Eye-Catching Toronto Theatre for the Week of March 12, 2012

Here is what’s going on in Toronto theatre this week. There are several great shows to catch for the week of March 12, 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

FRANCES AND MARYBETH by Neale Kimmel ((bracket) Theatre). A woman looks to forget her heartbreak by planning a double-date night with her sister in this comedy. Opens Mar 8 and runs to Mar 18. $20, Sun pwyc. Factory Theatre, Studio, 125 Bathurst. francesandmarybeth.com.

**FREE AS INJUNS by Tara Beagan (Native Earth Performing Arts). This poetic drama looks at blood ties, entitlement, inheritance and legacy. Previews Feb 28-29. Opens Mar 1 and runs to Mar 18. $10-$20. Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555, nativeearth.ca.

HIGH LIFE by Lee MacDougall (Soulpepper). An unlikely group of masterminds plan ‘the perfect crime,’ with dangerous and comic results. Previews Feb 13-20. Opens Feb 21 and runs to Mar 28. $51-$68, stu $32; rush $22/stu $5. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 55 Mill. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.

LEGALLY BLONDE THE MUSICAL by Laurence O’Keefe, Nell Benjamin and Heather Hach (Lower Ossington Theatre). A sorority girl makes it to law school in this musical based on the 2001 film. Opens Mar 9 and runs to Mar 31. $45-$60. 100A Ossington. 416-915-6747, lowerossingtontheatre.com.

LONG DAY’S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT by Eugene O’Neill (Soulpepper). O’Neill’s story of isolation, addiction and despair reveals a day in the life of his own family. Previews Feb 14-22. Opens Feb 23 and runs to Mar 28. $51-$68, stu $32; rush $22/stu $5. Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 55 Mill. 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.

POTTED POTTER by Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner (Starvox Entertainment/Potted Productions). Clarkson and Turner use costumes, props and music to perform all seven Harry Potter books in 70 minutes. Previews Feb 11-12. Opens Feb 14 and runs to Mar 25. $29.95-$99.95. Panasonic Theatre, 651 Yonge. 1-800-461-3333, mirvish.com

THE HAPPY WOMAN by Rose Cullis (Nightwood Theatre). This darkly comic play looks at how a middle-class family suppresses truth to maintain a happy veneer. Previews Mar 5-6. Opens Mar 7 and runs to Mar 24. $22-$46. Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley. 416-368-3110, nightwoodtheatre.net.

**THIS WIDE NIGHT by Chloë Moss (Mermaid Parade). Two women just out of prison try to survive and connect with the outside world. Opens Mar 1 and runs to Mar 17. $20, stu/srs $15, Sun pwyc. Red Sandcastle Theatre, 922 Queen E. 416-845-9411, redsandcastletheatre.com.

**WAR HORSE based on a novel by Michael Morpurgo, adapted by Nick Stafford (National Theatre of Great Britain/Mirvish). An English boy sets out to find his horse after it’s sold to the cavalry and shipped off to France during WWI. Previews Feb 10-27. Opens Feb 28 and runs to Sep 30. $35-$130. Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King W. 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.


And the rest…

AWKWARD Buddies in Bad Times Theatre presents a night of queer storytelling by eight local comedians. Mar 15 8 pm. $10. 12 Alexander. 416-975-8555.

BABAR (Little Red Theatre). This play for ages three and up looks at the the adventures of an elephant king and his family. Opens Mar 12 and runs to Mar 15. $11, child $9. Palmerston Library Theatre, 560 Palmerston. 416-533-8848.

BALLET EXPRESS! The Free Concert Series in the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre presents various pieces performed by Ballet Jörgen. Mar 14 at noon. Free. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. coc.ca.

BUS STOP by William Inge (Stage Centre Productions). Strangers get to know each other when a bus becomes stranded in a blizzard. Opens Mar 15 and runs to Mar 24. $27.50, stu/srs $22.Fairview Library Theatre, 35 Fairview Mall. 416-299-5557, stagecentreproductions.com.

