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 2017-05-17
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

THEATER REVIEW For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday
by Scott C. Morgan, Windy City Times
2017-04-19

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Playwright: Sarah Ruhl. At: Shattered Globe Theatre at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: 773-975-8150 or ShatteredGlobe.org; $35. Runs through: May 20

With the Chicago premiere of Sarah Ruhl's 2016 play For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday, Shattered Globe Theatre has already laid claim to the casting coup of the season. Ruhl wrote this play in honor of her theater-loving actress mother, Kathleen Ruhl, and she herself is playing her daughter's dramatized version of herself.

Like other Ruhl plays ( The Clean House, eurydice ), For Peter Pan… is filled with the playwright's usual dreamy mix of whimsy and seriousness. And since Ruhl has J.M. Barrie's most famous creation to riff on, For Peter Pan… can be especially potent and poignant in exploring faith, familial love and lost childhood.

The play begins with Kathleen Ruhl sharing anecdotes about playing Peter Pan as a child in Davenport, Iowa, and getting to meet arguably the most famous Peter Pan of the 20th century, the Broadway star Mary Martin. But the meat of the play really deals with Kathleen and her four grown siblings in the 1990s.

Ruhl dramatizes the before-and-after moments when the five adults realize that they are no longer technically children. It's the hospital death of their last surviving parent, George ( Doug McDade ).

The siblings then hash out the happy/sad memories of their childhood, career choices and questions of faith and belief. These arguments that then veer into angrily divisive political views which almost feel shoehorned in. The brothers played by Patrick Thornton, H.B. Ward and Ben Werling are all aggressively conservative, while Ruhl and her sister played by Eileen Niccolai are both defensively liberal.

Into this mix, George and a family pet make "unseen" appearances as if Ruhl suggests that a person can still be alive as long as they live on in others' memories. And given the play's title, the siblings do get to dress up in Peter Pan character drag to highlight how one's childhood is nearly impossible to recapture.

Despite the lack of stage flying as in previous productions of For Peter Pan…, director Jessica Thebus does work well with production designer Michael Stanfill to inject the necessary stage magic into the production. What isn't quite there is the feeling among the ensemble that they're all siblings with lifelong patterns of familial love and resentment. Hopefully that sense will emerge more naturally as the run continues.

But what is nice about For Peter Pan… is the way that playwright Ruhl honors her actress mother. As long as For Peter Pan… is produced, Kathleen Ruhl and her family relations will continue to live. In this instance, this theatrical gift of life is certainly a wonderful present.


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

'Rent' cast thrills Sidetrack attendees 2017-05-23 - Jonathan Larson's Rent has captivated audiences for more than 20 years. The story, loosely based on Puccini's La Boheme, shows the struggles of ...


Gay News

Goodman shows 'Sequins;' Stamos hosts 'Wish Ball' 2017-05-23 - On May 20, Goodman Theatre held a "Sequins and Soul" extravaganza at the Fairmont Chicago. This year, the annual gala invited the talented ...


Gay News

Kate Clinton to be honored at Levity & Justice June 22 in New York 2017-05-22 - Washington, DC ( April 27, 2017 ) — LPAC, the national grassroots lesbian political action committee supporting pro-LGBTQ and pro-women's equality candidates, is ...


Gay News

Performance of Black Pearl, A Tribute to Josephine Baker, to benefit Legacy Project 2017-05-20 - Kick-Off LGBT Pride 2017 with us on Saturday, June 3rd with a special Legacy Project Benefit performance of Black Ensemble Theatre's acclaimed "Black ...


Gay News

Nothing Without a Company Announces 2017-18 Season 2017-05-20 - CHICAGO, May 17, 2017 - Chicago non-profit theatre company Nothing Without a Company has announced their 12th season, "Identity." The season will feature ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Objects in the Mirror 2017-05-17 - Playwright: Charles Smith. At: Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn Ave. Tickets: $20-$75. Runs through: June 4 Our play's author is Charles Smith; ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Tight End 2017-05-17 - Playwright: Rachel Bykowski. At: Twenty Percent Theatre Company at the Pride Arts Buena, 4147 N. Broadway. Tickets: $20. Runs through: June 3 ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Paradise Blue 2017-05-17 - Playwright: Dominique Morisseau. At: TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington Ave. Tickets: 773-281-8463; TimelineTheatre.com; $38-$51. Runs through: July 23 Paradise Blue is a ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW We're Gonna Die 2017-05-17 - Playwright: Young Jean Lee. At: Haven Theatre at the Den, 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: $18. Runs through: June 4 Whether you ...


Gay News

Theater spotlight on Token, Critics' Picks 2017-05-17 - Theater spotlight In Token, actress/comedian Kaye Winks shares lifelong tales of being that lone Black person in a world of white. This 60-minute ...


 



Copyright © 2017 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.