Eye-catching Toronto live theatre for the week of October 31, 2010

Here are all of the shows we wish we could get out and see this week! Take your pick from our list of great theatre escapes for the week of October 24, 2010:

** Shows marked with the double asterisks and in red are the ones that make Megan, our editor, wish she could clone herself so she could check them all out.

Continue reading Eye-catching Toronto live theatre for the week of October 31, 2010

Review: A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry (Soulpepper)

by Ryan Kerr

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Alison Sealy-Smith rocks! And she is a perfect anchor as matriarch Lena Younger in Soulpepper’s A Raisin in the Sun. Were the rest of the production stripped bare save a lounge chair, a meek potted plant and Lena, I would have been satisfied.

You can imagine my elation when director Weyni Mengesha’s lavish production combined a period set with a collection of heartfelt performances. I’m pretty sure my mouth hung open the entire night.

Continue reading Review: A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry (Soulpepper)

Review: Spent (Theatre Smith-Gilmour)

by Lucy Allen

I don’t know anyone who hasn’t been affected by the financial crisis in the last couple of years. Heck, even with no assets to my name to lose I find myself scrounging for change in the couch for subway fare. Of course, any world crisis is always ripe for parody and countless plays and tv shows pop up to give their own commentary on the disaster. Spent, which opened last night at the Factory Theatre, is one of those many shows. It’s one of the only shows, though, that does it right. Continue reading Review: Spent (Theatre Smith-Gilmour)

IFOA NOIR Reading – Harbourfront.

By Sam Mooney

31st International Festival of Authors in Toronto

If you haven’t ever been to a reading at the International Festival of Authors maybe this is the year you should go. Last night I heard 4 authors at a reading that’s part of the NOIR series in the festival.

You might be wondering why Mooney on Theatre is covering the IFOA. We believe that author readings are akin to staged play readings or to monologues. Not a lot of lights and music but they definitely engage the imagination and entertain. Person + stage + material+ audience = theatre.

Until November 5 IFOA is on the road so if you can’t make it to a reading in Toronto check the out of town schedule to see if there is a reading near you. Continue reading IFOA NOIR Reading – Harbourfront.

[Sponsored Article] Dora award winning SPENT is being remounted in Toronto opening October 29, 2010

Sponsored Article

Last September Theatre Smith-Gilmour, Why Not Theatre, and TheatreRUN took the Toronto theatre scene by storm with their smash-hit production Spent. In fact, the production was such a success it garnered 3 Dora Mavor Moore Award nominations (including outstanding production and outstanding new play) and went on to win for best performance by an ensemble in a featured role.

Due to popular demand Spent is returning to the Factory Studio Theatre on Friday, October 29, 2010, on the 81st anniversary of Black Tuesday. Fittingly enough, the piece is an intelligent, hilarious and poetic commentary on greed and the financial crisis of 2008.

Continue reading [Sponsored Article] Dora award winning SPENT is being remounted in Toronto opening October 29, 2010

Review: The Andersen Project (Canadian Stage)

By Sam Mooney

The Andersen ProjectThe Ansersen Project – presented by Canadian Stage at the Bluma Appel Theatre – is written and directed by Canadian theatre icon Robert Lepage. I’m a wee bit embarrassed to admit that this is the first of Lepage’s plays that I’ve seen. It seems like the Canadian equivalent of admitting that you’ve never been to Stratford to see a show. (Oh, wait, I haven’t ever been to Stratford to see a show.)

Yves Jacques played all three roles and was amazing. His transformations from one character to another were seamless. The Andersen Project is the story of Frederic, a Quebec songwriter who is hired by the Paris Opera to write a libretto for a children’s opera based on The Dryad – a story by Hans Christian Andersen. Arnaud is the Director of the Paris Opera who has hired Frederic. Rashid is the Moroccan janitor who cleans the booths in the peep show that’s in the building where Frederic is staying. Continue reading Review: The Andersen Project (Canadian Stage)

Review: Madhouse Variations (Eldritch Theatre)

By Adelina Fabiano

Mysteries and Mayhem at Toronto’s Theatre Centre

If you are looking for a show to set you in the mood for this year’s upcoming Halloween, then Madhouse Variations, produced by Eldritch theatre at the Theatre Centre is the one to see. Inspired by stories from three of Horror’s great writing masters: H.P. Lovecraft, E.T.A. Hoffman and Algernon Blackwood, this trilogy of terror will do more than just ignite the senses!

Set in the suburb of Kobol Hollow in the dreary Ravenscrag Asylum, two inmates re-enact the lives and histories of three infamous patients uncovering the evil power of the “Necronomicon.” Highly creative, superbly written, and brilliantly performed, puppet theatre has taken on a whole new meaning! Continue reading Review: Madhouse Variations (Eldritch Theatre)

Review: Aida (The Canadian Opera Company)

by Jenna Rocca

The Canadian Opera Company’s presentation of Aida for the first time in 25 years is the example of opera at its best. Based on a French text by Camille du Locle, taken from a scenario by Auguste Mariette, it is considered by many to be Giuseppe Verdi‘s masterpiece, with the libretto by Antonio Ghislanzoni. It was first presented in 1871.

Following the class defying relationship between the great Egyptian warrior Radames and the servant Aida, the plot examines the internal conflict between romantic love and familial love; devotion to the heart or to the homeland. Continue reading Review: Aida (The Canadian Opera Company)

Review – Priscilla: Queen of the Desert (Mirvish)

By Crystal Wood

Do you happen to enjoy fun? Then, you owe it to yourself to see Priscilla: Queen of the Desert, the Musical, which officially opened at the Princess of Wales Theatre last night.

You may be familiar with this story of three drag queens crossing the Australian desert from the 1994 movie, but let me assure you, the movie will not prepare you for the level of bubble-gum entertainment you are about to witness. From the moment the lights dim and the disco ball rises, you’re in for 2.5 hours of hot pink and 80’s pop.

Continue reading Review – Priscilla: Queen of the Desert (Mirvish)

(Sponsored Article) Toronto production of Homeland explores what 'home' means

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In a couple days (Thursday, October 28) a new multi-disciplinary performance piece exploring the meaning of ‘home’ will open in the Theatre Passe Muraille backspace.  The piece, called Homeland, is an interplay of fiction and reality, scripted fictional performance interacting with documentary film.

It’s a snapshot of our lives, divided between two or more worlds.

Homeland is described as a multi-faceted examination of the meaning of home in a hybrid setting of dance, live music and documentary film. The spoken, and at times unspoken, words of the personalities in the film are translated into a solo dance and physical theatre against the beat of drums and flow of electronic sequences performed by two musicians on stage. This contemplative journey of words, sounds, and movements, makes one rethink the definition of home.

Continue reading (Sponsored Article) Toronto production of Homeland explores what 'home' means