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When this boyfriend taps at the door, you gotta answer it or he'll knock the house down. He's dozens of metres tall and his name's Godzilla. If you're into monster films -- or contemporary Japanese comedy -- check out a reading of Yasuhiko Ohashi's 1987 hit, Godzilla, sponsored by Crow's Theatre and the Japan Foundation. A family comedy about falling in love with the wrong guy, the piece, directed by Susan Doyon and Jim Millan, features Damien Atkins as the big, snaggle-backed lover and Cara Pifko as his human-scale partner. Among the characters are other pop-cult beasts from Japanese horror films, Mothra and Pigmon, played by Lorne Cardinal and Fiona Highet. A great group of actors, but no Asians among them? Pity. January 11-15. Free. 416-966-1600, ext 229.
summerworks shinessummerworks shines
SummerWorks is accepting applications for the 12th annual festival, set for August 1 to 11. A jury will again choose 50 productions from submissions, and a lottery will narrow those down to a maximum of 25 participating companies. Other shows will be invited to take part in the festival. Deadline is February 1. Applications are available online at www.summerworks.ca, or call 416-410-1048 for info.
russia with loverussia with love
Ruth Madoc-Jones is getting a reputation as the replacement queen of Toronto theatre. Last fall she stepped into the all-female Passe Muraille's A Midsummer Night's Dream, taking on the role of Puck well into the rehearsal period and turning in a mesmerizing performance -- part punk, part androgynous fairy. Now she's replaced an actor in Theatre Asylum's Walking To Russia, creating the role of Masha, a ghostly daughter who haunts her elderly Jewish parents. This is Jonathan Garfinkel's first staged script; he's currently playwright-in-residence at Blyth. Garfinkel draws on his own family history for the characters, for like the fictional father, his grandfather was an environmental scientist. Walking To Russia begins previews today (Thursday, January 10) and opens Saturday (January 12). Theatre Passe Muraille Backspace (16 Ryerson). 416-504-7529.