All Rise--A Theatrical Event on Sacred Ground | Luther Memorial Church | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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All Rise--A Theatrical Event on Sacred Ground 

When: Fridays-Sundays. Continues through March 17 2013
Walkabout Theater's evening of performance installations should add up to a pretentious, empty mess. Staged in various parts of Lincoln Square's Luther Memorial Church, its four 30-minute pieces seem almost random, ranging from a hyperrealistic diet club meeting in the crummy basement to a wordless movement piece in the majestic sanctuary. But thanks to cagey writing, savvy performances, and outrageous staging (the audience watches the movement piece from the altar), Emma Stanton's promenade-style experiment turns out to be an ineffable marvel. The production is rich with humor and sacrilege—in one vignette, an elaborate church service begins with an underwear-clad man brushing his teeth and ends with an astronaut dreaming of disintegrating into strands of DNA—yet the show's endlessly evocative ambiguity creates a poetic atmosphere that feels positively sacred. —Justin Hayford



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