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

Ashes to Ashes, by Harold Pinter at the Europe Theatre prize in Rome

Reviewed by on    Arts News   ,

Isabelle Huppert with Jeremy Irons  reading Ashes to Ashes by Harold Pinter.Photo Franco Bonfiglio

The XIV Europe Prize Theatrical Realities went to Susanne Kennedy, Jernej Lorenci, Yael Ronen, Alessandro Sciarroni, Kirill Serebrennikov, and Theatre N099. Estonia. The Special Prize was awarded to Dimitris Papaioannou. Wole Soyinka and Fadhel Jaibi were chosen as the recipients of the Special Europe Theatre to extend the recognition of theatre excellency beyond Europe. The XVI Europe Theatre Prize was awarded to Isabelle Huppert and Jeremy Irons.

Report by Yana Meerzon from Rome

Bent: a problematic production but some substantial performances bring substance to the evening.

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   ,


Bent Phillip Merriman in the foreground.
Photo Peter Whittaker


There are moments in TotoToo’s production of Bent that are as good as anything that this enterprising company has ever done.

Indeed, the excellent performances of Phillip Merriman and Mike Rogoff as two doomed young lovers provide a compelling reason for theatregoers to seek out this sometimes problematic revival of Martin Sherman’s 1979 play about Nazi persecution of homosexuals. (Continue reading » )

Sir John A: Acts of a Gentrified Ojibway Rebellion,:Well executed but wordy!!

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   ,


Herbie Barnes, Katie Ryerson,
darrell Denis


The spark for Sir John A: Acts of a Gentrified Ojibway Rebellion, says playwright Drew Hayden Taylor, was “the Aboriginal equivalent of an urban legend.”

So, with his experience as a standup comic, as well as accolades as a playwright, at the fore, he delivers a road-trip comedy about an attempt to retrieve a medicine bundle now exhibited in a British museum. The method will be arranging an exchange with the bones of Canada’s first Prime Minister — to be dug up from Sir John A’s final resting place in Kingston. (Continue reading » )


Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   , ,

Photo Maria Vartanova




Tick…tick BOOM, book, music and lyrics by Jonathan Larson, Script adaptation by David Auburn,  Orpheus Musical Theatre Society

The countdown on the chance of success as a composer is near. Jon (aka Jonathan Larson) sees his thirtieth birthday as the deadline for delivering a hit musical or leaving theatre for a lucrative alternative.

Therefore, anxiety and anger have equal time in his autobiographical chamber musical tick…tick…BOOM! Originally written as a solo rock monologue mourning the fact that the workshop of his musical, Superbia, did not progress to full production, David Auburn (author of the play Proof) turned the show into a piece for three performers after Larson’s death: the anxious composer, his girlfriend, Susan, and his best friend, Michael. (Continue reading » )

Canada Dance Festival July 2 to 16th. Ottawa

Reviewed by on    Arts News, Dance   , ,

Le jardin des délices
Cie de Marie Chouinard
Photo: Sylvie-Anne Paré

Welcome to the 2017 Canada Dance Festival
New Dance from Canada’s best

The Canada Dance Festival in partnership with the National Arts Centre’s Canada Scene celebrates 2017 with a diverse program of new Canadian Dance. Following the successful CDF 2016 and building toward our next full festival in 2018, this year’s edition will showcase powerful movement and beautiful movers – all telling uniquely Canadian stories through dance. (Continue reading » )

1979: An amusing play, not a satire

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Canada, Theatre in Ottawa and the region   , , , ,


Photo by Andrew Alexander

The year is 1979 and the Canadian political scene is in upheaval. The Conservative government has just replaced Trudeau’s Liberals, and the new Prime Minister, Joe Clark, is trying to govern the country on the principles of honesty, truthfulness, and adherence to his high ideals. During his short period in the cabinet, he meets with much stronger adversaries than the opposition party – human greed and corrupt nature. While he stays true to himself and to Canadians, he, as a political misfit, ultimately looses the battle. (Continue reading » )

Avec « ERZULI DAHOMEY, déesse de l’amour » et après « Médée-Kali », le M’Acte démontre sa volonté de rapprocher les différentes cultures

Reviewed by on    All the world's a stage   , , , ,

Guest Critic Scarlett Jesus.            Avant la Martinique -où la pièce sera jouée au Théâtre Aimé Césaire du 16 au 18 février prochain-, dans le cadre d’une programmation mettant à l’honneur Karine Pedurand, le  Mémorial Acte a donné une unique représentation d’« Erzuli Dahomey, déesse de l’amour ». Le texte de cette pièce, écrite par Jean-René il y a une dizaine d’années dans le cadre d’une résidence d’auteur à La Chartreuse d’Avignon et publié aux éditions des Solitaires intempestifs, a reçu plusieurs récompenses : le Prix SACD de la dramaturgie française en 2009, suivi en 2013 du Prix « Théâtre 13 Jeunes metteurs en scène ».

La pièce avait fait l’objet d’une programmation à la Comédie Française (salle du Vieux Colombier) du 12 mars au 15 avril 2012, avec une mise en scène d’Eric Génovèse. La mise en scène, pour la Guadeloupe et comme pour la Martinique, a été réalisée à l’initiative de la Compagnie Théâtre des Deux Saisons. Elle a pu être vue en Île de France, les 17 et 18 juin derniers, dans le cadre de la structure Arcadi (Plateaux Solidaires).

Erzuli ? Voici une pièce qui va évoquer le vaudou, pensez-vous!  D’autant que vous connaissez l’origine haïtienne de Jean-René Lemoine. (Continue reading » )

The Colony of Unrequited Dreams: The Heart and Soul of the Rock

Reviewed by on    Theatre in Ottawa and the region   ,

The opening night of The Colony of Unrequited Dreams at the National Arts Centre was attended by a who’s who of Newfoundland artists, Canadian politicians and journalists. It was appropriate of course as the play is an adaptation by Robert Chafe of Wayne Johnston’s novel that imagines what early influences might have created a character as enigmatic and colourful as Joseph Smallwood, the last father of Confederation and an enduring symbol of Newfoundland.

A work of fiction that speculates about the heart and soul of a very real character in Canadian history by blending history with invention makes for a compelling evening . It worked on every level. The characters both real and imagined are spellbinding. The dialogue crackles with the wisecracking wit that you find in the best of 40’s cinema. Chafe’s play makes me want to both read Johnston’s novel and discover more about this significant piece of history. (Continue reading » )


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Pour deux soirs seulement, la création acclamée par la critique et le public F**KING CARL revient à La Nouvelle Scène Gilles Desjardins.

de Louis-Philippe Roy et Caroline Yergeau

une production du Théâtre du Trillium
du vendredi 3 février au samedi 4 février 2017 à 19 h 30
dans le Studio B

Il y a eu une annonce sur Kijiji, une couple (de caisses) de bières, des Monster Trucks, des « festivaux » et un forain. Ça a donné un couple. Un couple mis devant une simple question : « Pourquoi pensez-vous être une bonne famille pour accueillir un enfant? ». F**k…

Ne ratez pas votre chance de voir « l’une des meilleures créations jouées sur les planches de l’Ontario français ces dernières années. » [revue Liaison #173]