Tarot Live! (AAAtarot) 2016 Toronto Fringe Review

Tarot Live

Tarot Live! is not a play. It’s a one-man show but it’s not about his story. It’s about your story. Jesse Stong is here at this year’s Toronto Fringe Festival to give you further insight and clarity into your life through the wisdom of numerology and the tarot.

In case you couldn’t tell, this show requires audience participation.

Have you ever had your cards read before? I have. In fact, I read tarot myself and own a few decks. So yes, I did feel a sense of kinship when I saw the listing for this show. The format is exactly as you’d expect from a live reading. Audience members join Stong on stage with topics or questions in their minds relating to love, careers, friendships, and as one young man asked, why he’s always so darned tired.

Stong is also well versed in numerology and can reveal traits about a person simply based on the letters of their first name. I found this to be particularly interesting and I wish he had taken time look further into this and go into birth date numerology, but I digress.

His deck of choice is the Osho Zen deck, one that I’m not entirely familiar with and one that is rather different from the traditional Rider-Waite deck and offered further insight into the readings that was new and interesting to me.

If you believe in tarot and what it can reveal, that’s great. If you don’t, you can be a skeptic and find amusement in this show. The real revelations here can be translated into basic psychology, ways to alter the patterns in your life to create change and that alone, even when pertaining to someone else’s life, can be universally useful to people as a whole.

This being opening night, there were quite a few people in the audience that were personal friends of Stong and his familiarity felt predictable when it came to the readings. I knew that if I was going to actually get something solid out of this show, I’d have to get on that stage myself. What I learned was indeed insightful and eye opening and I may need to explore a new career path in social work.

As this ‘show’ is entirely based on the audience, each performance will be entirely different. If you have questions, if you’re even slightly curious about tarot, Tarot Live! is a light and fun show to explore.


  • Tarot Live! plays at the Factory Theatre Studio. (125 Bathurst St)
  • Tickets are $12 at the door and in advance, and can be bought online, by telephone (416-966-1062), from the Fringe Club at Honest Ed’s Alley, and — if any remain — from the venue’s box office starting one hour before curtain. The festival also offers a range of money-saving passes for serious Fringers.
  • Content Warnings: Fog or Haze Effects, Mature Language, Sexual Content, Audience Participation.
  • This venue is NOT wheelchair-accessible.


  • Saturday July 2nd, 12:00 pm
  • Sunday July 3rd, 10:30 pm
  • Tuesday July 5th, 03:00 pm
  • Thursday July 7th, 08:00 pm
  • Friday July 8th, 01:45 pm
  • Sunday July 10th, 04:00 pm

Photo of Jesse Strong provided by the company.