Saturday, March 26, 2011

In Review: Baby Boyz Dance Group in Three Boyz, Three Countries & One Dream

I have a rule...if  I walk out of a show before it is over then I don't review it. How can I? I didn't see it in its entirety. Today I shall make an exception.

Everyone says that Toronto has so much culture and such a good arts when I came here for the Junos I thought, why not check out the non-music scene as well. I asked around and looked to see what was on and someone told me that the Harbourfront Centre puts on legit stuff. Now this may be true, but in my case it was not.

I went and saw Baby Boyz Dance Group in Three Boyz, Three Countries & One Dream...yes I know what you are thinking, using a "z" in Boyz should have been a warning signal, but I was obviously not paying attention. It was the most horrific thing I have ever seen...and I have seen a lot of stuff.

It was a dance/theatre performance...I would have thought that the dancing would be good. Nope, not at all. It was the sloppiest mish-mash of "dance" I have ever seen. The moves weren't tight, well timed or executed in any way that would make me think that they rehearsed more than twice. Don't even get me started on the 4 dudes that did the contemporary movement number. It was so painful I had to close my eyes.

The acting was....beyond words. At one point a mother gets shot and the audience laughed. They this the reaction that should happen? No, it was just that bad.

I could go on and on about the elementary school play type sets they had, the shoddy story line, the confusing plot, the incomprehensible speaking etc, but I won't...because you shouldn't need to hear it. All you need to hear is that it was the worst thing I have ever seen. I have never actually itched to get up and leave something in the middle of the first act, ever.

So Toronto...did you pass the theatre test? Well, the Harbourfront Centre sure didn't. Now I don't know why people always bitch about Calgary's arts scene...cause in comparison it is f-cking brilliant.

Verdict: Really? REALLY? No, I can't even put an integer on what I saw.



  1. i love them with a little fixing they will the show will be great this is there first one asshole

  2. Sound like u have a beef with people from Toronto,why you dislike people in Toronto,Baby Boyz manager try to keep these 10 black men off the street,but no people like you would love to keep on the street,I hope the Baby Boyz take this show to Calgary soon, no bitching babe and it's Baby Boyz yes with a Z PAY ATTENTION BOY,

  3. Opinions need to be respected good or bad. This is an opportunity to take this show a higher level. Bad critics are good in the sense that it can help us improve on what has been presented. The concept of the show is great but it needs to be tight in all aspects in order for it to shine. We must strive for excellence in all that we do.

  4. GO Baby Boyz with a Z go, we will always love you guys,the team is our Toronto team,use all the haters as a step ladder to the top.I pay $32 to see the play and I think is was well spent, Tabby my #1 Waldo and Famus my#2 I love you all keep up the good work, Trevor take care of them you are doing a good job
    Much love

  5. Baby Boyz when and were is the next show
    you guys have the show lock,Just need to speak the janaican a little more raw,I wanted to buy peanut from the peanut man,pay attention xoxo JES this is what happen just before the mother got shot her son told her he going to Japan and he going to bring her back japanese china, that why the audience laughed then she got shot but maybe if you didn't have your ass up your brain you would have know say it was bad but you stay to the end.
    thank you Baby Boyz for giving me Great night out,I would pay $65 to see the show again' our crew love you all


  6. Excuse me gyalll I dunt know who you are talking to you are well crazy and mad sick head no good you need some massive help as well if your itching you should go see the doctor for some flee control or something because you could never be talking about the show I personally loved it so if you dont like it take your wack experience and shove it up your ass untill it gets to your brain understand. I cant beleive you had the nerve to come to toronto from your shity place clagary and talk your stupidness about brilliancy I dont even care how you spell it you need to get your eyes and your brain checked the next time you come to toronto come look the Baby Boyz again im sure they will love to entertain you once more and please make sure you dont bring your itching flees with you. Thank you

  7. Rather than a straightforward review, consider this an encouragement award.
    It would be very easy to dismiss Three Boyz, Three Countries, One Dream (a.k.a. King Ah De Dancehall) out of hand – the show certainly needs a lot of fixing. But there is also much to praise.

