Review: ROOMING HOUSE at Lucky Plush Productions

ROOMING HOUSE, a dance-theater event from Lucky Plush Productions at Steppenwolf’s 1700 Theatre, asks the question: what makes a person do something that has potentially life-changing consequences?

As the show begins, six friends (ensemble members Kara Brody, Michel Rodriguez Cintra, Rodolfo Sanchez Sarracino, Elizabeth Luse, Aaron R. White, and Meghann Wilkinson) are engaging in casual conversation that easily flows between English and Spanish. They discuss people who have taken great actions with equally great risks, such as letting a loved one go or a defecting from Cuba, and bring up a perfect illustration: the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. As each member interprets their own viewpoint of the story and embodies both characters, the conversation slips to a recollection of the game Clue, and how each one of the dancers might participate in this game of whodunit. While the audience thinks they’re about to be taken on a familiar journey in this game, the ensemble breaks and reimagines the rules and structure of the game, which keeps the audience on the edge of their seats as they wonder what the next twists and turns will be. At the end of the game, one ensemble member emerges as the winner, but the game is secondary to the delight of discovery and wonder the six players have created and shared.

Pictured (From left): Lucky Plush dancers Kara Brody and Rodolfo Sánchez Sarracino Photo by Alan Epstein.

The charismatic ensemble, employing a loose and flexible storyline, shows a true sense of comedic timing, which is not necessarily expected in a dance performance. Each member is not only a terrific dancer, but uses a perfect blend of their acting and movement talents to take the audience on a journey that is surprising and happily thought-provoking. LUCKY PLUSH, a group that has been performing for nearly two decades, is a company to watch as they continue to create wonderful multi-disciplinary pieces that engage and fascinate.

ROOMING HOUSE runs through November 18th. For more information visit luckyplush.com.

About author

Elizabeth Ellis

Elizabeth is an actor, playwright, musician, and a graduate of De Paul University. She studied theatre and improvisation at the Second City Training Center, the Actors’ Center, and at the Royal National Theatre Studio in London. Elizabeth has performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Tympanic Theatre, Congo Square Theatre, Second City’s Children’s Theatre, Stage Left Theatre, Bailiwick Arts Center, and London’s Canal Cafe Theatre. Six of her plays have been chosen as part of the Abbie Hoffman and the Around the Coyote festivals.

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