The North China Lover | Lookingglass Theatre Company | Fall Arts, Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

The North China Lover The Short List (Theater) Image Closing (Theater and Galleries)

When: Tuesdays-Sundays. Continues through Nov. 11 2013

When the French writer Marguerite Duras died in 1996, at age 81, she left behind more than 50 novels, plays, and screenplays. It probably helped her productivity that she didn't mind repeating herself (or that a lot of her books are really short). The North China Lover—now onstage at Lookingglass Theatre Company in an intriguing but tepid adaptation by Heidi Stillman—was the last published version of a story that pops up several times in Duras's work. It's there in her first successful novel, The Sea Wall (1950), and there again in The Lover, the 1984 international best seller for which she's best known today. The real-life events that prompted all this spilled ink make up what sounds like a pretty seamy chapter in the author's childhood in French Indochina, where her parents were schoolteachers until her father died and her mother took up farming, with financially disastrous results. In most versions of the story, an impoverished, pubescent Duras stand-in meets an older Chinese man on the ferry from Sa Dec to Saigon, and the two of them embark on an affair that today we would call statutory rape. Continue reading >>

Price: $28-$70