All posts by Lauren Stein

Review: The Return (Circa/Canadian Stage)

Members of the Circa Ensemble in The Return.Canadian Stage presents Australian Circus company Circa’s production The Return in Toronto

Circa explores the fusion of circus and opera in their production of The Return, a reimagining of Monteverdi’s baroque masterpiece The Return of Ulysses. The show opened on Wednesday night at the Bluma Appel Theatre as part of the Spotlight: Australia performance festival, produced by Canadian Stage. Featuring seven highly trained circus artists, a live ensemble of musicians and two opera singers, the performance definitely pushes the boundaries of convention.

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Review: ‘Til Death (Do Us Part) (Lauren Griffiths/Filament Incubator)

Lauren Griffiths in Til Death (Do Us Part)‘Til Death (Do Us Part) blends sketch, improv, audience interaction and love on stage at the Monarch in Toronto

Taking over the main floor of Toronto’s Monarch Tavern, ‘Til Death (Do Us Part) is an interesting amalgam of sketch comedy with improv elements. The show introduces audiences to the fictional Canada’s Cupid Corporation, a company seeking to take the unlucky in love and transform them into the ultimate partner.

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Review: Suitcases (Rosanna Saracino)

Cast of Suitcases, photograph by Brittany Clough.

Suitcases offers Toronto audiences a unique take on mental illness and memory

Suitcases, a collaborative production helmed by Rosanna Saracino, got quite a warm reception last night for its opening. With a full audience, and a balmy shift in the weather, the Artscape Sandbox Theatre in Toronto was the place to be.

A piece of theatre that frequently crosses the lines of contemporary dance, Suitcases takes its inspiration from the 1995 closure of the Willard Asylum in New York State. An employee of the asylum had uncovered over 400 suitcases in the attic, belonging to patients who had been institutionalized there between 1910 and 1960. The suitcases, and their contents, became a fascinating source of insight into the lives of the patients and have since been meticulously documented by photographer Jon Crispin.

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Review: Falcon Powder, Vest of Friends (2016 Toronto Sketchfest)

Photo of Kurt Smeaton, Scott Montgomery and Jim Annan from Falcon Powder.Toronto sketch troupes Falcon Powder and Vest of Friends deliver laughs at the Theatre Centre

Taking over Toronto’s Theatre Centre, the Toronto Sketch Comedy Festival attracted a lively audience during last night’s line-up. On the playbill were two local sketch comedy groups, Falcon Powder and Vest of Friends, each veteran acts that boast their share of accolades in the world of Canadian comedy.

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Review: Going Home Star – Truth and Reconciliation (Royal Winnipeg Ballet)

going home starRoyal Winnipeg Ballet takes on the legacy of the residential school system in Going Home Star

It was an intense evening at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts last night for the opening of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s Toronto leg of their Going Home Star – Truth and Reconciliation tour. The strength of the RWB dancers and their dedication to telling this story, the story of residential schools and the terrible mark they’ve left on the Indigenous community, make this ballet one of the most powerful and necessary dance productions I have seen in a while. Continue reading Review: Going Home Star – Truth and Reconciliation (Royal Winnipeg Ballet)