• Stratford and the Stratford Festival 2023

    Stratford and the Stratford Festival 2023

    The 2023 Guide to Stratford and the Stratford Festival After a Covid-induced hiatus, I have resurrected my annual Guide to Stratford Ontario and the Stratford Festival, completely updated for 2023. It is now available in e-book format on Amazon’s Kindle Store. The guide began as a labour of love, created in the hope that I […]

  • New Home For Here For Now Theatre

    New Home For Here For Now Theatre

      Here For Now Theatre has announced new digs for its 2023 season – a canopy on the grounds of the Stratford Perth Museum on the western fringe of Stratford. It’s a return to the roots of this plucky little troupe, now entering its fourth season. The first two Here For Now Theatre seasons were […]

  • Girls & Boys Moves to Crow’s Theatre

    Girls & Boys Moves to Crow’s Theatre

    Girls & Boys Moves To Crow’s Theatre In my review of Girls & Boys, presented by Here For Now Theatre last summer in Stratford, I fretted that there was precious little time left in its short run to allow those who stumbled on my review to see it – and it richly deserved to be […]

  • The 2022 OntarioStage Awards

    The 2022 OntarioStage Awards

    The 2022 OntarioStage Awards What they lack in prestige, they more than make up for in pointlessness.™ I’m not a major theatre critic, but I do play one on this website. 2022 marked the first year I made a serious attempt at reviewing all the plays I see, something I had been doing in a […]

  • Blyth And Foster Festivals Announce 2023 Seasons

    Blyth And Foster Festivals Announce 2023 Seasons

    Blyth and Foster Festivals Announce Their 2023 Seasons The Blyth Festival and the Foster Festival have both announced their 2023 seasons and the auguries are all positive. Blyth will be producing a grand total of seven plays next year. On its outdoor Harvest Stage will unfold a trilogy about the infamous Black Donnellys, a colorful […]

  • The Season I Missed (5) – R+J

    The Season I Missed (5) – R+J

    R+J Streaming On [email protected] R+J, which I streamed on [email protected], is a gloss on Shakespeare, the initials indicating, I assume, that what we are going to see is not the Bard’s beloved play Romeo and Juliet but something altogether new. As this short but nonetheless interminable production wore on, I decided that the R+J stood […]

  • Drayton Announces 2023 Season

    Drayton Announces 2023 Season

    Drayton Entertainment Announces 2023 Season Drayton Entertainment has announced their line up for 19 shows, playing across their 7 locations for the 2023 season. At this point there is no information about cast or directors. But just the bare bones list of titles reinforces my opinions about why Drayton is important in the theatrical ecosystem […]

  • The Shaw Festival Is Canada’s Great Theatre Bargain

    The Shaw Festival Is Canada’s Great Theatre Bargain

    The Shaw Festival Is Canada’s Great Theatre Bargain After sharpening my pencil and doing some calculations, I have decided that the Shaw Festival, in drop-dead-gorgeous Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, is the greatest theatre bargain in Canada. I have booked tickets for the missus and myself for the entire 2023 season at the Shaw Festival – a mere […]

  • Aaargh!

    (Image: New YorkTimes) Gimme A Break! This review in the New York Times made me want to open a vein and slide into a warm tub. Why on earth do people like director Thomas Ostermeier insist on grafting their gawdawful “visions” onto Shakespeare, instead of creating their own works that would illuminate their brilliant insights […]

  • The Season I Missed (4) – Serving Elizabeth

    The Season I Missed (4) – Serving Elizabeth

    Serving Elizabeth Streaming on [email protected] Serving Elizabeth, a wonderful new play by Marcia Johnson, travels in time from Kenya in 1972 to London in 2015 with five terrific actors playing all the roles. The conceit of Serving Elizabeth – and this is all entirely fictional – is that Mercy, an outspokenly anti-British Kenyan cook and […]

