Eye-Catching Toronto Theatre for the Week of January 23, 2012

Here is what’s going on in Toronto theatre this week. There are several great shows to catch for the week of January 23, 2012: ** Shows marked with the double asterisks and in red are the ones that make Wayne, our Managing Editor, wish he could exist in multiple parallel universes so he could check them all out.

Already covered by MoT

AVENUE Q by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx (Lower Ossington Theatre). A college grad moves to NYC and works through the transition to adulthood in this musical puppet show. Opens Jan 18 and runs to Feb 4. $45-$60. 100A Ossington. 416-915-6747, lowerossingtontheatre.com.

CABARET by Joe Masteroff, John Kander and Fred Ebb (Hart House Theatre). An American writer falls for a nightclub singer in Nazi-era Berlin. Opens Jan 13 and runs to Jan 28. $25, stu/srs $10-$15. 7 Hart House Circle. 416-978-8849, harthousetheatre.ca.

DREAMS REALLY DO COME TRUE! (AND OTHER LIES) Second City presents its latest sketch revue about the things we tell ourselves to get through life. Wed-Thu 8 pm, Fri-Sat 8 & 10:30 pm, Sun 7 pm. $24-$29, stu $15. 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.

**KIM’S CONVENIENCE by Ins Choi (Soulpepper). A Korean family in Toronto struggles with a bitter past and reconciliation. Previews Jan 12-18. Opens Jan 19 and runs to Feb 11. $51-$68, stu $32. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 55 Mill. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.

MY MOTHER’S ITALIAN, MY FATHER’S JEWISH & I’M IN THERAPY by Steve Solomon (Philip Roger Roy/Dana Matthow/Bud Martin). Solomon performs his solo show about growing up in a wacky, bi-ethnic family. Opens Oct 12 and runs to Feb 5. $51.50-$56. Bathurst Street Theatre, 736 Bathurst. 1-855-985-2787, http://www.italianjewish.com.

**OTHER PEOPLE by Christopher Shinn (Mutual Friends Co-op/Mercedes Grundy). Three ambitious young adults struggle with sex, desire and their art over Christmas in the East Village in NYC. Previews Jan 18. Opens Jan 19 and runs to Jan 28. $20, stu/srs $15. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, Tank House Theatre, 55 Mill. 416-866-8666, otherpeopletoronto.com.

**RED SNOW by Diana Tso (Red Snow Collective). This story of love and struggling to reconcile the past with the present is inspired by stories of survivors of the Rape of Nanking. Previews Jan 12-13. Opens Jan 14 and runs to Jan 28. $30, stu $15, Sat mat pwyc. Theatre Passe Muraille, 16 Ryerson. 416-504-7529, redsnowcollective.ca.

**THE BLUE DRAGON by Robert Lepage (Mirvish). The life of a Canadian expat living in Shanghai is turned upside down by two women in this multilingual dance-theatre piece. Previews Jan 10. Opens Jan 11 and runs to Feb 19. $25-$99. Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King W. mirvish.com.

THE GOLDEN DRAGON by Roland Schimmelpfennig (Tarragon Theatre). A restaurant’s kitchen staff help an illegal immigrant search for his lost sister. Previews Jan 10-17. Opens Jan 18 and runs to Feb 19. $20-$51. 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.

**THE PENELOPIAD by Margaret Atwood (Nightwood Theatre). This response to Homer’s Odyssey comes from the perspective of Odysseus’s wife and is told through classical tragedy, Victorian melodrama, burlesque and song. Previews Jan 10-11. Opens Jan 12 and runs to Jan 29. $22-$46. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555, nightwoodtheatre.net.

And the rest…

A BRIMFUL OF ASHA by Asha and Ravi Jain (Why Not Theatre). An Indo-Canadian man discovers that his Indian vacation is actually a wife-seeking scheme by his parents. Previews Jan 24-25. Opens Jan 26 and runs to Feb 18. $18-$22, stu/previews $15-$19. Tarragon Theatre, ExtraExtra Space, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tarragontheatre.com.

A TASTE OF 20 (Theatre 20). The company presents a sneak peek at its debut season, plus cocktails, a silent auction and more. Jan 23 at 7 pm. $120. The National Club, 303 Bay. http://www.theatre20.com.

