TORONTO — Canadian Stage Co. has snagged two Gotham hits for its fall season, beginning with the Canadian premiere of “The Beauty Queen of Leenane,” in a new production directed by Tony award-winning Garry Hynes. Also arriving for the first time north of the border is Alan Ayckbourn’s “Communicating Doors.”
Also new: As part of a revised mandate to produce the “best in Canadian and international contemporary theater,” the company is axing its popular outdoor Shakespeare series. This year, the summer production will be Canuck John Gray’s popular 1982 musical “Rock and Roll.”
Much of season is devoted to bringing in hits from across the country, with the exception of the world premiere of George F. Walker’s “Heaven” and an evening devoted to the music of Leslie Arden, author of “The House of Martin Guerre,” “Harvest Moon Rising” and “The Last Resort.”
Morris Panych and Wendy Gorling’s “The Overcoat” is making its first Toronto stop. Loosely based on Gogol’s famous short story, “The Overcoat” was a huge critical and popular success in Vancouver. David Mirvish had expressed interest, but this version is a co-production among Canadian Stage Co., National Arts Center and Manitoba Theater Center.
Master puppeteer Ronnie Burkett stops in with “Street of Blood,” about Hollywood, prairie life and growing up gay, while an ambitious five-city, cross-Canada tour brings Michel Tremblay’s latest work, “For the Pleasure of Seeing Her Again,” to Toronto.
And Jason Sherman’s powerful “Patience,” which sold out Tarragon Theater last season, will arrive in January with rewrites and a new production, directed by Shaw Festival/Soulpepper’s Joseph Ziegler.
Tarragon, Canada’s premiere theater for new work, features an adaptation by Brian Quirt of Jane Urquhart’s “The Whirlpool,” an English version by Judith Thompson of Quebec writer Serge Boucher’s “Motel Helene,” and an adaptation of Goethe’s “Faust” by Daniel Brooks. Thompson will also premiere her newest play, “Perfect Pie,” during the season.
Some intriguing partnerships are afoot. Michael Healey and Kate Lynch perform and co-write two one-act comedies under the joint title “The Road to Hell,” while Richard Greenblatt and Diane Flacks pair up for “Sibs.”