January 4, 2014
The National Ballet’s sumptuous, comical, touching and spellbinding version of E.T.A. Hoffmann’s Christmas tale was created in 1995 and has been enthralling audiences – especially children – ever since. It is a refreshingly traditional version of the story, replete with the details of childhood dreams and the appeal of fantasy, a ballet gloriously designed and costumed and brimming with affection for and insight into the passage from childhood to maturity that all children make.
Re-setting the story to Imperial Russia, with its simple folk customs and its overwhelming opulence, choreographer James Kudelka allows full rein to both his instincts for everyday beauty and dazzling spectacle, for natural wonder and dreamlike astonishment, all conveyed in an array of breathtaking choreography. The entire production is a glittering, enchanting gem of a ballet, a work that is at once deeply familiar and forever new.
For tickets: www.National.Ballet.ca
Venue: Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts — 145 Queen Street West
Toronto is awash with excitement in light of news that Ross Petty Productions has announced that the 18th annual holiday pantomime at the Elgin Theatre will be THE LITTLE MERMAID, running November 22, 2013 – January 4, 2014. Petty is leaving behind the Brothers Grimm and entering Hans Christian Andersen territory through this classic story, but with a Petty pivot – his first-ever foray into the fishy fairy tale where anyFIN goes!
Currently starring as the title role in Evangeline at The Charlottetown Festival, musical theatre power house Chilina Kennedy will star as the Little Mermaid, bringing forth an impressive resume of stage work and critical acclaim that includes her role as Mary Magdalene in the Stratford to Broadway production of Jesus Christ Superstar. With an aquatic collection of friends by her side, the title character’s quest for true love and happiness is aided by Dan Chameroy’s sea-lacious Dame Plumbum, returning to the Elgin stage with his perennial persona as the Little Mermaid’s aunt. Starring opposite Kennedy as the handsome Prince, and the buoy of her dreams, is actor and Canadian Idol Season 1 finalist, Marc Devigne.
For more details or tickets: www.rosspetty.com
Venue: Elgin Theatre — 189 Yonge Street
The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) hosts Mesopotamia in its premiere North American engagement from June 22, 2013 to January 5, 2014. The internationally touring exhibition of the ancient civilization is presented in Toronto by the British Museum in collaboration with the ROM.
More than 3,000 years of accomplishments by the civilization are explored in the exhibition. Widely credited with the invention or development of writing, long-distance communication, law, trade networks, and the first empires, Mesopotamian society also launched and advanced literature and sophisticated art, concurrently with great intellectual, spiritual, and scientific advances. These achievements still influence us today.
Mesopotamia showcases more than 170 priceless objects from the eminent collections of the British Museum. These artifacts, most never before seen in Canada, are augmented by those from the ROM’s own renowned collections and other leading institutions, including the University of Chicago Oriental Institute Museum, the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (Penn Museum, Philadelphia), and the Detroit Institute of Arts. Presented in a series of well-defined themes, the exhibition features an outstanding selection of artifacts: stunning jewellery, dramatic stone sculptures, and impressive wall reliefs.
Location: Royal Ontario Museum — 100 Queen’s Park
In an exotic, faraway land, one man’s life is about to change with the lucky rub of an ancient lamp—and you’re invited to join the magic carpet ride.
Welcome to ALADDIN, Disney’s new Broadway-bound musical, adapted from the hit film and featuring some of the best-loved music by Academy® and Tony Award®-winning composer Alan Menken and lyricists Howard Ashman, Tim Rice and Chad Beguelin, with a book by Beguelin.
Brought to you by the producer of Toronto’s record-breaking hits The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast, ALADDIN will be directed and choreographed by Tony®-winner Casey Nicholaw (The Book of Mormon) and will feature the award-winning and acclaimed design team of Bob Crowley (sets), Gregg Barnes (costumes) and Natasha Katz (lights), with illusions by Jim Steinmeyer.
With its timeless story, extravagant sets and costumes and a host of memorable characters and songs, ALADDIN will transport you to a place you only know in your dreams. Go ahead, make a wish. And discover a whole new world, in a whole new way… at ALADDIN.
Ed Mirvish Theatre (formerly The Canon) — 244 Victoria Street
One, and Two, and More Than Two presents a survey of significant work by Toronto-based artist Micah Lexier. United by his interests in temporal and graphic systems of organization and measurement, this exhibition brings together an important selection of recent work that reflects the artist’s diverse and dynamic practice. Featuring four solo pieces, three collaborations, and one new, ambitious curatorial project, One, and Two, and More Than Two witnesses Lexier at all levels of his practice. Whether working individually (One), in a collaborative process (Two), or encompassing hundreds of different artists (More than Two), Lexier’s work evinces witty and playful reflections on the creative processes of making and presenting art.
For more details: www.ThePowerPlant.org
Location: The Power Plant — 231 Queens Quay West
Winner of eight 2012 Tony® Awards including BEST MUSICAL, ONCE is a truly original Broadway experience.
Featuring an impressive ensemble of actor/musicians who play their own instruments onstage, ONCE tells the enchanting tale of a Dublin street musician who’s about to give up on his dream when a beautiful young woman takes a sudden interest in his haunting love songs. As the chemistry between them grows, his music soars to powerful new heights… but their unlikely connection turns out to be deeper and more complex than your everyday romance. Emotionally captivating and theatrically breathtaking, ONCE draws you in from the very first note and never lets go. It’s an unforgettable story about going for your dreams… not living in fear… and the power of music to connect all of us.
For tickets or information: www.Mirvish.com
Royal Alexandra Theatre — 260 King Street West
Sometimes one musical isn’t enough! THE MUSICAL OF MUSICALS (THE MUSICAL!) is a satiric love-letter to musical theatre of the 20th century. Experience a clever and hilarious story told five different ways, using five of the most be-loved musical theatre styles written by Broadway’s most famous composers including: Rogers & Hammerstein, Stephen Sondheim, Jerry Herman, Kander & Ebb and Andrew LLoyd Webber. Direct from an award-winning, sold-out run, at the 2013 Toronto Fringe Festival, and starring an all-Canadian cast, get ready for musical theatre heaven! “This is the show for you! A delightful, fizzy concoction!” (Associated Press).
For tickets: www.Mirvish.com
Venue: Panasonic Theatre — 651 Yonge Street
Get into the holiday spirit with ROM for the Holidays (RFTH): two weeks of special family experiences at the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM). From Thursday December 26, 2013 to Sunday January 5, 2014, this year’s holiday activities are filled with toys, games, and excitement for all to enjoy with great value for your family. All ROM for the Holidays activities take place from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm daily, and are included with general admission.
For more information: //bit.ly/1jk6Abw
Location: Royal Ontario Museum — 100 Queen’s Park