Topdog/Underdog | American Theater Company | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through March 7 2009
Phone: 773-409-4125
Price: $35-$50
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More accessible but less ambitious than her earlier work, Suzan-Lori Parks's 2002 Pulitzer prize-winner gives us two African-American brothers--mischievously named Lincoln and Booth by their terrible parents--for whom life is a perpetual scam. Booth spends his time trying to master three-card monte, while Lincoln dresses up as his namesake at an arcade where tourists can play at assassinating him. Capitalizing on the jazzy, syncopated rhythm of the dialogue, director Derrick Sanders turns this American Theater Company-Congo Square Theatre co-production--running in repertory with Sam Shepard's True West, another Cain and Abel story (see separate listing)--into one long, flaying war of words. The flaw is that Daniel Bryant's ill-defined Booth is outmatched by the mesmerizing vocal dexterity of Anthony Irons as Lincoln. --Zac Thompson

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