Cayetano's Circus | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

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Cayetano's Circus

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Too many plotlines surge through this 110-minute two-act for New Town Writers by Chicago poet and teacher Robert Klein Engler. The backstory is that the protagonist, a gay college teacher, was fired for a fling with a student, while the principal plot, inflected by a ghost's testimony, concerns the teacher's current affair with the gay son of a racketeer. The best thing about the play is its sense of place: New Orleans inspires lovely descriptions of the French Quarter and of the Garden District's "languid expectations." The next best thing is Floyd A. May's sturdy staging, the performances persuasive even when the casting is odd. But the dialogue can get awfully aphoristic and allusive, announcing events instead of letting them unfold and making explicit what should be left to the imagination. Still, Engler clearly loves these characters and for the most part knows them well. Through 4/27: schedule follows. 4/18-4/19: Mon-Tue 7:30 PM. Then 4/25-4/27: Mon and Wed 7:30 PM. Bailiwick Repertory, Bailiwick Arts Center, 1229 W. Belmont, 773-883-1090. $10.

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