo of Sex T-Rex's WastelandToronto sketch troupe Sex T-Rex left audience in stitches with their remount of Wasteland

I think I may have to start calling myself a Sex T-Rex fan now. Their latest production Wasteland, coming off of rave reviews from this year’s Toronto and Montreal Fringes and currently playing at The Second City Toronto, is the third Sex T-Rex production I have seen (fourth if you count the fact that I saw Swordplay twice) and I still continue to be impressed by their boundless creativity and consistent delivery of a rollicking good time.

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Preview: Weesageechak 29 Festival (Native Earth Performing Arts)

Photo of Weesageechak 29Currently in its 29th iteration, the Weesageechak Begins To Dance Festival is an annual festival of Indigenous work curated by Native Earth Performing Arts. This year’s festival brings a compelling selection of interdisciplinary new works and works-in-progress from both national and international Indigenous artists to the Aki Studio until November 19th. We spoke to Artistic Director Ryan Cunningham about what we can look forward to at Weesageechak 29:

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Review: How We Are (Mikaela Davies and Polly Phokeev Productions)

Photo of Virgilia Griffith and Sochi Fried in How We Are by Dahlia Katz

How We Are challenges Toronto audiences to get close to an important, uncomfortable subject

Mikaela Davies and Polly Phokeev Productions presents How We Are, a challenging and complicated show that unflinchingly explores the aftermath of sexual assault. It’s the kind of show that has me still mentally unpacking and thinking deeply about what I had seen long after I exited the performance. Continue reading Review: How We Are (Mikaela Davies and Polly Phokeev Productions)

Review: SolOthello (RUTAS panamericanas 2016)

Photo of SolOthello provided by the company.One-actor Othello finds humour in tragedy, playing now on the Toronto stage

SolOthello, curated by Native Earth Performing Arts as a part of the 2016 RUTAS panamericanas Festival, is a funny, original one-actor “twist” on the classic Shakespearean tragedy Othello from Maori theatre company Te Rehia Theatre.

Disclaimer: It has been quite a while since I have read Othello and while I am a big fan of Maori filmmakers, I have never seen work from a Maori theatre company before. This is why it’s so important to support theatre festivals like RUTAS that bring artists in from around the world and give us the opportunity to experience great art from beyond our borders.

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Preview: Groundswell: A Festival of Contemporary Women’s Theatre (Nightwood Theatre)

Photo of Nightwood Theatre's Groundswell Festival 2016

Nightwood Theatre will kick off their 37th season next week with the opening of the 31st annual Groundswell Festival: A Festival of Contemporary Women’s Theatre. Held at the Ernest Balmer Studio in The Historic Distillery District, Groundswell will feature a week of readings by emerging playwrights from Nightwood‘s 2015-16 Write from the Hip script development program with participation from their Young Innovators. To celebrate the opening of Groundswell 2016, we had the opportunity to ask program facilitator, dramaturge and director Andrea Donaldson some questions about this year’s festival. Continue reading Preview: Groundswell: A Festival of Contemporary Women’s Theatre (Nightwood Theatre)

Review: Callaghan! and the Wings of the Butterfly, and SwordPlay: A Play of Swords (Sex T-Rex World Tour II Double Bill)

Image from Sex T-Rex World Tour 2.Sex T-Rex launches their World Tour II, a double bill featuring two comedic plays in Toronto

Comedy troupe Sex T-Rex takes their acclaimed scripted comedies Callaghan! And the Wings of the Butterfly and SwordPlay: A Play of Swords on a “World Tour II” to Eastern Canada this weekend. Based on the preview I saw, I can say without a doubt that comedy lovers in Ottawa, Montreal, and Fredericton are in for a real treat!

Continue reading Review: Callaghan! and the Wings of the Butterfly, and SwordPlay: A Play of Swords (Sex T-Rex World Tour II Double Bill)

noyé/e/ and vərˈbādəm (Simon Renaud/ Project: Humanity) 2016 SummerWorks Review

Photo of Noye at the 2016 SummerWorks Performance FestivalPlaying first in a SummerWorks dance double bill with vərˈbadəm, noyé/e/ is a collection of contemporary duets that beautifully explores the feelings of longing, desire, connection, and oneness. Creator Simon Renaud and Performer Joanie Audet test the limits of space and balance with their slow but emotionally-fraught choreography.

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the root of the river flows darker than clouds (lo bil) 2016 SummerWorks Review

Photo of the root of the river flows darker than clouds from the 2016 SummerWorks Performance Festival

the root of the river flows darker than clouds is an experimental SummerWorks live art “performance residency” that explores what it means to be “wild.” Creator lo bil invites her audience to help build a multidisciplinary performance stimulated by her immediate environment.

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Burnish (Erika Batdorf) 2016 SummerWorks Review

BurnishTo put it bluntly, the SummerWorks Live Art presentation of Burnish is what you get when you combine a live art installation with a therapeutic tarot card reading. While I was a bit skeptical at first, I grew to appreciate creator Erika Batdorf’s whimsical attempt at helping me cleanse my soul.

Burnish can be experienced in two ways: you can participate in a one-on-one session with Batdorf for the price of a ticket, and you can observe the installation for free at anytime during her sessions. I had the opportunity to experience both on separate days.

Continue reading Burnish (Erika Batdorf) 2016 SummerWorks Review