Pirandello's Henry IV | Greenhouse Theater Center | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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Johnny Knight

When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through Nov. 13 2016
Price: $15-$57.50
Tom Stoppard and Luigi Pirandello are theatrical brothers from different mothers, fascinated with the ways in which roles create identity, narrative makes destiny. So it was probably inevitable that the Czech-born Englishman behind Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead (Stoppard) would translate the Italian best remembered for Six Characters in Search of an Author (Pirandello), choosing this 1922 work about a modern-day aristocrat whose fall from a horse leaves him with the delusion that he's an 11th-century German king. The script is chock-full of intellectual and dramatic twists, but Nick Sandys's staging for Remy Bumppo Theatre looks too stiff to handle them at first. You've got to wait awhile, until Mark L. Montgomery enters as the boggled blue blood, for any real excitement to kick in. Alternately woolly and cunning, arrogant, amused, tortured, and pissed, Montgomery's Henry saves an otherwise unsatisfying show. —Tony Adler



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