Review: Kiss & Cry (Canadian Stage)

Kiss & Cry

CanStage’s Season Opener Sets The Bar High: Wonderful, Exciting Theatre

Kiss and Cry opened Canadian Stage’s season last night and set the bar high for the rest of the season. I can’t remember the last time I heard such long, sustained applause for a theatrical production; it transcended the standing ovation.

It’s a very short run. Kiss & Cry is only here for another four performances so if you want to skip to the end of this review for the ticket information, I’ll understand. Continue reading Review: Kiss & Cry (Canadian Stage)

Review: The Mountaintop (Obsidian Theatre/Shaw Festval)

Mountaintop_0635_DC

The Mountaintop fictionally recalls Martin Luther King Jr’s final night, playing at Toronto’s Aki Studio Theatre

Settling in at Daniels Spectrum, Aki Studio Theatre for Obsidian Theatre’s production of The Mountaintop, I found myself completely whisked away by the set and pre-show soundscape. Late sixties pop tunes play and rain outside a window throws eerie patterns on the wall of a darkened and dismal motel room. Segments of Martin Luther King Jr.’s final speech weave in and out. It is both comforting and ominous, this opening atmosphere crafted by Judith Bowden (set), Kevin Lamotte (lighting) and Freddy Gabrsek (sound). Continue reading Review: The Mountaintop (Obsidian Theatre/Shaw Festval)

An Invitation to Hold Mommy’s Cigarette: an interview with Shelley Marshall

Shelley Marshall performs her play Hold Mommy’s Cigarette in Toronto for Mental Illness Awareness Week

When Shelley Marshall suggested the interview take place at her Full Bawdy Loft, I didn’t realize until I arrived that it was, in fact, her loft; a lived-in space that she was inspired to adapt for the October run of her show Hold Mommy’s Cigarette.

The eclectic 1970’s inspired set dominated the room. She gave me a tour, showing me some props and describing the lighting design for her show, opening tomorrow. I felt like I was invited into her home, shown family trinkets, and invited to ask my questions. It’s not surprising Marshall has inspired others to open up about mental illness.

Continue reading An Invitation to Hold Mommy’s Cigarette: an interview with Shelley Marshall

Cheap Theatre for the Week of September 30th, 2014

Sometimes it can be fun to go see theatre that’s entirely based on the writer’s imagination – they might be set in the real world, but the characters and events are all made up. This week’s Cheap Theatre, however, is a collection of shows that take their inspiration from real-life individuals and/or events. And you’ll be inspired by the cost! It’ll cost only $25 or less to see any of these shows! Check out the list below.

Continue reading Cheap Theatre for the Week of September 30th, 2014

Review: Le Passé antérieur/Past Perfect (Théâtre français de Toronto)

Past Perfect Albertine Alex

Théâtre français de Toronto presents Michel Tremblay’s play Past Perfect / Le Passé antérieur

All talk, no action — that’s Past Perfect/Le Passé antérieur by Michel Tremblay. Playing at the Théâtre français de Toronto, this French-language story about love lost offers English surtitles on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Geneviève Dufour plays Tremblay’s passionate, broken-hearted star character Albertine. Dumped by Alex, the man she longed to marry, Albertine can’t bear the fact that Alex is courting her younger, mild-mannered sister. Albertine is unhappy, and misery sure loves company. Everyone who crosses paths with Albertine — her mother Victoire, her sister Madeleine, her brother Edouard, her ex-boyfriend Alex — must be made painfully aware of every single tear she has shed. Continue reading Review: Le Passé antérieur/Past Perfect (Théâtre français de Toronto)