Tag: Patrick Rybarczyk

Review: The Nance (Pride Films and Plays)

Vince Kracht and Patrick Rybarczyk star in The Nance, Pride Films and Plays            
      

  

The Nance

Written by Douglas Carter Beane
Pride Arts Center, 4139 N. Broadway (map)
thru Aug 13  |  tix: $30-$40  |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets   
     

July 9, 2017 | 0 Comments More

Review: Some Men (Pride Films and Plays)

Edward Fraim and Nelson Rodriguez star in Pride Films and Plays' "Some Men" by Terrence McNally, directed by David Zak and Derek Van Barham. (photo credit: Alexa Ray Meyers)        
      
Some Men

Written by Terrence McNally  
Directed by David Zak and Derek Van Barham
at Rivendell Theatre, 5779 N. Ridge (map)
thru Sept 14  |  tickets: $20-$30   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
                   Read review
     

August 25, 2014 | 0 Comments More

Review: Directions for Restoring the Apparently Dead (Pride Films and Plays)

Patrick Gannon and Patrick Rybarczyk star in Pride Films and Plays' world premiere of "Directions for Restoring the Apparently Dead" by Martin Casella, directed by David Zak. (photo credit: Michael Brosilow)        
      
Directions for Restoring
       the Apparently Dead

Written by Martin Casella
Directed by David Zak 
at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont (map)
thru Nov 10  |  tickets: $20-$30   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
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October 10, 2013 | 0 Comments More

Review: Beautiful Thing (Pride Films and Plays)

Robert Hilliard as Jamie and Charlie Wein as Ste in Pride Films and Plays' "Beautiful Thing" by Jonathan Harvey, directed by John Nasca. (photo credit: Jeff Bolek)

       
       
Beautiful Thing 

Written by Jonathan Harvey
Directed by John Nasca
Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport (map)
thru Feb 17  |  tickets: $23-$25   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

January 23, 2013 | 0 Comments More

Review: Run-of-the-Mill (Currently Untitled Theatre)

  
  

When ‘Run of The Mill’ happens to good actors

  
  

scene from "Run-of-the-Mill" by Tyler Dean, presented by Currently Untitled Theatre.

  
Currently Untitled Theatre presents
  
Run-of-the-Mill
  
Written by Tyler Dean
Directed by
Nate Silver
at
Act One Studios, 640 N LaSalle,Suite 535 (map)
through Feb 26  |  tickets: $20 |  more info

Sometimes people tempt fate. That seems to be the case with the title of the world premiere production of Run-of-the-Mill by Tyler Dean at Currently Untitled Theatre.

This is the story of a family dealing with the foibles and failings of modern life while trying to avoid the mistakes of the past. This is a noble and fecund premise but the seeds lay fallow in spite of some good acting.

scene from "Run-of-the-Mill" by Tyler Dean, presented by Currently Untitled Theatre.This story follows two marriages. Cynthia and Darryl are parents to Stacy, David, and Collin. Darryl has been unemployed for over a year and things are getting tense. Cynthia is a hard driving real estate agent who is fighting to live down past mistakes.

Brit Cooper Robinson, playing the part of Cynthia, balances the role without coming off as brittle or shrill. Patrick Rybarczyk is wonderful as the ever-optimistic Darryl.

Andrea DeCamp, as a daughter who is struggling with graduation dreams and a marriage proposal, is cool and unaffectedly hip in her portrayal. She and Robinson have a good dynamic as mother and daughter.

Mike Hahalyak and Dan Toot play brothers David and Collin respectively. David has messed up his marriage to Donna (Virginia Marie) and Collin is home from Iraq with a less than honorable discharge.

All of the ingredients are in place, but the writing is stilted and weak. Dean takes a long time with the expository elements of the characters. Though much angst is expressed over the dissolution of David and Donna’s marriage, we aren’t told why until after the intermission in the middle of the second act. Ms. Marie does a beautiful and subtle job of suppressed rage and sexual rejection. Hahalyak is appropriately penitent but by the time we find out about her infidelities – who cares? Hahalyak’s David is given a worn excuse of ADHD and depression for screwing around. It’s a punchline; not a reason. This storyline is so drawn out that it feels like an episode of the retro soap “Search for Tomorrow”.

Collin comes home from Iraq packing a bag of weed in his duffle and dishonorable discharge papers. Dan Toot is great as a kid soldier who grew up through combat. He portrays heartbreak, and there is a subtle hint of post- traumatic stress syndrome simmering. The ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ repeal seems thrown in as an afterthought. It’s not why Collin is ejected from the Army but the real reason is less compelling.

scene from "Run-of-the-Mill" by Tyler Dean, presented by Currently Untitled Theatre.The second act does not continue with the stark mystery but jumps right into an ill- conceived series of flashbacks. The soundtrack plays Huey Lewis and the News’ ‘Power of Love’ just as in ‘Back to the Future’. (Some Marty McFly humor would have helped.) What happened to Cynthia and Darryl is what happens to thousands of families and therefore it’s ‘run of the mill’. That doesn’t make for a great night at the theater. To be certain, there are families whose lives are ordinary and mundane, but I go to the theater to see a more tense dynamic or a story that I haven’t heard before. If I’m going to watch a soap opera, then somebody needs to be held captive in a well or Granny’s in the attic living in Imagination Land.

There are other kinks to be worked out in Run of the Mill”. The staging is rather clumsy. Did anyone think to put brakes on the casters? Moveable sets should not keep moving in the middle of the scene. Why do props in some scenes and then completely expressionistic in others? Is this a fleshed out story or a workshop in invisible burger flipping? Go for the fake food. We know it’s not real and in that case go for the satire, for this story has that potential: “Ward and June discover something happened to the Beaver in Iraq. Will things ever be the same on Morning Glory Lane? Tune in for the finely crafted acting!”.

  
  
Rating: ★½
  
   

scene from "Run-of-the-Mill" by Tyler Dean, presented by Currently Untitled Theatre.

Run of the Mill runs on Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 through February 26th at Act One Studios,  640 N. LaSalle in the West Loop. Go to www.currentlyuntitledtheatre.org for more information on the company and the actors.  All photos by Gretchen Allnutt.

 

     
     
February 17, 2011 | 0 Comments More