Bernarda Alba and Her House | Redtwist Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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Katie O'Shea

When: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Saturdays. Continues through Jan. 3 2016
Price: $20, $15 students and seniors
redtwist.org
Federico García Lorca's family tragedy, set in rural Spain, receives the southern-gothic treatment from Poetry Is and Redtwist Theatre, based on a new adaptation by Robert Eric Shoemaker. Tyrannical widow Bernadette (Sara Stern) wields her dearly departed’s phallic cane over the heads of her five daughters and two maidservants, demanding obedience and chastity. The issue with setting this adaptation in Louisiana, given the minimal furnishings and lack of a set, is dialect. I had a difficult time understanding some of the performers’ accents—this play has a lot of talking to pass the time, and the New Orleans drawl (water is “wowtuh”) defeats almost every member of the cast. The daughters’ ambiguous class standing is nicely brought home by Heather Scholten's excellent costumes. However, seating is arranged in an awkward alley of two facing rows to accommodate the small space, so I spent much of this play admiring the backs of dresses. —Max Maller

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