Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-11-13
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Living Quarters
THEATER REVIEW
by Mary Shen Barnidge
2010-03-03

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


Playwright: Brian Friel. At: Strangeloop Theatre at Trap Door, 1655 W. Cortland. Phone: 773-276-0458; $15 Runs through: March 14

There's this career officer in the Irish Defense Forces, you see, who married a much younger wife just before he left for the Middle East to serve with the United Nations peacekeepers. When he returns, a decorated hero, five months later, he learns that his wife and his son have succumbed to sexual attraction leading to a brief, but intense, affair. If this story calls forth vague memories of Greek and Roman literature, it's not your imagination—indeed, our play is sometimes subtitled, "After Hippolytus"—but you can discard all that classroom cant about "the inevitability of tragedy." Brian Friel is not about to let the Fates take the blame for his characters' unhappy outcome.

Friel was still at a stage in his literary development in 1977 to employ a convention invoked by many beginning playwrights—namely, an omniscient narrator, identified only as "Sir," whose duties are to deliver exposition, comment on the action, and ascertain that we understand everything the author is trying to do ( cf. Pirandello, Brecht and the role of the chorus leader in classical drama, for you ambitious playgoers desiring homework ) . Structurally, this should reduce the action to mere audio-visual assistance for the analysis delivered by the aforementioned writer-surrogate.

But Friel refuses to bully his creations. Sir may remind his unfortunate clan that this is a re-enactment of events taking place in their memories, but they are still permitted to argue their cases—even attempt to alter the facts—as they ( and we ) consider the individual deeds contributing to the dissolution of a good family and the death of its innocent patriarch. In performance, what this means is that our attention remains focused on the Chekhovian dynamics simmering below the placid surface of a modern, small-town, middle-class household, now forced to re-live their transgressions until they come to terms with them and move on.

Living Quarter's slippery ( some might say, sophomoric ) multidimensional conceits might exceed the skills of most theater troupes embarking on only their second production, but the company assembled by director Thomas Murray is more than equal to the task. The adroit cast keeps us firmly anchored in the intimate scenario ( in particular, Jillian Rafa's minimalist approach to the potentially disruptive Sir ) , while the technical staff delivers environmental artistry ranging from Kate Jordan's pitch-perfect dialects to Glen Anderson's museum-accurate scenic design and Leigh Barrett's seamlessly shifting lighting scheme.


facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

THEATER REVIEW Packing 2019-11-13
THEATER REVIEW Romeo and Juliet 2019-11-13
THEATER REVIEW P.Y.G. or The Mis-Edumacation of Dorian Belle 2019-11-13
Critics' Picks 2019-11-13
THEATER SPOTLIGHT Sombras Tango Cabaret 2019-11-13
THEATER FEATURE New York theater gets political 2019-11-13
SHOWBIZ Out singer, 'Hamilton,' 'Sense8,' Dolly Parton, Shangela 2019-11-12
YEPP fall fundraiser Nov. 13 at Theater Works 2019-11-10
'Rip Nelson Celebrity Roast' Nov. 9 2019-11-08
Pride Films and Plays' "The Christmas Foundling" cast announced 2019-11-08
THEATER REVIEW Laura and the Sea 2019-11-08
Bette: Xmas at the Continental Baths opens Dec. 7 2019-11-06
Drag star's "All I Want for Christmas is Attention" tour Dec. 10 2019-11-06
Oscar 2020 kickoff party Nov. 13 2019-11-04
'Drag Race' alums bring holiday show to Chicago Dec. 10 2019-11-03
'Boys in the Band' starting Jan. 29 2019-11-03
Internship applications being taken at Oak Park theater 2019-11-03
Hell in a Handbag Productions presents The Golden Girls new Lost Episodes 2019-10-31
Billy Porter drops in at Sidetrack 2019-10-30
OPERA 'Dead Man Walking' makes Lyric debut 2019-10-30
COMEDY Whitney Chitwood makes the case for Chicago 2019-10-30
Salute to Robert Ollis on Nov. 4 2019-10-30
THEATER REVIEW You Are Happy 2019-10-30
THEATER REVIEW Kentucky 2019-10-30
THEATER REVIEW Sugar in Our Wounds 2019-10-30
Chicago Theatre Week dates announced 2019-10-29
A Man of No Importance at Pride Films and Plays through Nov. 10 2019-10-22
Critics Picks 2019-10-22
Remy Bumppo, Court lead Jeff Awards, Teatro Vista honored 2019-10-22
THEATER REVIEW Sunset Boulevard 2019-10-20
THEATER REVIEW The Effect 2019-10-20
THEATER REVIEW Exquisita Agonia 2019-10-20
Ravinia president/CEO leaving post in 2020 2019-10-19
Story Jam features local celebs in a show to raise money for immigrant youth 2019-10-18
Cirque du Soleil names cast for holiday production at Chicago Theatre 2019-10-17
Firebrand Theatre to present Always… Patsy Cline 2019-10-17
THEATER REVIEW Back in the Day 2019-10-16
THEATER REVIEW Invisible 2019-10-16
THEATER REVIEW Sundown, Yellow Moon 2019-10-16
CRITICS'PICKS 2019-10-16
 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Submit an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.