ChiIL Live Shows photos--The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart
Ask any theatre geek what "The Scottish Play" is and he or she will undoubtedly conjure up the infamous Shakespeare play whose name must not be uttered within a theatre or it's bad luck. Actors can be a superstitious lot. However, in Chi-town right now, there are two authentic Scottish plays running this month, with real Scottish actors and accents, and major players from The National Theatre of Scotland! Neither of them is Macbeth, though the troupe IS here in conjunction with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre.
Image 1: Left to right: David McKay, Alasdair Macrae, Melody Grove and Andy Clark in National Theater of Scotland’s production of The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart, presented in the Upstairs Theater at Chicago Shakespeare, now through October 28, 2012. Photo by Drew Farrell.
Do not miss this limited run. The show must close October 28th.
3:00 & 7:30 p.m.
3:00 & 7:30 p.m.
ChiIL Live Shows caught opening night and we loved it. This show is wickedly funny, creative and smart without pretension. Much of the dialogue is couplets providing a classy and classic touch.
Scottish folk ballads and instruments that have been used for centuries effectively transport the audience out of the intimate, upstairs space at Chicago Shakespeare Theater on Navy Pier and into a recreated Scottish pub.
Image 3: Left to right: Andy Clark, Melody Grove, Annie Grace, David McKay and Alasdair Macrae in National Theater of Scotland’s production of The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart, presented in the Upstairs Theater at Chicago Shakespeare, now through October 28, 2012. Photo by Drew Farrell.
I heard a few older patrons saying they had a bit of trouble with understanding the accents, but I'd say 95% of the dialogue and song was easy to hear and follow along with. Luckily we were also given a "cheat sheet" that explained the most Scottish of expressions and events not universally known to Chicagoans.
The theatre has a bar in the room and the audience is treated to a free communion cup shot of smoky, rich Benromach Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky. Even my decidedly non-theatre lovin' spouse was placated with a few beers and a shot of 10 year old whisky in front of him, and actually admitted he enjoyed the show!
Image 2: Left to right: Annie Grace, Melody Grove and Andy Clark in National Theater of Scotland’s production of The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart, presented in the Upstairs Theater at Chicago Shakespeare, now through October 28, 2012. Photo by Drew Farrell.
Chicago Shakespeare Theater Presents
National Theatre of Scotland's
The theater Upstairs at Chicago Shakespeare morphs into the intimate confines of a Scottish pub for National Theatre of Scotland’s The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart now through October 28. Complete with pub-style seating and a bar, the production recounts the Faustian tale of Prudencia, an ivory-tower academic sweetly "lost" in her research on Scottish folk music, who finds her world comically unhinged as the love and mythology of her research springs to surprising life.
Writer David Greig’s recent work for National Theatre of Scotland includes Dunsinane (Royal Shakespeare Company), Peter Pan and The Bacchae (Edinburgh International Festival). Currently, he is working on a new Broadway production of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Director Wils Wilson, a Critics’ Award for Theatre in Scotland (CATS) recipient, has previously worked on National Theatre of Scotland’s Gobbo, devised and created with David Greig, and Home Shetland, created with Jackie Kay. Composer Alasdair Macrae won a CATS for Best Music and Sound for his work on The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart. The production’s creative team is rounded out by Designer Georgia McGuinness, Composer and Music Director Alasdair Macrae, Movement Director Janice Parker, and Casting Director Anne Henderson. The cast of The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart includes: Andy Clark, Annie Grace, Melody Grove, Alasdair Macrae and David McKay.
Black Watch, also by National Theatre of Scotland is opening Oct 10th. Click the link for video clips, behind the scenes, reviews and more. We missed it the last time around and are eagerly awaiting it's return. It's playing at The Broadway Armory through Oct. 21st.
Both are well worth a night out. Get your tickets today before they sell out or ship out! Check out ChiIL Live Shows prior coverage here.