Exploring the dark side of manhood and toxic masculinity, Daughter is on stage in Toronto
Daughter, onstage now at the Theatre Centre, dives into the dark side of fatherhood and manhood, ostensibly in a critique of toxic masculinity. It’s a compelling performance from Adam Lazarus, a well known figure in Toronto’s clown community. He’s also the writer, blending elements of autobiography into the story. The audience is supposed to be unsure at any given moment if we are hearing from Lazarus the man, or the monster he has created.
Continue reading Review: Daughter (The Theatre Centre/QuipTake)
Nightwood Theatre’s nuanced play takes to the Toronto stage
Lo (Dear Mr Wells), a Nightwood Theatre production in association with Crow’s Nest, tells the story of a sexual relationship between a high school student and a teacher. Going into it, I expected the teacher to be a “bad guy”, obviously predatory, allowing the audience to comfortably condemn him. Instead, Mr Wells is a developed character, a likeable human person. I believed that he really did love Lo. Continue reading Review: Lo (Dear Mr Wells) (Nightwood Theatre)
Toronto’s Factory Theatre opens its season with Anita Majumdar’s play The Fish Eyes Trilogy
Anita Majumdar is a force to be reckoned with in The Fish Eyes Trilogy, the one-person show she’s written, choreographed, and is performing at Factory Theatre. You’d need an oil tanker, not a fishing boat, to hold the amount of ferocity she brings to playing three teen girls (and a host of other minor characters) living in Port Moody. Told almost as much through dance as through voice, The Fish Eyes Trilogy probes into the tender places where racism and misogyny burrow into adolescent sexuality, with complex psychological repercussions.
Continue reading Review: The Fish Eyes Trilogy (Factory Theatre/Nightswimming)
Theatre artist Katie Sly has returned from Vancouver to present their play Serenity Wild at the Summerworks Festival. Sly is a significant figure in the vanguard of exploring sex and sexuality onstage.
They have produced the Two Queer: A Bi Visibility Cabaret series (which once featured my work), and performed in Sky Gilbert’s The Terrible Parents, and they have been featured in Summerworks previously, with their autobiographical show Charisma Furs. I had the pleasure of seeing a staged reading of Serenity Wild some years ago. Here is my conversation with Sly. Continue reading Preview: Serenity Wild (Tender Container) 2017 SummerWorks Preview
Ghost Rings, part of the Luminato Festival in Toronto, is “whimsical” and “wonderfully wild”
David Pecault Square is home to the Famous Spiegeltent for Luminato, serving as the venue for performances including Ghost Rings, from NYC company Half Straddle. Ghost Rings is a pop-punk experimental musical about girls who are close when they are young, but grow estranged as they become adults. Continue reading Review: Ghost Rings (Luminato)
The Youth/Elders Project tackles issues affecting the LGBTQIA community, on stage in Toronto
In partnership with The 519 and the Senior Pride Network, Buddies in Bad Times has put LGBTQIA people under 25 and over 55 together in a yearlong process to create this show, The Youth/Elders Project. The results are sincere and charming, if a bit patchy. Continue reading Review: The Youth/Elders Project (Buddies In Bad Times)
A troupe of five take on the many characters of the Bard’s Caesar on stage in Toronto
In a dank, creepy basement accessed via a back alley in Kensington, I sat down in a folding chair with a sense of wariness to see Wolf Manor Theatre Collective‘s take on Caesar. Happily, I need not have worried: dedicated performances from the five person ensemble carry the narrative in a tight grip. Continue reading Review: Caesar (Wolf Manor Theatre Collective)
Soulpepper presents Wildfire a new play by Judith Hompson and Toronto’s RARE Theatre
I find it impossible to criticize Wildfire, produced by Soulpepper/ RARE Theatre which manages to be endearing while still addressing serious issues of the abuse and neglect of disabled people who were instiututionalized in the Huronia Regional Centre during its existence, as well as the continuing stigma and marginalization in broader society. Continue reading Review: Wildfire (Soulpepper/RARE Theatre)
True Crime delves into the mind of a convicted murderer, on stage in Toronto
In True Crime, the current offering from Crow’s Theatre, Torquil Campbell delves into the dark side of his own psyche via his fascination with convicted murderer, kidnapper and impostor Christian Gerhartsreiter, aka Clark Rockefeller, among other aliases. Shifting between an impersonation of Gerhartsreiter and his first person narrative detailing the creation of the play, Campbell explores what compels them both to do the things they do. Continue reading Review: True Crime (Crow’s Theatre)
Soulpepper presents Crawlspace, Karen Hines’ dark comedic play about homeownership in Toronto
If I ever had any regrets about my resignation to never own property, Karen Hines’ Crawlspace has effectively banished them. In her dark tale of home ownership in Toronto, playing at Soulpepper, Hines relates real estate horror that is all too true. Continue reading Review: Crawlspace (Soulpepper)