NS reviews

Reviews of theatre and art in Nova Scotia and beyond

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Welcome to Dante’s Wild World

 Dante’s Purgatorio is a noisy, funny, thought-provoking, visual extravaganza that makes remarkable use of the entire Sir James Dunn Theatre in a Fountain School of Performing Arts show running through Saturday. Stripped down to its black brick walls, the theatre becomes the frightening world of Purgatory as protagonist Dante and his companion, ancient poet Virgil, climb out of hell – a glowing red, smoking pit – to meet the unusual, […]

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The Changeling: #metoo meets 17th century in intense, fast-paced tragedy

The Villain’s Theatre updates The Changeling to make it about a young woman driven to extreme action because of male power structures.  As a Jacobean tragedy, the play set in a madhouse is full of murky morality, murder, treachery and sexual appetite. The protagonist Beatrice wants to get rid of her father who stands in the way of her marrying a gentleman she fancies. To do so she leads on […]

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A tale of twin spirits in silversmithing: gallery talk today, 1:30, at Mary E. Black

Labrador Wave, (close up), Wesley Harris, 12×17.6×13.5cm, sterling silver, fine silver, copper, 14k rose gold, 14k white gold. Harris gives a talk today (Sunday), 1:30 p..m. In the beginning there was a red jasper Chinese ring. This hundred-year-old ring that Wesley Harris found among his late mentor’s things  launches Mentor & Metalsmith: The Silver Art of Arthur Brecken & Wesley Harris, at the Mary E. Black Gallery, close to Pier […]

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Queer-Storytelling Quadfecta in Halifax this weekend

Stewart Legere in Tom at the Farm, the Atlantic Canadian premiere of Michel Marc Bouchard’s drama, at the Bus Stop Theatre, Halifax, today and Sunday, 4 and 8 p.m., with $5 rush tickets for any LGBTQ+ folks five minutes before every show. (Tee Johnny) The U.S. elected its first openly gay governor Tuesday and, this weekend in Halifax, there is a quadfecta of queer storytelling with three plays and one […]

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Mary Vingoe’s Some Blow Flutes: deeply moving, honest, rewarding theatre

Hugh Thompson as Costas and Francine Deschepper as Sandra in the premiere of Mary Vingoe’s Some Blow Flutes, at the Bus Stop Theatre, Halifax, through Nov. 4.  (Stoo Metz)  I am at an age when – like many people – I have raised a teen, cared for a parent with Alzheimer’s and lived with grief in the loss of both parents. SO, I needed a lot of Kleenex for Mary […]

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There’s gonna be a Revolution (in craft)

(All photos by Grace Leammler) REVOLUTION, at the Mary E. Black Gallery through Nov. 4, is an intriguing, imaginative and powerful exhibit by Craft Nova Scotia members. For this juried show the province’s top artisans explored the many intrepretations of the word revolution. The 22 works range from the astonishingly-exquisite song sparrow’s nest of orbiting silver wire by jeweler Elizabeth Goluch to ceramic artist Carol Morrow’s quilt-inspired, revolutionary- red, text-patterned […]

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The Little Years: magical, dark comedy about limited female roles

Colleen MacIsaac as the thwarted scientist Kate is framed by, left, Christine Daniels as Grace and Mauralea Austin as Alice in Matchstick Theatre’s production of John Mighton’s The Little Years, on Oct. 13 and 14, 2 and 8 p.m., at the Bus Stop Theatre. (Samm Fisher) Given the idea — or hope —  that young women today can do anything they want with their lives, John Mighton’s The Little Years […]

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Scratch & Sniff Menu seriously smart and seductive

Comfort food meets scratch and sniff technology in Emily Lawrence’s playful, poignant art exhibit about Alzheimer’s at the Craig Gallery, Alderney Landing. The viewer steps on foot-shaped pieces of shag carpet, as cozy as old knitted slippers, to look at luscious photographs of 1950s and 1960s home-kitchen favourites that smell, when scratched, like apple pie, or birthday cake, or fresh white bread just out of the oven. Lawrence, exhibiting Scratch […]

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The Bitterest Time: powerful N.S. drama about wartime heroine Mona Parsons

Rachel Hastings as Wendy receives a potato from Amanda LeBlanc as Mona in The Bitterest Time: The War Story of Mona Parsons, by Andria Hill-Lehr and Sarah Jane Blenkhorn.  (Bruce Dienes) The Bitterest Time: The War Story of Mona Parsons is a powerful, deeply affecting play about the resilience of the human spirit as two women struggle to survive in a Nazi prison cell. Thanks to Wolfville writer Andria Hill-Lehr, […]

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Fall in Love with Shakespeare in Love

A  merry band of reprobate actors and producers in Shakespeare in Love, Neptune Theatre’s rollicking, witty season-opener, on stage to Oct. 7. (Stoo Metz)  Neptune Theatre’s popular new artistic director Jeremy Webb makes the winter of Atlantic Canadian actors’ discontent glorious summer with his first season-opener. He casts local and homegrown talent, instead of importing from Toronto, and he casts inclusively with African-Nova Scotian and Asian actors. But the play’s […]

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