Ultimate Guide to The Kick & Push Festival

By Sara Smith

Get the inside scoop on the Kick and Push, this summer’s most unique theatre festival, running from July 19 to August 12.

Swordplay at the Kick and Push Festival

July 19th at 8:30 pm

The Grand Theatre

Tickets $10 plus fees

A potent combination of parody and pop culture make this a can’t-miss production. Performed by Sex T-Rex, Toronto’s most acclaimed physical comedy troupe, SwordPlay invites viewers to look away from their screens and enjoy an homage to classic video games and swashbuckling bravado.

The Flick at the Kick and Push Festival
The Flick

July 24, 25, and 26 at 8:30 pm
July 27 and 28 at 7:30 pm
July 29 at 6:30 pm

The Screening Room

Tickets $20 plus fees

As audiences file into their seats at The Screening Room, downtown Kingston’s independent movie theatre, they may expect this production to be shown on the screen. Instead, they’ll find themselves fly-on-the-wall observers of the drama and discord that develops amongst the theatre’s employees in this clever immersive experience.

Space Hippo at the Kick and Push Festival
Space Hippo

August 1, 2, and 3 at 7:30 pm
August 4 at 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm

The Grand Theatre

Tickets $20 plus fees

“Space Hippo is a delightful, touching, beautiful show that the whole family can enjoy,” says Tricia Knowles, festival marketing director. This spectacle of light and shapes, featuring over 200 intricate shadow puppets, is brought to you by an award-winning team and set to a magical musical score.

Agokwe at the Kick and Push Festival
Photographer: Marc J Chalifoux
Agokwe — Unplugged

August 2, 3, and 4 at 8 pm

Location: 274 Princess Street

Tickets $20 plus fees

This tale of love that blossoms between two boys on neighbouring reserves is tender and tragic, told against a backdrop of lost Anishnaabe traditions. The winner of six Dora Mavor Moore awards, this production explores serious social and cultural issues in a visually stunning way.


Rosalynde at the Kick and Push Festival
Rosalynde (or, As You Like It)

August 7 at 7:30 pm

Battery Park

Pay What You Can  (accepting cash, debit, or credit at the door)

Fans of clever comedy will enjoy this fantastically fun “Shakespearience”. The bard’s classic As You Like It has been given an empowering feminist edge, and a more modern, Canadian-centric setting. The titular character finds herself lost in a forest of mixed messages, and along the way, she’ll encounter love, whiskey, and puppets.


Betas Baby at the Kick and Push Festival
Beta’s Baby

August 10, 6 pm
August 11, 10 am and August 12, 2 pm

Location:  274 Princess Street

Tickets $10 plus fees

For those who seek out the exciting and unusual side of theatre, this production is not to be missed! Instead of a set start time, the show is open from 10 am to 6 pm, and audiences can drop in at their leisure. You’ll enter a retro video rental storefront, receive a videotape to watch, and what follows is an interactive, engaging experience like no other. There are over a dozen different versions of the story, so you may want to come back over and over… and over again!

Flashing Lights at the Kick and Push Festival
Flashing Lights

August 8, 9, and 10 at 8:00 pm
August 11 at 2:00 pm and 8:00 pm

The Grand Theatre

Tickets $20 plus fees

The final production of this year’s Kick & Push festival, which was nominated for 8 Dora awards in 2018, must be seen to be believed. The story finds antihero Peter navigating the lines between fame and obscurity, and the digital and “real” world. Surreal props and effects combine with a thought-provoking message to concoct a story that will stay with you long after the curtain falls.


Bonus Features


Don’t miss these exciting events and programs taking place alongside The Kick & Push!


The Storefront Fringe Festival

See what’s on the fringe of The Kick & Push! Like a regular Fringe fest, only slightly cooler, the Storefront Fringe Festival takes place in unusual venues: various empty storefronts in downtown Kingston. Expect to see compelling comedy, mysterious melodrama, a cardboard game show, and more – running from July 20 to 28.

TKids at The Kick & Push Theatre Camp

From July 3 to August 31, TKids, in association with Theatre Kingston, offers exciting and engaging theatre camp programs at The Grand Theatre. Children will learn about all aspects of theatrical production, both behind and in front of the curtain, culminating with an end-of-session performance for family and friends. Two-week sessions are available for ages 9-12, and one-week slots for ages 6-9, running from 8 am to 4 pm each weekday. Learn more.