    First for some background. Baby Boyz Dance Group, based in Brampton, Ont., is one of the Toronto area’s most successful urban dance companies. The eight-member, all-male troupe was founded in 2003 under the direction of choreographer Trevor Brown, and their usual performing venues are clubs and corporate events, with pit stops at churches, community centres and private gigs.

    Several years ago, I saw Baby Boyz at Dusk Dances in a park in the Jane-Finch neighbourhood. I said in a review at the time that this company was different because the young men tried to tell a serious story, about being black and coping with life on the margins.

    Three Boyz, Three Countries, One Dream is another ambitious attempt at dance theatre.

    For this show, Baby Boyz have put their b-boy crew – known for the detailed precision of a military drill team – at the centre of a drama that looks at three young men, all called Stripes (Tabby Donaldson), who share the dream of being King of the Dancehall.

    The story begins in Ghana, then moves to Jamaica and finally to Canada. In Ghana, a hunter sees a ritual dance. He learns the steps and takes them back to his village, and so inspires Stripes to dance. In Jamaica, where reggae and dancehall reign supreme, Stripes wants to be the best dancer on the island. In Canada, Stripes is a famous dancer who has lost his way, and finds it again through dance.

    The eight Baby Boyz and Trevor Brown form the core of the cast, which also includes guest male and female dancers, children, actors, singers and the poet Afua Cooper. In other words, this is armies marching. More than 20 people fill the stage.

    Not only that, the Boyz are stretching themselves. First, they are acting, speaking lines from a script written by Joseph Jomo Pierre and directed by Dian Marie Bridge. They are also performing contemporary choreography by Kevin A. Ormsby, which is entirely different from their usual urban dance. Kay-Ann Ward is also credited as a choreographer.

    The show is being presented under the auspices of Dance Immersion, Toronto’s important presenter of black dance under program director Vivine Scarlett.

    But, okay, here’s the bad stuff: There is an amateur quality to the show, which includes long (read: embarrassing) pauses between scenes. Some of the acting is weak, and the African and West Indian accents can be impenetrable. There is a sense of the Boyz being defeated by their own ambition.

    That said, I doubt there is another show in the country featuring urban dance with such sweeping storytelling. It’s a new Canadian hybrid, and that’s worth encouraging. There are certainly urban dance companies, particularly in Vancouver and Montreal, that perform narrative shows, but not with this breadth and depth, and mix of other disciplines.

    Needless to say, the dance numbers in Three Boyz are wonderful, even electrifying by the end. That’s to be expected. I want Baby Boyz to keep on experimenting, but when they put together another dance theatre piece, I hope to see polish and sophistication. Three Boyz, Three Countries, One Dream is only the beginning.

    Three Boyz, Three Countries, One Dream (a.k.a. King Ah De Dancehall) continues until Saturday.

    Three Boyz, Three Countries, One Dream
    peace,one love, u cant keep a good team down shithead.

  8. To the last post...let's give a little credit to the writer (Paula Citron - Globe and Mail)

  9. Hi Jes
    Paula Citron has the more than a little credit,in my world she has alot of credit,I think she was fair with her review about the Baby Boyz theatre peace,unlike you who lack of giveing them that word of encouragement,her review was post...on your site just for you to see and the peace,one love,u can't keep a good team down shit head was meant for you JES and not for Paula Citron,I know a fair review when I see one,your review was just hateing any one or team from Toronto, YES JES THE Baby Boyz(Boyz with Z)has come a long way

    Thanks you


  11. The GTA will kill you Jes for their Baby Boyz Dance Group,the group change my life and other Jes,they are our Toronto # 1 group, sorry for all the doging you are geting,these guys are so... love by every one in the GTA, it hurts to see or hear any one talk bad about them,I watch the play Fri and again on Sat I wish you see the show too an sat. big different, knowing Baby Boyz they will not stop until their Theatre show get the best review.

    Sorry JES

  12. OK,Paula gets her credit from us,what do you want us to give you JES


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