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Barbara Popel

Theatre Reviewer

Barb Popel is a frequent film-goer (hooray for the ByTowne Theatre!) and avid theatre-goer (almost 100 plays per year). She also attends quite a few classical music concerts. Not sure when she sleeps. Quoting a friend, she says, “I don’t support the arts; the arts support me.” Photo by Andrew Alexander.


As Rome Burns WEB

Fringe Review: As Rome Burns

63 min | Drama | Mature Nicholas Dave Amott’s new play, As Rome Burns, is about the rehearsal of a play concocted by the mad emperor Nero. His play is about his imperial family’s history and himself. It’s being rehearsed by a few of his loyal slaves in the home of a Christian slave whom Nero has […]

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Fringe Review: Shakespeare Crackpot

45 min | Comedy, Solo | PG Keir Cutler is a Shakespeare crackpot. That is, he does not believe that Will Shakespeare wrote the plays attributed to him. Our culture calls such people “crackpots”. Hence the moniker. “Doctor Keir” does indeed have a PhD in Theatre with a background in English literature.  He describes his impressive […]

Everybody Dies In December WEB

Fringe Review: Everybody Dies in December

55 min | Dark Comedy, Drama, Solo | PG Nancy Kenny, who brought us the dynamic Roller Derby Saved My Soul a couple of years ago, returns to Ottawa with another solo show: Everybody Dies in December. It’s a much quieter, almost interior play but, like Roller Derby, it’s about one woman’s passion for her vocation. […]

Photo from thegladstone.ca.

Theatre: Pierre Brault brings history to vibrant life

Pierre Brault has an excellent track record of writing and performing one-man plays based on historical figures.  First, there was Patrick Whelan, the man hung for assassinating D’Arcy McGee (Blood on the Moon).  Then Elmyr de Hory, the notorious art forger (Portrait of an Unidentified Man).  And then Lenny Breau, the guitar genius (5 O’Clock Bells). […]

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Tuesdays with Morrie: Moving lessons-in-living at the Gladstone

A truism: death comes to us all. How we approach our own deaths, and how we deal with loved ones as they approach death, say a great deal about who we are. In 1995, Mitch Albom, a successful sports reporter, watched his favourite professor, Morrie Schwartz, die of ALS, also known as”Lou Gehrig’s disease”. Albom’s […]

Love Letters

Love Letters a good play for thoughtful lovers

American playwright A.R. Gurney’s Love Letters is an epistolary play.  Epistolary plays – plays based on the exchange of letters – reside in a small niche in the world of theatre.  You may be familiar with plays such as 84 Charing Cross Road and Les liaisons dangereuses.   Using only dramatically read letters, Love Letters traces the complicated […]

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