Arts Club Theatre Company
Bittergirl: The Musical book by Annabel Fitzsimmons, Alison Lawrence, and Mary Francis Moore, music by Bob Foster

Dates and Venue June 15 – July 29, 2017, Mon–Thurs at 7:30pm, Fri & Sat at 8pm, Wed at 1:30pm, and Sat at 2pm | Granville Island Stage

Reviewer John Jane

Bittergirl is the bittersweet creation of Annabel Fitzsimmons, Alison Lawrence and Mary Francis Moore who turned a personal negative into a professional positive when they each broke up with their husband/partner/boyfriend. Full review



xThe White Rock Players
Leading Ladies by Ken Ludwig

Dates and Venue June 16 - July 1, 2017 | Coast Capital Playhouse, White Rock

Reviewer Ed Farolan

What a funny show! The matinee audience last June 18th were laughing, and some even screaming from delight, as these actors, especially Bryce Paul Mills (Leo Clarke/Maxine) and Dann Willhelm (Jack Gable/Stephanie) did their comic routines playing both male and female characters in this comic farce. Full review



Bard on the Beach
Much Ado About Nothing

Dates and Venue June 1 – September 23, 7.30pm + Sat & Sun matinees at 2pm | BMO Mainstage, Vanier Park

Director John Murphy Costume Designer Christine Reimer Scenic Designer Pam Johnson Lighting Designer Gerald King Sound Designer Murray Price Projection Designer Corwin Ferguson Choreography Tara Cheyenne Friedberg Production Stage Manager Stephen Courtenay

Reviewer John Jane

Director John Murphy has moved this overtly lavish production out of its original late sixteenth century setting to the mid twentieth century Messina, Sicily – the location of its original staging. Alas, the Vancouver weather, like much of this year’s spring, didn’t cooperate in providing Sunset Beach with a Mediterranean brand of sunshine. Full review


United Players
The Game of Love and Chance by Pierre de Marivaux

Dates and Venue
June 2, 2017, 8pm, Thur - Sun., Matinées: June 11 & 25 at 2pm | Jericho Arts Centre 1675 Discovery Street (at NW Marine Drive)

Reviewer Elizabeth Paterson

Upper classes disguised as servants and servants pretending to be their masters and mistresses have been a staple of English drama since Shakespeare’s time. Tranio and Lucentio, planned to wive it wealthily in Padua, Kate Hardcastle checked out young Marlowe to see if he would make a good husband. Full review


Arts Club Theatre Company
Hand to God by Robert Askins

Dates and Venue
May 25 – June 15, 2017, Mon – Thurs 7.30pm, Fri & Sat 8pm, (matinees on Wed at 1.30pm, and Sat at 2pm) | Goldcorp Stage at the BMO Theatre Centre

Reviewer Maria Figueiredo

Robert Askins wrote this play reflecting on his own life experiences in a small town called Cypress, Texas where he grew up in a congregation of Fundamentalist Christians. Churches often used puppets to illustrate to children how to keep the Word of God and be good. Full review



Staircase Theatre
The Hunger Room by Scott Button

Dates and Venue May 25 - June 10, 2017, 8pm | PAL Studio Theatre, 581 Cardero St

Director Stephen Heatley Production Design Daniel VanHeyst Sound Design Stephen Bulat Stage Manager Jessica Keenan

Reviewer Christian Steckler

High school is a mixture of heaven and hell for students and teachers alike. Dawning awareness of life, shared with sincere and like-minded friends, liberate and comfort students as they find their ways toward independence; and all too rare meaningful connections with searching minds and souls are golden moments for teachers. Full review



Pacific Theatre
Outside Mullingar by John Patrick Shanley

Dates and Venue May 19 - June 10, 2017, 8pm Wed – Sat with 2pm matinees all Sat and Sun | Pacific Theatre, 1440 W 12th Ave.

Director Angela Konrad Set Design Carolyn Rapanos Costume Design Sabrina Evertt Lighting Design Lauchlin Johnston Sound Design Julie Casselman Dialect Coach Adam Bergquist Stage Manager Linzi Voth

Reviewer Erin Jane

John Patrick Shanley is a favourite playwright of Pacific Theatre, and Outside Mullingar is an excellent pick to end their 2016-17 season on a strong note. Pacific’s unique stage set-up (where audience seating is divided into two facings halves that flank both sides of the stage) has always been a favourite of mine, as it creates a claustrophobic style of observation that perfectly reflects the insulated and reclusive theme of the play. Full review



The Cultch
Children of God by Corey Payette

Dates and Venue May 17 – June 3, 2017, 7pm (2pm matinees on May 21, 28 & June 3) | York Theatre, Commercial Drive

Director Corey Payette Production Design Marshall McMahen Dramaturg Sybille Pearson Lighting Design Jeff Harrison Sound Design Kris Boyd Movement Director Raes Calvert Stage Manager Samira Rose Musicians Brian Chan – Cello, Allen Cole – Piano, Martin Reisle – Guitar, Elliot Vaughan – Viola

Reviewer John Jane

When Corey Payette, in his introductory remarks, advised patrons that emotional support volunteers would be available for the benefit of those who might find the heavy content too much to bear, we knew that this was going to be an intense play. Full review



Arts Club Theatre Company
Million Dollar Quartet book by Colin Escott and Floyd Mutrux
Inspired by Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins

Dates and Venue May 11 – July 9, 2017, Mon – Thurs 7.30pm, Fri & Sat 8pm, (matinees on Wed at 1.30pm, and Sat at 2pm) | Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage

Director Bill Millerd Musical Director Zachary Stevenson Musical Staging Valerie Easton Set Design Ted Roberts Costume Design Barbara Clayden Lighting Design Gerald King Sound Design Bradley Danyluk Stage Manager Caryn Fehr

Reviewer John Jane

Million Dollar Quartet is Colin Escott and Floyd Mutrux’s retelling of an extemporaneous jam session that turned out to be a seminal moment in the history of rock ‘n’ roll. The session took place on December 4, 1956, at the Sun Record Studios in Memphis and involved Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley... Full review



Patrick Street Productions
A Little Night Music Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim

Dates and Venue May 11 - 21, 2017 | Anvil Centre Theatre, New Westminster

Director and Choreographer Peter Jorgensen Musical Director Sean Bayntun

Reviewer Erin Jane

A highlight was the opening sequence – Jorgensen kept Sondheim’s vocal warm-ups but added a modern twist, where characters enter the stage in their street clothes, warming up while disrobing, revealing turn-of-the-century undergarments and bustiers under their clothing. Full review

xArts Club Theatre Company ON TOUR
Bittergirl: The Musical book by Annabel Fitzsimmons, Alison Lawrence, and Mary Francis Moore

Dates and Venue February 16 – March 15, 2017 | Various venus across the Lower Mainland
Following the Lower Mainland tour, Bittergirl: The Musical will run at the Granville Island Stage from June 15 to July 29, 2017.

Reviewer Ed Farolan

What a show! The stars, with full energy oozing from their bodies, (Cailin Stadnyk, Lauren Bowler, Katrina Reynolds and, as the lone guy among them, Josh Epstein), got the opening night audience at the Surrey Arts Centre, all throughout the performance, laughing, clapping and thoroughly enjoying this musical. They got a prolonged standing ovation during curtain call. Full review