Dame Edna: Back With a Vengeance! | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Dame Edna: Back With a Vengeance!

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While circulation for serious newsweeklies is flat or declining, a recent Tribune item noted, readership is on the rise for vulgar rags that celebrate and chastise the rich, famous, and beautiful. This is the cultural climate that Australian actor Barry Humphries satirizes as Dame Edna Everage, whose latest show hits Chicago next week. A frumpy, dithery housewife who's reinvented herself as a glamorous megastar, egomaniacal Edna revels in her own grandeur as she deigns to interact with fans ("possums," she calls them), offering psychic readings and marriage counseling. A brilliant performer, Humphries turns drag into subversive conceptual comedy that recalls English music hall--and its loony descendants, The Goon Show and Monty Python--as well as TV talk shows and Vegas revues, all of it peppered with ribald double entendres, bitchy insult humor, and absurd musical numbers. Opens Tue 3/14, 7:30 PM. Through 3/19: Wed-Thu 7:30 PM, Fri 8 PM, Sat 2 and 8 PM, Sun 3 PM, Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph, 312-902-1400, $32-$65.

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