Starring Evan Buliung, Eddie Glen. Written by Jason Aragon. Directed by Adam Brazier. Music directed by Jason Jestadt. Panasonic Theatre, to Oct. 28.
Theatre 20’s Bloodless: The Trial of Burke and Hare is perhaps the most unique production on Toronto’s stages—it’s that rare thing, a brand-new Canadian musical. Unfortunately, that’s where the innovation stops. Jason Aragon’s script about the true story of William Burke and William Hare, two Irish immigrants in 1829 Scotland who suffocated guests at Hare’s boarding house and sold the bodies to the local anatomy professor, feels more than a little like a comical Sweeney Todd. Even so, the skilled cast
of Broadway, Stratford, and Shaw alumni—in particular, Carly Street as a prostitute determined to find one of Burke and Hare’s victims—delivers a show that’s a welcome addition to our country’s musical-theatre canon.