Three Sisters | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Three Sisters 

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Unlike Strawdog's superior current production, Robert Tenges's modern-dress adaptation is crude and unfocused, lacking any sense of time, place, or purpose. Taking the play's theme of paralysis too far, it has a rootlessness that infects the lackluster performances. More like outtakes from a Friends episode than a Chekhov play, LiveWire Theater's revival suffers from terrible acoustics, bad projection, aimless blocking, gratuitous screaming, and no costume or lighting design. Director Chris Arnold fatally forgets that Chekhov's universality comes from the transitory details of a fragile world--and bellowing "fucking retard" for no reason other than shock effect doesn't facilitate entry into that world. Nothing is at stake here, and much is unwatchable. The few exceptions only make the rest more unbearable. Through 11/13: Thu-Sat 8 PM, Sun 4 PM. Sun 10/30, 4 and 7 PM. Holy Covenant United Methodist Church, sanctuary, 925 W. Diversey, 773-412-8089. $10-$12; industry shows Sun. + The company presents a reading from the production Sat 10/29, 1 PM, at the Book Cellar, 4736-38 N. Lincoln. Free; call 773-293-2665.

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