Bold Girls | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

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Rona Munro's wrenching, mordantly witty 1990 drama about four Catholic women in Belfast presages Irish-Americans' disillusionment with the IRA after its alleged 2004 Belfast bank heist and the brutal slaying in January of Robert McCartney, a Catholic, by IRA henchmen. All the women in Munro's play must face that the missing men in their lives--one killed, the others imprisoned--are seriously flawed beings if not outright thugs. Munro's characters struggle against agonizing memories, the community code that demands plaster-saint purity of prisoners' wives, and their own bone-tired weariness at dodging bullets and barricades and enduring the British army's indiscriminate searches. Kimberly Senior's sensitive Seanachai Theatre Company staging is simultaneously raw and poetic, and the actors--particularly Jacquelyn Flaherty as the emotionally contained but deeply haunted widow--deliver the goods with an unflagging undercurrent of compassion. Through 5/15: Thu-Fri 8:30 PM, Sat 8 PM, Sun 3:30 PM. Victory Gardens Theater, first-floor studio, 2257 N. Lincoln, 773-871-3000. $25-$30.

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