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 2019-10-30
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Theater: A Jacques Brel Revue: Songs of Love and War
by Rick Reed
2005-06-01

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Pictured A Jacques Brel Revue: Songs of Love and War.

Director: Fred Anzevino

( musical direction by Michael Miller )

At: Theo Ubique at No Exit, 6970 N. Glenwood

Phone: ( 773 ) 743-3355; $20

Runs through: Open run

Jacques Brel is alive and well and living in Rogers Park? Yes, it's true: the master of Parisian pop, the chronicler of love and despair with accordion accompaniment has taken his act and moved it stateside, to the tiny, yet charming, confines of the No Exit Café ( and one wonders what Sartre would have to say about that? ) . But No Exit Café ( never mind its existentialist ties … in this case hell is definitely not other people, at least not this ensemble ) is the perfect venue for this funny, heart-rending, and lyrical two hours that boast nearly thirty of the Parisian crooner's greatest hits, many originally performed, we can imagine, in venues such as this one.

Fred Anzevino and Michael Miller again team up ( after last season's wonderful staging of Spoon River Anthology at the same venue ) to demonstrate that when showcasing poetry and music, less is more. For the most part, the staging here is simple, and it's at its best when music and emotion take center stage, such as the wonderfully argumentative duet, 'Litany for a Return' ( performed by the two most gifted and natural members of this ensemble of five, Danielle Brothers and David Heimann ) or the plaintive 'Don't Leave Me,' in which Brothers doesn't allow a dry eye in the house, including her own. These two pieces work because there is an honest match between music and emotion. And for the most part, this marriage works because the performers realize that simplicity is the key. The two youngest members of the ensemble ( I assume ) are Amanda Hartley and Jeremy Trager; while both of these performers are of fine voice, they still need to loosen up a bit on stage and let some honesty peek through. Both of them look too practiced, their smiles too perfect … one never forgets that they're performing.

This revue is an enjoyable outing and will not disappoint fans of Brel's oeuvre. The only problem for me was when things got a little too bogged down into trying to dramatize the song ( with costumes, movement, and mugging ) . No Exit is too small a space to tolerate much embroidery, since every gesture and every expression gets magnified when the performers are literally only a few feet away. Essentially, this is a cabaret show, and the only parts that are weak here are when the creators didn't trust in the emotion enough to simply allow it to come through the music.

But that's really a minor quibble: one can't fault artists for being too ambitious in their efforts. You like Jacques Brel? You want to see his music faithfully and lovingly performed? Then you don't want to miss this show.


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

YEPP fall fundraiser Nov. 13 at Theater Works 2019-11-10 - Youth Empowerment Performance Project ( YEPP ) will hold its inaugural fall fundraiser, "Rise Up: A Celebration of Resilience" Wed., Nov. 13, 6-9 ...


Gay News

'Rip Nelson Celebrity Roast' Nov. 9 2019-11-08 - Hell in a Handbag Productions will present its annual benefit, The Rip Nelson Celebrity Roast, on Saturday, Nov. 9, 6-11 p.m., at Ebenezer ...


Gay News

Pride Films and Plays' "The Christmas Foundling" cast announced 2019-11-08 - Cast announced for Pride Films and Plays production of Norman Allen's THE CHRISTMAS FOUNDLING, opening to the press on December 7 and playing ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Laura and the Sea 2019-11-08 - Playwright: Kate Tarker At: Rivendell Theatre Ensemble, 5779 N. Ridge Ave.. Tickets: RivendellTheatre.org 773-334-7728; $38. Runs through: Dec. 8 "The mind is ...


Gay News

Bette: Xmas at the Continental Baths opens Dec. 7 2019-11-06 - CHICAGO ( November 6, 2019 ) — Hell in a Handbag Productions is pleased to bring back its steamy cabaret sensation — with ...


Gay News

Drag star's "All I Want for Christmas is Attention" tour Dec. 10 2019-11-06 - Seattle sisters and drag superstars BenDeLaCreme and Jinkx Monsoon have joined forces once again to present a new holiday extravaganza, All I Want ...


Gay News

Oscar 2020 kickoff party Nov. 13 2019-11-04 - The "A Night With Oscar 2020" kickoff party—featuring a Chicago ball scene talk back—will take place Wed., Nov. 13, at 6 p.m. at ...


Gay News

'Drag Race' alums bring holiday show to Chicago Dec. 10 2019-11-03 - Drag queens and RuPaul's Drag Race alumni BenDeLaCreme and Jinkx Monsoon have joined forces once again to present a new holiday extravaganza, "All ...


Gay News

'Boys in the Band' starting Jan. 29 2019-11-03 - Windy City Playhouse, 3014 W. Irving Park Rd., is presenting Mart Crowley's groundbreaking play, The Boys in the Band, directed by Playhouse Associate ...


Gay News

Internship applications being taken at Oak Park theater 2019-11-03 - Oak Park Festival Theatre is accepting applications for summer internships. Every year, 10-15 young people are accepted into the internship program from across ...


 



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.

 

 

 

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 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.