From a Fading Light | Saint Paul's Cultural Center | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

From a Fading Light Recommended New Review (Theater and Comedy) The Short List (Theater) Closing (Theater and Galleries)

When: Tuesdays-Saturdays. Continues through May 22 2010

Just when I'd decided that promenade staging is pretentious bunk, director Dexter Bullard and Plasticene demonstrate that the format--in which audience members follow a route around a given space, watching scenes at stops along the way--can be enormously effective. In this show, patrons are divided into three groups and sent trooping through a Wicker Park church to see six actors perform a fragmented narrative that seems to be about cultists preparing to receive a revelation. Here, they gather all their books to be burned. There, they participate in a baptismal bath. And there, two sneak off to nibble contraband chocolate. The ensemble's intense concentration creates the requisite fly-on-the-wall atmosphere, voices from other rooms evoke an eeriness, and glimpses of scenes I'd already witnessed gave me a feeling of deja vu, as if time here might move in any direction. The promenade worked powerfully on me. But even if it had failed miserably, From a Fading Light would still be worth seeing for a long, Boschian interlude in which the actors move among church pews--now seeming to rise from waves and now to fall into hellfire. --Tony Adler

Price: $12-$20

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