Tag: Susan Fay

Review: Hitler on the Roof (Akvavit Theatre)

Amy Gorelow stars as Dr. Joseph Goebbels in Hitler on the Roof by Rhea Leman at Akvavit Theatre           
      

  

Hitler on the Roof
   
Written by Rhea Leman   
at Strawdog Theatre, 1802 W. Berenice (map)
thru July 9  |  tix: $25  |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets   
     

June 27, 2017 | 0 Comments More

Review: The Frozen on the Square, 1982 (Akvavit Theatre)

Bergen Anderson, Andrew Fortman and Dan Wilson star in Akvavit Theatre's "The Frozen on the Square (1982)" by Lucas Svensson, directed by Breahan Eve Pautsch. (photo credit: Sooz Main)        
      
The Frozen on the Square (1982)

Written by Lucas Svensson  
Directed by Breahan Eve Pautsch
at The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee (map)
thru Nov 9  |  tickets: $15-$20  |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
                   Read review
     

November 1, 2014 | 0 Comments More

Review: The Clean House (Crabapple Productions)

Cruz Gonzalez-Cadel, Julie Mitre and James Munson star in Crabapple Productions' "The Clean House" by Sarah Ruhl, directed by Emmi Hilger.        
       
The Clean House 

Written by Sarah Ruhl  
Directed by Emmi Hilger 
Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport (map)
thru Sept 1  |  tickets: $27   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

August 27, 2013 | 0 Comments More

Review: Gjenganger (Akvavit Theatre)

Corey Nobel and Bergen Anderson star in Akvavit Theatre's "Gjenganger" by Joe Fosse, directed by Wm. Bullion, Breahan Eve Pautsch and Paul S. Holmquist. (photo credit: Sooz Main)        
       
Gjenganger 

Written by Jon Fosse
Directed by Wm. Bullion, Breahan Eve Pautsch
    and Paul S. Holmquist
DCASE Storefront Theater, 66 E. Randolph (map)
thru March 24  |  tickets: $10-$22   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

March 7, 2013 | 0 Comments More

Review: Broken Glass (Redtwist Theatre)

Redtwist Theatre's "Broken Glass" by Arthur Miller, directed by Michael Colucci and Jan Ellen Graves. (photo credit: Jan Ellen Graves)        
       
Broken Glass 

Written by Arthur Miller  
Directed by Michael Colucci  
      and Jan Ellen Graves
at Redtwist Theatre, 1044 W. Bryn Mawr (map)
thru Nov 18  |  tickets: $25-$30   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

October 20, 2012 | 0 Comments More

Review: Susan Swayne and the Bewildered Bride (Babes With Blades Theatre)

Lisa Herceg (Susan Swayne), Kimberly Logan (Isabelle Fontaine-Kite) - in Babes With Blades' "Susan Swayne and the Bewildered Bride" by Reina Hardy, directed by Dan Foss. (photo credit: Johnny Knight)        
       
Susan Swayne and the
    Bewildered Bride
 

Written by Reina Hardy  
Directed by Dan Foss
Lincoln Square Theatre, 4754 N. Leavitt (map)
thru Sept 22  |  tickets: $12-$20   |  more info
       
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August 29, 2012 | 0 Comments More

Review: Be A Good Little Widow (Collaboraction)

     
Meghan Reardon  - Collaboraction Be A Good Widow
Be A Good Little Widow
 

Written by Bekah Brunstetter  
Directed by Anthony Moseley
Flat Iron Arts Building, 1575 N. Milwaukee (map)
thru Oct 23  |  tickets: $15-$25  |  more info

Check for half-price tickets
   
   
        Read entire review

     
September 14, 2011 | 1 Comment More

REVIEW: The Lady’s Not For Burning (Theo-Ubique)

Eloquent Period Piece Is an Endurance Test

 

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Theo-Ubique Cabaret Theatre presents
  
The Lady’s Not For Burning
   
Written by Christopher Fry
Directed by
Fred Anzevino
at
No Exit Cafe, 6970 N. Glenwood (map)
through October 31  |  tickets: $25  |  more info

Reviewed by Keith Ecker

Watching Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre’s production of The Lady’s Not for Burning is like a marathon for your mind. For a comedy, the play is incredibly dense. Written in Shakespearean-style prose, the language is beautifully ornate at times while confusingly verbose at others. The whole thing in the end feels like a riddle, a riddle that goes on and on for two-and-a-half hours.

Ladys Not For Burning - Theo Ubique 9 It is this length that serves as the production’s greatest hindrance. The cast is confident and spot on with their comedic timing. The staging is economic given the awkwardly shaped theater space. You would think that such skillful acting and direction would be able to sustain a play. And although The Lady’s Not for Burning charges out of the gate, it eventually loses steam and limps its way to its conclusion.

Written by Christopher Fry in 1948, the play takes place in the Middle Ages, incorporating period style dress and speech. As Arthur Miller would later do with The Crucible, Fry touches on themes relevant to post-World War II society, including the Red Scare. However, unlike The Crucible, The Lady’s Not for Burning is a comedy, and so it uses satire to address these heavy social issues. Unfortunately, the language and plot are so heavy themselves that these social commentaries get lost within the thick of the play.

To simplify it as much as possible, the play is about a soldier (Layne Manzer) who encourages the mayor (J. Preddie Predmore) to execute him by hanging. Conversely, there is an alleged witch (Jenny Lamb) who wants to live. The two have long conversations about their predicaments, which leads to a blossoming love.

There is of course much more to the story than this. Why else would it stretch on for so long? The problem is the other elements of the story are inconsequential. In fact, it’s unclear as to what purpose the other characters serve other than to occupy space and battle wits with one another for humor’s sake.

And humor is the highlight of the play. Even if the piece becomes crushed under its own weight, the humor adds some much-needed levity.

As mentioned, the acting is superb. Predmore plays the mayor with a wonderful mix of overconfidence and idiocy. Manzer embodies the soldier’s sardonic personality, and Drew Longo, as both the depressed chaplain and the town drunk, proves himself to be a dynamic actor and effective clown.

 

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Director Fred Anzevino, who is also the artistic director of Theo Ubique, characterizes The Lady’s Not for Burning as a musical without song or music. While I can understand the sentiment behind the statement, the play is more akin to an epic poem, emphasis on the epic. There is no denying that there is some fine writing here. The descriptions are clever and unique. The imagery painted through Fry’s words is vibrant. But unfortunately, it is this same diction that serves to disconnect the audience from the play. While interesting sentence structure, word choice and figurative language may be pleasant, coherency should be the ultimate goal. Unfortunately, the writing at times impedes understanding.

I’m not sure what instrument from the director’s toolbox could have been employed to help this play. There is little to no downtime between scenes, so there isn’t much that can be whittled away to shorten the piece. In the end, there’s a lot of talent at work here, and there is a lot of potential in the commentary, especially in the play’s first half. But as we stretch into the third act, our patience is tested, and we begin watching our watches rather than the stage.

   
  
Rating: ★★½
  
  

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September 22, 2010 | 1 Comment More