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 2015-09-30
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


Hit the Wall/Oohrah!
by Mary Shen Barnidge

facebook twitter pin it stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

Playwright: Ike Holtert/Bekah Brunstetter. At: The Inconvenience/Livewire Theatre at Steppenwolf Garage, 1624 N. Halsted St. Tickets: 312-335-1650;; $20-$45. Runs through: April 8

It sparked a revolution, that steamy summer night in 1969. Amid an America shaken by war protesters, hippies, feminists, the Youth International Party, the Black Panthers and assorted factions renouncing the status quo, a routine police-raid on a Greenwich Village gay bar brought forth a resounding "No More!" from a still-invisible minority and a movement, united in pride and fellowship, was born.

Ike Holtert's 90-minute docudrama is not content to echo the legendary ( and frequently spurious ) lore surrounding this benchmark event, but instead has drawn upon interviews with documented witnesses to winnow the story down to eight representative archetypes: Latino Tano and African-American Mika, the observers; Newbie, the suburban WASP; Gay-A, the Wall Street WASP; Carson, the proud transvestite; Peg, the teenage butch-lezzie; Cliff, the counterculture drifter; Roberta, the motor-mouth activist; Madeline, the uncomprehending family member; and Cop, the voice—and muscle—of authority. Each will play their part in forging a collective identity capable of demanding change.

The Inconvenience replicates the atmosphere of that fatal evening with an accuracy as vivid and visceral as a punch to the belly. The crash of live rock music as we enter ( earplugs are available at the box office ) is our first warning of what is to come. Over a quick 90 minutes, we will move from simmering stoops in Sheridan Square to a sweaty dance floor in the Stonewall Inn bar, and outside to revel in an orgy of violence, culminating in the rallying cry of "Out of the closets and into the streets!" The band was smart to choose Stevie Wonder's "Sir Duke" for its post-curtain farewell on opening night. Not since Among the Thugs has there been adrenaline-pumping spectacle to incite audiences to beating on car hoods and kicking over trash cans on their way home from the theater.

Oh, there's something about a man in uniform—everybody in Bekah Brunstetter's keenly observant family drama Oohrah! agrees on that—but where they differ is on what that uniform signifies to them. Brunstetter is to be commended for her exploration of hitherto-overlooked issues reflecting multiple perspectives—solitary wives, alienated children, eager groupies, gaming wannabes, envious 4-F rejects, and the returning GIs, themselves—but this makes for two hours containing enough material for two, or even three, plays, in order for each of her provocative insights to receive the discussion they deserve.

facebook twitter pin it stumble upon digg 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.


Newly eligible theaters take Equity Jeff awards 2015-10-05
SCOTTISH PLAY SCOTT A 'Marvin's Room' milestone 2015-09-30
THEATER REVIEW Disgraced 2015-09-30
THEATER REVIEW Miss Buncle's Book 2015-09-30
THEATER REVIEW Funnyman 2015-09-30
THEATER REVIEW Gem of the Ocean 2015-09-30
Theater Spotlight and Critics' Picks 2015-09-30
Charm play features look at transgender charm school 2015-09-29
Chicago Humanities Fest presents Four Women: Josephine, Eartha, Nina and Tina 2015-09-24
THEATER REVIEW The Revel 2015-09-23
Theater: Now on stage and soon to open 2015-09-23
Jane Lynch dates rescheduled 2015-09-23
Chicago Theater still thrives, still evergreen 2015-09-23
THEATER REVIEW Dogfight 2015-09-23
Theater Spotlight and Critics' Picks 2015-09-23
THEATER REVIEW The Tempest 2015-09-23
THEATER REVIEW Side Show 2015-09-23
THEATER REVIEW The Producers 2015-09-23
SCOTTISH PLAY SCOTT Silk Road's many strands 2015-09-23
Harris Theater: World premiere with Renee Fleming, Patricia Barber 2015-09-22
Alexandra Billings to headline PFP's Simply Sensational Benefit 2015-09-22
Victory Gardens Theater launches Directors Inclusion Initiative 2015-09-18
Trans rally at movie theater Sept. 20 2015-09-18
FALL THEATER SPECIAL Premieres galore 2015-09-16
THEATER REVIEW Katrina: Mother-in- Law of 'em All 2015-09-16
THEATER REVIEW American Idiot 2015-09-16
THEATER REVIEW How the World Began 2015-09-16
THEATER REVIEW Jamaica, Farewell 2015-09-16
'Handbag Sampler' benefit Oct. 18 2015-09-16
Theater Spotlight and Critics' Picks 2015-09-16
FALL THEATER SPECIAL Classics, revivals offer relief from changes in theater landscape 2015-09-16
'Snow White' runs in Provincetown 2015-09-15
Theater: Now on stage and soon to open 2015-09-15
Chicago's Bijou Theater to close Sept. 30 2015-09-11
About Face Theatre Presents 3rd Annual to present The Black & Tan Supper Club 2015-09-11
THEATER REVIEW The Rainmaker 2015-09-09
THEATER REVIEW Glory Days 2015-09-09
THEATER REVIEW The Lyons 2015-09-09
THEATER REVIEW Don Chipotle 2015-09-09
Theater Spotlight, Critics' Picks 2015-09-09

Copyright © 2015 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.