Next Stage

next stage Theatre Festival 2023

The 16th annual Next Stage Theatre festival will be October 18 to 29, 2023. We are pleased to announce both our new home and the lineup coming this time next year. Next October festival goers will be able to experience the best in performing arts in Toronto’s iconic Buddies in Bad Times Theatre. The Toronto Fringe is delighted to be partnering with Buddies in this next chapter of Next Stage. 


"We're absolutely thrilled to welcome Next Stage Theatre Festival to the Buddies space as part of our 45th anniversary season. Next Stage is an integral platform for artists in Toronto and beyond to deepen the development of their work and connect with a network of presenters and partners. As a company with a long history of supporting new works, Buddies looks forward to welcoming the teams of artists who will animate our stages with bold new performances next fall." - Daniel Carter, Interim Artistic Director, Buddies in Bad Times

“We are very much looking forward to the Next Stage Festival being part of the 2023 theatre season.  It is wonderful to have so much time with these artists, a full year ahead of opening and we are already talking about access measures, emerging themes and what else we can plan for conversations that will accompany the shows,” - Lucy Eveleigh, Toronto Fringe


We are beyond excited to share the lineup joining us for our leap into fall. The selection committee and everyone at TO Fringe are honoured to give a platform to these 6 unique pieces and artists. This dynamic set of artists covers dance, sketch, musical(s), and drama, all ready for their next stage. 

The 16th Annual Next Stage Lineup will be:
Dance: Black Canadians – Our Stories (Shameka Blake) 
Theatre: Bremen Town (Gregory Prest) 
Sketch: Dead Parents Society – a dark sketch comedy revue (Shohana Sharmin) 
Theatre: ECHO (Kole Durnford) 
Musical Theatre: Guildwood (Braeden Soltys) 
Theatre: Something in the Water (S.E. Grummett) 

We know October can be busy so we're giving you a year's notice. These shows are not to be missed.

The 2023 Next Stage Theatre Festival Selection Committee was comprised of: Daniel Carter, Derrick Chua, Lucy Eveleigh, Amanda Lin, and Laura Paduch. Thank you to all the talented artists who applied.