Capital Critics' Circle
Le cercle des critiques de la capitale

Reviewing Theatre in Canada's Capital Region
La critique théâtrale de la région Ottawa-Gatineau

Difficult for the Uninitiated, but Technically Brilliant: L-E-V’s OCD Love

Reviewed by on    Student Reviews  

Kellie MacDonald. Criticism class of Patrick Langston. November 18, 2017

From Israel-based dance company L-E-V, co-Artistic Directors Sharon Eyal and Gai Behar present OCD Love at the National Arts Centre’s Babs Asper Theatre. At roughly 55 minutes without intermission, the performance is an exploration of love and obsessive compulsive disorder set to the metronomic ticking of DJ Ori Lichtik’s soundscape. OCD Love keeps audiences on the edge with writhing choreography and repetitive bass-thumping house music. (Continue reading » )

L-E-V OCD : Dancing the Pain Away

Reviewed by on    Student Reviews   ,

Emily Blake,  November 26th 2017

In Patrick Langston’s criticism class.  

 

Silence speaks louder than words, and in that silence is all the meaning in the world. LEV’s OCD Love is a powerful commentary on what it like to be plagued by OCD, shedding light on the realities of those who are faced with this disorder every day. LEV is an Israeli dance company founded by choreographer Sharon Eyal and Gai Behar. They are joined by techno musician Ori Lichtik, working together to create this hypnotic masterpiece. (Continue reading » )

NAC French Theatre: Gabriel Dumont’s dream of a Wild West Show realized for the stage

Reviewed by on    Arts News   ,

Patrick Langston, artsfile.ca preview
October 12, 2017

Johnathan Lorenge.the Wild West Show

A scene from Gabriel Dumont’s Wild West Show produced by the NAC’s French Theatre department. Photo  Johnathan Lorenge.

 

Gabriel Dumont would be intrigued. Dumont, the ally of Louis Riel and leader of the Métis forces during the 1885 North-West Rebellion against the Canadian government, fled Canada for the U.S. after the rebellion was quashed and Riel hung.

In the U.S., he joined Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show, but he didn’t stick for long. However, it turns out he did dream of creating something similar in Canada to spotlight the struggle of the Métis people to reclaim their rights.
(Continue reading » )

Office Hours: McCabe’s cast and crew keep the tone light and entertaining!

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   , ,

Office Hours
Poster. Courtesy of Phoenix Players

Office Hours By Norm Foster. Directed by Jo-Ann McCabe. Phoenix Players

It’s Friday afternoon at the office, or, more accurately, at six offices, and a regular day of preparing for the weekend away from the city.

The busy week included firing a couple of employees, having a sycophantic encounter with an alcoholic film director out of original ideas, dealing with a couple of potential suicides, a pushy salesman, a self-centred psychiatrist, a domineering mother who believes herself responsible for her son’s sexual orientation, an overweight jockey, a steamy novelist and a dead racehorse. (Continue reading » )

OCD Love: L-E-V Dance company delves into a paradox, the strange psychic disruption of the troubled body!

Reviewed by on    Dance  

OCD Love (L-E-V Dance) Photo. Courtesy of the National Arts Centre

This latest work by the Israeli dance company LEV Dance, created by  Sharon  Eyal and Gai Behar is a terrifyingly complex moment of corporeal  inventiveness that subjected  the dancers to the most demanding  feat of choreography I have ever seen.

(Continue reading » )

Capital Critics Circle Presents its awards for the 2016-17 theatre Season in Ottawa

Reviewed by on    Arts News   ,

Vigilante,  Best professional production. Photo by David Cooper

Photo: Maria Vartanova

Photo: Maria Vartanova Best Community  production: Other Desert Cities

 On November 14,  about 200 members of the Theatre community of  the nation’s capital gathered in the Salon of the National Arts Centre for the nineteenth  annual  theatre awards presented by the Capital Critics Circle, for plays presented in English in the National capital region. As Nathan Medd, managing director of the National Arts Centre English theatre stated, this is the only event in the city which brings together members of  community,  professional and student  theatre groups who rarely mingle but who have  equally strong traditions  in Ottawa. (Continue reading » )

Student Review: Dense but Rewarding: The Metropolitan Opera’s The Exterminating Angel

Reviewed by on    Student Reviews  

Photo Emon Hassan
The Exterminating Angel

Kellie MacDonald from the Theatre Criticism course of Patrick Langston, U of Ottawa

Widely considered the opera event of the season, this is the North American premiere of acclaimed British composer-conductor Thomas Adès’s newest work. With direction and libretto by Tom Cairns, The Exterminating Angel draws inspiration from the 1962 Luis Buñuel film of the same name. It is, at the same time, thrilling and torturously slow, depicting the descent into madness of a Sartrean dinner party nobody can leave. (Continue reading » )

Orpheus strikes gold with Shrek: The Musical

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   ,

Shrek: Poster from Orpheus Musical theatre

Book and lyrics by David Lindsay-Abaire.Music by Jeanine Tesori.  Based on the Dreamworks animation motion picture and the book by William Steig. Orpheus Musical Theatre Society,  directed by Jenn Donnelly.

Shrek: The Musical will never win a place in the annals of great Broadway shows, but the production it receives from Orpheus is nevertheless an ongoing delight.

Forget the fact that the prime reason for its arrival on the Great White Way was somewhat cynical and opportunistic —  to capitalize further on the enormous success of the Dreamworks animated movie about a misanthropic swamp-dwelling ogre named Shrek and his rescue of a princess from a tower. Ignore, if you can, the readiness of the stage adaptation to remain faithful to a marketing dictum pursued by the filmmakers — that young audiences find flatulence funny. Accept the reality that Jeanine Tesori’s score can be pretty underwhelming. (Continue reading » )

Shrek the Musical: Ogre gets girl has some incredible design elements!!!

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   ,

Poster for Orpheus musical in Ottawa

There have been some remarkable musicals already this early in Ottawa’s theatre season. We had the remarkable Jonathan Larson biographical musical Tick Tick Boom kicking off for Orpheus in the studio theatre at Centrepointe and the clever, innovative Ordinary Days at GCTC. We are now into the Christmas season and the more traditional musical formula is upon us.

Shrek, the classic story of ogre gets girl, ogre loses girl, ogre gets girl wrapped up in a message of inclusion and be true to yourself comes to the Centrepointe theatre from the dedicated and talented community of Orpheus. Oops, I forgot the spoiler alert. Oh well, I doubt that there would be more than two percent of the public that isn’t already familiar with the original DreamWorks animated film of the same name. (Continue reading » )

Shrek the musical:Orpheus lands a show of stunning quality and great visuals!

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   ,

Poster for Orpheus musical in Ottawa

Book and lyrics by David Lindsay-Abaire; Music by Jeanine Tesori/ Based on the Dreamworks animation motion picture and the book by William Steig

Orpheus Musical Theatre Society  directed by Jenn Donnelly

A terrific production can make a believer out of a curmudgeon of a reviewer who has always hated body-noise and bathroom jokes. No doubt about it.

Orpheus Musical Theatre Society‘s Shrek the Musical overcomes the limitations of the script, the generally unmemorable score and assorted loud belches and regular breaking of wind to land a show of stunning quality and great visuals. It also offers a low-key presentation of the message that love and acceptance come in many forms. (Continue reading » )

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