ALL IN THE TIMING by David Ives (Down n’ Out Productions). A series of vignettes satirize the family life of bourgeois America. Opens Jan 28 and runs to Feb 12. $55 (includes dinner), mat pwyc (show only). Campbell House Museum, 160 Queen W. 416-597-0227 ext 2. campbellhousemuseum.ca

BABAR (Little Red Theatre). This play for ages three and up looks at the the adventures of an elephant king and his family. Jan 28 at 3:30 pm. $7. Emmanuel Howard Park United Church, 214 Wright. 416-533-8848. littleredtheatre.on.ca

CAROLINE, OR CHANGE by Tony Kushner and Jeanine Tesori (Acting Up Stage Company/Obsidian Theatre). A black maid and the son of her Jewish employer struggle with extraordinary life changes in this musical. Previews Jan 21-22. Opens Jan 25 and runs to Feb 12. $32-$45. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley. 416-368-3110, actingupstage.com.

**CRUEL AND TENDER by Martin Crimp (Canadian Stage). A general fighting a war in Africa sends a local woman back home to his pampered wife in this modern update of Sophocles’ Trachiniae. Previews Jan 21-25. Opens Jan 26 and runs to Feb 18. $22-$99. Bluma Appel Theatre, 27 Front E. 416-368-3110, canadianstage.com.

DRACULA – A LOVE STORY by Sharyl Hudson (Brant Theatre Workshops). Follow actors through the castle’s historic halls in this adaptation of Bram Stoker’s novel. Opens Jan 20 and runs to Feb 11. $34-$66. Casa Loma, 1 Austin Terrace. 647-725-1822, casaloma.org.

FUNKYLAND (Famous People Players). The blacklight theatre company presents a twist on Lewis Carroll’s Alice In Wonderland. Opens Jan 24 and runs to Apr 28. $62, srs $56, child $40 (includes meal). 343 Evans. 416-532-1137, fpp.org.

GIRLESQUE 7 (Great Canadian Burlesque). This burlesque showcase features Miss Indigo Blue, April March, Tiffany Carter and others. Jan 27. $35-$40, VIP $65. Revival, 783 College. greatcanadianburlesque.com.

GOD: A PLAY by Woody Allen (Trinity College Dramatic Society). Audience members become part of the story in this play within a play using devices from ancient Greek theatre. Opens Jan 25 and runs to Jan 28. $10, stu $5. George Ignatieff Theatre, 15 Devonshire. uofttix.ca.

HAMLET LIVE (Hamlet Live Team). Shakespeare’s tragedy is adapted to a dystopian post-apocalyptic future in this production that can be viewed live onstage or via computer live stream. Opens Jan 26 and runs to Feb 11. $5-$40. Annex Theatre, 730 Bathurst. hamletlive.com.

HARD TIMES COMEDY LOUNGE Impulsive Entertainment and Bite TV present a comedy mashup w/ Zabrina Chevannes, Ron Josol, host Garrett Jamieson and others. Jan 25 9 pm. $5. Hard Luck Bar, 772a Dundas W. impulsiveent.com.

KAAL – TIME Harbourfront NextSteps and Janak Khendry Dance Company present South Asian bharatanatyam, kathak and odissi disciplines alongside western dances to tell the cosmic and modern story of time. Jan 26-28. $31.50-$38.50. Fleck Dance Theatre, 207 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000, jkdanceco.org.

NO EXIT by Jean-Paul Sartre (art & lies productions). Three deceased people await their punishment in this existential drama. Opens Jan 24 and runs to Feb 4. $24.95, stu/srs $19.95.Theatre Passe Muraille, Backspace, 16 Ryerson. 416-504-7529, artandliesproductions.com.

PENNY PLAIN by Ronnie Burkett (Ronnie Burkett Theatre of Marionettes). A reclusive old woman’s sanctuary is disrupted by a chaotic outside world. Previews Jan 20-22. Opens Jan 24 and runs to Feb 26. $38-$55, previews $30. Factory Theatre, 125 Bathurst. 416-504-9971, factorytheatre.ca.

