Voyeurs de Venus | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Voyeurs de Venus 

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

Somewhere in Lydia R. Diamond's overlong, overwritten theatrical exercise is a powerful play. She interweaves the stories of Saartjie Baartman, the 19th-century "Hottentot" displayed like a circus animal for five years to European "polite" society, and Sara Washington, a present-day feminist academic offered a lucrative book deal to write Baartman's biography. But in our era of revisionist history, the play's animating crisis--Washington can't imagine telling the story without becoming as exploitative as Baartman's colonialist captors--makes no sense. Extended dance sequences and extraneous subplots further dilute the work. Given the provocative material, however, and Diamond's knack for revealing character through deftly pointed dialogue, she may find her play in a rewrite or two. Through 4/15: Thu-Sat 8 PM, Sun 3 PM, Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago, 312-633-0630, $10-$25.


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Justin Hayford

Agenda Teaser

Performing Arts
His Shadow 16th Street Theater, Berwyn Cultural Center
September 05
Performing Arts
Bernhardt/Hamlet Goodman Theatre
September 14

Tabbed Event Search

Popular Stories