  • The Season I Missed (3) – Midsummer Night’s Dream

    The Season I Missed (3) – Midsummer Night’s Dream

    Midsummer Night’s Dream Streaming on [email protected] Before he tackled the job of desecrating Shakespeare’s Hamlet in 2022, director Peter Pasyk warmed up with the Bard’s Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2021. The script has been ruthlessly cut to accommodate a cast of just eight and an intermission-less running time of about 90 minutes. Fair enough. Stranger […]

  • Billy Bishop On Demand

    Billy Bishop On Demand

    Billy Bishop On Demand If you missed Drayton Entertainment’s excellent production of Billy Bishop Goes to War earlier this year, you’ve been granted a second chance. In honour of Remembrance Day, November 11th, Drayton is presenting “Billy Bishop On Demand” for a limited time, from November 7 to 11. And at a bargain price, too, […]

  • The Season I Missed (2) – Three Tall Women

    The Season I Missed (2) – Three Tall Women

    Three Tall Women Streaming on [email protected] Edward Albee has legions of devoted fans. I am not among them. But I soldiered through the Stratford Festival’s nicely observed production of Three Tall Women, now streaming on its [email protected] platform, to savour Martha Henry’s final performance. What a performance it was! Henry was dying of cancer when […]

  • Toward Beauty – A Book Review

    Toward Beauty – A Book Review

    Toward Beauty Book Review I’ve been a fan of Dennis Garnhum ever since I saw his masterful take on A Christmas Carol at the Grand Theatre in 2017. I even had a chance to chat with him briefly when he was workshopping Grow at Goodspeed in Connecticut. So when I saw that he had a […]

  • Want To Become A Canadian Citizen?

    Want To Become A Canadian Citizen?

    Want To Become A Canadian Citizen? Well join the club. I know a lot of Americans who would love to become a Canadian citizen. The same holds true for folks from a lot of other countries. But if you’ve given any thought to what it takes to move to Canada you probably know that it’s […]

  • The Season I Missed (1) – I Am William

    The Season I Missed (1) – I Am William

    I Am William At The Stratford Festival [I was unable to attend the Stratford Festival’s truncated 2021 season because the border was closed to “non-essential travel” during the pandemic. However, the plays presented that season were filmed and are currently available on [email protected], the Festival’s very own streaming service. This is one of a series […]

  • Rain Vs. Shark

    I recently took in two British imports at Mirvish theatres, Singin’ In The Rain and The Shark Is Broken. I was intrigued to note that my reactions to both shows were somewhat at odds with those of the reviewers for the major papers. Singin’ In The Rain received generally positive reviews whereas my reactions were […]

  • Have Pot, Will Cook: Cannabis Cooking at Stratford Chefs School

    Have Pot, Will Cook: Cannabis Cooking at Stratford Chefs School

    Have Pot, Will Cook: Cannabis Cooking at Stratford Chefs School Shakespeare isn’t the only thing in Stratford that can transport you to another time and place. Now that cannabis (a.k.a. pot, grass, weed) is legal in Canada, some visitors may be tempted to visit one of a number of perfectly legal cannabis stores in Stratford. […]

  • Stratford Announces 2023 Season

    Stratford Announces 2023 Season Somewhat later than used to be the case, the Stratford Festival has announced its 2023 season, with four plays by The Bard. Artistic Director Antoni Cimolino likes to build each season around a central theme. Reflecting on the toll taken by the recent pandemic and the memories of a previous plague […]

  • Shaw Announces 2023 Season

    Shaw Announces 2023 Season The Shaw Festival in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, has announced an ambitious 17-play 2023 season and it looks promising. The Shaw’s 2023 season will kick off with a two-part, six-hour updating of the Sanskrit epic The Mahabarata, featuring an all South Asian cast. It will run for just four weeks, from late February […]

  • Long Wharf Theatre, Meet The Blyth Festival

    Long Wharf Theatre, Meet The Blyth Festival

    (Image: Monica Silvestre) Long Wharf Theatre, Meet The Blyth Festival Jesse Green’s recent article in the New York Times about ending racism in theatre kicks off with a discussion of changes at New Haven’s Long Wharf Theatre  If you are not up to speed on Long Wharf’s current situation, Green’s article will fill you in. […]