How to find a listing Theatre listings are comprehensive and appear alphabetically by title. New this week lists shows that open or preview this week; Continuing shows have already opened. The rating system is as follows: NNNNN Standing ovation NNNN Sustained applause NNN Recommended, memorable scenes NN Seriously flawed N Get out the hook L = Luminato event P = Pride event
Critics’ pick (highly recommended) How to place a listing All listings are free. Use the event submission form at nowtoronto.com. Deadline is the Thursday before publication at 5 pm. To submit a correction to an existing listing, email: email@example.com.
New this week
L At the IllusIoNIst’s tAble (Luminato). Scottish illusionist Scott Silven hosts a night of fine dining & whisky, illusion, mentalism and storytelling. Opens Jun 7 and runs to Jun 24, Tue-Sun at 6 and 9 pm. $225. Casa Loma,1 Austin Terrace. luminatofestival.com.
AveNgerDAle: Age of ArchIe (Players). The Avengers heroes masquerade as high school teachers in T.O.’s Riverdale district. Opens Jun 7 and runs to Jun 16, Thu-Sat 8:30 pm. $15$25. Tranzac, 292 Brunswick. playersto.com. chIcAgo by John Kander, Fred Ebb, Bob Fosse (Mirvish). A nightclub dancer is charged with murder in 1920s Chicago. Opens Jun 12 and runs to Jun 17, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Wed 1:30 pm, Sat-Sun 2 pm. $39-$199. Ed Mirvish Theatre, 244 Victoria. mirvish.com. P clAmorous coNcorDs Buddies’ Youth Ensemble presents a celebratory theatrical adventure, opening act by Queer AF Collective. Jun 13 at 8 pm. Pwyc, adv $10. In the Chamber. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. buddiesinbadtimes.com/pride. P the commuNIst mANIfesto for chIlDreN by Bruce Gibbons Fell (Crocodilo Triste/Queer Pride). Work-in-development about 4 kids in 1950s Latin America. Jun 9 at 8 pm. Free. In the Cabaret. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. buddiesinbadtimes.com/pride. L the fever (Luminato/600 Highwaymen). This interactive show tests the limits of individual and collective responsibility. Jun 12-17 daily, see website for times. $39 & up. Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen W. luminatofestival.com. heNry v by William Shakespeare (Edge Productions). All-female production of the action-packed battlefield drama. Jun 8-9 at 8 pm. $35. The Attic Arts Hub, 1402 Queen E, unit C3. henryvtoronto.bpt.me. INspIrAto festIvAl The ten-minute play festival returns, this year’s theme is All About Her. Playwrights include Nedra Roberts, Dominik Loncar, Carol Libman, John Kane, Georgette Kelly and others. Jun 7-16, see website for schedule. $15-$20. Alumnae Theatre, 70 Berkeley. 416-483-2222, theatreinspirato.ca. A mIDsummer NIght’s DreAm by William Shakespeare (Bard in the Park). The classic romance is set in modern-day Athens University during Frosh Week. Opens Jun 11 and runs to Jun 17, Mon-Sat 7 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. Pwyc. Kew Gardens Park, 2075 Queen E. 416606-2518, bardinthepark.com. molly bloom adapted by Jocelyn Adema (Fourth Gorgon Theatre). A woman tries to make sense of her life in this play based on part of James Joyce’s Ulysses. Opens Jun 7 and runs to Jun 16, Tue-Sun 8 pm. $15-$25. Majlis Art Garden, 163 Walnut. fourthgorgon.com. L NAssIm by Nassim Soleimanpour (Why Not Theatre/Luminato). Each night a different performer reads a script for the first time, w/ Anand Rajaram, Allegra Fullton, Lee Maracle, Michael Redhill and others. Opens Jun 7 and runs to Jun 16, see website for times. $39 & up. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley. luminatofestival.com.
P peArle hArbour’s bAttle cry Buddies’ ñ Queer Pride presents a drag concert extravaganza with popular pro-war rallying songs to get you marching. Jun 10 at 8 pm. $15-$20. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander, Cabaret. buddiesinbadtimes.com. the phANtom of the operA by Andrew Lloyd Webber, Charles Hart and Richard Stilgoe (Cameron Mackintosh). Super-sized staging of the iconic musical set in 19th century Paris. Opens Jun 7 and runs to Jun 30, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Sat-Sun 2 pm. $79-$220. Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King W. mirvish.com. potteD potter: the uNAuthorIzeD hArry experIeNce by Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner (Starvox). Show that condenses all seven Harry Potter books (and a game of Quidditch) into 70 minutes. Opens Jun 13 and runs to Jul 8, see website for times. $30-$100. CAA Theatre, 651 Yonge. pottedpotter.com.
LP rIot A riotous cocktail of Irish ñ
dance, drag, circus and comedy. (See related story, page 36.) To Jun 16, Tue-Thu & Sat 7 pm, plus Fri-Sat 9:45 pm. $39 & up. The Joey and Toby Tanenbaum Opera Centre, 227 Front E. luminatofestival.com.
P showtuNes KArAoKe The Second ñ
City presents an interactive musical theatre love-in & group singalong. Jun 11 at 8 pm. $15. Second City, 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.
