Teibele and Her Demon | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Teibele and Her Demon 

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Adapter Eve Friedman stretches Isaac Bashevis Singer's ten-page fable into three hours, an approach perfectly suited to making the audience feel it's trapped in a Marc Chagall painting. It's a shame that the European Repertory Company, directed by Zeljko Djukich, expends so much intelligence and energy on this uninteresting piece of folklore. Shtetl Poland comes to life in everything from music (by Robert Steel) and costuming to mannerisms, with exceptional performances by Dado as Teibele and artistic director Kirk Anderson as the schlemiel who woos her in the guise of a demon. Though both dig faithfully beneath the quaint to what's eerie and sexy in ghetto life, their efforts produce only a desire to escape. But then I'm prejudiced against cartoon Judaica and magic realism in any of its ethnic guises--others may enjoy this respectful yet playful treatment of Singer and his story. Through 2/6: Thu-Sat 8 PM, Sun 3 PM. Athenaeum Theatre, third-floor studio theater, 2936 N. Southport, 312-902-1500. $15-$20.

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