“The Ultraviolet Life” Doesn’t Quite Dazzle

Photomirage’s The Ultraviolet Life has a fascinating concept at its heart, but the show seems to be weighed down by a burlesque interpretation that sometimes works but still isn’t fully integrated into the play. Ultraviolet Life tells the story of a young woman living with a skin disease and its effects on her relationships with … Continue reading “The Ultraviolet Life” Doesn’t Quite Dazzle

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“Five More Minutes” Could Use Five More Minutes

Five More Minutes is a promising start to what could be a thoughtful look into male friendship in high school, coming of age, and self-destructive decisions, although in its current form there’s a bit more work to do. Nick, Sam, and Tom, best friends since kindergarten, have one more exam left before they’re finished high … Continue reading “Five More Minutes” Could Use Five More Minutes

“…like nobody’s watching” Creates a Remarkable Synthesis on Stage

One of my favourite things that a show that can possibly do is to put two seemingly random concepts together to create a surprising and remarkable synthesis, and ...like nobody’s watching accomplishes this magnificently. In this case the two elements are “isolation films” such as Castaway, 127 Hours, and Gravity, and the distinctive monologue style … Continue reading “…like nobody’s watching” Creates a Remarkable Synthesis on Stage

“The Last Spartan” is a Timely and Compelling Historical Drama

This may not come as a surprise to anyone familiar with Pierre Brault’s work, but his latest, The Last Spartan, is a fantastic show. Dorion was raised from birth to be the perfect soldier, the pinnacle of Spartan achievement. After being captured by the Athenians instead of dying on the battlefield at Sphacteria however, his … Continue reading “The Last Spartan” is a Timely and Compelling Historical Drama

“The Beast’s Library”: Strong in Theory

With The Beast’s Library, Sad Ibsen Theatre presents a feminist/Marxist retelling of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, asking the question: what if Belle just stayed in the library the whole time and got really into philosophy? As you might guess, this show presents a rather irreverent take on the 1991 film (there’s no mention of … Continue reading “The Beast’s Library”: Strong in Theory

Bill Pats Brings Some Much Needed Drama in “Executing Justice”

Bessie-Jean’s Executing Justice is a timely examination of the direction Canadian society and its laws could go based on their current trajectories. Writer/performer Bill Pats goes a bit beyond the “social warning” nature of the show to explore the characters he’s created in more detail, and though this does muddy the basic intent a little … Continue reading Bill Pats Brings Some Much Needed Drama in “Executing Justice”

“Sparks Street Ballad”: An Ambitious Undertaking with Modest Success

Fiddleheads Musical Theatre’s Sparks Street Ballad blends theatre for young audiences with fiddle music, Canadian history, and the need to teach this history to young Canadians in a way that addresses the historical wrongs perpetrated against certain segments of the population. It’s an ambitious undertaking that they achieve with modest success. The story concerns Mrs. … Continue reading “Sparks Street Ballad”: An Ambitious Undertaking with Modest Success

“Confederemix”: Performers Make the Most Out of Weak Text

Confederemix is well-performed by actors who give it their best, but it isn’t quite enough to save the show from its misguided concept. Confederemix centres around George Brown, a hugely important political figure at the time of Confederation (and founder of the The Globe newspaper, which eventually became The Globe and Mail) but who is … Continue reading “Confederemix”: Performers Make the Most Out of Weak Text