The best shows just a short drive from T.O.

THE MA­JOR FES­TI­VALS IN NIAGARA- ON-THE-LAKE AND STRATFORD – AND SOME SMALLER THE­ATRES – ARE READY TO WEL­COME STAGE-LOVERS

NOW Magazine - Hot Summer Guide - - CONTENTS - BY JON KA­PLAN

Canadian Catskills

Play­wright Alex Poch-Goldin re­vis­its a largely un­known piece of Canadian his­tory in The Right Road To Pon­ty­pool, about a com­mu­nity near Toronto that be­came a sum­mer wa­ter­ing hole for Jewish Cana­di­ans, who were en­ter­tained by the likes of Wayne and Shus­ter. It was On­tario’s ver­sion of the Catskills. Di­rected by Kim Black­well, the pro­duc­tion fea­tures Ellen-Ray Hen­nessy, Al­lan Price and Dov Mick­el­son. Runs June 30 to Au­gust 1 at 4th Line Theatre, Mill­brook. 1-800-814- 0055.

Five framed por­traits

The Shaw Fes­ti­val tack­les one of Michel Trem­blay’s most nu­anced works, Al­ber­tine In Five Times, in which we see the ti­tle char­ac­ter at five stages of her life in con­ver­sa­tion with her sis­ter Madeleine. Pa­tri­cia

Hamil­ton, who was an Al­ber­tine in the orig­i­nal Tar­ragon pro­duc­tion, here plays Madeleine un­der direc­tor Miche­line Chevrier. June 24 to Oc­to­ber 10 at the Court House Theatre, Niagara-on-the-Lake. 1-800-511-7429.

Moscow, Moscow

Stratford stages an­other play about a set of sib­lings, Chekhov’s Three Sis­ters, in which the ti­tle char­ac­ters deal with small-town tragedies as they yearn for life in Moscow. Martha Henry di­rects Su­san Coyne’s adap­ta­tion, with Dalal Badr, Lucy Pea­cock and Irene Poole as the sis­ters. Runs to Oc­to­ber 3 at the Tom Pat­ter­son Theatre, Stratford. 1-800-567-1600.

Night-time ro­mance

One of the Bard’s most popular come­dies, Twelfth Night, blends laugh­ter, love, cross-dress­ing and self-de­ceit.

Theatre by the Bay presents direc­tor Brett Christo­pher’s pro­duc­tion, with a cast that in­cludes Jody Stevens, Ben Clost, Eric Woolfe, Michael Raw­ley and Tim Walker. From Au­gust 13 to 28 at the Down­town Com­mu­nity Theatre, Bar­rie. 1-866-735-9243.

Cram­ming in Cow­ard

Shaw of­fers a fes­ti­val within a fes­ti­val, en­ti­tled Tonight At 8:30, with four pro­grams that present all 10 of Noël Cow­ard’s one-act plays. Three of the play­bills com­prise three one­acts, and there’s a lunchtime pre­sen­ta­tion of the sin­gu­lar piece Star Cham­ber. The mix in­cludes com­edy, drama and even a star­tlingly mod­ern mu­si­cal ( Shadow Play); the­atre­go­ers will rec­og­nize one of the scripts as the source for the film Brief En­counter. Through Oc­to­ber 31 at var­i­ous Shaw the­atres, Niagara-on-the-Lake. 1-800-511-7429.

Alex Poch- Goldin re­calls On­tario’s Jewish so­cial his­tory in The Right Road To Pon­ty­pool. cut­line

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