Altar Boyz and Beyond: An Interview with Brian Goldenberg

Published: December 21st 2009
in Culture » Stage

With the success of Altar Boyz behind him, Goldenberg is just as excited about Angelwalk’s next musical production, The Last Five Years, which opens at the Studio Theatre in May. It tells the story of a young couple in their twenties who meet, fall in love, marry, and split up over the course of five years. Interestingly, the story is told in a series of soliloquies set to music, where the man starts at the beginning of their relationship and the woman starts at the end, working backwards. The two rarely appear onstage together except in key moments of their relationship. At the end of the play, the audience can piece the whole story arc together.




“It’s very creative, the music is exciting, it’s humourous at times and very touching at others,” Goldenberg says. “You know they’re going to break up, there’s no secret to the plot, but the question is what happened – why didn’t they work out.”




Like Altar Boyz, he likes that it’s a very performance-based piece, where the two actors really get the opportunity to shine with a range of music styles. “The female part is probably the role that any female performer in Toronto wants to play,” he says. “The range of songs is huge. Even though they’re soliloquies, they’re not all ballads – there’s some pretty upbeat rock stuff in there too, and some really contemporary music and soft, touching moments.” There’s also a Jewish aspect to the show, but to say more would ruin part of the plot.




Even with such a promising debut, and a promising spring show to come, Goldenberg is cautiously optimistic, noting that there is still a long ways to go in building Angelwalk’s reputation and a loyal audience base. “I worked for many years as a performer, playing at weddings and Bar Mitzvahs, and I always say that basically every gig you have is an audition for your next gig,” he says. “And I think it’s the same with theatre. Any theatre company that ever thinks they’re out of the woods is doomed.”




The Last Five Years opens May 7 at the Studio Theatre in the Toronto Centre for the Arts.




For more information on Angelwalk Theatre, go to

Related articles: (stage, brian goldenberg, angelwalk theatre, altar boyz, the last five years)

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