All posts by Katharine O'Brien

Review: The Precious Young Ladies (Théâtre Français de Toronto) / Critique: Les Précieuses ridicules (Théâtre Français de Toronto)

Théâtre Français de Toronto’s adaptation of Molière’s The Precious Young Ladies takes to the Berkeley Street Theatre’s stage

Critique en français à suivre. 

Last night I finally got to see Théâtre Français de Toronto’s production of The Precious Young Ladies at The Berkeley Street Theatre, something I had been looking forward to all week. I have always been very impressed with their work so I was more than excited to see their latest Molière adaptation.

The Precious Young Ladies is a one-act comedy by Molière in prose that takes a satirical aim at the extravagant and delicate ladies of the French bourgeoisie. Magdelon and Cathos are two cousins from the country who have come to Paris in search of love and adventure. When they reject and ridicule two eligible suitors, the men vow to take revenge on les précieuses by tricking them into falling in love with their valets–who are disguised as sophisticated men of the world.

Continue reading Review: The Precious Young Ladies (Théâtre Français de Toronto) / Critique: Les Précieuses ridicules (Théâtre Français de Toronto)

Review: Burn This (Sterling Studio Theatre)

Burn This takes a look at personal identity and relationships playing at Toronto’s Sterling Studio Theatre

Wednesday night was my second experience with Sterling Studio Theatre. I enjoyed their production of Specter so much that I was really looking forward to seeing their preview performance of Lanford Wilson’s play Burn This. An interesting space, I wondered what they would do with it this time.

Burn This begins shortly after the funeral of Robby, a gay dancer who drowned in a boating accident with his boyfriend. Set in a Manhattan loft shared by Robby’s roommates Anna; his dance partner and choreographer, and Larry; who works in advertising, Burn This is about reconsidering identity and relationships. Pale, Robby’s older brother, forces everyone to make sense of their lives when he bursts on the scene.

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Review: Watch her/A Month in the Country (The National Ballet of Canada)

A double bill with contrasting themes is featured in the National Ballet’s Watch her/A Month in the Country

Let me first say, that aside from The Nutcracker, Watch her/A Month in the Country was my first experience with not only The National Ballet of Canada but with ballet in general. Yet, while not knowing what to expect Wednesday night, I arrived at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts with eager anticipation.

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Review: Of Mice and Morro and Jasp (U.N.I.T. Productions)

Morro and Jasp bring clowning and comedy to Of Mice and Men at Toronto’s Factory Studio Theatre

Although I had previously heard a lot about the clown duo Morro and Jasp, it wasn’t until Wednesday night that I got to see what they were all about firsthand. As I am not very familiar with clowning and what it involves, my idea of it preceding this performance was very basic and probably misguided. So, in truth, I honestly didn’t think I’d enjoy myself at Factory Studio Theatre that night.

But enjoy myself I did. I’m pretty sure I was expecting to walk into a really bad birthday party for small children. Yet I was pleasantly surprised to discover that clowning can be fun and dynamic, even for adults.

Continue reading Review: Of Mice and Morro and Jasp (U.N.I.T. Productions)

Review: Le fa le do (Théâtre français de Toronto/Théâtre La Catapulte) / Critique: Le fa le do (Théâtre français de Toronto/Théâtre La Catapulte)

le fa le do | CAST@Marc Lemyre

Co-produced by the Théâtre français de Toronto and Théâtre La Catapulte, le fa le do is unique, hilarious, and full of suspense / Co-produit par le Théâtre français de Toronto et Théâtre La Catapulte, le fa le do est à la fois unique, hilarant et plein de suspense.

Critique en français à suivre. 

After seeing TfT‘s production of Les Fourberies de Scapin, I was eager to see more. Unlike a Molière play, I had no idea what to expect with le fa le do. A unique co-production of Théâtre La Catapulte and Théâtre français de Toronto, le fa le do is both hilarious and suspenseful.

Continue reading Review: Le fa le do (Théâtre français de Toronto/Théâtre La Catapulte) / Critique: Le fa le do (Théâtre français de Toronto/Théâtre La Catapulte)

Review: In A Forest Dark & Deep (Ron Leach & Brian Levy)

In a Forest Dark & Deep playing at Toronto’s Theatre Passe Muraille Backspace is a production compellingly acted and exquisitely directed

First off, let me admit that I am a huge fan of Neil LaBute. I have read, seen and even been involved in several of his plays over the years, which was why I was excited to catch his latest play In A Forest Dark & Deep in the Theatre Passe Muraille Backspace.

In A Forest Dark & Deep tells the story of brother and sister Bobby and Betty reuniting in a cabin in the woods. Bobby thinks he’s simply lending his sister a hand with clearing out her cottage for new tenants. But it’s a dark and stormy night, and his sister has a big secret.

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Adopt This! (2 Tickets to Bingtown) 2013 Toronto Fringe Review

adopt_this-250x250For my last show of the evening, I went to the Tarragon Solo Room to catch a performance of Adopt This! written and performed by Dan Bingham. Expecting to see his usual style of comedy (which is hilarious), I was pleasantly surprised by the level of honesty and rawness in this production.

Adopt This! is a hilarious and reflective look at growing up adopted. Raised by a strict Irish Catholic mother, Dan Bingham recounts his troubled youth as he recalls the painful abuse of his mother’s boyfriend and his reunion with his rowdy biological Scottish family.

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Yarn (Acky-Made) 2013 Toronto Fringe Review

yarn-250x251Yesterday evening I saw the opening performance of Yarn by Acky-Made at Majlis Multidisciplinary Arts. This was, first off, one of the coolest venues I’ve ever been to. It’s one of the the site-specifc venues in the Fringe Festival. Everything is outdoors with cute little cushions on your seats. There were candles and rope lights everywhere with tons of greenery and the smell of citronella was in the air. It was the perfect setting for a summer night at the theatre.

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The Taliban Don’t Like My Knickers (DYS(THE)LEXI) 2013 Toronto 2013 Fringe Review

the_taliban_dont_like_my_knickers-250x250For my last show of the evening, I went to see The Taliban Don’t Like My Knickers by DYS(THE)LEXI at the Tarragon Extra Space.

A multimedia experience, The Taliban Don’t Like My Knickers is a stylized two-hander inspired by the novel ‘In The Hands of the Taliban’ written by British journalist Yvonne Ridley after she was captured by the Taliban in 2001. With Taliban video footage playing constantly in the background, I was expecting something extremely exciting and uncomfortable to watch.

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