All posts by Isabella O'Brien

Review: Between Riverside and Crazy (Coal Mine Theatre)

Photo of Allegra Fulton and Alexander Thomas in Between Riverside and CrazyMasterful performances anchor the timely Between Riverside and Crazy, now on stage in Toronto

Coal Mine Theatre has brought American playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis’ Between Riverside and Crazy to Toronto, and this production packs one hell of a punch. It’s a timely show, particularly relevant in these times of growing political, social and economic strife.

An unorthodox tale of David and Goliath, Between Riverside and Crazy tells the story of a retired New York City police officer, Walter “Pops” Washington, living in the aftermath of an accident some eight years earlier. As the story goes, Pops, who is Black, was shot six times by a White rookie police officer, while drinking off-duty in a bar. Left injured by the shooting, Pops has been relentlessly pursuing a discrimination case against the New York Police Department, alleging that the White officer targeted him for being Black, before firing away.

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Review: Riverboat Coffee House: The Yorkville Scene (Soulpepper)

Picture of Brooke Blackburn and Sate in Riverboat Coffee House: The Yorkville SceneRiverboat Coffee House is a love letter to Yorkville’s artistic history

After a former run, Riverboat Coffee House: The Yorkville Scene has re-opened at Soulpepper Theatre. As part of their concert series programming, it’s a song and dance down memory lane into the iconic era of folk music that blossomed in Toronto’s Yorkville district in the 1960s and 1970s. Featuring performances of songs by legendary folk singers, this show is a love letter to an influential era of artistry in Toronto.
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Review: In The Abyss (Citadel + Compagnie)

Picture of dancers, including Ana Claudette Groppler and Syreeta Hector, in In The AbyssCitadel + Compagnie present a stunning dance piece exploring human connection

Citadel + Compagnie presented the world premier of In The Abyss and it’s a breathtaking, celestial work. The performance, choreographed by Aria Evans, seeks to explore the need for human connectivity. Inspired by the idea that we are all made of stardust, this show feels like it was created by humanity, for humanity.

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Review: The Jungle (Tarragon)

Picture of Shannon Currie and Matthew Gin in The Jungle ‘The Jungle’ is “heartfelt, heavy, moving and funny”.

The Jungle premiered last night at Tarragon Theatre and it was a punch to the gut: very real and very much told with eyes wide open. Billed as a Toronto love story between an immigrant from Moldova and the son of Chinese immigrants, it wrestled with what it really means to be working class, and if getting ahead is systemically possible in a capitalist society.

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