Ottawa offers plenty of options for theatre buffs

Wintertime is play time in Ottawa.

Wintertime is play time in Ottawa.

And by play time, we’re referring to scripted interactions between characters performed live in front of an audience, of course.

Most the city’s theatre companies are just starting the second half of their season, so there is still a lot of drama, comedy, and tragedy to catch over the next few months.

The Ottawa Little Theatre’s production of Drinking Alone ends on Jan. 30. After a short break, The Memory of Water, directed by Geoff Gruson, opens there on Feb. 16.

This tragic-comedic play, by Shelagh Stephenson, tells the story of three sisters, each struggling with their own issues, who come together for their mother’s funeral.

The play explores how the sisters’ memories interact with each other and that, despite being in the same place at the same time, they experienced events very differently.

With Bash’d, a Gay Rap Opera ending its run on Jan. 31, the Great Canadian Theatre Company will spend the next month preparing for the March 2 opening of Blood.

The play is a coming-of-age story about Mudgu SanKofa, a 15-year-old girl in Kingston, Jamaica. As the blood from both life and death cycles through her, Mudgu meets her obsessively clean grandmother, a machete-wielding stranger, her reggae-loving boyfriend and her pious aunt. Mudgu’s mother, who left her in search of a better life for herself and her daughter in Canada, helps her come to terms with her past, present and future.

Over at the Gladstone Theatre, Shakespeare’s Danish Play will be running until the Feb. 27. The production by A Company of Fools is a “hilarious re-imagining of Hamlet” with clown duo Pomme and Restes and friends taking on Shakespeare’s masterpiece.

After the Fools have had their way with Hamlet, the Gladstone is the scene of an entire different production, with the tragic musical Blood Brothers, opening on April 8.

The play tells the story of the Johnstone twins, Mickey and Eddie, who were separated at birth but reunited and became friends. On March 5, the Orpheus Musical Society production of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer begins its 10-day run at the Centrepointe Theatre.

The musical comedy is based on the novel by Mark Twain about a 14-year-old boy growing up in St. Petersburg, Mo., in 1840. Just like the novel, the play has Tom matching wits with his stern Aunt Polly, falling in love with Becky Thatcher, and finding adventure with Huckleberry Finn.

 
 
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