March was brimming with amazing new works to witness, and I was blown-away by the diversity of live performance I was fortunate enough to witness. April is proving to be even more busy, with incredible, exciting productions on the horizon! Here’s what you can expect to see reviews for this month:

The Hooves Belonged to the Deer – Tarragon Theatre in association with Buddies in Bad Times Theatre

When Izzy’s family immigrates to a small rural town, the young queer Muslim boy becomes the salvation pet project to the local Pastor Isaac. In his attempt to reconcile his sexuality and faith, Izzy invents an imagined Garden of Eden, where Adam and Hawa’s (Eve in Arabic) relationship is turned upside down by the arrival of Steve, a beautiful, blue-eyed, white-skinned northerner.

An emotionally-charged and ritualistic journey of two universes colliding, The Hooves Belonged to the Deer offers an epic story of life, discovery and belonging where small town Canada meets the Garden of Eden.

March 28 – April 23

Tarragon Theatre, Mainspace – 30 Bridgman Ave

The Resurrection – Opera Atelier

Opera Atelier announces the much anticipated finale of its 2022/23 season Handel’s The Resurrection, on stage April 6 and 8 at 7:30pm and April 9 at 2:30pm at Koerner Hall, TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning. The Resurrection marks the Canadian premiere of Handel’s first acknowledged masterpiece in a fully-staged production for a live audience. The company’s lavish production will feature musical accompaniment from Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra under the baton of David Fallis, choreography by Founding Co-Artistic Director Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg C.M., performed by Artists of Atelier Ballet, and an innovative, multi-level set by Opera Atelier’s resident set designer Gerard Gauci. The all-star Canadian cast includes Soprano Carla Huhtanen, Soprano Meghan Lindsay, Mezzo-Soprano Allyson McHardy, Tenor Colin Ainsworth, and Bass-Baritone Douglas Williams.

Written for Easter of 1708, Handel’s The Resurrection details the events between Good Friday and Easter Sunday, and the tension leading up to Christ’s resurrection following his crucifixion and burial. The narrative plays out simultaneously across two spheres. In the celestial realm, a militant Archangel demands entrance to Hades and disputes the claims of a boastful Lucifer, insisting Christ’s death was an act of sacrificial love. Always the consummate showman, Handel ensured the opera is not without its moments of humour, as the Archangel and Lucifer spar for the upperhand. Meanwhile on Earth, Mary Magdalene, Cleophas and St. John the Evangelist struggle to make sense of Christ’s brutal death. Handel’s astonishingly sensual score and vivid word painting act as a catalyst for an exceptional play of emotions for all of the protagonists.

April 6, 8 &9

Koerner Hall in the TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning – 273 Bloor St. W

Never the Last – Delinquent Theatre and Theatre Passe Muraille

Created by Christine Quintana and Molly MacKinnon, NEVER THE LAST follows the passionate relationship between Russian-Canadian Sophie Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté – one of the most innovative composers of early twentieth century Europe – and expressionist painter Walter Gramatté. The couple’s ten years of marriage, marked by adventure, poverty, artistic strife, and tragedy, is captured in Eckhardt-Gramatté’s ten rarely performed violin solos. NEVER THE LAST seamlessly blends classical violin performances, movement, and text to tell the heartbreaking story of two people in love, and the ever-increasing space between them. NEVER THE LAST was nominated for five Jessie Richardson Theatre Awards, and winner for Significant Artistic Achievement: Outstanding Interdisciplinary Collaboration.

April 8 – 16

Theatre Passe Muraille Mainspace – 16 Ryerson Avenue

The Seagull – Soulpepper Theatre Company

Unrequited love. Creative jealousy. Guns. Vodka. A summer weekend at a lakeside estate falls apart when a famous writer comes to visit. Switching effortlessly between the ridiculous and the profound, Chekhov’s masterpiece examines the burning need to create art and the destructive power of love.

April 6 – 30

Young Centre for the Performing Arts – 50 Tankhouse Lane

Homelands – Kaha:wi Dance Theatre

Choreographed by celebrated Six Nations of the Grand River | Oshwé:ken dancer, choreographer, and artistic director, Santee Smith, the striking multimedia performance melds earthy and cinematic media, sound design and performance in celebration of the connection between Indigenous women, their lands and waterways since time immemorial.

