Toronto Theatre Buzz

Mooney on Theatre’s Hot Tickets for Fringe 2017

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Every year, Mooney on Theatre brings a team of more than 20 contributors to Fringe. With a team this big and diverse, no matter what you’ve got to show us, we have someone who wants to see it — and we will! As always, Mooney on Theatre will post a longform review of every show in the festival (all 160!) by the end of opening weekend.

But for now, a little buzz: our Hot Tickets are the shows which excited, attracted, intrigued and interested our team more than any others. These are the pieces which turned our heads, tickled our brains, and caused stampedes at scheduling time. Presenting, in no particular order, Mooney on Theatre’s Hot Tickets for Toronto Fringe 2017!


Bendy Sign Tavern (Sex T-Rex)

We love Sex T-Rex. This hyperkinetic, hammy-but-clever narrative comedy group have served up so many of our favourite Fringe experiences: from the post-apocalyptic, totally tubular Wasteland, to razor-sharp perennial favourite Swordplay: A Play of Swords, to my own beloved Callaghan! , these artists have wowed us again and again.

This year, they’re bringing us Bendy Sign Tavern, a full-length foray with puppets and a unique romcom structure. We’re extremely eager to see how these physical comedians work with their new toolkit, and our editor Samantha Wu can’t imagine anywhere she’d rather be:

I’ll admit that I’m late to the Sex T-Rex party. Yes I’ve heard of them (have known about them for years!) always knew they were a riot to watch — but never exactly how much until last year when I accompanied our fellow editor Lin to Swordplay: A Play of Swords. I was sold!

When I learned that Sex T-Rex were offering their Bendy Sign Tavern show at this year’s Fringe Festival, I couldn’t resist. Every year, my Fringe experience has to include at least one site-specific adventure – and this being at The Paddock (where I can also order a beer!) is wonderful. On top of that, it’s a show about life behind the bar run by puppets?! Sign me up.

Bendy Sign Tavern plays at the Paddock (178 Bathurst St.) from July 5th through July 15th. Showtimes vary, see website for details. Ticketing information at bottom of article.

Continue reading Mooney on Theatre’s Hot Tickets for Fringe 2017

Announcement: 2017 Dora Mavor Moore Award Winners (With Links to MoT Reviews)

Photo of Raoul Bhaneja hosting the 2017 Dora Mavor Moore AwardsSoulpepper, Tapestry Opera and The Theatre Centre, the big winners at the 38th Dora Awards

The Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA) presented the 38th Annual Dora Mavor Moore Awards at a ceremony hosted by prolific Toronto actor and musician Raoul Bhaneja at the Elgin Theatre last night.

Continue reading Announcement: 2017 Dora Mavor Moore Award Winners (With Links to MoT Reviews)

Announcement: 2017 Dora Mavor Moore Award Nominees (With Links to MOT Reviews)

Soulpepper, Mirvish and Canadian Opera Company lead noms for the 38th Dora Awards

The Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA) revealed the nominations for the 38th Annual Dora Mavor Moore Awards at a press conference early this morning. The Dora Awards seek to recognize excellence in the Toronto performing arts community. This year’s ceremony will take place on Monday, June 26 at the Elgin Theatre and will be hosted by prolific Toronto actor and musician Raoul Bhaneja.

Continue reading Announcement: 2017 Dora Mavor Moore Award Nominees (With Links to MOT Reviews)

Write for us! Coverage of the 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival

Tarragon-Lineup_smCover Toronto Fringe for Mooney on Theatre

Mooney on Theatre is looking for folks to review shows at the Toronto Fringe Festival, which runs from July 5 – 16, 2017.

In many ways, Fringe Festivals embody what Mooney on Theatre holds dear: making theatre more accessible. The Fringe features inexpensive shows attended by a wide range of people, many of whom are not theatregoers the rest of the year.

With this in mind, we put an intense amount of effort into providing as much coverage of the Toronto Fringe Festival as we can. To get an idea of what that coverage looks like, check out the Fringe Festival category on this site.

Among other things, this coverage includes reviewing each show in a relatively substantive way by the end of the first weekend. This task takes a lot of writers. Each year, to make it happen, we bring on additional contributors. Maybe this year that will be you.

