Monday August 3rd 2015

“Long Story Short”

While Colin Quinn’s “Long Story Short” is considered a play, I for one feel it is more like a cabaret evening with a stand-up comedian who tells us his story- The History of The World in 75 very funny minutes. Directed by fellow comedian Jerry Seinfeld Quinn takes us from ancient Greece to current Greece with stops everywhere along the way. The only problem with this production is that Quinn has a tendency to mumble and toss lines that would be better heard. I am a laugher! Nothing gets by me and yet, I found myself missing lines as he just threw them away during transitions. Throwing a line away, for those of you who are not used to the term, means that he evidently didn’t feel they had the same importance as the laugh lines they were preceded by. How would one know, if they never heard them?

Here is a funny man, with some marvelous anecdotes about history, family and almost every part of the world. Yes he starts with the Greek Philosophers, takes us to Rome, England,France, and covers  America,South America ( in particular the Mayans, Mexicans and Peruvians) Canada,Africa. Haiti , Russia and even touches Germany and Australia ( questioning whether they are even a part of this planet). He travels to China, India and of course the middle east and does this all in just a bit over 75 minutes. Was Caesar the original Mafia leader? Did Nero burn down Rome for the insurance money? How did England, while being the best dressed army, take over so many countries? How do the economical leaders allow our economy to keep falling? Why is it that Mexicans climb rocks and go under fences to come to America so they can get jobs at health clubs watching Americans simulate climbing mountains and scaling walls and going under fences?  In his special satirical way, Quinn shows us that we keep making the same mistakes and yet the world goes on.

The set for this one man show was done by David gallo who also created the projections depicting the maps of the world and the people of the times. The original music that is just there (Scott Elmegreen) adds a little to the evening and Howell Binkley’s lighting keeps our focus on this energetic comic. With all the “stuff”going on in our world today, the tension and stress, attending live theater ( of any type) should be a diversion, that allows us a certain amount of tme to not think about what might be on our minds- work, a move, a change of jobs, a family problem, etc and this production accomplishes this to  a “T”. I only hope that he slows down just a bit so that all of his creativity gets heard by the audience. They need the diversion! They want the diversion! They want to laugh, so let them hear every word you have written. That being said, I had a ball, and I know you will as well. This is an intimate theater and drinks are allowed for this non-stop hilarity ( no intermission).

“Long Story Short” will continue at The Broadway Playhouse, located in Water Tower Place ( 175 E. Chestnut/ at Michigan Avenue) through September 10th with performances as follows:

Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays  and Saturdays at 7 and 10 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m.


Tickets range from $40-$65 and can be purchased at any of the Broadway In Chicago box offices, by phone at The Broadway In Chicago Ticketline  800-775-2000, all Ticketmaster locations or online at 

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