Private Eyes | Piven Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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Robert Erving Potter III

When: Fridays-Sundays. Continues through March 19 2017
Price: $25
Steven Dietz's self-consciously postmodern 1996 comedy, here revived by Piccolo Theatre under the direction of Michael D. Graham, never reaches the levels of madness to which it aspires. The premise—a play about an illicit love affair that flowers during rehearsals for a play about an illicit love affair that flowers during rehearsals—is fun, but the resulting work is belabored and leaden. One problem is that Dietz tells his tale too slowly; another is that most of the plot twists are predictable. But a bigger problem still is simply that his writing lacks heart: Dietz treats his characters as mere pawns in a theatrical game, leaving his actors little to do except speak their lines and avoid stumbling over the furniture. As the three points of the love triangle, Megan DeLay, Kurt Preopper, and Edward Fraim strive mightily to add warmth to this cold work, but the results are lukewarm at best. —Jack Helbig



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