• We earn love through time. We’ve all experienced love at first sight or an instant connection with someone but to have a true relationship with another person you need to experience things with them; to share joy, loss, trauma, even redemption. We are creatures of experience and memory.

    Pelee, don't get too close; photo: Ed Gass Donnelly
  • The Panel:
    Alison Broverman is a playwright and arts reporter. She has a bee block in her backyard.
    Andrew Lamb is a Toronto-based director. You should go see In Darfur, the play he has directed for the Summerworks Festival.
    Daniel Krolik is an actor and man about town.

    The Beekeepers do some decorating, photo: safe solvent
  • It has been a long standing joke among my friends that if I’m serious about getting out of this playwriting gutter, I should write a play about the First World War. Because Canadians of a certain age – the types who have season tickets to regional theatre companies – love the First World War. In response to our aging demographics, I’ve considered moving it up a notch by writing about the Second World War instead.

    No, it's you.
  • The “one-hander” is a standard of any theatre festival where the budget is slim and the shows are many. Any show that relies entirely on the skill of one performer requires an actor that is at once endearing, fascinating and impressive.

    Rendezvous with Home, photo credit: Michael G Pierson
  • *The Panel*
    Alison Broverman is a playwright and arts reporter. She fears a zombie apocalypse most of all.
    Ann McDougall is a playwright and storyteller. She fears nuclear fallout where everyone mutates and slowly dies, but not before they go crazy and kill each other.

    Cosy Catastrophe, Vancouverites bring blood and poop jokes to Toronto.
  • I saw The Emergency Monologues immediately after seeing Talk Sixty to Me. I left that show, which used the words of sixty year olds in a highly mediated-form, wondering if the audience had really felt as if they’d experienced something authentic. If they had, then I wish they’d come next door with me and listened to the stories of Morgan Jones Philips.

    Trust me, I'm a paramedic, really; The Emergency Monologues; photo by John Philips|
  • So, we all heard about the aborted (pun intended) great Pastor Phelps Project Protest of last week. How the real life Pastor Phelps (the subject of the Pastor Phelps Project by Ecce Homo) and his chums from the Westboro Baptist Church were going to come to Toronto and picket the SummerWorks production only to be turned back at the border.

    Get out of my head! Pastor Phelps Project, Carey Wass is Fred Phelps, photo: Alistair Newton
  • The Show:
    The Pastor Phelps Project, which, thanks to the real threats of protest by the Westboro Baptist Church, is the most notorious show at this year’s SummerWorks Festival.

    The Pastor Phelps Project; Carey Wass as Fred Phelps; photo: Alistair Newton
  • In 1918 Igor Stravinsky wrote a music theatre piece "to be read, played, and danced". The libretto, which is based on a Russian folk tale, was written in French by the Swiss universalist writer C.F. Ramuz. It is a parable about a soldier on leave, who trades his fiddle to the Devil for a book that predicts the future of the economy, a moral tale of greed and punishment.

    A Soldier's Story
  • A re-telling of Ovid’s story of Tereus, Philomela and Procne, Groundwater Productions' If We Were Birds opens with Philomela (Tara Rosling) appearing from behind an overturned table. She opens her mouth and blood spills from her lips. The echo of Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus (which was inspired by the same source story) is unmistakable. Unlike poor Lavinia, Philomela has had her tongue sewn back in so she can tell us her tale.

    If We Were Birds