Dirty Rotten Scoundrels | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Dirty Rotten Scoundrels


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This gag-packed musical farce, based on the 1988 movie (in turn based on the 1964 film Bedtime Story), is broad, sometimes raunchy, and very, very funny. Jeffrey Lane's script and David Yazbek's score revel in comic stereotypes to tell of two con men--suave Brit Lawrence Jameson and coarse Yank Freddy Benson--who team up, and later compete, to seduce and swindle rich American tourists on the Riviera. The core of the show is the relationship between the two crooks, who admire each other even as each tries to put the other out of business. The jokes are vulgar and the songs forgettable, but this touring edition of the 2005 Broadway production triumphs thanks to the expertly played comic camaraderie between Tom Hewitt's elegant, arrogant Lawrence and D.B. Bonds's clownish Freddy. Also in fine form are Laura Marie Duncan as the wholesome heiress upon whom the scoundrels set their sights and longtime Chicago favorite Hollis Resnik as an eccentric widow on the make. a Through 8/12: Thu 7:30 PM, Fri 8 PM, Sat 2 and 8 PM, Sun 2 PM, Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Congress, 312-902-1400, $18-$80. --Albert Williams

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