Sounds So Sweet | Black Ensemble Theater Cultural Center | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through May 17 2015
Price: $55
Shows by Black Ensemble Theater tend to come with a slight trade-off: in order to enjoy the exhilarating live music, you have to excuse the mawkish framing device that surrounds it. But the song-to-sap ratio is way out of whack in this nearly three-hour-long revival of Rueben D. Echoles's 2010 celebration of girl groups. Sisters reunite in their Mississippi hometown to rehearse a memorial performance for Grandstine, the family matriarch. Between too-short excerpts of songs by the likes of the Pointer Sisters and Destiny's Child, the women recount life lessons and hash out complicated dramas (divorces, interracial marriage tension, career crises) mostly through contrivance and long-winded, awkwardly expository dialogue. The highs are high, but it's time for the BET formula to be tweaked—with a revue or an outside playwright to start. —Dan Jakes



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