Lovers, Shakespeare and family guilt

Publication YearIssue Date 

The last of the leaves have blown away and now we're just waiting for the snow to fall. While the frosty air may make you feel like curling up and waiting out the chill yet to come, it's midterm season and there's a lot to get done. Have no fear, Calgary's drama and dance community has plenty of shows to shake you out of any hibernation-induced stupor.

The University of Calgary drama department opens this year's season with Don Juan in Chicago. Directed by David Owen as part of his master of fine arts thesis, it promises to be a riot of comedic delight. Sixteenth-century nobleman Don Juan makes a deal with the devil to sleep with a different woman everyday in order to live forever. Things get complicated when his true love Dona Elvira makes a similar deal, only she must sleep with Don Juan a second time. Four hundred years of seduction later, things come to a side-splitting head in modern day Chicago. Don Juan will be shown at the University Theatre from Oct. 21 until Nov. 1 with a special Halloween showing. Dress up as a devil that day and get free admission to the show.

For some classic entertainment, Alberta Ballet presents the Shakespearian classic, A Midsummer Night's Dream. This comedy of errors will be showing at the Jubilee Auditorium Oct. 23-25 and tells the story of some rather unfortunate mortals unwittingly tangled in the affairs of mischievous meddling fairies. Set to the works of German composer Mendelssohn and brought to life by the inspired choreography of Christopher Wheeldon, this is sure to be a treat for audiences of all ages.

Decidedly Jazz Danceworks will bring us back to modern times when they present their show Alchemy. Artistic directors Kimberley Cooper and Sarisa Figueroa have collaborated to create a celebration of movement and the unlimited potential of the future. Alchemy will run from Nov. 18-23 at the Grand Theatre. This inspiring showcase of local dancers and choreographers will be sure to dazzle and infect you with its cheerfulness, which definitely beats getting a cold.

Alberta Theatre Projects presents a moving story of redemption and family ties with East of Berlin which will be showing at Martha Cohen Theatre from Oct. 21 until Nov. 8. Written by Hannah Moscovitch, East of Berlin tells the story of a son who finds out about his father's involvement in one of the most terrible and gruesome events in human history. An important and quite brave piece of work, the production captures the journey to forgiveness and reconciliation. As the protagonist Rudi comes to grasp with the unthinkable acts of the generation before him, his drive will make you think about the inheritance of guilt and the responsibility of subsequent generations to right the wrongs of their forefathers.

And She Sang is an emotive exploration of what it means to be happy with one's self and is presented by Calgary's En Corps Dance Collective. It will be showing at the Engineered Air Theatre from Nov. 3-5. Featuring the works of local choreographers Alfi Forsch, Melanie Malarchuk, Jocelyn Hebert, Susan Serrao, Emily Neuheimer and Caralee Lamoureux, the story follows a woman dealing with the confusing worlds of love and rejection. Her journey of self-growth and personal development will encourage the audience to find the beauty in themselves before anything.

So forget about fall foraging and instead head down to one of these great events before winter gets her cold unforgiving hands on you.