Hank Williams: Lost Highway | Athenaeum Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

Hank Williams: Lost Highway Closing (Theater and Galleries) The Short List (Theater)

When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through July 15 2012

This 2002 jukebox musical lays out the highlights of Hank Williams's brief, meteoric career with dehumanizing expediency. One minute he's a poor Alabama farm boy learning the blues from black street singer Rufus "Tee-tot" Payne. The next he's a road musician playing two-bit honky-tonks under the guidance of his overbearing mother, Lily. Then he's a superstar guzzling booze and pills. Playwrights Randal Myler and Mark Harelik try to connect the dots with 20 Williams tunes—but, lacking the messy details of human life, the story seems clunky and thin. Julie Ritchey and Omen Sade's dutiful staging for Filament Theatre Ensemble drags the show out to two and a half hours and reduces Tee-tot to a Mystical Negro. As Williams, though, Peter Oyloe sings like gangbusters. —Justin Hayford

Price: $19-$24

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