The Gilded Age | City Lit Theater | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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Drew Johnson and Jacquelyne Jones

Drew Johnson and Jacquelyne Jones

When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through Feb. 21 2016
Price: $29, $25 seniors, $10 students
Mark Twain’s The Gilded Age: A Tale of Today, though not much read anymore, receives a spirited adaptation from Paul Edwards and the folks at City Lit. Twain and his neighbor supposedly wrote this book in alternating chapters, without knowing how it would end, as a kind of dare from their wives. The shaggy dog that resulted has been trimmed for the stage, though Edwards still retains too much of the novel’s rambling, aimless quality. Mike Speller and Philena Gilmer delight in various ensemble roles, and Jacquelyne Jones alternates quite well between toughness and sweetness in the role of adopted daughter Laura. The play tries to honor Twain’s original subtitle; its scenes set in Washington—full of political blowhards, backroom deals, and desperate journalists—succeed wonderfully in doing so. — Max Maller

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