Spoilers ahead, friends.   Pilots are funny little things. Sometimes, in the case of shows like Firefly, they are only fully appreciated too late, when the show is cancelled and all hope for a reboot is dead and gone. In other cases, the pilot episode is inconsequential, poorly produced and altogether better forgotten – the […]

  Vyasar Ganesan

Spoilers ahead, friends.   There’s nothing like a wedding in a high fantasy series. The dresses, the decor, the sumptuous feasting and above all else, the drama. House of the Dragon’s mid-season climax is the wedding of Laenor Valeryon and Rhaenyra Targaryen, and “We Light the Way” is all about setting up the friction, the […]

A restorative 90 minute tour of the heart by way of a gruff Canadian poet, The Shape of Home is an original narrative concert born in isolation with roots in a familiar form. Joined by fellow multi-instrumentalist super-talents Beau Dixon and Raha Javanfar, it’s thrilling see perennial favourites Frank Cox-O’Connell and Hailey Gillis reunite for […]

  Kelly Bedard

The world of Crow’s Theatre’s Uncle Vanya is filled with glorious light courtesy of the ever-reliable Kimberly Purtell and set in a beautiful almost semi-immersive stage design by Julie Fox. It’s looks like a painting and it feels like a return to form for Crows- a starry ensemble anchored by Tom Rooney and directed by […]

  Vyasar Ganesan

Spoilers ahead, friends. And some difficult sexual discussion.   I feel, this week more than others, at a loss for where to start. Normally, I try and create a preamble, something to ease the reader in. But after the events of House of the Dragon this week, I find myself struggling to write a fitting […]

I love the concept behind Soulpepper’s bold Lear Family Double Bill that pairs a very solid production of Shakespeare’s King Lear with a new play by Erin Shields that imagines what might have happened seven years earlier to inform the behaviour of the characters in King Lear. Shields’ play Queen Goneril focuses not just on […]

  Vyasar Ganesan

Spoilers ahead, friends.   If you’ll recall from my earlier reviews, Game of Thrones suffered greatly from what I like to call the “mid-season slump.” Most seasons presented us with something new and exciting at the beginning, but then slackened as the season went on. TV is formulaic – the season finale is where you […]

  Kelly Bedard

The final piece of Outdoors at the Shaw programming I saw this year (I sadly missed A Short History of Niagara), Fairground is a kid-inclusive interactive fair that morphs into a roving concert showcasing members of the musical company (plus Kristopher Bowman). The break dancing from season standout Kevin McLachlan and pet puppets are the […]

  Kelly Bedard

Another hit from the Outdoors at the Shaw programming, this original narrative concert written, curated and directed by Jay Turvey is an unblinking and critical but ultimately joyful examination of where we were 100 years ago and how far we have (and haven’t) come.   The major events and artistic achievements of 1922 are chronicled […]

  Kelly Bedard

The Outdoors at the Shaw programming is what happiness is made of. Created by the cast who performs it, this superb Shavian variety hour tours audiences around the beautiful Festival Theatre grounds, treating us to pleasures ranging from a cooking demonstration to a magic show to snippets of script and song. The show earnestly embraces […]

  Vyasar Ganesan

When I was a child, I loved Quantum Leap. I watched it for the first time when I was at a neighbor’s house, catsitting for the largest orange feline I’d ever seen. He and I would stare at a little brown television, sprawled over the carpet, devouring episode after episode of time-jumping fun.   House […]

  Kelly Bedard

The Shaw Festival has elevated The Doctor’s Dilemma into a moving and impactful tent pole of its excellent post-pandemic season.

  Kelly Bedard

Just to Get Married is the best sort of Shaw Festival programming, a refreshing treasure unearthed from well-worn ground. It’s every bit the mandate, which doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

  Zach Adler

Renaissance Now Theatre & Film delivers a capable production of Macbeth thanks to its strong supporting cast and inventive staging; however, the potential of a “Redux” remains underdeveloped and its leads struggle to carry momentum.   What starts as a fairly standard interpretation of Macbeth breaks wide open in Act 1, Scene 3: Angus (a […]

  Kelly Bedard

Onstage at Oshawa’s Regent Theatre for four days only, this thrice-postponed iteration of a homegrown cult hit is a shaky attempt at commercial theatre production with community theatre limitations. I admire Mansfield Entertainment’s concept of bringing large-format theatre to a community that could use a serious arts infusion and the professional designation should mean that […]

  Kelly Bedard

The landing page for all of our Shaw & Stratford Festival reviews from the 2022 season. Stay tuned as this page will update throughout the summer. 

  Jackie Houghton

After a 2 year hiatus from writing reviews due to the pandemic, I was welcomed back by Driftwood Theatre’s Bard’s Bus Tour opening performance of King Henry Five. In keeping with the past few years, it was fitting that the show did not go off without a hitch. Due to weather conditions, the performance was forced […]

  Kelly Bedard

Every second of this vibrant new staging of Adler & Ross’ 1955 musical comedy about a team in need of a win is packed with delight. From stage magic that rivals anything in The Cursed Child to the thrill of rooting for a new star, The Shaw Festival’s Damn Yankees is the most fun I’ve […]

  Kelly Bedard

Everybody is the dream. If you ever hear someone question the goal of modernizing and diversifying the country’s biggest and most entrenched theatres, tell that person about Everybody. This production is why that forever and always struggle is important. Beyond just issues of fairness and the importance of representation, it’s important because real success means […]

  Kelly Bedard

Click Here for a full list of our 2022 Toronto Fringe reviews.    At the Table with Keith Brown (A) I hate to be tricked but I love hyper-specific skills that can only be mastered with good old fashioned decades of practice. So magicians often present a bit of a problem for me. What works […]

  Kelly Bedard

Click Here for a full list of our 2022 Toronto Fringe reviews.    Clip Show (A-) Jon Blair is one of the most creative minds in Canadian comedy. His joyful, thoughtful, outlandish style is so uniquely his own that his solo shows have begun to take on an almost auteurish quality. Building out this latest […]

  Kelly Bedard

Click Here for a full list of our 2022 Toronto Fringe reviews.    2 Robs, 1 Cup: What Happens When You’re Done Eating Shit? (A) I was grateful for Fringe’s masking policy when I saw this atrociously named solo show from the ever-inspiring Vikki Velenosi. The true story opens with a voicemail so shocking that […]

  Kelly Bedard

Click Here for a full list of our 2022 Toronto Fringe reviews.    Unmatched (A) This clever piece presents itself at first like a pretty standard storytelling show wherein a comedian regales us with true tales of their less-than-stellar dating history. Caity Smyck is a compelling performer who connects with the audience instantly so I […]

  Kelly Bedard

Click Here for a full list of our 2022 Toronto Fringe reviews.    Gay for Pay with Blake & Clay (A-)  In Gay for Pay, noted gay actors Daniel Krolik & Jonathan Wilson play less noted gay actors Blake and Clay who are teaching a seminar to straight actors aspiring to play gay roles. It’s […]

  Kelly Bedard

More reviews from the Toronto Fringe Festival! Featuring Sketch T-Rex,

  Kelly Bedard

The term “jukebox musical” is used to describe two completely different types of productions. It’s a general label thrown onto anything that uses pre-existing songs instead of original music and is thus very often misapplied to biographical musical plays like Jersey Boys or Beautiful where all the music is diegetic. In this context, I completely […]