Andrea Cain has been performing her entire life, even through pursuing degrees in Mathematics and Education from Illinois Wesleyan University. Her minor in Theatre Arts allowed her to explore the world of theater critique, and she has enjoyed freely blogging about her experiences for many years. She can be found dancing, writing, and practicing different dialects with her family in her free time.
Pictured: Xavier Lagunas and Elaine Carlson. Photo by Tom McGrath, TCMcG Photography.
By Andrea Cain
The moment the audience walks into the small space at the Athenaeum, it is apparent they will be visiting an unusual show. Slowly the actors trickle onto the stage, fully in character, and entirely silent. And an unusual experience it is.
THE MADWOMAN OF CHAILLOT is aptly named, as all the characters do seem completely mad, not just the titular figure (played brilliantly by the witty and endearing Elaine Carlson). We are slowly given small storylines, none of which seem to come together entirely until we eventually know who the Madwoman is and what her life goals are.
Promethean’s production, however, is frustrating and confusing to watch. The actors do not invoke a desire to be watched, and it is hard to connect with anyone’s story other than the delirium that the Madwoman lives in. She is kind, hopeful, and incredibly humorous, making the hazy aspects of the storyline seem at least mildly enjoyable with her quips and anecdotes. Elaine Carlson’s rendition is, unfortunately, the only redeeming quality of this production.
Full of odd direction choices, a hastily painted set and uncomfortable pacing, Promethean has not put on their best work in this show.
THE MADWOMAN OF CHAILLOT runs through March 17th. For more information visit prometheantheatre.org.