Love and Information takes us through the digital looking glass | Theater Review | Chicago Reader

Love and Information takes us through the digital looking glass 

Trap Door's production captures the narrative of no narrative in the Internet age.

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

click to enlarge Love and Information

Love and Information

Courtesy of the artist

Kim McKean directs Caryl Churchill's 2012 assault on the senses disguised as a play. Assembled from dozens of fragmented vignettes breathlessly performed over 80 lightning-fast minutes, Love and Information leaves one feeling a bit whiplashed afterward. But the cumulative weight of what at first seems like cacophony makes itself felt if you just let it wash over you rather than looking for a narrative or an explicit point.

Strobe lights, glitchy TV monitors, and multiple references to social media and tabloid scandal enhance the overall portrait of a society that can't pay attention or sit still, but that desperately wants to connect, to have something to believe in. The overall effect is a sort of live-action dramatization of the Internet. It puts love, hate, jokes, advertising, and politics in a blender and occasionally spits out semicoherent bits. But as soon as one starts to get into one scene, it's gone, replaced by something completely unrelated.

By employing a crazy-quilt approach to storytelling, Churchill ably evokes the mediated existence most of us are currently drowning in. It's a place where context is removed, meaning is only fleetingly visible, and distraction passes for hope. If the purpose of art is to point a mirror at its audience, this is one piece of looking glass that could lead to utter despair. But it's also very hard to look away from. It's a kind of 1984 for 2019.  v

Related Events

  • <i>Love and Information</i>

    Love and Information @ Trap Door Theatre

    • 9/12-10/19: Thu-Sat 8 PM $20 Thu-Fri, $25 Sat; also 2-for-1 Thu
    • Buy Tickets

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Dmitry Samarov

Agenda Teaser

Performing Arts
The Great Leap Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Upstairs Theatre
September 05
Performing Arts
Bernhardt/Hamlet Goodman Theatre
September 14

Tabbed Event Search

Popular Stories