Desire Under the Elms | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

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Desire Under the Elms

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A domineering father, his calculating young bride, a resentful son, and a valuable estate create a situation ripe for uncontrolled greed and passion in Eugene O'Neill's 1924 shocker. Today the story risks coming off as hackneyed to audiences inured to steamy domestic intrigues. But under Chris Riter's perceptive direction, the GreyZelda Theatre Group uses its intimate storefront space to advantage, establishing the intensity of the characters' relationships. In a production running a tidy two hours with not a second wasted, Tom Gordon and Melissa J. Kuhlmann are suitably eros obsessed as the young lovers. But what rivets our attention is Aris Tompulis's bearish performance as the uncompromising patriarch. Through 6/3: Wed-Sat 8 PM, Oracle Productions, 3809 N. Broadway, 773-267-6293, $20, two for one Wed.

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