Stage Door News

Toronto: Sky Gilbert’s “Who’s Afraid of Titus?” plays the Red Sandcastle August 31-September 3

Sunday, July 17, 2022

Who was Shakespeare? Does it matter? Sky Gilbert (renowned playwright, artistic trailblazer) thinks he was an aesthete; a poet whose plays are about poetry and their effect on us.                        

“In Titus Shakespeare writes against didacticism. We watch intense characters trying to use poetry as a moral blueprint for life -- and failing, ridiculously and miserably." - Sky Gilbert, Director 

In tackling Titus Andronicus, perhaps Shakespeare’s most baffling play, Gilbert is drawing on his research for his new book Shakespeare Beyond Science: When Poetry Was the World, released in 2020 by Guernica Editions. Gilbert has adapted Titus Andronicus for a post-Covid era, asking the question on all our minds Who’s Afraid of Titus Andronicus?. By reducing Titus Andronicus to approximately one hour and 18 concise scenes, Gilbert hones in on the language and the story to present Titus as a queer play about poeticised violence. This adaption asks (but does not answer) the question: does art harm us? Should it?                        

WHO’S AFRAID OF TITUS? features a stellar cast including Brian Smegal (Stratford Festival) as Titus, Ellen-Ray Hennessy (Canada’s Queen of Voice and Animation) as Tamora, Sandy Crawley (The Hitchhiker) as Marcus, Veronika Hurnik (paula and karl, DNA Theatre/Six Stages) as the Narrator, and Emily Lucasik (Shaw Festival) as Lavinia. The production also features Ray Jacildo, George Alevizos, Max Ackerman and John Humeniuk                                                                


Adapted & Directed by Sky Gilbert    

August 31 to September 3rd, 2022

at the uncanny Red Sandcastle Theatre 922 Queen St East, Toronto

Tickets: $15 Arts Worker/$25 Advance/$35 Door

7:00PM Doors/7:30 Evening Showtime 3:00PM Doors/3:30 Saturday Matinee                     

1 hour, no intermission

*Please read our COVID19 safety protocols hereHEPA filtration throughout the theatre, vaccinated & masked staff, as well as mandatory masks for all audience members, in order to gain admittance to the theatre. There is no food or drink allowed in the theatre at this time.                        

Artwork "Stewardess Fight" by Kirsten Johnson            

About Sky Gilbert

Novelist, poet, filmmaker, director, actor, and drag queen extraordinaire. Sky Gilbert is one of Canada's most controversial artistic forces. He was the co-founder and Artistic Director of Buddies in Bad Times Theatre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, for 18 years. In 1997 Sky Gilbert left Buddies to have more time for creative pursuits.                        

Sky Gilbert’s most recent novel I, Gloria Grahame was just published by Dundurn - and his most recent non-fiction book Shakespeare Beyond Science: When Poetry Was the World was released in 2020 by Guernica Editions. In 2005 Sky received his Ph.D. from the University of Toronto. Since leaving Buddies Sky has worked as a Professor in The School of English and Theatre Studies at the University of Guelph. There is a street in Toronto named after him: Sky Gilbert Lane. 

For more please visit his website:

About The Red Sandcastle Theatre                        

A 50 seat storefront theatre, in which anything is possible! We're so off Broadway, we're in Leslieville. In May of 2011, Rosemary Doyle opened the Red Sandcastle Theatre with the intent of giving theatre artists a canvas. That feeling that anything is possible, has become a reality with 922 Queen Street East becoming an Artistic Hub to rent for creators in theatre, dance, visual art, and music. Eldritch Theatre, lead by Eric Woolfe and Adrianna Prosser, took over management in 2021, opening a new chapter on this magical space in the east end of Toronto.