With its most diverse lineup to date, Toronto’s premiere winter arts celebration, Next Stage Theatre Festival, returns January 2020 for its 13th edition. Presented by the Toronto Fringe, the 12 carefully curated shows are a thrilling showcase for bold, independent voices and a broad range of new, innovative plays.
2020 is the perfect year to talk about 20/20 vision, as the productions in this year’s Next Stage Theatre Festival portray this theme in many ways – both personal and political — as artists present discussions around politics, bodies, genders, abilities, fears, and desires.
Highlights include a number of performances that prove theatre can be both serious and humorous. A breakout hit of the 2019 Toronto Fringe, the all-Filipina, all-fun comedy show Tita Jokes, written and performed by Tita Collective, returns with new sketches, new songs and a new sixth performer. In their reimagined clown piece Morro and Jasp: Save The Date, Amy Lee and Heather Marie Annis examine the strength of sisterhood when their duo is upset by a romantic partner. In addition, disabled artist Ophira Calof presents her solo show Literally Titanium, which blends music, comedy and storytelling to explore the relationship between her body and mind as they navigate a world that wasn’t built for them.
In Pearle Harbour’s Agit-Pop! the drag tragicomedienne Pearle Harbour presents a cabaret spectacular developed over five years, in an ever-changing collection of Pearle’s favourite and most heart-wrenchingly hilarious short acts. Written by Kevin Shea and directed by Jill Harper, Consumption Patterns offers a rich satire of contemporary exploitation and reveals a world at war with itself, offering a bracing glimpse of what’s to come.
Next Stage is also proud to present Bilal Baig’s powerful Kitne Saare Laloo Yahan Pey Hain, a truthful drama that unapologetically puts queer and trans bodies at the centre of the storytelling, in a truthful drama about a young trans woman that runs away from Bangladesh with only one suitcase and a secret.
Tallboyz – Live: A one-night only show in support of the Toronto Fringe
Catch the stars of the hit CBC comedy series that #StartedAtTheFringe live on stage! Tallboyz Guled Abdi, Vance Banzo, Tim Blair, and Franco Nguyen bring their absurdist but relatable sketch comedy to Next Stage for a side-splitting one-night-only performance. With a hilarious and upbeat demeanor, the Tallboyz take on friendship, politics, bro culture, and everyday life.
Tickets are $18 for all Mainspace shows, and $15 for the U-R-U Staged Reading. Tickets purchased online or over the phone are subject to a $3 order fee.
Tickets for the Tallboyz Fundraiser are $25, $45 or $95
Pay What It’s Worth with weshowup.io – A limited number of Next Stage tickets will be available on weshowup.io. Patrons will be able to pay a lower base price up front, and then top up their spend after the show to the level they desire after experiencing the performance.
How to get tickets?
Phone: (416) 966-1062
At the door: At the heated Steam Whistle Tent in the courtyard of Factory Theatre.
The box office opens one hour before the first show of the day.
Cash, Debit, Visa and MasterCard accepted – no AMEX.
WHEN & WHERE
Date & Time: January 8 to 19, 2020. – Schedule
Venue: Factory Theatre, 125 Bathurst Street, Toronto, ON M5V 2R2
STEAM WHISTLE FESTIVAL TENT
Cozy up with other culture lovers in the Next Stage heated tent between shows. Head to the tent to find the Box Office and bar, which features Steam Whistle pilsner, wine, hot chocolate, coffee, tea, and snacks.
Public transport accessible
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