IndyFringe Theatre Festival Audience Choice Award winner Prepares us for Our Mortality
Walking into the Rosehill Cemetery is like entering a whole new city. The sounds of traffic and city life fade away as you are greeted by impressive monuments, an assortment of statues, and the peaceful stillness that accompanies cemeteries. One can’t help but think about mortality when surrounded by the departed and their memorials. The quiet walk through the cemetery leads to the May Chapel; a stunning Gothic style building with beautiful oak ceilings that direct the gaze upwards. The simple yet elegant stained-glass windows provide striking lighting while the sun starts to set. Yes, mortality is at the forefront of the mind, but the peaceful calm of the place is undeniable. The environment works spectacularly to prep us for the show we are about to see.
We are now ready to explore and question our relationship with mortality. And we are prepared to also consider what it means to truly live…
Neil Tobin, Necromancer: Near Death Experience delves into contemporary views on mortality and how it affects us as humans. The interactive nature of the show makes the setting even more intimate, like friends sitting down and discussing some of life’s harder topics. Writer, producer and solo performer Neil Tobin weaves magic into the show as he guides us on a journey to understanding our views on death and what could come from reshaping them. Most of the magic will leave even the most skeptical among us pondering what they just experienced.
There are plenty of laughs throughout the piece that help us all relax a bit as we contemplate what it means to have an end, and how accepting that can help us live a more fulfilling life. One weak link, in this writer’s opinion, is that the music choices didn’t work to enhance the experience and perhaps caused disengagement from the piece . Nonetheless, the show will likely leave you with a positive outlook on life.
Near Death Experience is perfect for adults who love interactive and site-specific theatre that makes you think. An added bonus, if you are so inclined, is the opportunity to explore the historic Victorian era Rosehill Cemetery. The show is not so great for lovers of traditional works and settings.
Note: This is now added to the Picture this Post round up of BEST PLAYS IN CHICAGO, where it will remain until the end of the run. Click here to read – Top Picks for Theater in Chicago NOW – Chicago Plays PICTURE THIS POST Loves.
Saturday, April 14 3:00 pm
Sunday, April 15 3:00 pm
Saturday, May 5 3:00 pm
Sunday, May 6 3:00 pm
Run time is 60 minutes with no intermission
If you love Fringe Theater events be sure to check back to our pages for information on the 2018 Chicago Fringe Festival , and in the meantime read our round up of reviews from last year’s Chicago Fringe Festival.
About the Author
Taryn Smith graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago's BFA Performance program in 2011. After graduating, she co-founded Realize Theatre Group and served as Executive Director for the company. She has filled numerous roles while with RTG both on and off stage including making her playwriting debut with her play America, Inc . She has worked as a stage manage, designer, director, and actor. Outside of the theatre world, Taryn is a licensed massage therapist.