The Miss Neo Pageant | Neo-Futurarium | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

The Miss Neo Pageant The Short List (Theater) Closing (Theater and Galleries)

When: Thursdays-Saturdays. Continues through June 22 2013

Growing up girl these days means sometimes you're up, and sometimes you're crying alone eating hot chocolate mix. We're taught to shatter glass ceilings, but there are daily struggles that can feel more pressing. Leggings versus tights: Are either of them considered pants? Or: Were your multiple sexual partners "questionable," warranting an HIV test? The Neo-Futurists' latest, a thoughtful and wildly entertaining pageant parody created by Megan Mercier and directed by Stephanie Shaw, features five "grown-up" women on a baffled quest for the respect they think comes with being a "full-realized member of society." Through song, dance, acrobatics, and free-association ranting, each cast member enlists her singular talents and life experiences to present a wonderfully honest look at a loaded word: feminist. Pitting each woman against the others in a Vaseline-smile, Miss Congeniality-style cage match, The Miss Neo Pageant illustrates just how unattainable female camaraderie can feel when the sparkly bitch next to you keeps stealing your spotlight; contestant names like Miss I'm Not Gonna Cry provide evidence of how stressful the lady rat race can be. While judging each performance singly is decidedly not in the sisterhood spirit, as a critic I must introduce the hugely talented cast (most are Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind regulars), whose solo works each exert a creative energy and magnetic pull that's a pleasure to feel for someone usually stuck behind the fourth wall. Continue reading >>

Price: $20


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