What the critics are saying:

"Auerbach’s earthy, heartfelt (vocal) style will touch your soul." -Joe Belanger, London Free Press

"It is fortunate, then, that director Michael Nathanson's production is in the hands of an actor as exquisitely talented as Auerbach. In a fearless performance, she embodies each character - from a clueless L.A. actor to an angry Zionist mother to a pragmatic Russian prostitute - fully. In what amounts to a 110-minute long masterclass in acting, she convincingly delivers a range of accents (kudos are due here as well to dialect coach Shannon Vickers), and finds the subtle gestures and nuances that make each character rich, full, and tragic in the few minutes we spend with them.

She's able to play everything from moments of goofy humour to quiet, dignified drama with equal effect. Nathanson's wisely unhurried direction leaves Auerbach plenty of room to shine, and she takes full advantage of it.

It's an incredible performance, wrestling with a difficult play - but it's a performance that makes that difficult play a captivating experience."
-Jeff Schmidt. CBC

"Greenblatt has two aces up her sleeve in her treatment of this well-worn story. First, Rebecca Auerbach – a fine singer, actor and guitar player – is a revelation as Sophie, a self-effacing Canadian musician who discovers in the Holy Land that she can be both sexy and Jewish."

-Kelly Nestruck, The Globe and Mail

"Rebecca Auerbach is also perfection as Caroline, turning from the tough-but-tender teenager of the
flashbacks to the tough-and-gettin’-tougher woman of the present in the blink of an eye."

-Richard Ouzounian, The Toronto Star

About "Your Side, My Side, and the Truth" at Summer Works:

"Writer Rebecca Auerbach captures all of the dizzying highs and perilous lows of the tumultuous surge towards adulthood with inventive flair and charm. She also heads up a cast of five as an artist who has easily seduced an insecure sci-fi enthusiast stricken with an embarrassing fear of spiders. Elsewhere, an adopted brother and sister navigate the minefield of their possible mutual attraction, and an unattached woman searches for fulfillment through yoga.
The actors all make the most of their individual moments, from emotional payoffs to musical interludes to hilarious non-sequiturs (“Let’s get a lobster pizza!”). As for Auerbach, it’s hard to watch (and hear) her without thinking of a talent like Girls‘ Lena Dunham. Not to imply that her work is at all derivative, only that she is another new young female voice discussing the peculiarities of growing up in a refreshingly frank and funny fashion."

-Kevin Scott, The Torontoist

"This play really grabbed me and held me for the full seventy five minutes at The Scotiabank Studio theatre.

For the first while I thought the show might take place in the 90’s, which I loved. It has a heavily 90’s influenced soundtrack -it begins with a Pixie’s song that I remember buying the tape for (it was a single tape with a B-side no less) and everyone has a good pot smoking intellectualizing 90’s angst about them (ashtanga yoga and acoustic guitar anyone?) which had me in a Reality Bites/Singles kind of moment. Then they all took out their iPhones. The phones were used so well in the show that I didn’t mind getting pulled out of the nostalgia.

Rebecca Auerbach leads the cast – she plays a woman who falls in love with a stuttering, insecure Sci-Fi geek who loves her instantly (played by Jeff Gladstone). She’s not so sure though. Then we meet an adopted brother and sister who secretly long for each other as they try to find themselves (Taylor Trowbridge and Michael Kash). Rounding out the piece is the concussion suffering, “unattachment” seeking yogi (played by Tova Smith) who makes more sense as the story ultimately unravels.

The love and loss in this piece are underlined with lots of humour through the everydayness of their lives and I think that’s why it resonated so much for me. The play felt like the memory of something that happened about 10 years ago and only after watching did I read that this is actually the case. Auerbach wrote the script inspired by her own life.

The frenzy, fun and confusion of youth is there. The characters trade backpacking stories, talk about life, and strum acoustic guitars. If they aren’t drinking, they are smoking weed and if they aren’t doing that, they are snorting lines of coke or popping ecstasy. Drugs are a casual expectation in this life but as the story unravels it is evident that they are the catalyst for loss.

The excellent cast feels seamless here – narrating each other’s stories as they sing, kiss, fuck, massage and laugh. For a short amount of time you are pulled into their world with all of its joy and confusion and, ultimately, grief."

