Weird Romance: Two One-Act Musicals of Speculative Fiction | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Weird Romance: Two One-Act Musicals of Speculative Fiction 

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Holy holograms! Broadway composer Alan Menken and sci-fi writer Alan Brennert (mis)treat alternative realities in two wacko make-believe tales with questionable resolutions. The Girl Who Was Plugged In celebrates love's power to triumph over dystopic cybernetic mind swapping. In Her Pilgrim Soul, a literal ghost in the machine defies death by delivering a final message to its spiritual successor. As always, Menken delivers supple songs that trigger love at first hearing. They even inspire Blue Moon Studio Theater to exceed the convoluted material despite its bare-bones production. Though Timothy Boyd's accompaniment is too loud, Bradley Bartolo's staging showcases strong voices and persuasive performances. Still, abandon all hope of plausibility, ye who enter here. --Lawrence Bommer a Through 9/22: Fri-Sat 7:30 PM, Sun 5:30 PM, Strawdog Theatre Company, 3829 N. Broadway, 312-771-1310, $20.

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