Gerard Reyes’ The Principle of Pleasure has all the makings of a spectacle at this year’s Toronto SummerWorks festival, with Reyes’ own body being the primary attraction against a backdrop of smoke, sound effects, and strobe lights. And, of course, the songs of Janet Jackson. It falls short on a few counts though and opens up questions of whether intimacy can indeed be forged in this context. It may be overstated to say that any rules and conventions are broken in this piece, for, while entertaining, I didn’t find The Principle of Pleasure to live up to all it said it would be.
Continue reading The Principle of Pleasure (Gerard Reyes) 2017 SummerWorks Review
WMI Collective Presents White Man’s Indian, a striking one-woman show written and performed by Darla Contois at this year’s SummerWorks festival.
Darla Contois is an engaging storyteller and this is a hard-hitting performance not to be overlooked.
Continue reading White Man’s Indian (WMI Collective) 2017 SummerWorks Review
How Did You Find Me Here? is a play by Alchemistic Theatre Company in the 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival. It is an intriguing piece of visual theatre about an Aboriginal male who confronts his cultural heritage for the first time in 25 years. Brendan Chandler, as Bear, and Jessica Bowmer, as Shadow, create a striking presence in this performance, and seem to be personifications of something much larger than themselves. Continue reading How Did You Find Me Here? (Alchemistic Theatre Company) 2017 Fringe Review
Brain Storm is a production devised by Lucid Ludic in partnership with BIST (Brain Injury Society of Toronto) in this year’s Toronto Fringe Festival. Brain Storm explores the notion of a conscious mind that can survive the physical brain. It’s kind of the ultimate question, isn’t it? Brain Storm is such a visually arresting and intellectually compelling creation that even the less spiritually-inclined may be moved to entertain the idea of a soul.
Continue reading Brain Storm (Lucid Ludic) 2017 Fringe Review
On The Inside is a docutheatre production created by s&m productions, written by Michelle Thoms, and is the most gut-wrenching play you will attend at this year’s Toronto Fringe Festival.
On The Inside is a fictional dramatization of a young woman’s recent experience in the Canadian prison system. It was the hardest and most emotionally devastating piece of theatre I’ve ever witnessed. Theatre is a forum which can be used to raise awareness of important issues–this show is so impressively executed and the reality it presents so absurd, I have hope it may even mobilize civil action, not just awareness. But for this to happen- -you’ll need to go see it.
Continue reading On The Inside (s&m productions) 2017 Fringe Review
Jennifer McKinley is a phenomenal storyteller and expert wordsmith. Her one-woman show Operation SUNshine, in this year’s Toronto Fringe, is as radical as it gets.
It’s an arresting dark comedy that sheds light on the seedy underbelly of Toronto crime in the 1980s and 90s. Join Jennifer as she shares a devastating part of our collective memory we’d rather not think about, even though the conditions that enabled these crimes to happen haven’t gone away.
Continue reading Operation SUNshine (Jennifer McKinley) 2017 Fringe Review
Theatre Enthused brings Dear Uncle Wish to the 2017 Toronto Fringe, and I couldn’t be more grateful to have seen it. Dear Uncle Wish captures a time of transition in newly confederated Newfoundland, and explores the tensions between old and new by focussing on two characters’ different approaches to healing. This is an intricately woven tale that will show you something that you may not have thought about recently. Dear Uncle Wish is a modern, original play written by Samantha Chaulk (who also happened to produce, compose the musical score, as well as play the main character, ‘Bride’). If you’d like to see an imaginative and expansive interpretation of a past that wasn’t so long ago, I urge you to go. Continue reading Dear Uncle Wish (Theatre Enthused) 2017 Fringe Review
What do you want to see this Toronto Fringe? Even if you don’t know, The O.C. knows exactly what you need, and it comes in the form of Pillow Talk – an original sketch comedy show, written and performed by Adam Martignetti, Charlotte Cattell and Olivia Brodie-Dinsdale – that you simply need to go see. It should be on your Fringe short-list. Seriously. Continue reading Pillow Talk (The O.C.) 2017 Fringe Review
Shadowpath‘s production of Plays in Cafes in the 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival is a site-specific immersive piece that is light, smart, and hilarious, with a few heartwarming moments to boot. Come to the Free Times Cafe on College Street for a mood of general good cheer that carries the show through. It’s a well-crafted entertaining experience that will leave you with a few hearty belly laughs to go along with your meal. Continue reading Plays in Cafes (Shadowpath) 2017 Toronto Fringe Review