Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2018-10-17
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



COOKING WITH LARD Written by: Cindy Hanson & Cheryl Norris
by Rick Reed

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

Playwrights Cindy Hanson and Cheryl Norris, debuting their new "Texas comedy" at Lifeline, have a deft touch when it comes to comedy and characterization. These two gals are no strangers to crafting dialogue that tickles and creating characters that are unique, sympathetic, and delightfully quirky. Set over the course of one very eventful day in a small Texas town, where Addie's Diner is the social center, Cooking with Lard manages to introduce us to an almost dizzying ( and often dizzy ) array of characters, situations, and problems. There's the taciturn Addie herself, who doesn't speak unless she has something important to say, her right hand Gerry, a lunatic vegetarian activist, a couple spicy old ladies, bubbleheaded drill team members, bingo players, a manic mama, her Girl Scout daughter, a yuppie lawyer, and of course, El Rita, the talk of the town. El Rita is on the lam because her husband has turned up dead and the gossips of the town are pointing their fingers at her. This alleged murder is the line of continuity upon which all the above characters and events have been threaded.

One would think, with all of these characters marching on and off stage, and all these disparate story lines, Cooking with Lard would move with breakneck speed. No such luck. Although the show, and its creators, demonstrate tremendous potential, Cooking with Lard winds up being overlong ( no light comedy such as this should hold an audience in the theater for two and a half-hours ) . A half-hour to 40 minutes could easily be cut from this gem, making it sparkle all the more brightly. As it stands, the various episodes that make up the day at Addie's Diner run on too long. Each one wears out its welcome before it ends, like a good friend who just doesn't know when to shut up. It also doesn't help that Cooking with Lard is essentially a collection of ( again, very funny and clever ) anecdotes, with only the thinnest of plots to tie them together. When the "killing" angle comes to a conclusion near the play's end, it's unsatisfying, because the southern angst and feminist hook are cliché.

Cooking with Lard still needs some tinkering to deliver on the promise of its creators' genius ( a promise that's clearly evident ) . Just a little work on creating a cohesive anchor and some pruning would make this a vehicle worthy of the huge talent exhibited by its all-female ensemble. Katie McLean, Dorothy Milne, Kathleen Powers, and Martie Sanders, all in multiple roles, deliver a powerhouse of thespian ability. Match their gifts with a script that's polished and you'll have a show that really cooks.

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

Tamale Sepp starts a new chapter 2018-10-17 - Internationally renowned comedian and interdisciplinary performer Tamale Sepp has relocated to the East Coast after serving up 16 years of comedy, performance art, ...

Gay News

Rock 'N' Roll 2018-10-17 - Playwright: Tom Stoppard At: The Artistic Home, 1376 W. Grand Ave., Tickets: 866-811-4111;; $34. Runs through: Nov. 18 This is a ...

Gay News

WaistWatchers The Musical 2018-10-17 - Playwright: Alan Jacobsen and Vince Dimura At: Royal George Theatre, 1641 N. Halsted St. Tickets: 312-988-9000 or; $45-65. Runs through: Dec. 30 ...

Gay News

Flyin' West 2018-10-17 - Playwright: Pearl Cleage At: American Blues Theater, Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: 773-654-3103;; $19-$39. Runs through: Nov. 3 ...

Gay News

A Shire calling: Gay comedian moves from Chicagoland to LA 2018-10-17 - People often have to make big changes in their lives to order to find success. This is no different with Kyle Shire—a ...

Gay News

Eclipsed 2018-10-17 - Playwright: Danai Gurira At Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave. Tickets: $18-30; Runs through: Nov. 4 "How you gonna ...

Gay News

Crumbs From the Table of Joy 2018-10-17 - Playwright Lynn Nottage At Raven Theatre, 6157 N Clark St. Tickets: 773-338-2177 or; $15-46. Runs through Nov. 18 Like ...

Gay News

Fun Harmless Warmachine 2018-10-17 - By Fin Coe At Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: 773-697-3830 or; $10-20. Runs through: Nov. 4 The New ...

Gay News

Arts in the Dark Halloween Parade to light up State St. Oct. 20 2018-10-17 - Arts in the Dark, the magical nighttime Halloween procession, will march down State Street for the first time, Saturday, October 20 from 6 ...

Gay News

Too ghoul for school, theater for the Halloween weekend 2018-10-17 - The weeks surrounding Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanzaa, solstice and New Year's are often collectively dubbed the "holiday season" in our multicultural society, but you're ...


Copyright © 2018 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.