Profiles Theatre, celebrating 25 years of bringing Chicago audiences delicate and provacative works of theater, driven by the actors on their intimate stages. One of their resident playwrights, Neil LaBute, who has given us some very stark works is the author of their current Midwest Premiere, “Wrecks’, a one man , one hour show directed by Jason Gerace. I must tell you that this play just may not have bene ready to produce as it seems to be somewhat unfinished with far to many “holes” for an audience to gather.
The story takes place in a funeral parlor, somewhere, or at least we are led to believe so, in Chicago. Edward Carr, ( the always powerful John Judd) appears before us in what might be a waiting area where he is allowed to smoke his cigarettes ( FYI-they use the fake type, but they do look natural). He seems to be getting away from the other guests attending this “wake” for his recently departed wife, Jo-Jo. Here is where the first miscue takes place. he points to the curtains on the wall as if the “other guests” are sitting in another area, but the urn is on the table in the room we are in. And, who are we? Are we really there or just a figment of his imagination as he searches through his mind and relives his experiences of just how they came to be a couple.
Edward tells us of his childhood, being left behind for someone to adopt and a sthe tale of his life, his meeting Jo-Jo, who was 14 years his senior and already married, to his boss, and their falling deeply in love, he continues to smoke away, one after another. As we hear his story and what he has had to do to get from “there” to “here”. While Judd is a strong actor and makes this character a man that we start to care about, we later learn things about the man and his late wife that young people would call “to much information” and once this is done, any feelings we might have for this man who is facing death himself soon from his own Cancer, begin to fade away.
Unless I am misreading what LeBute is telling us, the secret that Edward feels he needs to get off his chest , is one that chnages everything. Jo-Jo’s childhood and family, his lack of a family and his unknown mother. His search for his birth mother…these are all a part of the “secret” shared. It is a story about the past and the present meeting up and it is also about love and desire and the power that they can hold over the human mind. In order to know it all, in every detail, you will have to make the trip to Profiles Theatre in their Alley Stage at 4147 N. Broadway. “Wrecks” will continue until November 17th with performances as follows:
Saturdays at 5 and 8 p.m.
Sundays at 7 p.m.
Tickets are $35-$40 depending on day and are available by calling 773-549-1815 or online at www.profilestheatre.org
Parking is a problem in the area, but there is discount parking at 4100N. Clarendon, a short walk from $14–$20. I always suggest taking the 36 Broadway bus a sit stops at the White Hen where you can get a cup of coffee which can go in to the theater. open seating, one hour NO intermission. Seniors and students get a $5 discount. I would love to hear what you felt, so please feel free to write to me.
To see what others are saying, visit www.theatreinchicago.com, go to Review Round-up and click at “Wrecks”