The Hick, the Spic, and the Chick | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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The Hick, the Spic, and the Chick

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The best autobiographical monologuists are instinctive Aristotelians: they achieve universality by plunging into the particular, connecting with the audience by simply and honestly revealing, using just a hint of humor, the details of their lives. It's the way Paul Turner paints a portrait of growing up in the depressed economy of Paducah, Kentucky, one alarming fact at a time: the downtown is dying, Turner's dad loses the family farm, the few good jobs to be had are at the paper mill and the new prison. The way Donna Jay Fulks lets us feel the pain of losing a brother in a violent accident by recounting in excruciating detail a trip to Disney World the family took six months after he died. And the way Antonio Sacre weaves stories of his family, thickly encrusted with arguments in Spanish and broken English, re-creating his life between two worlds, Cuban and Irish, trying to free himself from the same family he also yearns to win acceptance from. As the clever rhyming title implies, these three are evenly matched in wit and charm, if not in gender or national origin. So instead of one performer overshadowing the others, each prepares the way for the next. You'll leave this delightful hour-long show wanting more. Strawdog Theatre Company, 3829 N. Broadway, 528-9696. Through May 18: Saturdays, 11 PM. $7.

--Jack Helbig

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