Part of what makes Jonathan Berry’s direction stay with you after the show ends is that he allows his actors the space and time to make real discoveries and connections in the moments.
When I was 10 years old, my family went apple picking and not too far from the apple orchards was an area where they reenacted the Civil War. I remember my uncles and I hiking a good distance to get to the area on the battlefield where modern-day civilians could watch without being in harm’s way.
Shakespeare’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM has its very own fairy dust-covered jar in the time capsule of my iconic teenage theatre experiences. I strongly suspect that a similar jar is being dusted and stored in the memory of each middle-schooler with whom I had the privilege to attend Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s production on Tuesday morning.
The show doesn’t particularly tug on the heartstrings the way most House Theatre shows tend to do, but it is a great retelling with harmonious live music, beautiful singing and a healthy dose of the House’s inimitable artful style.
The parallels between 1962 and now can’t be ignored, and WE’RE GONNA BE OKAY is an excellent choice to see at this time, as the infantile and antagonistic leaders of two nations put not only their own citizens at risk, but the entire world, as they challenge each other to see whose nuclear buttons are bigger.
BLIND DATE reveals our misunderstanding as to what the Presidency actually entails. We optimistically hope that our leaders are crunching facts and figures, soberly and clinically weighing options. Yet in reality, political theater is just that – jockeying to appear a “strong” leader – it is indeed acting that gets the job done.
Emerald City Theatre is a necessary component in the Chicago theatrical community, where, in addition to providing energetic children’s productions, they also give back to the community and provide accessible shows for underserved communities.