Altar Boyz | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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This expertly performed touring edition of the clever off-Broadway hit takes the form of a concert by a fictional Christian hip-hop boy band. Matthew (the heartthrob), Mark (the "sensitive" one--think Lance Bass), Luke (the rebel), Juan (the "ethnic" one), and Jewish human beatbox Abraham spread the gospel with the aid of an onstage "Sony Soul Sensor DX-12" that digitally gauges the number of sinners in the theater. Irreverent but never mean-spirited, the catchy, tightly harmonized songs (with lyrics like "Jesus called me on my cell phone" and "Girl, you make me wanna wait") and slick dance moves spoof 'N Sync, Milli Vanilli, New Kids on the Block, and their showbiz brethren. And the witty script, with its intricate running gags, satirizes religious intolerance and hypocrisy while celebrating charity and brotherly love. a Through 10/29: Tue-Thu 7:30 PM, Fri 8 PM, Sat 2 and 8 PM, Sun 2 and 7:30 PM, Sun 10/22, 2 PM only, LaSalle Bank Theatre, 18 W. Monroe, 312-902-1400, $32-$55.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Carol Rosegg.

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