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Articles tagged with: Conor McPherson

‘The Weir’ at Irish Theatre: Ghosts and laughs abound — until hidden demons come to light

Jan 8, 2017 – 12:19 am
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Review: It’s a play about hauntings, Conor McPherson’s “The Weir,” a dark and sharply drawn comedy of the unconscious now enjoying an infectious – and, happily, extended — run by the Irish Theatre of Chicago. Ghosts, the ones within us, fill the rural pub where “The Weir” unfolds: Five characters quite recognizably and sufficiently stand in for the lot of frail, erring, rueful humanity. ★★★★

‘Shining City’ at Irish Theatre: Shattering drama for one, encumbered by three extra characters

Dec 15, 2014 – 7:01 pm
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Review: For every line Brad Armacost speaks as a grief- and guilt-ridden widower consulting a therapist in Conor McPherson’s “Shining City,” but especially for the prodigious and emotionally wrenching monologue that occupies the center of this 90-minute drama, the production by Irish Theatre of Chicago is greatly to be recommended. For the rest, neither McPherson’s patch-up of a play nor this realization directed by Jeff Christian holds much charm. ★★★

It’s a ‘Shining’ hour for Irish Theatre of Chicago as rechristened troupe debuts with McPherson

Nov 26, 2014 – 11:10 pm
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Preview: When Michael Grant and a group of fellow Chicago actors formed Seanachai Theatre Company back in 1995, the name seemed inspired, exactly apt, a no-brainer. The word seanachai means story-teller in Irish Gaelic, and that’s what this troupe meant to do – stage the rich legacy of stories in the tradition of Irish theater. But after building its own legacy through two decades under the Seanachai banner, the company finally acknowledged that what had seemed obvious was anything but. Behold the renamed Irish Theatre of Chicago, which has its second birth Nov. 28 when the rechristened company makes its season debut with Conor McPherson’s “Shining City.”

Theater 2014-15: Ready for something new? Drop in any time this season at Steppenwolf

Sep 23, 2014 – 9:51 pm
Ensemble members, from left, Francis Guinan ('The Nigh, K. Todd Freeman, Alana Arenas, John Mahoney and Tim Hopper. Photo courtesy of Steppenwolf Theatre

17th in a series of season previews: The 2014-15 season at Steppenwolf Theatre is for drama buffs with a taste for adventure. Every play on the calendar is new to Chicago. One show is an American first, and also waiting in the wings is a world premiere. Steppenwolf opens with the Chicago unveiling of “The Night Alive” by Conor McPherson, as hot a playwright as you’ll find in the theater world today. If you haven’t seen “The Seafarer,” or if it isn’t at the top of your must-see list, raise your hand. Thought so.

Role Playing: Shannon Cochran found partners aplenty in sardonic, twice-told ‘Dance of Death’

Jul 30, 2014 – 12:03 am
Actress Shannon Cochran, who plays Alice in 'The Dance of Death' at Writers Theatre.

Interview: In working out her transfixing performance in the harrowing pas de trois that is August Strindberg’s “The Dance of Death,” now on the boards at Writers Theatre, actress Shannon Cochran says she got an indirect boost from Irish playwright Conor McPherson, who created the new English-language adaptation at hand.

‘The Dance of Death’ at Writers: Wedded war rages in old Sweden; fresh look at Strindberg

Apr 12, 2014 – 4:35 pm
Kurt (Philip Earl Johnson) questions Alice (Shannon Cochran) about her tumultuous marriage. (Michael Brosilow) (2)

Review: If you liked Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf,” you’ll love the original: August Strindberg’s “The Dance of Death,” wherein a toxic, blood-sport marriage between a venomous old soldier and his hissing wife make the sniping between Albee’s George and Martha feel once more present in the room. Writers Theatre provides the well-polished dance floor for Strindberg’s caustic waltz. ★★★★★

Role Playing: Brad Armacost switched brothers to do blind, boozy character in ‘The Seafarer’

Jan 19, 2014 – 1:49 am
Brad Armacost (brave lux)

Interview: Brad Armacost’s earthy, funny and deceptively nuanced portrait of the blind, drunken brother of a lost soul in Conor McPherson’s “The Seafarer” was shaped in part, he says, by a blessing and a curse. How Irish that both circumstances should spring from the same source. Armacost’s performance as the devoutly plastered Richard Harkin, in Seanachai Theatre’s brilliant go at “The Seafarer,” is his second pass at the play in recent Chicago seasons.

Seanachai’s ‘Seafarer’ taps into human comedy with earthy charm and touch of grace

Jan 1, 2014 – 1:35 am
Everybody's laughing but the troubled Sharky (Dan Waller, right) in this 'Seafarer' alternate feature with Brad Armacost, Ira Amyx and Kevin Theis. (Joe Mazza)

Review: It’s hard to imagine a sweeter greeting for the New Year than Seanachai Theatre’s announcement that it will extend its luminous production of Conor McPherson’s “The Seafarer” – originally scheduled to close Jan. 5 – for another four weeks. Lovely, lads, lovely. ★★★★★

Theater 2013-14: Fantasy ‘Old Man, Old Moon’ opens Writers’ season; new home draws near

Sep 3, 2013 – 2:53 pm
PigPen Theatre's 'The Old Man and the Old Moon,' an off-Broadway hit in 2012, is being re-mounted and re-thought with Stuart Carden at Writers' Theatre

Ninth in a series of season previews: As artistic director Michael Halberstam began putting together the 2013-14 season at Writers’ Theatre with associate artistic director Stuart Carden, one coincidence seemed too good to be true: Halberstam’s right-hand man had been the teacher, at Carnegie-Mellon University, of an eclectic group of seven buddies called the PigPen Theatre Co., who were the buzz of Greenwich Village for their folksy fable called “The Old Man and the Old Moon.” The charming off-Broadway saga now comes to Writers’.