Begin the end of 2020 with
some free or low-cost shows
A rundown of worthwhile, often top-notch shows for the first two weeks of December
By Byron Toben
There is an abundance of excellent shows available on numerous platforms as we enter the festive month of December in this year 2020. A sampling reveals fees of U.S. $20 to $55.
Many viewers may choose to tighten their belts while the pandemic persists, hence my periodic listing of worthwhile, often top-notch shows that are free or low cost ($10 or less). Many of the free shows do, understandably, request voluntary donations for the presenters or for third party non-profit good causes.
Here’s a rundown for the first two weeks of December:
Sunday, December 6
Talisman Theatre, dedicated to producing Quebec French plays in English, streams Habibi’s Angels at 7 pm. Repeated December 6 at 3 pm.
Saturday, December 6
At 3 pm, the Segal Centre and the Jewish Public Library present jazz singer Jennifer Gasoi. Jazz Singer/Reviewer Mary Ann Lacey reviewed Ms. Gasoi’s similar show last year favourably for WestmountMag. The cost is $5.75.
Also at 3 pm, Toronto’s Harold Green Jewish Theatre presents A Global Hanukah Celebration streamed to Canada, the USA, Australia, the U.K. and elsewhere. Music, dance and song can be shared worldwide but viewers must bring their own latkes.
Tuesday, December 8
New York’s Bedlam Theatre offers Chekov’s Three Sisters as part of its admirable Do More streamed readings. Added to its live shows in June of 2020, this series, presented free but donations appreciated, has 100% of its donations going to a variety of non-profit good cause groups. The ten readings thus far have generated $24,924 for the designated beneficiaries. This one is for The Black Theatre Network. Olga, Masha and Irina never did get to Moscow but they live on in world theatre.
6:30 pm: Live music by Kenyon Duncan
7 pm : Reading
Thursday, December 10 to 24
The Hudson Village Theatre hosts 15 Days of Christmas each day at 7 pm. Why limit Xmas cheer to only 12 days? Thank the HVT for their fine selections. This event is free but the theatre will be collecting voluntary donations for Le Pont Bridging food bank.
Thursday, December 11 to January 2
New York’s Irish Repertory Theatre streams the musical Meet Me in St. Louis. The 1944 film, starring Judy Garland, was made into a 1989 Broadway musical and performed by the Irish Rep in 2007. This is a digital abridged version of that show. Among its songs is the ever-popular Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.
Saturday, December 12 and 13
This last event, a live streaming courtesy of the Segal Centre, is a bit more ($18-$25) but it is a joint production with the National Arts Centre of Underneath the Lintel, presented earlier in 2020 in French by the Théâtre du Nouveau Monde, so listed here in local solidarity.
Feature image: Emmanuel Schwartz in Underneath the Lintel, courtesy of the Segal Centre
Byron Toben, a past president of The Montreal Press Club, has been WestmountMag.ca’s theatre reviewer since July 2015. Previously, he wrote for since terminated web sites Rover Arts and Charlebois Post, print weekly The Downtowner and print monthly The Senior Times. He also is an expert consultant on U.S. work permits for Canadians.