Gay theatre lovers have two wonderful options over the next few weeks.
Sky Gilbert has unleashed a hilarious comedy A Few Brittle Leaves which mixes drag with classic British drawing room drama. Gavin Crawford gives a subtly vicious performance as the repressed sister – Maggie Smith would be envious of Gilbert’s delicious delivery of acid-tinged backhanded compliments. His genteel demeanor is matched by Ed Roy’s gleefully over-the-top turn as the more flamboyant sister. Gilber has lots to say about the gay experience, love and aging and this time he has wrapped his ideas into a tasty teatime treat.
A Few Brittle Leaves continues until Sun, May 5 at Buddies in Bad Times, 12 Alexander St. buddiesinbadtimes.com
by Drew Rowsome
Falsettos uses a brilliant and catchy score to tell the story of Marvin’s coming out, his love for Whizzer, and the complications that it all causes for Marvin’s wife and son. Though set in 1979 and 1981 with the inevitable spectre of AIDS adding drama to the second act, Falsettos is timeless and illuminates the gay heart and the value of family. Add a starmaking performance by Eric Morin whose handsomeness – the scene where he strips to tighty whiteys is worth the price of admission along - is matched by his talent and powerful voice and presence. Falsettos races along on an ingenious set and the audience leaves humming the score and wiping a tear from their eyes.
Falsettosruns until Sun, May 12 at Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas St E. ausc.ca/falsettos
The production is written and directed by Ecce Homo Artistic Director Alistair Newton, with performances by Bruce Dow (Jesus Christ Superstar on Broadway), Gavin Crawford (Dora Award winner for The Situationists), Tyson James (currently starring in Buddies' production of Arigato, Tokyo), Kimberly Persona, Chy Ryan Spain, and Kyle Travis Young, musical direction by Dan Rutzen, choreography by Sky Fairchild-Waller, and designs by Matt Jackson, Trevor Schwellnus, and Lyon Smith.
Of a Monstrous Child is the first musical to ever be commissioned and developed by Buddies in Bad Times. In-keeping with the company's almost-35-year tradition of transgressive queer performance, this show will test the boundaries of the musical genre and offer audiences a distinctly queer perspective on the cultural phenomenon of Lady Gaga.
Inspired by an essay Lady Gaga wrote while studying at NYU, the show chronicles an encounter between one of her obsessed super-fans and performance legend Leigh Bowery. In it, the iconic Bowery gives a crash course in the history of queer performance, trotting out a virtual who's who of artists, academics, and celebrities whose work has been appropriated by Lady Gaga. The pop star's chart-topping hits and memorable moments act as a background for the likes of Yoko Ono, Quentin Crisp, Boy George, Madonna, and so many more to share the stage in an unforgettable celebration of the creative people and art that came before us.
Two of Canada's greatest character actors share the stage for the first time as they take on a cast of characters that reads like an art world A-list. Stratford veteran Bruce Dow shows us his wickedly playful side as the show's master of ceremonies: legendary queer performer Leigh Bowery. Starring along-side Dow is celebrated comedian and talented impersonator Gavin Crawford, playing a host of famous artists and intellectuals that include Bjork, Marina Abramovic, Andy Warhol, and countless others.
This show also introduces Toronto to the amazing talents of Kimberly Persona, an up-and-coming young performer who looks, sounds, sings, and moves with an uncanny likeliness to Lady Gaga. An accomplished performer seen recently as Mrs. Pinkerton in Pinkalicious at the Lower Ossington Theatreand the creative force behind the web series Miss Persona and the Marvelous Melodies,Kim's starring role as Lady Gaga marks her first mainstage performance in Toronto. Buddies is thrilled to once again introduce Toronto audiences to an exciting young performer in a once-in-a-lifetime role.
OF A MONSTROUS CHILD: A GAGA MUSICAL
written & directed by Alistair Newton
starring Bruce Dow, Kimberly Persona, Gavin Crawford, Tyson James, Chy Ryan Spain and Kyle Travis Young
musical director Dan Rutzen
Previews May 14 & 15 | Opening Night May 16 | Closes May 26
Runs Tues-Sat 8pm, Sun 2:30pm
Tickets PWYC - $37
Box Office 416-975-8555 or buddiesinbadtimes.com
Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander Street, Toronto ON