Toronto Theatre November

This Week in Theatre: The Children's Republic, Romeo and Juliet, Ride the Cyclone, The Addams Family, 2P4H

This week in theatre rounds up the most noteworthy live theatre playing right now in Toronto. It includes just-opened shows as well as productions that are about to close.

The Children's Republic / Tarragon Theatre / 8:00pm/2:30pm / $25 - $46
Hannah Moscovitch returns to the stage with a full-length play after Little One, an undisputed hit at SummerWorks. In a co-production with the Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company, The Children's Republic is a portrait of an important humanitarian, Dr. Janusz Korczak, a champion of children and signatory to the League of Nations' Declaration of the Rights of the Child. As a followup to East of Berlin, Essay and The Russian Play, the bar is high for Moscovitch, but with Alisa Palmer at the helm, magic could very well be made again.

Romeo and Juliet / National Ballet - Four Seasons Centre / 7:30pm/2:00pm / $25 - $100+
Shakespeare's classic tale is told through dance in a new version by the internationally celebrated choreographer Alexei Ratmansky to launch the 60th anniversary of the National Ballet. The play is a natural fit for dance — it features a portrait of youth and the heartbreak of forbidden love. Complete with the music of Sergei Prokofiev, and the signature sword-fight between Tybalt and Mercutio, R&J is an accessible ballet that is sure to harness the emotion of the two title characters.

Ride the Cyclone / Theatre Passe Muraille / 7:30pm/2:00pm / $15-$30
Talk about a titillating hook — Ride the Cyclone is a piece about a teenage chamber choir from Uranium City, Saskatchewan that died in a roller coaster a traveling fair no less. The play serves as the choir's final performance where they showcase their repertoire while trying to come to terms with their new state of being. Acting Up Stage Company and Theatre Passe Muraille present this odd and intriguing play, a follow up to Atomic Vaudeville's Legoland.

The Addams Family / Toronto Centre for the Arts / 7:30pm/2:00pm / $62+
They're creepy and they're kooky, mysterious and spooky, they're altogether ooky, The Addams Family. For a musical in which the theme song rhymes "spooky" with "ooky" and even "see'em" with "screa-um," the expectations shouldn't be that high. Critically panned during its run in New York, which squandered the talents of Broadway darlings Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth, the macabre family brings its coffins to Toronto for a limited engagement. Unfortunately Lane and Neuwirth aren't along for the ride.

2 Pianos 4 Hands / Panasonic Theatre / 8:00pm/2:00pm / $40+
Ted Dykstra and Richard Greenblatt have toured the globe with a show about their love/hate relationship with the piano. An enduring, and somewhat haunting, feature of childhood memories spent indoors, the two actors explore the instrument on which so much of their early efforts were spent. The performers inevitably get the last laugh as playing the piano, not at Carnegie Hall but on stages all over the world, has been their bread and butter. Catch this one for Dykstra and Greenblatt's final performance. See my full review here.

Photo of the cast of Ride the Cyclone by Fairen Berchard

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