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Adagio Teas
   Features  >  LATEST NEW YORK NEWS

at the Goodman Theater (Chicago, IL)

By David Lefkowitz
Published March 16 2008

ARE YOU READY TO ROCK? Well, theatrically, anyway?

Two shows with rock and roll as a thematic backdrop plus a new pop musical will be part of the 2008-09 season at Chicago's Goodman Theater.

In May 2009, Tom Stoppard's Rock `n' Roll, which recently ended its acclaimed Broadway run, will make its Chicago debut, under the direction of Charles Newell. Although the play is about a disjointed family dynamic in the years following Russia's crush of the Prague Spring, the piece is suffused with music by Dylan, Pink Floyd and the Stones - not to mention Czechoslovakia's own Plastic People of the Universe, who represented artistic freedom in a time of political oppression On the Goodman's intimate Owen Stage that same month, Rebecca Gilman's The Crowd You're In With comes to Chicago after wowing `em at its premiere at San Francisco's Magic Theater last November. The comedy takes place at a backyard barbecue, where a couple who've been trying for a baby entertain an already pregnant couple, one of whom is a snarky rock critic. (The play's title is cribbed from Bob Dylan's angry anthem, Positively 4th Street.) Wendy C. Goldberg stages the piece by the author of Spinning into Butter and Boy Gets Girl.

Also on tap for the Goodman season is the world premiere (Sept. 2008) of the next project for Jersey Boys creators Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice. Turn of the Century, to be staged by Tommy Tune, tells of two cabaret performers who wind up flashing back to 1900, where they're challenged to come up with major hits of the ten decades to come.

That tuner will be followed on the Albert stage by a Robert Falls-directed Desire Under the Elms, featuring Brian Dennehy. Two of the pair's previous collaborations, Death of a Salesman and Long Day's Journey Into Night, moved on to Broadway productions. Two other plays have yet to be announced for the Goodman's mainstage next season.

Over on the Owen, Lynn Nottage's Ruined (Nov. 2008) will have its world premiere prior to a staging at off-Broadway's Manhattan Theater Club. The drama, commissioned by and developed at the Goodman, is set in the modern-day, war-torn Congo.

The prolific, Tokyo-born Naomi Iizuka will premiere her Ghostwritten in Spring 2009, to be directed Lisa Portes. Its Seafarer-like synopsis tells of a successful chef who has to pay back a stranger for a deal made twenty years earlier.

Established in 1922 and operational since 1925, the Goodman is currently headed by artistic director Falls and executive director Roche Schulfer. The Goodman and Steppenwolf are considered Chicago's premiere theater companies.


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