The Woodcutter

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Matchstick Theatre ventures deep into the forest with The Woodcutter, a play written by Don Hannah and helmed by its resident director Jake Planinc. An ambitious one-hander, the show rests on the performance of its only actor, Sébastien Labelle. Labelle surrenders himself entirely to the role of Ted, a man navigating the dark forest that is the extensively transformed Bus Stop Theatre.

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The Woodcutter

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The Argyle Street Kitchen Party

It was minutes into Argyle Street Kitchen Party when singer/songwriter Ian Sherwoodinvited audience members to come sit onstage during the performance. Imagine my surprise when, while laughing cordially at the offer, I was whisked to the seats in a random spur-of-the-moment decision by my girlfriend. Perched on a stool behind a counter in a very lifelike kitchen, the decision to relocate instantly proved to be a good one. The ensuing performance by Sherwood and fellow musicians Karen LizotteCelia Koughan, and Malia Rogers celebrates the beloved Maritime institution, the kitchen party. Fun and infectious, their energy quickly permeated from those sitting mere inches away to the audience members who stayed in their seats.Screen Shot 2018-07-09 at 4.30.13 PM.png

 

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The Argyle Street Kitchen Party

Obstacle Fest

Terra Novella Theatre’s newest adventure, Obstacle Festis built on the simple, unspoken fact that some of the best theatrical moments happen when something goes horribly wrong. A single, unexpected mishap has the make-or-break ability to change the course of a play.

Obstacle Fest is a mixed-bag in terms of its comedic highs and lows. Written, directed, and acted by both newcomers and veterans of the stage, the event features many delightful actors who carried their scenes despite their particular limitations. In other moments, actors went overboard with hammed-up performances and mugging to the audience, which ended up proving that some obstacles can end up working against a play as a whole.

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Obstacle Fest

 

 

 

Landline

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Truth be told, I’ve never really been one for meditation or deep introspection. I am, in many ways, quite guarded emotionally-speaking. I can be frustratingly socially-awkward and self-conscious, and so self-reflective, open-ended, and abstract lines of thinking are often quite difficult for me to embrace.

Halifax’s XOTHEATRE seems to thrive on secrecy. I had little idea of what to expect, and what preconceptions I initially had proved quickly to be incorrect. The location is a secret, and only two people can attend, (for lack of a better word), a “performance,” at a time. You get hooked up with an iPod Shuffle, headphones, and a phone number on your cell belonging to a stranger in Victoria, British Columbia, who is simultaneously doing the exact same thing as you. So start walking and prepare for further instructions.

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Landline

 

In A World Created By A Drunken God

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For Torontonian Jason (Sean Hauk), life is turned upside down when a stranger named Harry (Jeff Schwager) comes knocking at his door with the news that he is Jason’s half-brother. Their father, who abandoned Jason and his mother 30 years ago, is dying of kidney failure. The news of this man’s failing health fails to have any gravitas for Jason, as does Harry’s insistence that he possesses the rare ability to be a life-saving organ donor.

With Neptune Theatre’s newest venture, In A World Created By A Drunken God, Ojibwe playwright Drew Hayden Taylor’s subtly poses questions concerning morality and familial obligation. To what do we owe relationships that were never nurtured? Is it acceptable to keep what happened in the past unaddressed and unresolved?

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In A World Created By A Drunken God at Neptune

The Mountaintop

Screen Shot 2018-03-04 at 9.00.04 AMIt’s in the early hours of April 3rd, 1968 and Martin Luther King Jr is in his room at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. In a matter of hours he will be relegated to the pages of history, branded as an idyllic crusader for human rights and justice. If you think you have an idea as to what this play will be like, there is a likely chance you are mistaken. As described by director Ahdri Zhina Mandiela, “The Mountaintop is not only a raid on the deification of an unwilling martyr, but a poetic muse on the fragility of the human condition.”

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The Mountaintop