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 2019-09-04
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



OPERETTA REVIEW The Cousin from Nowhere
by David Mccann

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

Music & Libretto: Rideamus ( Fritz Oliven ) and Eduard Kunneke. At: Chicago Folks Operetta at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: 773-327-5252, or at or; $25-$40. Runs through: July 24

Poor beautiful, wealthy Julia. Living her pampered life in a mansion and attended by servants, the girl has almost everything her heart could desire. But her lush life has its trials. Her inheritance also supports her greedy guardians, Aunt Wimpel and Uncle Josse, while dreaming of her lost love. Seven years ago she pledged herself to her cousin Roderich, but she hasn't seen or heard from him in all this time. Meanwhile, her two conniving relatives have been plotting to keep Julia's inheritance in the family by marrying her off to their nephew, August. Things become complicated and confusing when a stranger shows up. Because no one has seen August since he was a child, the nephew, who falls in love with Julia at first sight, claims to be the young man for whom she's been pining all these years. The plot thickens when, amid mistaken identities and devious intentions, another stranger arrives on the scene.

This forgotten German operetta, which became an overnight success in Berlin, back in 1921, has been practically lost to the ages. Chicagoans, like most Americans, have probably never heard Eduard Kunneke's beautiful, romantic score, unless they've traveled abroad, where the operetta is still popular and performed regularly. As in all of this company's elegant productions, here's a unique opportunity to enjoy another neglected work from the world of operetta.

Musical director Anthony Barrese guides his gifted cast to melodic perfection, accompanied by a sumptuous 22-piece orchestra, tucked away within Kurtis Boetcher's sparse, white scenic design. Elizabeth Margolius' broad, melodramatic staging, featuring some fancy, stylized choreography by Todd Rhoades, heightens and embellishes the musical's broad comedy.

Heather Youngquist leads the cast as Julia, a lovely young woman with the voice of an angel. Together with comic and musical treasure Genevieve Thiers, as Julia's maid and best friend Hannah, they blend in some of the show's funniest and finest choral moments. Extraordinary Nicolas Pulikowski, as August, is brilliantly funny and possesses a strong, masterful voice.

With Youngquist, their duets fill the venue with rapturous melodies. As glutinous relatives Uncle Josse and Auntie Wimpel, James Judd and Rose Guccione are equally superb comedians and incomparable vocalists. Guccione's hilarious scene with a banana is a must-see moment. There's even more comedy provided by Roy Wilford Belzer and Damon Cole, as Hans and Egon, providing an unexpected campy conclusion to the production.

Overflowing with lush romantic duets, comical foxtrots, passionate tangos and romantic waltzes, Eduard Kunneke's score fills this fairy tale with toe-tapping harmonies and refrains. Enhanced by Maestro Barrese's full orchestra and performed by eight of Chicago's finest singers, Elizabeth Margolius' comical delight is the perfect lighthearted diversion for a warm, summer night.

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

Steppenwolf for Young Adults to premier The Brothers Size 2019-09-12 - CHICAGO ( September 10, 2019 ) — Returning to the stage for the first time since its celebrated Chicago premiere, Steppenwolf for Young ...

Gay News

Black Ensemble Theater to present The Be Gala 2019 2019-09-12 - Chicago, IL—The acclaimed Black Ensemble Theater, led by Founder and CEO Jackie Taylor, celebrates 43 years of musical theater excellence in Chicago with ...

Gay News

LEZFEST, with queer female and non-binary performance artists, expands 2019-09-12 - LEZFEST, a presentation and celebration of queer female and non-binary performance artists, expands to two nights - Tuesday October 22 and Wednesday October ...

Gay News

Theater: Be Here Now 2019-09-11 - Playwright: Deborah Zoe Laufer At: Shattered Globe Theatre at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: 773-925-8150; $42 Runs through: Oct. 19 ...

Gay News

Steppenwolf Theatre Company begins 44th Season with The Great Leap 2019-09-11 - CHICAGO ( September 10, 2019 ) — Steppenwolf Theatre Company's 2019/20 season of complex, beautiful and maddening theater kicks off with a thrilling ...

Gay News

Critics' Picks 2019-09-10 - You Can't Fake the Funk, Black Ensemble through Sept. 22—Funk music tribute with two dozen '60s, '70s and early '80s songs, exceptionally well ...

Gay News

Architecture Center announces new neighborhoods, Year of Chicago Theatre trail 2019-09-10 - CHICAGO ( Sept. 10, 2019 ) — The Chicago Architecture Center ( CAC ) today announced the full roster of neighborhoods and sites ...

Gay News

YEPP director receives theater award 2019-09-09 - On Aug. 8, Youth Empowerment Performance Project ( YEPP ) Executive/Artistic Director Bonsai Bermudez received the "Leadership in Community-Based Theatre and Civic Engagement" ...

Gay News

Janus' 'Camelot' has female-identifying Lancelot 2019-09-09 - Janus Concert Series ( with Artistic Director Kaitlin Galetti ) kicks off its sophomore season with a full concert production of Lerner and ...

Gay News

THEATER The Band's Visit 2019-09-09 - Playwright: Itamar Moses ( book ), David Yazbek ( music & lyrics ) At: Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph Street. Tickets: 800-775-2000; ...


Copyright © 2019 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 publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.