The Night of the Magician | Chopin Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through Feb. 24 2013
Price: $15
Screen Door Productions uses some familiar tropes to tell this tale of strange goings-on in a tapped-out industrial town. The neogothic atmospherics recall Strange Tree Group; the combination of new tech (video), ancient tech (shadow puppetry), onstage actors, and live musicians—all deployed to serve a DIY aesthetic—suggests a heavy debt to Manual Cinema. But the inspirations go to waste because the show's writer-directors, Jack Lawrence Mayer and David Milton Brent, haven't done the basic work of getting their story straight. What's apparently meant to be dreamlike comes across as garbled, what's calculated to be mysterious seems ludicrous. Even a narrative involving human-animal hybrids and workers implanted with cathode-ray tubes needs internal integrity. In fact, that's the kind that needs it most. —Tony Adler



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