On stage: the week in theatre

What to see on the city’s stages this week: Festival les escales improbables kicks off, a reading by playwright Mieko Ouchi, a new venue for burlesque and cabaret and try-outs for a local The Full Monty reboot.

Christopher Hocké’s “The Human Jukebox.” Photo by Benoit Dorchies.

Tonight, the Playwrights Workshop brings Edmonton writer Mieko Ouchi to read from her play Nisei Blue. Think detective noir, but set in Japantown, Vancouver. Old cop John Finch celebrates his last days on the job by revisiting a cold case that’s haunted him for 45 years. Yes, there’s a dead body and a femme fatale — a Japanese-Canadian jazz singer whose seductive powers fog Finch’s judgement.

Ouchi is an accomplished writer, actress and director whose plays have won awards internationally, and the story of Japanese people’s deportation and encampment by the Canadian government during WWII draws parallel messages about being imprisoned in one’s own mind. Playwrights Workshop Montreal Studio (5337 St-Laurent), 7 p.m., free.


Once home to writhing undergrads as the Jupiter Room, 3874 St-Laurent will now showcase writhing vixens as the Wiggle Room. The new cocktail club dedicated to all things burlesque and cabaret opens its doors tonight, after the grand opening was cancelled due to a little plumbing problem. The space is long overdue, as Montreal’s burlesque scene has been scratching out space in Café Campus and Café Cleopatra for years now. Opening night is a vaudeville show with stand-up, magic, ventriloquism, belly dance and, of course, burlesque; check in tomorrow to see what it looked like. Voix de la Ville at the Wiggle Room (3874 St-Laurent). Tuesday, Sept. 3, 8 p.m., $10


Festival les escales improbables pops up throughout the city, bringing together contemporary artists working in all spheres, theatre and dance included. “The Human Jukebox” plays music and offers improvisational rants in the Quartier des Spectacles daily, and “5 out of 6 Machines” is an installation performance featuring basic “machines” like the pulley and the lever. Gastronomy and dance weave together at “Les installations mouvantes.” “5 out of 6 machines” at 141 Ann runs Thursday, Friday (6 and 7:30 p.m.) and Saturday (5:30 and 7 p.m.), $15–$17. Les Installations Mouvantes at Espace Lafontaine, Saturday Sept. 7, 7 p.m., $30


Ever wanted to be an actor? A naked actor? Auditions for Beautiful City Theatre’s production of The Full Monty start Thursday. “Diversity in spirit is valued above experience,” whatever that means. So if you’re good at waving your Johnson around and feel the muses’ call to be on stage, throw your name in the hat and give it a go. After all, what else will you tell people when you’re 96 and stuck in a wheelchair on the porch of the old folks’ home? That you heard about a naked audition and were too busy trying to organize your bit torrents? Email headshot and resumé to book an audition.

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