Where do they lead?
What will emerge from these Monsters Inc.-style portals?
A single candle places an important asterisk on this aura of the unknown, what director Megan Carney describes as “arrival, welcome, connection, and hope.”
Peer Into Podcasting
Fans of Serial, S-Town, and Dear White People will feel right at home as the show opens up into an oral history podcast mystery surrounding the LGBTQIA characters and their ancestors interactions with LGBTQIA history.
Maggie Scrantom’s delivery as Annie provides the same soothing inquisitive nature of Sara Koenig, and Riley Mondragon’s flowing and vibrant Claudia pushes us all to just get hip with the times.
Eric Thomas's writing gives the actors room to breathe in the modern nature of their surroundings, and gives representation to voices some may not have heard before. Though this audience member was disappointed that the writing chose to focus less vividly on some of the female and trans perspectives, those looking for new voices will not be disappointed.
The story is beautifully highlighted and amplified by Claire Sangster’s lighting design, turning a naturalistic tale into more of a legend. The aforementioned doors flash like warning signs, but also open to reveal closets that contain artifacts bathed in light.
Together with Christopher Kriz’s composition (reminiscent of Stranger Things) and Robert S. Kuhn’s bold and sassy costumes, the world created in this production is a surreal wonderland, grounded by a not just LGBTQIA, but human story. These characters are modern-throwbacks, so the pops of Queen and synth mesh well with the “half-gans”, floral patterns, and loose ties—classy bohemian, if you will.
About Face Theatre Gives History a New Narrative
Those looking for a history narrative are definitely in the right place. Thomas unravels the threads of the characters’ pasts in a winding but driving motion, allowing the audience to discover with them. Although this reviewer found the reliance on LGBTQIA stereotypes to be excessive and detracting from the message of the play, the Underground Railroad, equal and civil rights, and LGBTQIA history all are featured in a way that we may not have learned, or been exposed to in school. But as one mystery seems to be solved, Claudia’s line says it best: “Onward, to the next.”
Now thru April 7
Wednesdays - Saturdays at 7:30 PM
Sundays at 3:00 PM
1229 W Belmont Ave.
Chicago, IL 60657
ESTEBAN ANDRES CRUZ
Box Office: 773-975-8150
For Tickets visit the About Face Theatre Website.
JOSE MANUEL DIAZ
ROBERT S. KUHN
DANA M NESTRICK