Betty's Summer Vacation | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Betty's Summer Vacation 

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Christopher Durang's 1999 absurdist drama begins as a dark sitcom: good-hearted Betty finds herself sharing a summer cottage with four funny, annoying, and/or scary roommates. But in the second act it turns into a scathing satire of tabloid TV and sensation-seeking audiences. In this Infamous Commonwealth Theatre production, directed by Joanie Schultz, the ensemble underplays the comedy in the first act, aiming for the reality behind Durang's characters--a choice that leads to a rich, satisfying ending. Though some of the performances are on the bland side, notably Erica Peregrine's as Betty, Jennifer Mathews as a delusional matriarch is totally at home in Durang's world, both hilarious and crazy to the core. Through 10/1: Thu-Sat 8 PM, Sun 3 PM, Live Bait Theater, 3914 N. Clark, 312-458-9780, $8-$15.

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