Review: Dry Land (Cue6 Theatre)

Photo of Mattie Driscoll in Dry LandToronto’s Cue6 Theatre presents Ruby Rae Spiegel play taking on teen abortion

Cue6 Theatre’s production of Dry Land opened on Friday at The Assembly Theatre. Playwright Ruby Rae Spiegel was only 21 when the play was first produced. One of the things that motivated her was reading an article about the rise of DIY abortions. Given the changes to the laws in the U.S. over the past few years it’s a timely topic. It’s one we can’t afford to ignore here either. Unfortunately.

This makes it sound as if Dry Land is a political play. It isn’t. The publicity says it’s a play about “abortion, female friendship, and resiliency“. It’s funny, and agonizing, and wonderful. My friend Marg and I both loved it. Continue reading Review: Dry Land (Cue6 Theatre)

Review: Gay Play Day (Alumnae Theatre)

Gay Play Day is Toronto’s festival of theatre featuring work by LGBTQ playwrights

Gay Play Day, hosted by Alumnae Theatre and now in its seventh year, is a play festival focused on premiering work by LGBTQ playwrights and on LGBTQ themes. There are two programs, presented at different times, which seem to be structured to appeal to different audiences.

Pink, comprised of Fade to Black, Labels, Diamonds on Plastic, and Point and Click skews toward an older, more conventional audience with more traditionally structured work; one play nostalgically venerates Old Hollywood, and in another, a shopaholic, drunken Southern belle monologist (Margaret Lamarre, tearing up Philip Cairns’ Diamonds on Plastic) is right out of a slightly crasser Tennessee Williams play. Lavender, made up of I’ve Just Seen a Face, Missed Connections, The End is the Beginning and Coming Clean, feels a lot younger and a little more chaotic and fun, much of it an evolution of standup or sketch comedy.

Continue reading Review: Gay Play Day (Alumnae Theatre)

Review: Portia’s Julius Caesar (Shakespeare in the Ruff)

Photo of Catherine Horne and Nikki Duval in Portia's Julius Caesar

Playwright Kaitlyn Riordan had Shakespeare’s women—or lack thereof— on her mind when she constructed Portia’s Julius Caesar for Shakespeare in the Ruff playing in Withrow Park. She decided to create “a new Shakespearean play where we meet all kinds of women” using a mixture of Shakespear’s language from plays, sonnets, poetry and her own writing.

The result is an attempt to flesh out women’s roles that doesn’t quite succeed for me in the execution.

Continue reading Review: Portia’s Julius Caesar (Shakespeare in the Ruff)

Cheap Theatre in Toronto for the week of September 3rd, 2018

Five Shows Under $25 in Toronto this Week

Live theatre shows in Toronto with ticket prices of $25 or less, playing the week of September 3rd, 2018. All of these shows are perfect for the budget-conscious theatre enthusiast, so finish off the summer by taking in some top notch theatre without breaking the bank!

Continue reading Cheap Theatre in Toronto for the week of September 3rd, 2018

Review: Sisters (Soulpepper)

Soulpepper Theatre presents Sisters, based on the Edith Wharton novel, on stage in Toronto

Soulpepper Theatre Company presents Sisters, a play written by Rosamund Small (based on the novel Bunner Sisters By Edith Wharton) and directed by Peter Pasyk, that is so intimate it is almost claustrophobic. This is a production that explores the bonds of women, of sisters, and how far we’ll go to save them.

Continue reading Review: Sisters (Soulpepper)

Review: Boys Don’t Cry (Basement Productions)

This original musical explores toxic masculinity, played at the Red Sandcastle Theatre in Toronto

Photo of Mateo Lewis and Ryan HopperI gotta say, I was a little apprehensive waiting for Boys Don’t Cry, playing at the Red Sandcastle Theatre, to begin. Sitting under fluorescent lights in a tiny black box theatre to the tune of the Falsettos cast recording made my mind go to some strange places. “What kind of show is this?”.

Continue reading Review: Boys Don’t Cry (Basement Productions)