Alexander Franks

You ever fallen up the stairs before? I don’t know why but I feel more foolish when I fall going up the stairs then I do when I fall down the stairs. You see if you fall down the stairs at least it’s like gravity doing it’s natural part taking you down. But stairs are […]

  Jackie Houghton

Traditionally, the Gothic aesthetic has dabbled with imagery of the supernatural, haunted castles, and other spooky fare. It is more reminiscent of Stoker’s Dracula lurking around Transylvanian castles than velour tracksuits and cozy log cabins, but this is Canada, eh, and Canadian Gothic needs to represent this nation and its inhabitants. Yes, Canadian Gothic is […]

  Lisa McKeown

Initially staged at SummerWorks in 2015, Erin Shields’ Beautiful Man features Jennifer, Sophie, and Pam (Ashley Bottling, Mayko Nguyen, and Sophía Rodríguez), who perch on stools facing the audience. They chat about their favourite show featuring a woman detective who investigates violent crimes targeting beautiful young men. They gush over her darker side – she’s […]

  Steve Fisher

Before we announce the winners of the 2018 MyEntWorld Critics’ Pick Awards, we’re proud to present our annual Nominee Interview Series. Theatre artist and educator Janelle Hanna is well known to Toronto Fringe audiences, where she’s appeared in a half dozen shows, including her own subversive solo clown show, Bad Baby Presents: Rules Control The Fun. But her turn […]

  Steve Fisher

Before we announce the winners of the 2018 MyEntWorld Critics’ Pick Awards, we’re proud to present our annual Nominee Interview Series. Jani Lauzon has for more than three decades cultivated a career in storytelling that utilizes myriad artistic practices and disciplines. She’s been an actor on stage (from Stratford to the National Arts Centre) and on screen […]

  Steve Fisher

Two shows that had smaller stage runs when they first debuted are back in Toronto, with more room to breathe. At Factory Theatre, Bears is back, after a far too brief run (just ten shows) at the Theatre Centre last spring. Created out west by Aboriginal Performing Arts and Punctuate! Theatre (whose Matthew MacKenzie both […]

  Alisha Maclean

“Why should I fight the white man’s war, when men like you take everything away from me and my people?” This incredulous question strikes at the heart of Gods Like Us, a deep resonating expression of the complete disconnect between the priorities of two men from very different backgrounds. The undercurrents of racial divide and […]

  Kymberley Feltham

Toronto-based choreographer and dancer Esie Mensah’s Shades premiered at the Factory Theatre with a short run, September 27 to 20, 2018. Shades is an exploration of the discrimination between lighter-skinned and darker-skinned members of communities of colour, known as shadeism. This work addresses how the privileging of skin tones leads to fractures in communities of […]

  Lisa McKeown

Before we announce the winners of the 2017 MyEntWorld Critics’ Pick Awards, we’re proud to present our annual Nominee Interview Series. Anusree Roy’s Little Pretty and the Exceptional was a part of Factory’s 2017 season, tackling the daunting but relevant themes regarding the stigma and the realities of mental illness within an immigrant family in downtown Toronto. […]

  Kymberley Feltham

Before we announce the winners of the 2017 MyEntWorld Critics’ Pick Awards, we’re proud to present our annual…

  Kelly Bedard

Toronto theatre is navigating tricky times by making great art this winter. It’s a boom of full-throttle theatre-making, reflected most acutely in midsized-to-large companies taking on the sort of challenging, headline-making contemporary work that brings people to the theatre and inspires them to come back. It’s not all great, but it is all ambitious and […]

  Chelsea Dinsmore

Director Ravi Jain’s adaptation of Salt-Water Moon distills the classic Canadian play by David French to its essence: two lovers under a star-filled sky. The story centers on the return of Jacob Mercer to Coley’s Point, Newfoundland after his abrupt departure for Toronto a year earlier. Although his old flame Mary Snow is now engaged […]

  Kymberley Feltham

Anita Majumdar’s Fish Eyes Trilogy is an exercise in empathy, digging deep into the raw crevices of teenage desire for self-actualization. Playing at the Factory Theatre, the trilogy follows the intertwined but distinct storylines of three women as they come of age in small town BC. Layering on themes of sexism, assault, racism and oppression, […]