CHOREOGRAPHIC WORKS Ryerson Theatre School presents choreography and performance by students of the Dance program. Opens Mar 7 and runs to Mar 16. $18, stu/srs $14. Ryerson Theatre, 43 Gerrard E. 416-979-5118, ryersontheatre.ca.

**DYING HARD adapted from interviews by Elliot Leyton (A Vagrant Theatre/the Theatre Elusive). A mine destroys the health of a small Newfoundland community in this play based on a true story. Opens Mar 13 and runs to Mar 18. $25, stu $20. Tarragon Theatre, Extra Space, 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827, tickets.tarragontheatre.com.

FIRESIDE CULTURE WEEK (Parkdale Village BIA). This celebration features music, art, dance, magic, poetry, spoken word and more in various Parkdale venues. Opens Mar 12 and runs to Mar 17. Free. Queen W from Dufferin to Roncesvalles. 416-536-6918, parkdalevillagebia.com.

FRESH BLOOD The Chimera Project and Harbourfront NextSteps present works by emerging choreographers including Anjelica Scannura, Auja Ragnarsdottir, Jacob Niedzwiecki and others. Mar 16-17 at 8 pm. $20, srs $18, stu $15. Enwave Theatre, 231 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000, harbourfrontcentre.com.

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.

INTERLOCK Jasmyn Fyffe Dance Company and DanceWorks CoWorks present a mixed program with choreography by Jasmyn Fyffe, Karen Kaeja, Kyra Jean Green and Patrizia Gianforcaro. Opens Mar 14 and runs to Mar 17. $25. Winchester Street Theatre, 80 Winchester. 416-204-1082, danceworks.ca.

LIVE WRONG AND PROSPER Second City presents its latest revue of sketches, songs and improvisations. In previews, opens Mar 13. Tue-Sat 8 pm, plus Sat 10:30 pm (no show Mar 8), Sun 7 pm. $24-$29, stu $15. 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.

MOSAIC STORYTELLING FESTIVAL (The Open Door East End Arts Collective). Rukhsana Khan and Celia Lottridge share folk tales and traditional stories from the Middle East, Persia and beyond. Mar 18 at 3 pm. Pwyc ($5 sugg). St David’s Anglican Church, 49 Donlands. 416-466-3142, stdavidstoronto.ca/mosaic/mosaic.html.

**MY GRANNY THE GOLDFISH by Anosh Irani (Factory Theatre). A neurotic man’s Indian grandmother comes to Canada to help him recover from illness. Previews Mar 17-21. Opens Mar 22 and runs to Apr 15. $30-$40, mat pwyc, previews $20. 125 Bathurst. 416-504-9971, factorytheatre.ca.

NEW IDEAS FESTIVAL (Alumnae Theatre). The annual showcase of new writing, works-in-progress and experimental theatre features plays and staged readings with works by Donna Langevin, Megan Coles, Gerry McBride, Jordan Mechano, Stacy Gardner, Kelly DuMar, Radha Menon and others. Opens Mar 14 and runs to Apr 1. $15, pass $35, Sat readings pwyc. 70 Berkeley. 416-364-4170, alumnaetheatre.com.

OUT THE WINDOW by Liza Balkan (The Window Collective/Free Fall ’12). Balkan’s documentary play looks at her journey through the legal system after witnessing a man’s death at the hands of police. Opens Mar 17 and runs to Mar 25. $25, stu/srs $20 (festival pass $23-$45). Theatre Centre, 1087 Queen W. 416-538-0988, theatrecentre.org.

RHINOCEROS (UTS Department of Humanities). A man resists conformity as citizens of Toronto turn into rhinos in this adaptation of Eugène Ionesco’s absurdist play. Opens Mar 14 and runs to Mar 24. $12, stu/srs $10. U of T Scarborough Campus, Leigha Lee Browne Theatre, 1265 Military Trail. rhinoceros.eventbrite.ca.

