We’re not only having some great weather this fall; we’re seeing some great theatre. Let me tell you about three pieces you should catch.
Ronnie Burkett’s The Daisy Theatre, which is on at the Cultch until December 15, is one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. Plot isn’t always Burkett’s strong point, but this evening is essentially episodic, so that doesn’t matter. The material in this cabaret of marionettes is hilarious, sexy, moving…all the good things. Burkett’s technique and his vision make this a must-see production. Don’t be a dope and wait until the last minute. Book now.
An interesting aside: Burkett commissioned a number of Canada’s most prominent playwrights—including Brad Fraser, Daniel MacIvor, and Joan Macleod—to write short pieces for The Daisy Theatre, but everything that Burkett is performing here, he as written himself. He hasn’t performed the other authors’ writing since The Daisy Theatre premiered at Toronto’s Luminato Festival in June. In an email that publicist Ellie O’Day forwarded to me in response to an inquiry, Burkett wrote that those other texts were “an interesting experiment, but not quite The Daisy.”
This weekend, Sean Devine’s Except in the Unlikely Event of War plays the final performances of its premiere run at the Roundhouse. It’s a smart, funny show, and Sean is an artist to watch. I encourage you to catch this one.
I also want to make a shout out to director Richard Wolfe, who is hilarious in his video appearances in the show. The guy can act. Who knew? (Well, if you were at the Jessies this summer, you probably already had a hunch.)
At Studio 16 until December 7, Becky Shaw is also very worth catching. The play has a horrible title—it’s hard to remember, partly because it tells you sweet nothing—but Gina Gionfriddo’s script, which is about the quid pro quo of love, is tough and intelligent, and the five-member cast of this Mitch and Murray production is consistently excellent. It’s hard to get audiences out to less-known venues. Go see ’em.
My full reviews are on straight.com.