THE BLACK-JEW DIALOGUES by Larry Jay Tish and Ron Jones (Anti-Racism and Cultural Diversity Office/Black Students Assoc/Munk School of Global Affairs/Hillel of Greater Toronto). Tish and Jones use storytelling and comedic sketches to look at the history and absurdity of prejudice, followed by audience Q&A. Jan 25 at 7:30 pm. Free. Hart House, Arbor Room, 7 Hart House Circle. 416-978-8849. harthouse.utoronto.ca

THE BRITISH PUB SHOW (Studio 60 Theatre). This musical show features sing-along songs and dance. Opens Jan 20 and runs to Jan 28. $20. 60 Six Point. 416-354-2479, studio60theatreboxoffice.com.

THE LARAMIE PROJECT by Moisés Kaufman and Tectonic Theatre Project (Encore Entertainment). Residents of a small town react to the beating death of a gay man in this drama based on actual events. Opens Jan 26 and runs to Feb 5. $28-$29.50. Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge. 1-855-985-2787, encoreshows.com.

THE SOAPS The National Theatre of the World presents a weekly improvised soap opera. Pwyc. Comedy Bar, 945 Bloor W. thenationaltheatreoftheworld.com.

THE SOUND AND FEEL OF IT Peggy Baker Dance Projects presents live musicians alongside dancers performing contemporary works by Baker. Opens Jan 20 and runs to Jan 29. $28, stu/srs $22. Betty Oliphant Theatre, 404 Jarvis. 1-888-222-6608, peggybakerdance.com.

THE TROJAN WOMEN by Euripides, translated by Gwendolyn MacEwen (Alumnae Theatre). The women of Troy seek their voice amidst the destruction of war in this exploration of feminist ideals. Opens Jan 20 and runs to Feb 4. $20, Wed 2-for-1, Sun pwyc. 70 Berkeley. 416-364-4170, alumnaetheatre.com.

THIS IS WAR by Hannah Moscovitch (Tarragon Theatre). Canadian soldiers and their captain deal with various threats in a volatile region of Afghanistan in this WorkSpace presentation. Jan 20-21. Jan 26-28. Free. Near Studio, 30 Bridgman. tarragontheatre.com.

TOM JONES: A FOUNDLING by David Rogers (Rosedale Heights School of the Arts). Jones beds maidens and fights off villains in this adaptation of Henry Fielding’s comedy. Opens Jan 25 and runs to Jan 27. $10. 711 Bloor E. 416-393-1580.

TOMATO SOUP Typecast Dance Company and DanceWorks CoWorks present a double bill featuring new works by Pamela Rasbach and Missy Morris. Jan 26-28. $18. Winchester Street Theatre, 80 Winchester. typecastdance.com.

TOSCA by Giacomo Puccini (Canadian Opera Company). A passionate woman is caught in a web of corruption, lust and betrayal in this Italian opera. Opens Jan 21 and runs to Feb 25. $12-$318. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-363-8231, coc.ca.

TWOBYFOUR Dancemakers presents a festival of duets, with works by George Stamos, Peter Bingham, Andrea Spaziani and Martin Nachbar. Jan 17-23. Jan 26-28 at 8 pm. $25, stu/srs $20; passes $54-$60. Dancemakers Centre for Creation, 55 Mill, bldg 58, studio 313. 416-367-1800, dancemakers.org.

VISITING MR. GREEN by Jeff Baron (Harold Green Jewish Theatre). A court orders a young executive to visit an elderly widower after he nearly runs him down in his car. Previews Jan 28-30. Opens Jan 31 and runs to Feb 18. $39.50-$69.50. Jane Mallett Theatre, 27 Front E. 416-366-7723, hgjewishtheatre.com.

YOUR BROTHER, REMEMBER? by Zachary and Gator Oberzan (Zachary Oberzan/brutproduktion). Home videos, Hollywood film footage and live performance are used to track the journey of two siblings as they grow apart. Jan 26-28. $22, stu/srs $15. Theatre Centre, 1087 Queen W. 416-538-0988, http://theatrecentre.org/.


*Listings based on NOW stage listings*