Dogtown? Toronto’s street meat glorified in new play
We understand showcasing Toronto’s harmonious diversity and quirky culture through the eyes of its merchants—last May’s The Tale of a Town: Queen West explored the troubles of the area from the perspective of a vintage store owner. But street meat? Isn’t that mostly for tourists and drunk clublanders? Window on Toronto, Soulpepper’s latest production, debuts Friday and sounds interesting enough to make wieners enticing for discerning culture seekers. Nine actors play over 150 mostly-improv characters, who are seen on a stage reduced to the size of a hot dog vendor. The play’s director, Hungarian-born László Marton, had his adopted hometown at heart when he created his merry-go-round of characters.
“They all speak with different accents, they eat, drink, behave differently, because they came from different countries, and they represent a different heritage, a different culture,” he writes in the director’s note. “They are walking, talking, living, loving, shopping, running, begging, jogging, worshiping and dreaming here, and they all belong to this city that mysteriously made all of them Torontonians… I love Toronto.” Loving Hogtown is one thing, but loving hot dogs is another. We hope the play will sneak in a suggestion for the city to keep improving À La Carte.