According to Americans, Canadian culture used to run to moose, maple syrup and mounties. Recently, however, Alice Munro, Margaret Attwood, Kate Pullinger and Carol Shields have scooped literary awards, and Jesus of Montreal, I've Heard the Mermaids Singing and Being at Home with Claude have played to packed cinemas. Montreal has hosted hugely influential comedy festivals, and Mike McShane hasn't stopped working.

The latest import is Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet), an award-winning play by Ann-Marie MacDonald (Starring Ruth Naylor-Smith, Myriam Cyr and Sara Bailes, right).

Written in 1988, the play has since toured Canada and played New York where it picked up an impressive array of notices.

In true postmodern fashion, it features a timeslip between parallel realities. A self-effacing university lecturer is writing a thesis on Othello and Romeo and Juliet which suggests that far from being tragedies, the plays are in fact 'comedies gone awry'. At this point, the heroine discovers herself in a variant of the actor's nightmare: she is in the wrong play(s).

When all but the most confident new writing prides itself on unremitting intensity, it is refreshing to see Turtle Key Arts Centre launching its producing career with what promises to be a sharp, comic spin on serious ideas. Opens 6 June. Box office: 071-385 4905

(Photograph omitted)