Stage Write: Next Stage Theatre Festival

January. Ahhhh, January. Post-holidays, we can be a bit slow moving but in our ‘hood, there’s always
something exciting happening that helps us pick up the pace. The first month of every year, in the icy cold of winter,
The Toronto Fringe Festival warms us up with the hottest indie theatre in the
city AND a heated beer tent. In true Fringe style, the tickets are cheap, the
beer is cold, and the shows are hot.


Held
at the Factory Theatre and called the Next Stage
Theatre Festival
, this mini-theatre-fest is a curated line-up of the best independent theatre in Canada that runs from today until Sunday, January 13. In its 6th season, at #NSTF, you’ll see raw, uncensored and exciting
new work from the city’s most vibrant up-and-coming talent. Plus, since the
diverse line-up is chosen by a panel of industry pros, you can trust that the
shows will be solid. Past Next Stage hits have gotten Dora Award nods, remounts
at leading theatres across the country and off-Broadway productions in NYC. Oh,
and have we mentioned tickets are just $15 and box office proceeds go right
back to the artists you see on stage?

Our resident drama queens pick the shows you shouldn’t miss this
week:

Image courtesy of Toronto Fringe Festival

Written by brilliant (and award-winning, NBD) playwright Charlotte Corbeil-Coleman, Sudden
Death
examines the dark underbelly of Canada’s
national pastime to uproariously tragic effect. With the dashing (and super
talented) Tony Nappo starring as hockey legend John “Rambo” Kordic
and the stunning (rock-it promo alum) Melissa Jane Shaw, we can’t wait to see
this one.

Factory Theatre Mainspace: January 2 to 13.


Image courtesy of Toronto Fringe Festival

Fan of Game of Thrones or not, audiences will love Throne of
Games
, a hilarious and unscripted interpretation of the bestselling
medieval fantasy novels that inspired the award-winning HBO series. Directed by acclaimed
actor and improviser Colin Munch and featuring a tour de force cast of Canada’s
most brilliant comedic performers, this one promises belly laughs and even
possible nudity (awesome).

Factory Theatre Mainspace: January 2 to 13.


Image courtesy of Toronto Fringe Festival

One of the hottest shows at Summerworks 2010, Post Eden is
a ‘live film’ about a fantastical day in the life of a fractured suburban
family. Inspired by interviews conducted with actual
residents of Richmond Hill, playwright/director Jordan Tannahill creates a
multimedia production that is a blur between a
documentary and a live theatre show. 

Factory Studio: Thursday, January 3 to 13.


Image courtesy of Toronto Fringe Festival

The 2012 Best-of-the-Fringe hit is back a sold-out run. This comedy (with guts)
about fate, pheromones and the TTC follows Anabel, who gives her heart to a
stranger who disappears with it. With playwright Julia Lederer playing the lead
role alongside Martha Ross and Robin Archer, this show touches on a bunch
of things we like: GoogleShrink, purple plaid and
rom-coms. 

Factory Studio: January 2 to 13.


Image courtesy of Toronto Fringe Festival

Originally performed in a church during Fringe 2011, AWAKE is a
current, cutting show that takes you deep into the heart of one of Toronto’s
most violent neighbourhoods. Set during the funeral of a victim of gun
violence, the production explores the ripple effect of gangs within a
community. Developed over three years, the script was created entirely based on
interviews with mothers who lost sons, gang members, outreach works and police.

Factory Theatre Mainspace: January 3 to 15.

With ten plays on three stages over twelve days you might as well
kick off 2013 by seeing some of the best theatre you’ll see all year. For full
festival listings, to book tickets, or more details, visit http://fringetoronto.com/next-stage-festival/ or call 416.966.1062. Hell, while you’re at it, why not donate to The Toronto Fringe… didn’t you resolve to be a better person this year? 

See you in the beer tent for a hot toddy (or something colder) between shows!

For complete Next Stage Theatre Festival listings click here.







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