Pins | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader
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Jim Provenzano's play, based on his novel, is a coming-of-age narrative about a high school wrestler grappling with being gay. Few of the plot developments are surprising: there's bullying, crying, parental bafflement, innocence lost, self-knowledge won. But Provenzano shows a deep fondness for his characters and a sure understanding of the wrestling milieu. He's particularly adept at handling the crosscurrents of fear and lust produced by the conflict between the sport's potential homoeroticism and the team members' homophobia. Chris Arnold's well-choreographed production, part of the 2006 Pride Series, is sometimes a bit too agitated but nicely captures the tender ache of adolescence; Eddie Bennett is particularly endearing as the conflicted young wrestler. Through 7/23: Thu-Sat 7:30 PM, Sun 6 PM, no show Sun 6/25, Bailiwick Repertory, Bailiwick Arts Center, 1229 W. Belmont, 773-883-1090, $25.

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