pulling stringspulling strings
Just like in the poster for Happy, Ronnie Burkett must be soaring through the clouds. After its sold-out run in January at Canadian Stage, the puppeteer took the show to London's Barbican Theatre and met with a similar SRO response.
Burkett barely had time to breathe before running off to Tampa, Florida, to receive the President's Award at the Puppeteers of America Festival. "Now I have a big honkin' medal for my neck," he laughs, "but I doubt that I'll ever wear it out in public."
calypso queenscalypso queens
Here's a welcome visitor from the Caribbean. Lordstreet Theatre Company of Trinidad and Tobago brings in Tony Hall's award-winning show Jean And Dinah Who Have Been Locked Away In a World Famous Calypso Since 1956 Speak Their Minds Publicly. Performed by Rhoma Spencer and Penelope Spencer, it's based on a well-known calypso song and on interviews with women who turned to prostitution with the arrival of American soldiers during the second world war. It runs through Saturday (July 28) at Artword (75 Portland). Tonight's show is a benefit for Toronto's Emily Stowe Shelter and Tobago's Sylphil Home in Love. 416-408-2783.
premiering pairpremiering pair
Lots of companies present their first show in a festival setting. Others are more adventurous and display their new wares on their own. The Underground Theatre team lead off with David Mamet's Speed The Plow, which Madonna played on Broadway. Here, Adam Nashman directs Neil Girvan, Erin Hicock and Matthew Witherly. Runs to August 2 at the Velvet Underground (510 Queen West). 416-966-1579.
Frankie and Johnny Theatre opens with Don Nigro's Seascape With Sharks And Dancer, a two-hander about a man who rescues a woman from drowning. Nicola Correia-Damude and Amos Crawley are directed by Jacob Gallagher-Ross and Laura Nanni. It opens Monday (July 30) at 44 Stafford. 416-603-9772.
groundswell risesgroundswell rises
Nightwood Theatre, the acclaimed women's company, seeks submissions for their annual Groundswell play development program. Deadline is August 15. For more info, call 416-944-1740.