So, there I was, writing about how I wasn’t going to be covering theatre so much anymore… and I went and saw an awesome work lastnight I felt compelled to write about. Naturally!
The formal review of Andrew Moodie’s Toronto The Good will be posted at New Theatre Review tomorrow, but in the meantime, I can tell you… I loved it. Why? Fully fleshed-out characters, strong dialogue, an involving story about important themes. But it was never preachy, never judgmental, never pretentious. Nothing turns me off faster than going to the theatre and getting a finger wagged at me. That isn’t helpful, not is it dramatically involving.
Northrop Frye said you should always describe what is there… so? Toronto The Good is smart, funny, sad, thoughtful, and really well-acted and staged. And deeply relevant to the times and conditions we’re living in. That’s huge for me, and, I suspect, for a lot of other people that might find theatre to be a bit too… uh, thee-uh-tah-ish. Toronto the Good brings all the issues of modern, urban living up close and in your face -and there’s a rap scene too (how often does this happen in the theatre?). You’ll find yourself thinking, more than once, “I’ve seen that” or “I’ve done that” or “I know someone like that” or even “Oh Gawd, that’s me…” Such is the power of Moodie’s writing; he manages to raise some really important issues around ideas of race, ambition, opportunity and modern relating, but at the same time, keeps the personal touch that makes good drama so appealing.
Kudos to everyone. Bravo.