Friday, December 16, 2016

Best theatre events of 2016

While there are a couple of weeks left in the year, I don't have any plans to see more theatre (or concerts for that matter, though I may go see a bassoon concert Monday after work, but it depends if I can leave work early or if I am booked solid in meetings).  Thus, I feel it is fairly safe to put together my list of theatre events I enjoyed over 2016.  It is drawn up the same way as my 2015 list was, which is to say I'm not trying to boil this down to a top ten list.  The best comedy is basically a tie between Boeing, Boeing and Life Sucks.  The most wrenching drama was a tie between Soulpepper's Incident at Vichy and Coal Mine's Instructions (to Any Future Socialist Government Wishing to Abolish Christmas), though honorable mention goes to Red Light Winter, The Circle and The Model Apartment.  Then there is that ambiguous category of plays that mix humor and pathos in equal quantities; the standout shows in this group were Les Belles Soeurs and The Plough and the Stars.

Anyway, it was certainly another really solid year in terms of great productions, both in Toronto and a bit further afield.  Last Feb. I travelled fairly extensively to go to shows -- to St. Catherines to see Goodnight Desdemona and also to Peterborough to see Les Belles Soeurs.  Both were quite worthy productions, though Les Belles Soeurs was actually pretty amazing, easily as good as most of the Toronto shows I saw.  It does look like I'll be going to Buffalo in March 2017 to see A View from the Bridge, so the tradition will be unbroken, and of course assuming we go to Chicago over the summer, I'll try to see something there as well.  As is my way, I'm already collecting events for 2017 and have a few dates circled on the calendar already.

Red Light Winter (Unit 102)

Dalton and Company (Cart/Horse)
Les Belles Soeurs (The Motley Collective)
Goodnight, Desdemona; Good Morning, Juliet (Brock University)

Richard III (Wolf Manor)
Boeing, Boeing (Hart House)
Port Authority (Fly on the Wall Theatre)
The Public Servant (Nightwood Theatre)
Galileo (Remy Bumppo)
The Flick (Steppenwolf)

The Great War (Video Cabaret)
The Beaux' Stratagem (George Brown)

The Model Apartment (Harold Green Jewish Theatre)
The Anniversary (East Side Players)
Sheets (Video Fag)

Incident at Vichy (Soulpepper)
Instructions (Coal Mine)
The Heidi Chronicles (Soulpepper)
Much Ado About Nothing (Unit 102)

Night Lights (TO Fringe)
The Comedy of Errors (Shakespeare Bash'd - TO Fringe)
The Unending (TO Fringe)

Father Comes Home from the Wars (Soulpepper)
Sister Cities (The Den Theater - Chicago)
Fefu and Her Friends (Halcyon - Chicago)

Old Times (Unit 102)
The Plough and the Stars (Abbey Theatre Company)

Hosana (Soulpepper)
Master Harold and the Boys (Obidian Theatre)
The Circle (Tarragon)
Quiver/Mouthpiece (Buddies in Bad Times)
Life Sucks (Lookingglass)

Chasse-Gallerie (Storefront Theatre/Soulpepper)
The Realistic Jones (Tarragon)
The Damage Done (Canadian Rep Theatre)

Measure for Measure (Red Sandcastle)
Paradise Comics (Ignition)

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