Halycon Theatre and An Upper Room
For an audience member at a play, immersion in someone else’s life on the other side of the equator is an artistic marvel. Through light, music, dialogue, set, video and props one can experience a village on the Amazon River in Brazil…of course, in our Midwest section of the globe, outside temperature and its obvious results in a third-floor church “attic theatre” seems to reach tropical rainforest proportions and aid the “suspension of disbelief.”
Stuffy though it was, the stark upper room of Christ Lutheran Church in Chicago’s Albany Park was transformed quite convincingly into the village of the Costa family, a suitor for one of the Costa daughters and a mysterious stranger. Playwright Marisela Treviňo-Orta, the actors, directors and crew take on a centuries-old theme and breathe originality into it.
Shakespeare Meets Treviňo-Orta
Romeo and Juliette aren’t here – there are no feuding families. The conflicts are internal ones, and only later do they spill out over the lives of the characters. The river is real, the odd lives in and around it are real. The audience is drawn into this amphibious experience by the acting, the multi-media elements of lightening, rain, sunrise and sunset, and the past events of the characters.
Lovers of character-driven drama, of simple sets that compel one to exercise imagination throughout, and of magical realism will enjoy this production.
The Halycon Theatre Mission
Halcyon Theatre is housed on the third floor of the church and makes a commitment to as diverse a community as possible – in its core staff, playwrights, actors, directors, crew and audience. They profess to showcase drama as a transformer of “borders and ascend to a more just union.” They provide creative space and opportunities for peoples of various cultures and traditions to meet, interact and learn from each other.
The theatre’s commitment to its goal of inclusivity extends to admission. Every performance has a number of seats reserved for those who cannot afford the full ticket price. This Radical Hospitality program allows anyone who desires to attend the opportunity to do so.
3253 W. Wilson Ave.
(3rd Floor, Christ Lutheran Church)
Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays at 8:00 p.m.
Sundays at 6:00 p.m.
The play runs through June 18th.
Guaranteed Advance Admission: $20
Radical Hospitality Program: FREE
For information and/or tickets, call 773-413-0454 or visit Halcyon Theatre online.
Note: This is now added to the Picture this Post round up of BEST PLAYS IN CHICAGO. Click here to read — Top Picks for Theater in Chicago NOW – Chicago Plays PICTURE THIS POST Loves.
Note: An excerpt of this review appears in Theatre in Chicago.