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 2018-01-17
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

THEATER REVIEW Altar Boyz
by Mary Shen Barnidge
2018-01-02

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Playwright: music by Gary Adler and Michael Patrick Walker, book by Kevin Del Aguila

At: Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre at the No Exit Café, 6970 N. Glenwood Ave. Tickets: $34-$39. Runs through: Jan. 14

It's said that God—or gods, for you polytheists—moves in mysterious ways, but since history records the sacred and profane often meeting in mutual accord, the phenomenon of Christian rock is no more mysterious than the revivalist wave of the 1970s following Andrew Lloyd Webber's pop-oratorio passion play. Indeed, the propensity of teenagers for embracing religious fervor as an escape from hormonal confusion can be observed in cultures throughout the world.

Therein resides the conceit lending Kevin Del Aguila, Gary Adler and Michael Patrick Walker's musical its connection with audiences in 2017 who may have forgotten, or remained oblivious, to fads of decades past.

The Altar Boyz ( the spelling of the name being our first clue to chronological origins ) are a quintet of young male vocalists occupying the genre dubbed "Boy Bands," their pristine image intensified by a repertoire of soft-rock ditties featuring quasi-ecclesiastical lyrics. Being young and male, though, their concerns cannot help but mirror those of their secular kin, with the language of the gospels offering the sole acceptable means of expressing their anguish—restrictions leading to such anomalies as a coming-out song substituting the word "Catholic" for "gay," or a smitten swain proclaiming his attraction to a girl by confessing to conflicted thoughts regarding his pledge of pre-marital chastity. More serious issues are suggested by an orphan's quest for his birth parents and a last-ditch exorcism.

Walker, Adler and Aguila are content to leave the double entendres to our ribald sensibilities, however. Playgoers less inclined toward Book of Mormon-styled pottymouth are free to enjoy the exuberant goodwill invoked by the five warblers assembled under the leadership of directors Courtney Crouse, Jeremy Ramey and Sawyer Smith as they effortlessly conceal the complexity of bell-tone harmonies and precision-drill choreography beneath a veneer of youthful vulnerability.

The electronic device on the stage purporting to measure the number of saved souls in the room might have been funnier at the show's premiere in 2005 ( when covert surveillance was the stuff of fantasy ) but, by the end of the evening, when the roll is called up yonder, we are ready to be counted among those who make such joyful noise.


facebook twitter pin it 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.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

PASSAGES Pioneering gay comic Bob Smith dies 2018-01-21 - Bob Smith—the first openly gay comedian to appear on the Tonight Show—has died after a long struggle with ALS, according to Deadline.com. He ...


Gay News

'Insurrection' echoes Nat Turner's life through present day 2018-01-17 - Try to define playwright Robert O'Hara's Insurrection: Holding History would likely result in confusion. "I've been describing it, like, the playwright ...


Gay News

Julia Sweeney show through March 18 2018-01-17 - Saturday Night Live veteran, author, actor and TED- talk veteran Julia Sweeney will make her stand-up debut this January in a new workshop ...


Gay News

Charles Busch at Pride Arts Jan. 21-22 2018-01-17 - Tony Award nominee, Drama Desk Lifetime Achievement honoree and two-time MAC Award winner, Charles Busch, who performed two sold-out shows at Pride Arts ...


Gay News

WINTER THEATER SPECIAL World-premiere plays start bright and early 2018-01-17 - It might have been the mild snows in the last few years that finally persuaded theater companies to acknowledge winter as a time ...


Gay News

WINTER THEATER SPECIAL Winter classics "true and reimagined 2018-01-17 - The classics—usually meaning plays by dead playwrights which have withstood the test of time—sometimes can be "reimagined" ( to use an au courant ...


Gay News

THEATER SPOTLIGHT My Kinda '60s 2018-01-17 - Playwright, performer and drag legend Charles Busch ( Psycho Beach Party, Die Mommy Die ) returns to Chicago to perform My Kinda '60s. ...


Gay News

Critics' Picks 2018-01-17 - BLKS, Steppenwolf Theatre, through Jan. 28. Life is never easy for young, bright, urban hipsters confronting their future in all its high-velocity kaleidoscopic ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Flamingo and Decatur 2018-01-17 - Playwright: Todd Taylor At: Block St Theatre Company at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: $33. Runs through: Feb. 18 Audiences ...


Gay News

WINTER THEATER SPECIAL Queer theater to chill to 2018-01-17 - LGBTQ audiences who want to see their lives reflected onstage have plenty to choose from this winter. Productions ranges from developmental festival works ...


 



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.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor


 

Sponsor


Sponsor

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.