Anusree Roy’s new play Little Pretty and The Exceptional is currently premiering at the Factory Theatre. The play opens in the sari shop the family is about to launch. Yarrik Larivee’s set design is simple and realistic, adding depth, texture and colour to the atmosphere while forcing the action downstage. The story is ostensibly focusing on the […]

  Kelly Bedard

Blue Remembered Hills (Good Old Neon) This dark, unpleasant, uncompromisingly strange piece of physical theatre is born out of a British teleplay in which a group of children play and torture each other, as children do. The children are meant to be played by adults but director Nicole Wilson has fully grown the characters up, […]

  Thea Fitz-James

The beautiful geometric highrises are dark grey, crisp and askew, creating a darkly modern, if slightly nightmarish cityscape which the audience observes as we wait for Acquiesce to begin. Downstage centre, an open briefcase is slightly illuminated with a gentle tungsten spotlight from above. Then, without warning— no dimming of the lights, no audio cue—  […]

  Kelly Bedard

Dead End (Theatre Lab) This light-hearted one-act from playwright Jonny Sun and director Michael Orlando is the perfect Halloween-themed diversion in Toronto’s current sea of self-serious theatre. Sun traps bantering high school pals Christian Smith and Chris Wilson* in a dead end hallway as they flee the zombie horde that’s taken over their school, inviting […]

  Lisa McKeown

The Crackwalker is now on stage at Toronto’s Factory Theatre, directed by its own playwright, Judith Thompson. Originally written in 1979, the story takes place in Kingston, Ontario, in a town that is no particular town but could be any town (well, except Oshawa). The character of the Crackwalker (Waawaate Fobister) initiates the play with […]

  Kelly Bedard

Before we announce the winners of the 2015 MyTheatre Awards, we’re proud to present our annual Nominee Interview Series. We can’t think of a better way to describe Juno Rinaldi’s superb performance as an “odd woman” in Age of Arousal, the first production of The Factory Theatre’s much-lauded “Naked Season” than to just quote you our review: […]

  Kelly Bedard

Before we announce the winners of the 2015 MyTheatre Awards, we’re proud to present our annual Nominee Interview Series. The low-key and “luscious”-haired Oliver Koomsatira usually plays innocents but when director Nina Lee Aquino tapped him for the role of Dave in her Factory Theatre production of Banana Boys, he got the chance to really rage against […]

  Kelly Bedard

Before we announce the winners of the 2015 Critics’ Pick Awards, we’re proud to present our annual Nominee Interview Series. In Nina Lee Aquino’s brilliant and bare production of Leon Aureus’ stage adaptation of Terry Woo’s groundbreaking novel Banana Boys for the Factory Theatre, Blood and Water star Simu Liu played golden boy Rick, the idolized but tragic alpha […]

  Kelly Bedard

Banana Boys (Factory Theatre) I’m loving the Naked season at Factory. The text-centric, stripped down approach the company is taking to all the pieces in their so-far-so-good fall seasonette is spotlighting great performances, inspiring directorial creativity and refusing to let great texts get overshadowed by trappings. Banana Boys is the perfect example of what’s so […]

  Kelly Bedard

Age of Arousal (Factory Theatre) The best thing I’ve seen at the Factory Theatre in ages, Linda Griffiths’ Age of Arousal is funny and sad and executed with plenty of pathos to balance its slight lecturing vibe. As the lone man in the play, Sam Kalilieh is the exact kind of charming that leaves you […]

  Kelly Bedard

The use of white makeup as a base for exaggerated features has become a fairly standard practice in productions with a sense of heightened reality. This month in Toronto there are three shows all making use of the convention, albeit in wildly different ways. Trudeau & Levesque Their distinctive makeup is arguably the most defining […]

  Kelly Bedard

Warning: Extreme negativity ahead. Why don’t you read Rachael’s piece about all the Friends Thanksgiving episodes instead? Tapestry Briefs: Booster Shots (Tapestry) Conceptually, this evening of short opera scenes tied together with corresponding shots of curated liquors was a brilliant idea. How do you battle every simplistic but not altogether unfounded accusation of “long, boring, old, […]

  Lorenzo Pagnotta

Patrons are standing in the lobby of the Big Picture Cinema – yes, cinema! – many of whom know Paul Bellini well. I even strike a conversation with him myself as I took a writing class of his last year. Bellini kindly excuses himself as he has received word that it is, finally, okay for […]