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Jeff Cottrill

Digital Journalist based in Toronto, ON, Canada. Joined on Mar 7, 2011
Expertise in Board games, Entertainment, Celebrities, Internet, Movies,   see all» Travel, Books, Music, Social media, Divorce

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Review: Cullen scores the biggest laughs in zany Dickens spoof Special

Toronto - Charles Dickens’ works are so often viewed as boring, stuffy and antiquated these days, many don’t realize that his contemporaries actually saw him as a master of high and low comedy. Old Boz himself might even have enjoyed “Twist Your Dickens”.

Review: George F. Walker completes Bobby and Tina cycle on mixed note Special

Toronto - The third entry in a trilogy is often the weakest one. Think of “The Godfather Part III”, “Return of the Jedi”, “The Return of the King” – and now, if this rule counts for indie theatre too, add George F. Walker’s “The Damage Done”.

Review: ‘Constellations’ tries to find string theory in relationships Special

Toronto - Not everybody finds quantum physics romantic or sexy. British playwright Nick Payne evidently does, as his acclaimed 2012 stage hit “Constellations” tries to examine different incarnations of a relationship between two scientists.

Review: Intense ‘Breathing Corpses’ shocks, stuns in Canadian debut Special

Toronto - Everybody dies, but how does the cycle of mortality affect those still living? That’s the theme that confronts audiences in British playwright Laura Wade’s uncomfortable 2005 drama, “Breathing Corpses”, which opened in Toronto on Wednesday.

Review: Married Toronto comics Baram & Sneickus keep the laughs going Special

Toronto - Naomi Snieckus and Matt Baram are two of the funniest comedians in Toronto, if not all of Canada. And if their new sketch revue, “Still Figuring It Out”, seems a tad uneven in spots, there’s still plenty there to keep your funny bone occupied.

Review: Latest Second City Toronto revue tackles some thorny issues Special

Toronto - Second City rarely shies from controversial topics, but the Toronto comedy company’s new revue, “Come What Mayhem!”, seems to have thorny social issues as its mission. Terrorism, racism, rape culture, bullies – a lot of boxes get checked off.

Review: Updated take on Ibsen classic has fresh new meaning in T.O. Special

Toronto - You may think there’s nothing new to see in Henrik Ibsen’s “A Doll’s House”, or that it lacks the shocking, revolutionary quality that it had in 1879. Well, get ready to view the play in a different way if you catch the ongoing Toronto remount.

Review: Clowns are the stars of campy, frenetic ‘39 Steps’ in Toronto Special

Toronto - Ravi Jain may be one of Toronto’s hottest theatre directors, but he hasn’t forgotten his clowning roots. That’s clear from “The 39 Steps”, in which he turns the classic Alfred Hitchcock film into a crazily entertaining screwball free-for-all.

Review: ‘Hamlet’ in Toronto’s High Park scores with strong lead, energy Special

Toronto - How do you scrunch “Hamlet” down to ninety minutes without killing the plot or losing too many of the great soliloquies? Sounds like an impossible task, but Canadian Stage manages to pull it off in a surprisingly solid High Park production.

Review: Fast-paced staging fires up ‘All’s Well’ in Toronto’s High Park Special

Toronto - “All’s Well that Ends Well” is a famous title, but it’s not one of William Shakespeare’s better-known plays. This year, Canadian Stage is tackling this rarely remounted work with a wide comedic onslaught – mostly to its advantage.

Review: The Force is with Ross, as ‘One-Man Star Wars’ returns to T.O. Special

Toronto - You wouldn’t think a one-person Fringe show reenacting the basic plots of the original “Star Wars” trilogy would take a person very far, but British Columbia actor Charlie Ross has been doing this show for about fifteen years now.

Review: ‘Das Ding’ hits Toronto with eccentric take on globalization Special

Toronto - If you’ve always wanted to see a play about a large, sentient cotton ball that travels around the world and observes how people’s behaviour interconnects through modern technology and economics, German playwright Philipp Löhle has you covered.

Review: New Second City T.O. revue takes on Trudeau, Trump and more Special

Toronto - Second City wouldn’t be Second City if it weren’t topical, and the latest revue by the comedy company’s Toronto team is tightly focused on what’s current in both T.O. and Canada: everything from Justin Trudeau to Syrian refugees gets a mention.

Review: Reworked ‘Salt-Water Moon’ in Toronto more puzzling than profound Special

Toronto - It’s understandable when a theatre director wants to transform a familiar classic into something fresh and original. That’s an artist’s job: to create a unique, personal vision. But what if that vision makes the play almost unrecognizable?

Review: T.O. gets up close and personal with top acting talent in ‘Tale’ Special

Toronto - “The Winter’s Tale” isn’t the favourite Shakespeare play of many, but the modern-dress version at Toronto’s Coal Mine Theatre — the inaugural production of Graham Abbey’s Groundling Theatre Company — makes it seem close to a masterpiece.

Review: New Evan Linder play a timely drama about race, family, love Special

Toronto - How can a poor white couple cope in a small-minded Mississippi town when their new baby turns out to be African American? That’s the dilemma of Chicago playwright Evan Linder’s explosive new play, “Byhalia, Mississippi”, which opened on Friday.

Op-Ed: The best of live theatre in Toronto and elsewhere in 2015

Toronto - So we’ve come to the end of 2015. As inevitable as Christmas, New Year’s and excessive alcohol and chocolate consumption are the media’s endless recap lists and reviews of the best in entertainment of the year – in music, film and so on.

Review: Dumb but sometimes amusing ‘Rock & Roll Christmas’ opens in T.O. Special

Toronto - “Dee Snider’s Rock & Roll Christmas Tale” sounds like an absurd parody TV special from “The Simpsons” or “SCTV”. In fact, it kept reminding me of the old “KISS Saves Santa” bit from “Family Guy.” In 2015, life imitates silly art.

Review: David Fox owns the stage in otherwise routine 'King Lear' in T.O. Special

Toronto - As Edmund the bastard might put it, the wheel of David Fox’s association with Theatre Passe Muraille is come full-circle. A cast member of 1972’s legendary “The Farm Show”, Fox is back at the Toronto venue as the Bard’s greatest tragic hero.

Review: Campy ‘Holmes’ touring production is a little too elementary Special

Toronto - Like Batman, James Bond and other iconic heroes, Sherlock Holmes has seen so many reinventions that the original image is almost forgotten. Arthur Conan Doyle would faint if he were alive to see what pop culture has made of his famed creation.
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