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Many Chicago comedy troupes feature one gender and one color. Local 386 earns its union moniker by including rising improvisers from across the city--men, women, whites, blacks, a Hispanic DJ. In their second production, a 75-minute sketch show, they approach terrorism literally and figuratively in bits about poorly scheduled suicide bombers, blitz marketing, Big Brother, an unflappable cuckold, and aggressive club dancers (showcasing Eddie Jordan's magnificent plasticity). Though some scenes sputter and some jokes falter, their moxie is admirable, their writing consistently smart. There's also ingenious work in video (a clever, professional-looking preview of "Memories of a Gay Shah") and audio (a radio talk-show host says, "Are you wearing pants? The answer may surprise you"). This is a troupe to watch. Through 7/27: Thu 8 PM, Chicago Center for the Performing Arts, 777 N. Green, 312-733-6000, $10-$15.

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


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