Ceremonies in Dark Old Men | ETA Creative Arts Foundation | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

Ceremonies in Dark Old Men The Short List (Theater) Closing (Theater and Galleries)

When: Nov. 8-Dec. 23 2012

By focusing on one family's struggle against the demons of past and present oppression, playwright Lonne Elder III paints a striking portrait of Harlem at the crossroads between the civil rights and black power movements. When Russell Parker's daughter, Adele, demands that he and her two brothers get jobs or move out, the three men decide they'd rather run an illegal still and numbers game out of their idle barbershop than grovel for menial service jobs downtown. Elder's characters are complex—victims of their own failings as much as society's—and his themes remain depressingly relevant 43 years after the play's New York premiere. But in his indifferent staging for ETA Creative Arts Foundation, Vaun Monroe has trouble settling on a consistent tone. Some cast members play tragic flaws as comic quirks. —Keith Griffith

Price: $15-$30


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