One of the things I love about living in Toronto is that there is always so much to do, there is always something on the go. Sue and I are huge fans of going to the movies, the zoo, very shortly the Aquarium, even taking in the odd sporting event. Of course there are tons of other things as well, like the fantastic number of stages and the live theater they provide the city with.
The amazing stage production of Les Miserables has returned to town, always a joy to see, and I so need to get out to see it again. I haven’t seen it live in years! It’s one of my favorite shows.
Of course there is also the production of Disney’s Aladdin, an adaptation of the beloved animated film…
But I am also fascinated by the stage shows that may be a little off the main strip. Our friend Gabe Grey was a member of the stunning cast that featured David Husband, Alex Bird, Roman Lebeau, Farid Yazdani (who also served as producer), Craig Daiczun and Adrian G. Griffiths in director Christina Collins presentation of David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross at the Lower Ossington Theater. It had a short and fantastic run, with each of the gentlemen turning in a brilliant performance, that only caused Sue and I to put our ears a little lower to the ground to pay more attention to these fantastic gems to be discovered around the city.
It’s no secret I have been enchanted with Director Christopher Bond’s work, seeing both his shows multiple times now. And I really want to see them even more.
I was fortunate enough to see the opening night and closing performances of the second run of the fantastic Night of the Living Dead Live. Scripted by Trevor Martin and Dale Boyer, who also starred in the production, as well as Bond, the fantastic production paid wonderful homage to the original 1968 film. Featuring a brilliant cast composed of Boyer, Martin, Darryl Hinds, Mike Nahrgang, Gwynne Phillips and Andrew Fleming, all of whom get to play multiple parts as the play encompasses the film in the first act, and then spins through a hilarious serious of what-ifs in the second. It’s also seen me wandering around and proclaiming, “Maybe then, they would have survived!!” over and over again.
Much like those amazing guys over at Glengarry, each of these cast members gave their all in both of the performances I saw, and that vibe spills over into the audience, and flows back to them, forming a wonderful symbiotic relationship that can only happen when the performances and the shows are electrifying.
This show was perfect. It often had me laughing loudly and raucously, such was my enjoyment.
Christopher Bond not only had that one on the go, he’s also, of course, continuing to direct Evil Dead The Musical which has had a triumphant return to Toronto, something we also go to see the opening night of…
This one is literally bloody, good fun. Ryan Ward as Ash, is just about as pitch-perfect as you could ask for, alternately channeling Bruce Campbell, and poking fun at the film series I love so dearly.
The entire cast is nothing less than bang-on, and I can’t recommend seeing this one enough. We had a chance to chat with some of the cast, and can’t wait to meet and chat with more of them, simply because the energy they have on stage, Evan Dowling, Kenton Blythe, Alison Smyth, Brianna Love, Rodrigo Fernandez-Stoll, Margaret Thompson, Laura Tremblay and Daniel Williston, every single one of them brings it, just as their counterparts in the shows listed above do as well.
There is so much amazing work going on in Toronto, and we’ve been delighted to learn about these shows, and can’t wait to learn about more of them.
What are your favorite stages in Toronto, and you’re favorite stage show to see?