Cash on Delivery | Saint Bonaventure Church | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

Cash on Delivery The Short List (Theater) Closing (Theater and Galleries)

When: Fridays-Sundays. Continues through Nov. 14 2010

Farce depends on the tension between strict rules and a situation that stretches them. Go too far--actually break the rules--and you lose the tension, wrecking the farce. Michael Cooney's farce about a guy scamming government social service agencies goes too far. One of Cooney's rules, for instance, is that a certain character is pretending to be deaf; when the character makes a slip that proves he can hear, no recovery is made to keep the rule intact and Cooney's world becomes that much harder to believe in. Other such problems may have to do with the difficulties of adapting a British script to American circumstances, but the effect is the same. And Jonathan Hagloch's staging for the Saint Sebastian Players isn't up to the task of finessing the gaps. Sometime after the two-hour mark a character goes spinning across the stage, attached by belts to the pad from an undertaker's gurney. I had to laugh, but it was a worn-down, slaphappy sort of laugh--the result of having been subjected to a long comic hard sell, often more enthusiastic than skilled. -Tony Adler

Price: $7-$15

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