Porridge, the school play Reply

Review by Stéphane Potvin

Recently, the George R. Allan school students and staff presented a production of Porridge, a humorous musical play counting in its midst, characters like the Three Bears, Goldie Lox (Goldilocks), Mother Hubbard, Jack Spratt, Simple Simon, Three Billy Goats Gruff, Peter Piper, and many more.
The play is described as follows: When a crime wave hits Happy Valley, there’s a caseload of mysteries to be solved! Who’s stolen Ma Hubbard’s recipe book? Who’s kidnapped Marigold the cow? And what dirty secret is Papa Bear hiding behind his Porridge empire?porridge_finale


JESUS CHRIST Superstar; critic’s 4th viewing 1

Review by Terry GaisinreviewerETG
                    The Webber/Rice Gospel rock musical retelling the last week of Jesus’ life may be four decades old, but it still gleans mixed reviews. Audiences love it; critics range from cold to lukewarm to destructive (i.e. New Yorker Magazine ‘12). This scribe must admit to an ambiguous opinion after three previous takes about ‘Yeshua the Nazarene’. Some were good, others – feh, but City Centre Musical Productions’ take is a serious TOP TEN contender.

Jerusalem; circa 32 a.d. CCMP's Jesus Christ Superstar cast members

Jerusalem; circa 32 a.d.
CCMP’s Jesus Christ Superstar cast members


“Welfarewell”, fun-filled; pun-filled holiday in jail Reply

Review by Danny GaisinreviewerDGcolor
                    Pamela Delaney is a renowned poet, playwright, pet-lover and judging by her output – a compassionate individual. “WELfarewell” is a satirical and lampooning of the not-so-funny circumstance of the elderly living on insufficient fixed income. Like Swift’s ‘Modest Proposal’ it offers a rhetorical solution – ‘Do a crime…do the time’, albeit with 3-squares a day; semi-comfortable bed and definitely a roof over one’s head. Seriously poor Esmerelda Quipp has just been rejected for a theatrical bit-part; her cat has died and the rent is substantially in arrears.

Lunchtime at Toronto's DON JAIL

Lunchtime at Toronto’s DON JAIL


‘The Rover’, the itinerant; or his vessel; or BOTH? Reply

Review by Danny Gaisinreviewer_Danny
                    The book was written 3⅓ centuries ago, but the appropriateness and impact of Aphra Behn’s satire still carries both message and humour for today’s audience; especially as directed by Melee Hutton and presented by Theatre Erindale. We laughed, we applauded the actors; we appreciated the clever dialogue and even participated in the on-stage shenanigans and plot convolutions. It is certainly a challenge for the actors and UTM’s  students manage the task with aplomb.
Photo by Jim Smagata

Potter & Martin observed by disguised cast-members

Potter & Martin observed by disguised cast-members


A Good Night for Desdemona and Juliet Reply

Review by Michael PiscitellireviewerMichael P2
Going to see theatre is a fantastic way to become more cultured and start up conversations about the arts. If one brings a friend, it can be much easier explaining just how awful or wonderful a piece of theatre really was. Usually this writer does some research on what I’m seeing before writing reviews; unfortunately, due to extenuating circumstances, I wasn’t able learn & prep about “Good Night Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet)” .

The stress & strife that's "Goodnight Desdemona" etc.

The stress & strife that’s “Goodnight Desdemona” etc.


“THE SECRET GARDEN”, enigma exposed! Reply

Review by Danny Gaisinreviewer_Danny
                    Burnett’s 1911 children’s story is actually a subtle advocate for the principles of M.B. Eddy’s ‘Christian Science’ philosophy. Eddy respected the Bible but also believed that disease was strictly spiritual thus should be healed by prayer, not medicine. Plot-wise; Mary’s attitudinal change; Colin’s recovery; Dickon’s affinity for nature and Martha’s empathy are all manifestations of the C.S. dogma. Nevertheless, the storyline; especially presented musically; is still an optimistic charmer…for all ages. Meadowvale Music Theatre captures all the enchantment.

The inhabitants, real & spiritual of SECRET GARDEN's Yorkshire mansion

The inhabitants, real & spiritual of SECRET GARDEN’s Yorkshire mansion