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Toronto theatre

Where in Toronto: Dancap Takes a Bow

Jersey Boys was Dancap's biggest hit (photo by Joan Marcus)

Last week Dancap Productions, which brought to Toronto Broadway hits such as Jersey Boys, announced that it would not present any programming for the 2013 season. This suspension of operations marks the end of an era (albeit a relatively short one), where two large theatre companies, Dancap and juggernaut Mirvish Productions, introduced audiences to big-time mainstream musicals and stage dramas. But don’t fret; though the scene just got a little smaller, there are still many exciting opportunities across the city for resident and visiting theatre enthusiasts alike. (more…)

Staff Picks: Our Next Stage Theatre Festival 2012 Primer

Tomasso's Party is but one of the lauded independent productions at this year's Next Stage Theatre Festival

Now celebrating its fifth anniversary, the Next Stage Theatre Festival rounds up the best that the North American fringe circuit has to offer—all at one venue, the venerable Factory Theatre. New this year is the Ante-Chamber Stage, a forum for debuting short works and showcasing old favourites. Take in the finest edgy, indie productions, and even enjoy a fine brew at the heated McAuslan beer tent. Performances take place from January 4 to 15. Click here for further details and showtimes.

Hypnogogic Logic
Four-man comedy troupe Uncalled For returns to the stage with its award-winning Hypnogogic Logic, which explores the wide, wild world of dreams. Sporting life jackets to better navigate the rapids of the unconscious, the performers encounter Freddie Mercury, wordy street preachers and other absurd figments of their collective imagination, all while offering their signature wit, clever writing and the unpredictable hilarity of sketch comedy.

Living with Henry
Part of 2011’s “Best of Fringe,” Living with Henry is the story of Michael—recently diagnosed with HIV and envisioning the illness as a jealous man who haunts him throughout his relationships. Sometimes comic, always thought provoking, this musical drama reframes AIDS as a chronic disease rather than a death sentence, without diminishing its personal, physical and societal complications.

Love is a Poverty You Can Sell
Soup Can Theatre presents this decadent cabaret-style creation featuring show-stopping numbers from Sweeney Todd and Threepenny Opera. Hosted by two emcees, the production is a tribute to the works of legendary composer Kurt Weill and channels 1920’s Berlin in a night that’s brought critics to their feet since its 2009 opening.

LoveSexMoney
Inspired by a true story, LoveSexMoney takes a look at intimacy—or the lack thereof—in the digital age. A young woman sells her virginity online, and is poised to consummate when her scorned ex-boyfriend arrives on the scene. Hilarity ensues. This naughty production by Theatre Brouhaha openly exposes the world of Japanese erotic toys, custom-made dolls and love thwarted by the Internet.

Loving the Stranger or How to Recognize an Invert
Ecce Homo Theatre is known for its genre-bending socio-political commentary; this production is exemplary of the company’s ethos. A co-production with Buddies in Bad Times Theatre and the SummerWorks Theatre Festival, Loving the Stranger describes— through Brechtian cabaret, political theatre and camp—the life of a man who is arrested for homosexuality by the Nazi regime.

(more…)

7 Performances to See in Toronto this Holiday Season

The Four Season's Centre's Nutcracker. Photo by Bruce Zinger.

Between now and New Year’s you’ll find no shortage of things to do in Toronto, what with the sing-alongs and music performances and the shopping. (And even more shopping!)

But if culture is what you seek, check out Torontoist’s fab holiday shows round-up. They’ve reviewed of the seven theatre, dance and comedy performances from now through January 1 that range from family-friendly (the Nutcracker and the Wizard of Oz) to hilariously racy and quite possibly raunchy (Second City’s “Dysfunctional Holiday Revue” and Tarragon Theatre’s “A Very Lupe Xmas”).

The Curtain Rises on Toronto’s Stage Shows

The fall stage season is in full swing with numerous productions—rousing, provocative, humorous and more—presented by the city’s top theatre companies.  BY CRAIG MOY

Paul Gross and Kim Cattrall star in Private Lives (photo by Cylla von Tiedemann)

 

 

BIG TICKETS

Whether it’s a brassy, crowd-pleasing musical you’re after, or an impressive performance by a star or two, Toronto’s largest company, Mirvish Productions, has you covered with Broadway-style shows.

Private Lives
SEPTEMBER 16 TO OCTOBER 30 Over the decades, many talented thespians—from Robert Stephens and Maggie Smith to Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor—have stepped into the shoes of Elyot and Amanda, a divorced couple who end up honeymooning with their new spouses in the same hotel. Canadian stars Kim Cattrall and Paul Gross portray the pair in this latest, straight-from-London revival of Noël Coward’s classic comedy of manners. Glamour and decorum give way to witty impropriety as the characters rekindle old passions—and dig up past resentments. (more…)

July Editor’s Picks: Entertainment

Eric Davis is a deranged clown at the Fringe Festival.

Eric Davis is a deranged clown at the Fringe Festival.

JULY 1 TO 12 The city’s largest annual theatrical extravaganza, the Toronto Fringe Festival, offers up an eclectic slate of small- and large-scale productions—from dramas and musicals to comedies and modern dance numbers. More than 800 artists from around the world perform at a mix of traditional and unconventional venues. The 150 showcased plays are whittled down from 500-plus submissions using a lottery system, meaning that you could have tickets for Broadway’s next big hit. Catch the likes of Red Bastard—a one-man play starring Eric Davis as an anti-clown clad in a tomato-red body suit—or The Laramie Projects, a deeply moving story of hate, fear and hope in a small American town. Various venues, tickets $5 to $10; call 416-966-1062 for a program and times.

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