Continue reading Write for us! Coverage of the 2017 Toronto Fringe Festival

Preview: Toronto International BuskerFest (Epilepsy Toronto)

20151208_IMG_20151028_001715The 17th annual Toronto International BuskerFest for Epilepsy takes place Labour Day Weekend at Woodbine Park. Proceeds support Epilepsy Toronto, an organization that represents the approximately 4000 people in Toronto living with epilepsy. I did know this, but 1 in 100 people has epilepsy.

The festival features a superb musical lineup, including Juno award-winner Adam Solomon. Music is only a fraction of the attractions the festival has to offer. Acrobats, clowns, midway rides, stilt walkers, flaming hula hoops, and mimes will all play a part in the weekends delights. The festival will also include a car show for the first time this year.

I have attended the festival several times, and it is one of the highlights of the end of summer. We asked the folks at BuskerFest a few questions about changes to the festival, and what the weekend has in store. Continue reading Preview: Toronto International BuskerFest (Epilepsy Toronto)

Preview: Life Record (Pressgang Theatre)

LIFE RECORDS SHOW POSTERPressgang Theatre is remounting Life Records, a one-woman-show by Rhiannon Archer from the 2015 Fringe Festival. Archer uses songs that are entwined with personal memories to explore her life experiences. The show is both comedic and confessional, with a mix of lighthearted and horrifying stories.

We asked writer and performer Rhiannon Archer a few questions about the show. Continue reading Preview: Life Record (Pressgang Theatre)

Announcement: 2016 Dora Mavor Moore Award Winners (With Links to MoT Reviews)

Doras2016

Canadian Opera Company, Young People’s Theatre, Canadian Stage win big at the Doras

The Dora Mavor Moore Awards ceremony is the Toronto theatre community’s big night out to celebrate its own. This year the ceremony was hosted by award-winning Stratford Festival and Broadway alum Bruce Dow, who kept the pace swift and the tone irreverent, interjecting just enough humour and music to keep the proceedings interesting without causing the show to drag.

Continue reading Announcement: 2016 Dora Mavor Moore Award Winners (With Links to MoT Reviews)

Write for us! Coverage of the 2016 Toronto Fringe Festival

20120707_2075_smCover Toronto Fringe for Mooney on Theatre

Mooney on Theatre is looking for folks to review Toronto Fringe Festival shows, which run from June 29 to July 10, 2016.

In a lot of ways Fringe Festivals embody what Mooney on Theatre holds dear, theatre accessibility. They are cheap theatre that is attended by a wide range of people, many of whom are not theatregoers the rest of the year.

With this in mind, we put a lot of effort into providing as much coverage of the Toronto Fringe Festival as we can, including: covering each show in a relatively substantive way; running contests for free tickets; reporting on the buzz surrounding the fringe and more. If you want an idea of what the coverage will likely look like, check out the Fringe Festival category on this site. To make this happen, we need to bring on more contributors.

Continue reading Write for us! Coverage of the 2016 Toronto Fringe Festival

Preview: The 2nd Annual Short Short Play Festival (Social Capital Theatre)

TheShortShortPlayFestivalPoster2016THISONEThe Social Capital Theatre is about to come alive with some of Canada’s best emerging and established talent with The 2nd Annual (ever!) Short Short Play Festival.

The festival runs from April 27th through May 1st, 2016 and is unique in that it features plays that are 20 minutes or less. The diverse lineup is presented as a “tasting menu”, with three plays during each time slot, giving the audience a wide range of characters, genres, and themes all within the span of one viewing.

We had the chance to speak with Melyssa Ade, the Artistic Director of The 2nd Annual Short Short Play Festival. Continue reading Preview: The 2nd Annual Short Short Play Festival (Social Capital Theatre)

Preview: The Wizard of Oz (Young People’s Theatre)

Wizzard of Oz, YPT

Few stories have such cultural traction in young hearts and minds as The Wizard of Oz does, and few cultural institutions gets so much so right about what interests young people as does Young People’s Theatre. So it makes perfect sense that during their silver anniversary season (50 years!), YPT tackle the venerable, delightful tale of a young person who dreams vividly of a different life.

Continue reading Preview: The Wizard of Oz (Young People’s Theatre)