All posts by Ashima Suri

With her love of theatre, dance and writing, Ashima Suri jumped on the opportunity to write for Mooney On Theatre. Ashima is an award-winning established dance artist with her own dance theatre company called Limitless Productions. In her own work, she uses art as a tool for social change. As a reviewer, she seeks out shows that speak to the diversity in the community. She loves to watch innovative shows that break the norms and challenge the audiences.

Review: 30 People Watching (Subtle Vigilance)

30 People Watching by Toronto’s Subtle Vigilance, is a play about the murder of BC teen Reena Virk

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Based on the 1997 murder of Reena Virk, 30 People Watching is based on the story of the South Asian teen who was brutally assaulted and killed in Victoria, BC by several youth including Kelly Ellard. By creating the characters Rita and Chelsea, the show focuses on the unheard voices of Virk and Ellard. The play imagines what Rita and Chelsea would have said in the past and present. It’s an intriguing concept however, I couldn’t always feel the emotions behind the characters and that left me feeling a little disconnected to the play.

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Review: Uplica (Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie)

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Hip hop infused contemporary dance lit up Toronto’s Citadel in Uplica

Commissioned by Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie, Uplica is a beautifully choreographed one hour dance show that features two of Toronto’s top dancers, Laurence Lemieux and Erin Poole. It was the choreographers of this show, Apolonia Velasquez and Ofilio Sinbadinho (Gadfly), that captured my attention and piqued my interest to watch the show. Not really knowing what to expect, I went into the theatre with the slightest hunch that I was about to see some very interesting choreography and dancing. And luckily, my hunch was right!

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Retreat (Theatre Brouhaha) The Storefront Theatre

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Toronto playwright Kat Sandler spoofs reality shows in her latest play Retreat at the Storefront Theatre

Watch out Toronto, there is a new hilarious show in town that will knock the socks right of your feet! Retreat is no ordinary play. It is one-hour and forty-five minutes of time spent well! The talented playwright Kat Sandler gives us all something to think about in her well-written, smart, fun and engaging new play now playing at The Storefront Theatre.
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Black Or Ange (The Chimera Project) 2014 SummerWorks Review

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The show began with a loud scream that had a few of us jump from our seats. The scream was followed up by an ominous soundtrack that quite frankly, captivated me right from the beginning! Six fierce urban and contemporary dancers entered the space and gave us 50 minutes of mostly non-stop movement. Black Or Ange at the SummerWorks festival is a beautifully choreographed dance production by choreographer Malgorzata Nowacka. The level of technique is very strong and the partnered work left me breathless.

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Thus Spoke… (Groupe Gravel/ Lepage) 2014 SummerWorks Review

thus spoke resize‘We are privileged to be here.’ Yes we are, I thought, especially towards the end of the Thus Spoke… show. The topic of privilege was a beginning and end discussion point. How I loved watching the four very talented cast members take the mic to challenge our minds. This well-written and directed 90-minute SummerWorks festival show captivated my attention from the beginning. Intrigued initially by the buzz the show was getting, and that it is a dance theatre production, I couldn’t wait to see this Montreal-based cast take the stage!

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The Good Story (Beautiful Obedient Productions) 2014 SummerWorks Review

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There is nothing more Godly than to visit a foreign country and serve someone or a community in need. Mother Theresa did it and quite frankly, she made it look easy. Based on true events, the SummerWorks festival’s The Good Story features a young Alex who believes that God has sent her to an orphanage in India to help. Even though her cause is noble, Alex finds herself in way over her head as she discovers that ‘helping’ someone may not be all that it’s cut out to be.
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The Devil You Know (L’Amoreaux Collegiate Institute) 2014 SummerWorks Review

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I could feel my chest increasingly tense up as I watched director, producer and writer Wendy Krekeler’s The Devil You Know at the SummerWorks Festival. The topic of incest is never easy to speak about, yet all the actors in this play did a courageous job in bringing this highly-sensitive subject to the forefront.

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Review: Kontakthof (Luminato Festival)

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Tanztheatre Wuppertal Returns to Toronto with the Triumphant Kontakhof

I could feel the anticipation from the audience before the sold out show began. It’s been 30-years since the legendary Pina Bausch’s Tanztheater Wuppertal has performed in Canada. Finally, on the 40th anniversary of Tanztheater Wuppertal, Luminato Festival brought them back to show us one of Bausch’s most memorable productions, Kontakhof.

Pina Bausch was one of the first to introduce theatre in dance. Her choreography spoke to the human spirit as she stripped away the layers of pretense and got down to talking about what’s real. First staged in 1978, Kontakhof touched on the relationship between the sexes and the deep desire to be loved. The performers were first introduced as individuals, not really connecting with each other but humorously walking to the front of the stage to show the audience their profile and their teeth!

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Review: Walk When You Walk (The Theatre Centre)

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An interactive story exploring a journey to Shikoku, Japan, Walk When You Walk played at Toronto’s Theatre Centre

A two-hour contemplative walk, a sharing of perspectives and koans, making and eating rice balls and learning about the self was one part of the Tracy Wright Global Archive project. Beginning at The Theatre Centre, we stepped into the mind of well-known Butoh artist Denise Fujiwara, as she took us back into her own journey of travelling to the 88 Temples Pilgrimage on the island of Shikoku, Japan.

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