SPEAKEASY (Les Coquettes). The cabaret theatre company presents burlesque, music and more inspired by vintage NYC nightclubs in a dinner theatre show. Mar 4. Mar 18. Dinner + show $75-$85; show only $20-$55. Revival, 783 College. lescoquettes.com.

STAR-CROSSED Only Human Dance Collective presents a collection of choreographic works inspired by love, conflict and resolution. Mar 15-17. $12-$15. Betty Oliphant Theatre, 404 Jarvis. 416-978-8849, uofttix.ca.

THE BRICK BROS. CIRCUS by Ann Powell and David Powell (Puppetmongers Theatre). Highly trained bricks perform a one-ring circus show for ages 5 and up. Opens Mar 12 and runs to Mar 17. $10-$12. 401 Logan. 416-469-3555, puppetmongers.com.

THE CAMPBELL HOUSE STORY by Alex Dault (Single Thread Theatre Company). This walking-tour play of one of Toronto’s oldest buildings takes the audience back to 1827 and the politics of the time. Opens Mar 2 and runs to Mar 17. $20 (totix.ca). Campbell House Museum, 160 Queen W. singlethread.ca.

THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK adapted by Wendy Kesselman (Shakespeare in Action). The story of a Jewish girl and her family hiding from the Nazis is adapted for the stage. Opens Mar 15 and runs to Mar 31. $25, stu/srs $18. Al Green Theatre, 750 Spadina. 416-703-4881, shakespeareinaction.org.

THE GIFT (FADO Performance Art). Lee Hassall gathers impressions and objects from the neighbourhood, culminating in a performance/installation. Opens Mar 14 and runs to Mar 16. Pwyc-$10. Toronto Free Gallery, 1277 Bloor W. performanceart.ca.

THE GREEN DOOR CABARET SERIES (Lower Ossington Theatre). This series features cabaret performances by Joel Hartt, Randy Vancourt, Kelly Holiff and others. Opens Mar 2 and runs to Apr 7. $20-$30. 100A Ossington. lowerossingtontheatre.com/cabaret.

**THE NEVERENDING STORY based on a novel by Michael Ende, adapted by David S Craig (Roseneath Theatre). A bullied boy seeks refuge in books and is drawn into an epic adventure. Previews Feb 27. Opens Feb 28 and runs to Mar 17. $10-$20. Young People’s Theatre, 165 Front E. 416-862-2222, youngpeoplestheatre.ca.

THE RULES by Chuck Mee (University College Drama Program). Various scenarios explore societal norms and what it means to be ‘civilized’. Opens Mar 6 and runs to Mar 17. $15, stu/srs $10. Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse, 79A St George. uc.utoronto.ca/content/view/1135/2946/.

THE SECOND CITY GOES BOOM! Second City presents family-friendly entertainment with comedy and games for everyone. Opens Mar 12 and runs to Mar 14. $14, family 4-pack $45. 51 Mercer. 416-343-0011, secondcity.com.

THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS (AND HOLIER FARE) (Against the Grain Theatre). This concert presentation features Kurt Weill’s Weimar-era cabaret and other pieces. Mar 16-17 at 8 pm. $30-$50. Gallery 345, 345 Sorauren. againstthegraintheatre.com.

THE SLEEPING BEAUTY The National Ballet of Canada presents the Tchaikovsky classic fairy-tale ballet re-staged by Karen Kain. Opens Mar 10 and runs to Mar 18. $25-$234. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen W. 416-345-9595, national.ballet.ca.

THE SMALL ROOM AT THE TOP OF THE STAIRS by Carole Fréchette (Tarragon Theatre). A woman debates entering her husband’s secret room. Previews Feb 29-Mar 6. Opens Mar 7 and runs to Apr 8. $21-$51. 30 Bridgman. 416-531-1827,tarragontheatre.com.


*Listings based on NOW stage listings*