Toronto is less expensive than Chicago or New York City, yet offers many of the same productions plus top-notch accommodation, shopping and dining.
Aside from the two large stadium venues in Toronto, the Rogers Centre and the Air Canada Centre, Toronto offers some of the best live theatres - both historic and modern - where visitors can catch a show.
1. North York Performing Arts CentreThe North York Performing Arts Centre features a 1,700-seat and a 1,000-seat theatre for larger scale dramatic, musical, dance and opera performances as well as a more intimate studio theatre.
Address: 5040 Yonge Street (North of central downtown, but conveniently close to North York Centre or Sheppard subway stops)
Phone: (416) 733-9388, Box office: (416) 872-1111
North York Performing Arts Centre Website.
2. St Lawrence Centre for the ArtsTwo elegant theatres house performances that include opera, classical and contemporary music, comedy / improv and theatre. The Centre is located in the historic St Lawrence neighbourhood - the oldest in the city and well worth a visit.
Address: 27 Front St E
Phone: 416-366-7723 or 1-800-708-6754
St Lawrence Centre for the Arts Website.
3. SoulpepperSince its deput in 1997, the Soulpepper Theatre Company has put on some of the smartest and most scintillating theatrical performances in Toronto. This artist-founded, classical repertory theatre company presents world theatrical masterpieces in vital Canadian interpretations and provides classical training and mentorship to young theatre artists.
Address: 54 Mill Street (In the Distillery Historic District)
Phone: (416) 203-6264, Box Office: (416) 866-8666
4. The Sony Centre
The Sony Centre, although designed to serve a wide range of performing arts, has always lent itself to large-scale musical theatre, including ballet, opera, and a roster of national and international artists that reflect the diversity and sophistication of 21st century Toronto. In addition, the Sony Centre is dedicated to developing Toronto’s younger audiences through family programming, workshops targeted towards school-aged audiences, an under-30 membership program, and other community initiatives including an international culinary experience.
Address: 1 Front Street East (Just two blocks away from Union Station.)
Phone: (416) 393-7469, Box office:(416) 393-7476
The Sony Centre website
5. Massey HallDeclared a "heritage" building during the 1970s, Massey Hall remains a vital part of Toronto's cultural and entertainment scene. Harry Connick, Jr. commented on it being one of his favourite places to play and its outstanding acoustics when I saw him there last.
Address: 178 Victoria Street
Phone: (416) 593-4828
Massey Hall website
6. Roy Thomson HallRoy Thomson Hall, located in the heart of the King St. theatre district, was opened in 1982. Its curvilinear exterior design and sloping glass canopy have made this concert hall a Toronto landmark. The 2,800 seat theatre is the home of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir.
Address: 60 Simcoe Street
Phone: (416) 872-4255
Roy Thomson Hall website
7. The Princess of Wales TheatreThe Princess of Wales' stage is one of the widest and deepest in North America - large enough to accommodate the most spectacular theatrical productions - and its technical facilities are state-of-the-art. The 2000 seat Princess of Wales is surprisingly intimate. No seat is more than 85 feet from the stage, and all enjoy excellent sight-lines in an acoustically near-perfect auditorium.
Address: 300 King Street W Phone: (416) 872-1212
Princess of Wales Theatre website
8. The Royal Alexandra TheatreA masterpiece of beaux-arts architecture, the historic Royal Alexandra is Toronto's senior theatre and the oldest continuously operating legitimate theatre in North America.
Address: 260 King St. W
Royal Alexandra Theatre website
9. Canon TheatreThe historic, 2,300-seat Canon Theatre began as a vaudeville and movie theatre in the 1920's. At its inception, it was the largest and most lavish theatre in Canada. Formerly the Pantages Theatre, the Canon Theatre offers top performances in old theatrical grandeur.
Address: 244 Victoria St. (near Yonge and Dundas, across from the Eaton Centre)
Phone: (416) 872-1212 or 1-800-461-3333
Canon Theatre Website.
10. The Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre CentreThe Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres are in the heart of downtown Toronto, close to shopping, accommodation and public transit, with ample parking facilities in walking distance.
The Centre is a National Historic Site and dedicated to providing theatre-goers with the best in Canadian and international entertainment from musicals, comedies and concerts to dramas, operas and films.
Address: 189 Yonge Street
Phone: (416) 872-5555
The Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres Website.