SongbuSter – An ImprovISed muSIcAl ñ
The cast creates a musical from audience suggestions. Jun 7 at 8 pm. $20, adv $15. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. fb.com/songbustermusic. StrIng of peArlS by Michele Lowe (Labour of Love). A necklace is passed from one person to another over decades. Opens Jun 7 and runs to Jun 16, Thu-Sun 8 pm. $20. Artscape Youngplace, 180 Shaw. stringofpearls.bpt.me. P tAp thIS! A QueerAted operA SerIeS (Tapestry Opera). A selection of queer-themed opera and shows by Teiya Kasahara and Gutter Opera Collective with Maria Toilette. Jun 7-9, see website for times. $25 & up. Ernest Balmer Studio, 9 Trinity. tapestryopera.com. WeAvIng reconcIlIAtIon: our WAy by Renae Morriseau, Rosemary Georgeson, Savannah Walling (Vancouver Moving Theatre/Native Earth Performing Arts/Jumblies Theatre). A family deals with the impact of residential schools in their community. Opens Jun 7 and runs to Jun 9, Wed-Fri 7:30 pm, Sat 2 pm. $15$25. Aki Studio, 585 Dundas E. nativeearth.ca.
brIghton beAch memoIrS by Neil Simon (Harold Green Jewish Theatre). A boy dreams of escaping his mundane life in Depressionera Brooklyn. To Jun 10, Thu & Sat 8 pm, mat Sat 2 pm. $24-$95. Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge. hgjewishtheatre.com.
come from AWAy by Irene Sankoff and ñ
David Hein (Mirvish). With astonishing warmth, Newfoundlanders welcome traumatized passengers on planes rerouted to Gander on 9/11 in this home-grown Tony-nominated musical. The music is rollicking, the lyrics are clever and I don’t think I’ve ever seen a show with more heart. The cast, doubling up on roles as Ganderites and travellers, is uniformly excellent, especially Eliza-Jane Scott as a pilot and Kevin Vidal as a Black Brooklynite who can’t believe his hosts’ openness. The show just barrels along – even with some dark content – and you never get a chance to catch your breath. But so what? Go with the flow and enjoy. To Jan 20, Tue-Sat 8 pm, mat Wed 1:30 pm, Sat-Sun 2 pm. $39-$169. Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com. nnnn (Susan G Cole) god of cArnAge by Yasmina Reza (East Side Players). Civility turns to anger when couples meet to resolve their kids’ dispute. To Jun 9, Thu-Sat 8 pm. $24, stu $15. Papermill Theatre, 67 Pottery. eastsideplayers.ca. greASe the muSIcAl by Jim Jacobs, Warren Casey (Irregular Entertainment). This expensive, carefully choreographed revival of the 50s-set musical is one note and features uneven performances by actors known mostly for TV work. But some set pieces are terrifically staged, and the songs – including some cut from the film version – have their pastiche charm and help explain the show’s enduring appeal. To Jun 17, see website for times. $29$149. Winter Garden Theatre, 189 Yonge. greaseonstage.com. nnn (Glenn Sumi)
Innocence loSt: A plAy About Steven ñ
truScott by Beverley Cooper (Soulpepper). Cooper’s 2008 play cracks open the 1959 small-town Ontario cold case of a 12-year-old girl and the 14-year-old classmate later convicted of her murder and sentenced to death in what many came to see as a miscarriage of justice. Positioning the audience as detective, judge and jury, Cooper’s detail-rich account of the investigation, trial and aftermath dramatizes testimony from friends, family and neighbours as they relate their diverging memories, opinions and shifting conclusions of guilt or innocence. To Jun 23, see website for times. $32-$96. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca. nnnn (Jordan Bimm)
lA bête by David Hirson (Soulpepper). ñ
See review, this page. To Jun 22, see website for times. $32-$96. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House. 416-8668666, soulpepper.ca. nnnn (Glenn Sumi)
mA rAIney’S blAck bottom by August ñ
Wilson (Soulpepper). This scorching production of Wilson’s play about the recording of a blues album in 1920s Chicago crackles with life. The themes, especially about the exploitation of Black artists by white producers, is still relevant, and Wilson’s characters interact with nuance and drama. Directed by Mumbi Tindyebwa Otu, the ensemble, many of whom get to play instruments and sing, are superb, especially Alana Bridgewater as the eponymous Ma and Beau Dixon, Lindsay Owen Pierre, Neville Edwards and Lovell Adams-Gray as her musicians. To Jun 9, see website for times. $32-$96. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House. 416-8668666, soulpepper.ca. nnnnn (Glenn Sumi) muSIc muSIc lIfe deAth muSIc: An AbSurdIcAl by Adam Seelig (One Little Goat Theatre Company). The songs in Seelig’s uneven and unfocused new musical about the absurdity of family life have a lilting, hypnotic feel, but the lyrics are too often on the nose. Seelig’s loose direction also means there’s little shape or logic, although the singing actors, especially Theresa Tova as a nosy mother, are up for the heightened style of performance. To Jun 10, Tue-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. Tarragon Theatre, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, onelittlegoat.org. nn (Glenn Sumi) StoneS (Aluna Theatre/The Stones Project). See review, page 37. To Jun 10, Thu-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2:30 pm. $15-$20. Geary Lane, 360 Geary. alunatheatre.ca. nnn (José Teodoro) treASure ISlAnd by Robert Louis Stevenson (Solar Stage Children’s Theatre). Sea shanties and an epic pirate adventure for ages 5 & up. To Jul 1, Sat-Sun 1:30 pm. $20. Wychwood Theatre, 76 Wychwood. solarstage.on.ca.
Out of town
ShAW feStIvAl The Magician’s Nephew, The Hound Of The Baskervilles, Henry V, Grand Hotel, Stage Kiss and more. Runs to Oct 28. $35-$150. Niagara-on-the-Lake. 1-800-5117429, shawfest.com. StrAtford feStIvAl The Rocky Horror Show, An Ideal Husband, Coriolanus, The Music Man and others. To Nov 4. $25-$189, stu from $20. Stratford. stratfordfestival.ca.