Myths and Hymns | Heartland Cafe | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

Myths and Hymns Closing (Theater and Galleries) Member Picks Recommended The Short List (Theater)

When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through July 13 2014

Ever-adventurous BoHo Theatre delivers a musically extraordinary production of this theatrical art-song cycle by Adam Guettel, the gifted composer of The Light in the Piazza and Floyd Collins. Guettel's 1998 concert piece, which mingles themes from Greek mythology with imagery from a 19th-century Presbyterian hymnal, is nonnarrative. So director Peter Robel and musical director Nick Sula have created a scenario about a young couple wrestling with whether or not to take the leap of faith required to marry and, later, to have a child. The main draw here is Guettel's exquisite, demanding score, drenched in the influence of modern jazz and the French impressionism of Debussy and Ravel along with touches of rock, gospel, and even an allusion to the score of the famous Slaughter on Tenth Avenue ballet by Guettel's grandfather, Broadway icon Richard Rodgers. The soaring, rapturous melodies and complex harmonies are beautifully, sometimes stunningly sung by Kevin Webb and Elizabeth Telford as the couple and Matt McNabb, Stephanie Souza, Sydney Charles, and Neil Stratman as their friends and family. The offstage band—Sula on keyboard and Nicholas Davio on percussion and guitar—is likewise superb. —Albert Williams

Price: $20

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