-Mooney on Theatre

"The Summerworks roster is often heavily coloured by issues of social justice, politics, and other chin-stroking material. That is not to say that there aren’t a few feel-good (and intelligent) antidotes in the mix. Atomic Vaudeville’s previous smash hit Ride the Cyclone is one perfect example, as is this year’s Your Side, My Side, and the Truth from writer/actor Rebecca Auerbach.

Charming without being annoyingly quirky, smart without being overwritten, relatable without being generic, and moving without being maudlin, Auberbach’s story about modern relationships strikes the perfect tone. Drugs, blowjobs, yoga, hangovers, and STDs all firmly ground Auerbach’s characters in urban twenty-something reality while matter-of-fact voice over narration gives her piece a literary edge.

Of the capable cast members, Auerbach herself shines brightest as Renata, an easy going hedonist whose thick hide is challenged by an unexpected romance."

-Justin Haigh, Arts Vox

"Your Side, My Side, and The Truth is not — repeat, not — for the faint of heart. It’s got all the taboo biggies, and not in bite-sized quantities, either: sex, drugs, and death remain central focuses throughout. It’s dark. It’s raunchy. It’s unflinching. And it also happens to be a comedy.

Your Side centres around a handful of young people whose lives intersect through romantic and familial relationships, all dealt a bombshell by the news of one character’s death from drug overdose. Each of them cope with the news in different — and not always orthodox — ways. Based on true events from playwright/performer Rebecca Auerbach’s life, Your Side boasts a clever script tied together by a strong cast skilled at character interplay. It asks its viewers big questions and trusts them to arrive at their own conclusions. The whole production is cast in a raw, real light, with some wickedly funny moments to boot. See for yourself — but don’t say we didn’t warn you."

-Rebecca Ihilchik, blogger, SummerWorks

THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT - Arts Feature-September 2004

Rebecca Auerbach
By Colin Thomas

There are fat times and there are lean times. And that's okay.

Rebecca Auerbach's first season as a professional must have been giddy. After graduating from Studio 58 in December 2002, she appeared in Merlin for Carousel Theatre, stole the stage with her brassy voice and wide-eyed presence in the Playhouse Theatre production of Hello, Dolly!, and brought her ironic intelligence to the role of Jessica in Bard on the Beach's Merchant of Venice . Then she rode the wave of her success to Toronto, where it promptly vapourized on the rocks of a competitive scene in which she was unknown. In the six months Auerbach was there, she did just two television commercials and one self-produced Fringe show. Meanwhile, she was trying unsuccessfully to stay afloat by taking minimum-wage bartending jobs. Now the 26-year-old is back in Vancouver, living in her parents' house in Dunbar for the first time since she was 18. The young actor is reacting to the ups--and the downs--with equanimity.
Asked if the Toronto experience felt like a body blow, she replies in her husky, exuberant voice: "No. It didn't affect my confidence. I didn't go there thinking, 'I'm so great! I'm so great!' My grandmother did say, 'You thought you were going to hit Toronto and be a star, and now you're back with your tail between your legs!' But she said it in the sweetest possible way." Laughing as she speaks, Auerbach clearly feels neither defeated not diminished.

Besides, there was more to her short fallow period than simple difficulty in securing employment. She explains that her busy professional year was a harsh one personally: "I lost someone very special to me. A former boyfriend of mine passed away last August, right when I was in the middle of Bard." That sorrow seasoned her down months in Toronto. "I was having a hard time in general. I could have been in Mexico on a beach and I still would have been working through stuff."
Auerbach is admirably sensible about both her personal life and her work. She's also determined to keep them separate, and smart enough not to confuse the moods that might bleed between the two. She'll take the time she needs to grieve, but there's little doubt that she can look forward to a full career. In October, she will head back to Ontario to play the role of Cissy in Kevin Kerr's Unity (1918) at Hamilton's Theatre Aquarius. And sometime this season, she hopes to perform in Vancouver in Thicker Than Water , a script by David Mackay in which she and the author will play brother and sister. She's operating from a secure base: in June, the Vancouver theatre community welcomed the prodigal home by handing her the Sam Payne Award for Most Promising Newcomer at this year's Jessie Richardson Theatre Awards.

At the end of the interview, Auerbach and her mom's terrier, Shadow, perform a trick. Auerbach pretends to sneeze, and Shadow whips a tissue out of its box, then leaps with it onto her lap. Some people--and some dogs--are born to perform.

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