Theatre in London

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West Side Story

Reviewed by , May 7, 2015

Heart Wrenching Performance

There is that moment in West Side Story where you have a brief glimmer of hope that everything is going to be alright. Tony is calling for Chino to shoot him, when suddenly Maria shows up and Tony runs into her arms, so happy to see her alive after being told she is dead. But then the fatal shot rings out: Chino kills Tony.

I have seen many performances of West Side Story, and I’m always hoping everything will be sorted …

BOOM

Reviewed by , April 18, 2015

Talkin’ ’bout My Generation

BOOM is a tribute to the talent, energy and ambition of Rick Miller – one cannot help being in awe of him as he handles all roles in this huge one-man show, now on stage at the Grand Theatre.

Miller is Canada’s best impressionist since André-Philippe Gagnon and Rich Little. He does all the voices and singing in BOOM, which he also wrote and directed. In this documentary-like show, Miller covers the 25 years of the boomer generation from 1945 to 1969.

He weaves the news, politics and culture together in the stories of three people – Madeline, a woman from Cobourg, Ontario; Rudy, an Austrian-born …

Run, Father, Run

Reviewed by , April 16, 2015

[Disclaimer: I read several drafts of this play in the London Playwrights Lab. I may have even performed one of the parts.]

From the poster, you could be forgiven for thinking that Lynda Martens’ Run, Father, Run is an indictment of the Catholic church. Instead, it’s a look behind the pulpit, and a story of a very human priest given a choice he never thought he’d have to make.

It’s an interesting casting choice to have married actors David and Aimee Adler play Father Will Vandoorne and choir leader Julie Trudell, but it works in many ways in this LCP production. From their awkward meet-cute—he’s an avid runner just returned from a run, dressed in appropriate garb—they play the relationship between priest and congregant, …

Dream a Little Dream

Reviewed by , March 22, 2015

Sex, Drugs, Rock ‘n’ Roll!

Denny Doherty, one of the “Papas” in The Mamas and The Papas, wrote the musical Dream a Little Dream — The nearly true story of The Mamas and The Papas. Well, folks, if this is “nearly” true, I don’t think I want to see the complete truth, because this version is pretty raw. There’s a lot of alcohol and drug abuse, free love and broken hearts.

As well as showing us the seedy side of stardom, this is …

Perfect Pie

Reviewed by , March 13, 2015

While watching Western University’s Arts and Humanities Student Council’s production of Judith Thompson’s Perfect Pie (that’s a mouthful!) I had a distinct feeling that the Patsy character could have come from the small rural community where I grew up. Thompson’s play is set in 1990s Marmora, Ontario (population 1483) and director Jonas Trottier is from northern Ontario, so that’s certainly no coincidence; I suspect anyone with a similar background will have a similar sensation.

Of the Thompson plays I’ve seen or read, Perfect Pie features the most personally relatable characters. (And, to be honest, likeable.) Patsy and Francesca are childhood friends who grew distant, triggered by …