NUNN'S THEATER HABIT
Inspirational and creative theater blooms in June
Fri. June 7, 2019 12:00 AM
by Jerry Nunn
The old quote "I laughed, I cried, it became a part of me" is the only way for me to describe MS. BLAKK FOR PRESIDENT currently running now until July 14 at the Upstairs Theatre at the Steppenwolf.
After interviewing the star and director of the show, I had the feeling that this would be a simple Pride inspired piece that the Steppenwolf troupe put together. They go way beyond the LGBT call of duty.
The story of a drag queen running for president in 1992 is effectively created with all the right moves, from the runway stage, interactive moments including a pre-party, quick running time with no intermission to the effectively used cast, this was one endeavor for the iconic theater that was enjoyable and inspiring to watch.
Afterwards, I immediately texted so many of friends that I knew would enjoy it. It's a forgotten piece of Chicago history that we can all celebrate. Come casual, in drag, dressed up or whatever you like, just see it before July 14 with ticket information at Steppenwolf.org.
For a complete change of gears head to Lookingglass Theater Company's production of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein playing now through August 4.
The theatre group known for literary adaptations has done it again with another classic. The flowery language takes a while to settle in, but when the story starts moving things get bloody. The five cast members play multiple roles with Keith D. Gallagher being a standout. All areas of the space are used effectively and the story will grow on you.
Lookingglass Alice returns in May of next year for all those that missed it, but check out this period piece in the meantime with tickets at LookingglassTheatre.org.
There's a new Cirque du Soleil show in town called VOLTA and it takes over a large tent in the Soldier Field South parking lot. This marks the 30th anniversary of the circus act in the Windy City that runs currently in June through July 6.
This show focuses on bikes, hoops and acrobats. There's always a clown and some live singing, but they are moving into a better direction with these sometimes corny Cirque staples in VOLTA.
The BMX daredevils later in the act pop up to hit a large glass high above massive ramps. It was nerve wracking to watch and be in front of as an audience member, but it's everything this show is and should be about. Read my interview with a cast member on this website and purchase tickets at CirqueduSoleil.com.
The latest gay themed show from Broadway In Chicago is Falsettos that's about to sing its way out of town closing on June 9. It begins with being set in 1979 showing Marvin, a man torn between his wife and male lover. He goes on a journey in two acts that will ring true for many with continuos singing to carry along the plot.
There is some catchy music and performances, but things don't gel all the way for Falsettos unfortunately. The second act moves into 1981 and things do improve, but it grows so heavy by the end that it can be difficult to watch. Whizzer only had a short run, so a grab a ticket before the tour moves on if you are a fan with tickets at BroadwayInChicago.com.
Pride month has some unique theater in Chicago, so take a break from the parade and engulf yourself in a good story before they fly over the rainbow!