Huddersfield | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader


Serbian playwright Ugljesa Sajtinac insists that he's not writing about his nation's political troubles in the 2004 play Huddersfield, now receiving its engrossing U.S. premiere from TUTA Theatre Chicago. A coming-of-age domestic drama, it resembles Mike Leigh's Ecstasy or Eric Bogosian's SubUrbia, centering on 30-year-old burnout Rasha and his friends Doole and Igor, who spend a day drinking, smoking pot, and trying to come to terms with adulthood. Huddersfield even has the keenly observed, hypernaturalistic dialogue of those plays, fully exploited by director Dado's passionate six-member cast. But politics seeps into every scene: the three friends' approaches to adulthood--nihilism, escapism, and blind optimism--mirror the country's efforts to find a national identity in the 90s. Huddersfield is the first of two contemporary Serbian plays TUTA is producing in 2006, offering a glimpse into a unique, vibrant corner of world theater. Through 7/8: Thu-Sat 8 PM, Sun 3 PM, Victory Gardens Theater, second-floor studio, 2257 N. Lincoln, 773-871-3000, $15-$20, industry shows Thu and Sun.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Andrew Rothenberg.

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