Friday, June 29, 2012

Glory holes and circus feats: new Reader performing arts reviews

Posted By on 06.29.12 at 09:39 AM

Coach takes questions from the press in Oh, the Humanity!
  • Joe Mazza, Brave Lux
  • Coach takes questions from the press in Oh, the Humanity!
There aren't many shows to cover this week, but there are plenty to recommend. For instance: Common Hatred, a new homage to Anton Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard by lyrically named local playwright Calamity West, and Oh, the Humanity!, a collection of five short plays from Thom Pain (Based on Nothing) author Will Eno. Both productions excel by virtue of their sad, humorous, and disarming honesty.

Also recommended is The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me, a solo show in which Chad Ryan powerfully portrays a young man living through the early years of the AIDS epidemic. And on a wildly different note, there's Steamwerkz: The Musical, which Reader contributor Zac Thompson calls "Alice in Wonderland with glory holes."

Not quite recommended but highly esteemed: Dralion, a Cirque du Soleil touring show making a brief stop in Chicago, and After the Quake, based on two stories from Haruki Murakami's collection inspired by the 1995 Kobe earthquake.

Finally, Chicago's the Seldoms and Taiwan's WCdance offer up an exciting collaborative dance concert, while Links Hall and the Core Project present Going Dutch, a festival of dance, visual art, and digital works by women artists. Included are pieces based on Charlotte Perkins Gilman's 1892 story "The Yellow Wallpaper" and the love poems of Rumi—so you can fulfill your craving for psychological horror and 13th-century Persian literature in one night.

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