Dive into Toronto’s performing arts scene with fall’s top must-see events from Canadian, Indigenous and international performers.

Toronto is a wonderland for arts lovers. Whether you’re a fan of visual arts, live music, film or live stage, there’s always a festival, event or performance to plan a birthday weekend getaway or family trip around. 

Here are some action-packed theatre, musical and dance performances you won’t want to miss, including great kid-friendly options.

Pinkalicious: The Musical

Pink is the colour of 2023, and Wychwood Theatre joins the hype with Pinkalicious: The Musical (weekends from September 16–October 22, 2023). Inspired by the best-selling children’s book series, this family stage production explores the silliness that ensues when a certain someone eats too many pink cupcakes and catches Pinkititis.

Fall for Dance North festival

Now in its 9th year, the annual Fall for Dance North festival (September 26–October 7, 2023) shines its spotlight on local and international dance companies breaking barriers in ballet, Indigenous and contemporary dance. 

This year’s lineup (in venues across town) includes dancers from Mozambique, Sweden, South Africa, Israel, The Netherlands, the UK and the U.S. Don’t miss the Tkaranto Open (September 30, 2023), a jingle dress dance competition and gathering celebrating local Indigenous talent.


Soulpepper stages Wildwoman (October 5–29, 2023), a bold and sexy new comedy exploring issues of gender, class and power. 

Set in the 16th-century court of France’s King Henry II, his new wife Catherine de Medici finds herself contending with scheming servants, her husband’s mistress and the pressure to produce a male heir. There’s also a caged “wildman,” her husband’s pet oddity, who has a surprising impact on their lives.

Want more historical intrigue? Check out Broadway award winner, Six The Musical (September 23–December 17, 2023), which reimagines the six ill-fated wives of Henry VIII as icons of contemporary girl power.

The Guide to Being Fabulous

Renowned theatre, musical, TV and film icon Sandra Caldwell brings her original stories and songs to Soulpepper in The Guide to Being Fabulous (October 24–November 12, 2023). 

Caldwell’s autobiographical production follows the BIPOC trans trailblazer’s journey from pickpocketing youth to star of stage and screen. And what a journey it has been with stops in prison, at the Stonewall riots, Studio 54, Broadway and more. 

This is a must-see for 2SLGBTQ+ theatre lovers, allies and anyone who loves a fist-pumping underdog story.

Also see: Toronto Queer+ Restaurants, Cafés & Bars Everyone is Welcome At

Th’owxiya: The Hungry Feast Dish

Young People’s Theatre stages this multi-award-winning interpretation of Th’owxiya: The Hungry Feast Dish (October 28–November 6, 2023). 

With traditional Coast Salish and Stólō music, masks and imagery, Vancouver’s Axis Theatre presents the story of a Kwantlen First Nations legend about Kw’at’el, a cheese-stealing mouse who must outwit an angry ogre, with help from Raven (Sqeweqs), Bear (Spa:th) and Sasquatch (Sasq’ets).

Red Sky At Night

Get set for a thrilling night of dance, live music and spoken word from local and international Indigenous performers. 

The Canadian Stage presentation of Red Sky At Night (November 3–5, 2023) at the Berkeley Street Theatre features Red Sky Performance (dance and music), with poet/spoken word artist Shane Koyczan, Juno Award-winning musical artists The Bearhead Sisters, hip-hop dance company Reverb, and prairie dancers Buffalo Twins.

Bad Roads

Crow’s Theatre stages the North American premiere of Bad Roads (November 7–26, 2023) by Natal’ya Vorozhbit. 

Considered the leading Ukrainian playwright of her generation, Vorozhbit sets her play in the Donbas region of Ukraine during Russia’s invasion and explores the effect war has on intimate relationships. This timely yet timeless story intertwines themes of love, sex, loss, trauma and resistance.

Emma Bovary

Get lost in the passion of the National Ballet of Canada’s Emma Bovary (November 11–18, 2023). The world premiere of this new ballet by award-winning American choreographer, director and dancer Helen Pickett, explores the psyche of the anti-heroine of Gustave Flaubert’s Romantic novel, Madame Bovary. 

On the same program: the Canadian premiere of Passion by James Kudelka, the legendary former resident choreographer and artistic director of the National Ballet.

Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird

Academy Award winner Aaron Sorkin’s adaptation of Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is being hailed as a theatre masterpiece. Decide for yourself when Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird (November 21–27, 2023) hits CAA Ed Mirvish Theatre. This classic coming-of-age story set in the 20th-century American South explores racism and the nature of good and evil.