The Light in the Piazza | Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Wednesdays-Sundays. Continues through Sept. 20 2009
Price: $40-$45
Venice is usually the Italian city charged with the task of reinvigorating fictional American ladies on holiday, but Florence gets the honor in this 2005 musical by Adam Guettel and Craig Lucas, based on Elizabeth Spencer's novella. Margaret Johnson and her daughter Clara, from Winston-Salem, take a vacation in the city of "naked marble boys" and meet a flesh-and-blood specimen with whom Clara promptly falls in love. The fly in the Tuscan olive oil is that Clara, though lovely, is mentally stunted and emotionally disordered. The potential for melodrama is high, but Guettel's complex score manages to balance elegance with longing. Joe Leonardo's well-sung, in-the-round staging throbs with feeling, and boasts a beautiful performance from Mary Ernster, who conveys the reservoirs of regret and yearning beneath the mother's surface bustle. --Zac Thompson



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