Side by Side by Sondheim | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Side by Side by Sondheim 

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NSide by Side by Sondheim | Stephen Sondheim is so far above good and beyond conventional that it's easy to see his musicals as pure art and forget their Broadway showmanship. This Theo Ubique Theatre Company version of a much-performed biographical revue supplies an entertaining reminder. Director Fred Anzevino goes in heavily for old-fashioned, hand-shimmying, boa-whipping ingratiation. Not that he ignores Sondheim's trademark ability to voice the subtle self-reflexiveness of the 20th-century urban sophisticate. But he clearly knows what his somewhat limited cast can handle, and it ain't angst. It's playful, pastiche-y bits like "You Gotta Have a Gimmick" from Gypsy. Welcome exceptions: Dana Tretta, of the big, resourceful eyes, and Danielle Brothers, who moves smoothly from butt wiggling to a strong "Send in the Clowns." --Tony Adler a Through 12/10: Fri-Sat 8 PM, Sun 7 PM, No Exit Cafe, 6970 N. Glenwood, 773-743-3355, $20-$22.

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