The work journeys through the past from pre-colonial times to the present day and explores themes of environmental conservation, intergenerational ties and Indigenous resilience set within the homelands and waters of upper state New York (Kahnyen’kehàka/enhsenonhstate) and Six Nations of the Grand River (Ohswé:ken).

The immersive work features collaborations with many leading Indigenous creatives locally and internationally, and features Smith as a dancer and a vocalist within the percussive score, composed by singer/songwriter Pura Fé.

April 14 & 15

Harbourfront Centre Theatre – 231 Queen’s Quay West

Body So Fluorescent – Buddies in Bad Times Theatre

What happened last night on the dance floor? Two friends retrace their steps from the night before to figure out how it all ended in an explosive fight, shifting from self to alter-ego in their effort to untangle the facts. Body So Fluorescent is an electrifying solo performance that asks difficult questions about Blackness, otherness, and appropriation.

Following a national tour, critical acclaim, and a short film adaptation, co-creators Amanda Cordner and David di Giovanni reimagine their hit show for the Buddies stage.

April 13 – 23

Buddies in Bad Times Theatre – 12 Alexander Street

Vierge – Factory Theatre

An extraordinary new dramedy about faith, community, and sex from one of Canada’s most exciting emerging writers, Rachel Mutombo, Factory Theatre is thrilled to present the world premiere of VIERGE. Directed by Natasha Mumba, VIERGE stars Yvonne Addai, JD Leslie, Kudakwashe Rutendo and Shauna Thompson.

Sixteen-year-old Divine doesn’t really fit in anywhere, and her only real friend is Jesus (Christ) — that is until her family joins a new church and through the other girls in her youth group she discovers the world around her is not as it seems. This stunning new work follows four Congolese Canadian teenage girls as they journey to navigate between the pressures of Christianity, virginity and teenage hormones, and is sure to leave audiences tearing up one moment and laughing out loud the next.

April 8 – 30

Factory Theatre – 125 Bathurst Street

Niizh – Native Earth Performing Arts

Niizh, written by Joelle Peters, is a coming-of-age comedy inspired by YA romance novels read as a teen that will have its world premiere as part of the current Native Earth Performing Arts season, April 12-30, 2023 at Aki Studio.

Set on a reserve in Southwestern Ontario, the play follows the youngest of the ‘Little’ family, Lenna Little, who prepares to leave home for the first time. In the midst of this she meets Sam Thomas, who has returned to the reserve after many years away. Is there a meet-cute? Is there a fish fry? Is there a sax solo? You’ll have to wait and see!

April 12 – 30

Aki Studio, Daniels Spectrum – 585 Dundas Street East


Maanoma, My Brother – Canadian Stage and Blue Bird Theatre Collective

A new creation by Tawiah M’Carthy and Brad Cook with Anne-Marie Donovan, written and performed by M’Carthy and Cook and directed by Philip Akin, in MAANOMAA, MY BROTHER, childhood friends Kwame and Will reunite in Ghana for the funeral of a loved one and come to realize just how much has changed since the events that separated them 25 years earlier.

As they struggle with the urge to keep stories from the past buried and the desire to connect, resurfaced memories set them on a journey to discover a truth that neither of them expected. Blending together styles of West African and Canadian theatre, MAANOMAA mixes myth with reality, and the past with the present.

April 11 – 30

Canadian Stage Berkeley Street Upstairs Theatre – 26 Berkeley Street

Paint Me This House Of Love – Tarragon Theatre

After twenty-five years estranged, Cecelia and her father, Jules, are attempting reconciliation. Unable to communicate past shames and shortcomings, the pair become dependent on increasingly dramatic fairy tales to explain away their pain.

Paint Me this House of Love is a rhythmic, yearning, experimentation of language, exploring the threads that stitch together our shared family narratives, and asks how we communicate, “I Love You”, when the words alone are not enough.

April 11 – May 7

Tarragon Theatre – 30 Bridgman Avenue

New – Necessary Angel Theatre Company and Canadian Stage

The year is 1970 and the arrival of a Bengali bride to a small university town shakes up a tight-knit group of Indian immigrants, including the husband she’s never met. Tradition and counterculture collide for three women and their husbands as their perceptions of identity, sexuality, and the meaning of freedom are challenged by the spirit – and actions – of this fearless young woman.

April 25 – May 14

Berkeley Street Theatre – 26 Berkeley Street


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