Death and Harry Houdini | Chopin Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

Death and Harry Houdini Agenda Closing (Theater and Galleries) Member Picks Recommended The Short List (Theater) Image

When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through Aug. 18 2013

The House Theatre's first show—which the company has remounted a couple times since its 2001 premiere, most recently last year—is back, and it's still a crowd-pleaser. As a biography of the famed escape artist, Nathan Allen's script is pretty shallow; Houdini's obsession with his withholding mother is turned into a joke, and his lifelong mission to defy death never reaches the heights of hubris needed to evoke terror or pity. But the stagecraft and showmanship on display are liable to knock your socks off. As Houdini, Dennis Watkins flawlessly executes one amazing trick after another, culminating in a heart-stopping escape from a water-torture cell. Carolyn Defrin and Shawn Pfautsch bring an infectious enthusiasm to their roles as his wife and brother, respectively. —Zac Thompson

Price: $40


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