Monday, January 28, 2013

Openings We're Tracking This Week, January 28-February 3

I, Malvolio (photo credit: Bruce Dalzell Atherton)
Normally we don't much like the Ancients (especially second-tier Ancients: The Romans). But this one sounds very, very exciting: an adaptation of Ovid's Metamorphoses. That it's billed as a comedy is not the reason we're thrilled. That it's heavily adapted by Mary Zimmerman and that the play has gotten rave reviews...interesting, but not that. We are looking forward to what sounds like one of the most-ambitiously designed productions outside of a gazillion-dollar Cirque show. Bretta Gerecke is offering nothing less than a pool and a waterfall for the actors to frolic in and the techies are working overtime to make sure the selfsame performers don't break their necks or get fried even as they are well-lit, dressed and can deliver art as the temperature in the pool lowers over the 80 minutes of the piece. (Ottawa)

We loved the Khaled Hosseini novel and the subsequent movie and now Theatre Calgary artistic director Dennis Garnhum is about to wrangle The Kite Runner and expectations into his house. Garnhum says part of his mandate was to introduce cultural diversity into his seasons and that's clearly the case here with actors from across the country telling the tale of two boys, two worlds, one hideous war and repentance. It will require nothing less than theatrical magic. 

In a considerably smaller vein, and a considerably different key is I, Malvolio, part of PuSh. Tim Crouch delivers a solo, praised around the world, about the priggish servant from Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. Crouch has previously explored the Bard's secondary characters (I, Peaseblossom; I, Banquo; I, Caliban) and though the show was originally aimed at teens, it has delighted audiences of all ages. Hilarious, poignant, an actor that is reportedly at the top of his form and an interplay with the audience that is both seductive and repellent. (Look at his costume.) (Vancouver)

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