Cast on a Hot Tin Roof | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Cast on a Hot Tin Roof 

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CAST ON A HOT TIN ROOF, at the Royal George Theatre Center. The concept is simple: a five-person ensemble improvises the "world premiere and final performance" of a play, its plot based on audience input. The execution is a little trickier, since the story the performers come up with must mimic the well-known mannerisms of playwright Tennessee Williams. On the night I attended, the heroine was named Corruption Buckram, the family secrets included an "aversion to hot water" and a penchant for podiatry, and the setting was the town of Boiling Chair, Alabama.

The "play that Tennessee Williams forgot to write," originally created in 1991 by the Free Associates, was produced earlier this year by the Noble Fool. Now at home at the Royal George, it's once again smart as well as funny, its laughs integrated into the dialogue with a deftness that belies the show's spontaneity. If it makes you smile to hear a character intone "I can't stand your saying things and meaning things!" with lugubrious solemnity, this is your kind of entertainment.

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