Dark Comedy A Guide for the Perplexed at Victory Gardens Theater
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The last date listed for A Guide for the Perplexed was Sunday August 15, 2010 / 3:00pm.
Currently at Victory Gardens Zacek McVay Theater:
- Full Price:
- $46.00 - $50.00
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Appropriate deals with the hassles of inheritance as one family descends upon a crumbling Arkansan plantation to liquidate their dead patriarch's estate. The three adult children think they have problems as they argue over clutter, debt and their troubled family history. But, after a disturbing discovery among their father's possessions, a series of surprises and confrontations turns up the intensity at the already-uncomfortable reunion. Learn More
Reviews & Ratings
Featured review from Jim Heneghan
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Painfully poignant and wonderfully casted...this is a bitterwseet drama of familial tensions and the pain and uncomfortableness of encountering love.....each person seems to be seeking "a place to call home..." and in the end of their quest, they seem to try to find it with each other. It was carefully written, with great comedic timing and an incredible set! Loved the Chicago references and the "Glencoe" humor!
Victory Gardens closes its 2009/10 Season with the world premiere of ensemble playwright Joel Drake Johnson’s A Guide for the Perplexed, marking the Chicago return of award-winning Broadway actor Kevin Anderson. Anderson is perhaps most fondly remembered for his performances at Steppenwolf (Orphans), and on television (Nothing Sacred) and film (Sleeping with the Enemy). In A Guide for the Perplexed, Anderson stars opposite fellow Steppenwolf ensemble member Francis Guinan.
Anderson plays Doug, a newly released criminal, forced to take reluctant residence with his sister’s husband, their teenage son and a tank of tropical fish. The rehabilitation process, both absurdly funny and heartbreakingly sad, is by no means limited to the ex-con. When Doug’s female pen pal arrives in hot pursuit bearing strange gifts, the play cuts deep into the characters' mutual feelings of pain, guilt and fear. Hints of a tenuous recovery make Johnson’s newest play both hopeful and very real.
“I wrote A Guide for the Perplexed as a way to explore the journey to redemption. How does guilt push you forward on that journey? And how difficult is it to change one’s behavior knowing that the success of that change is a key to your survival? All five characters are at a crisis juncture, a juncture that is both incredibly personal and wholly dependent on the people in their lives,” says playwright Joel Drake Johnson.
“Joel has the ability to mine great humor from what often appear to be serious (or dire) situations. He is a master at juxtaposing laugher and tears. His plays always provide laser sharp insight into human behavior, and that makes the exploration of his characters fascinating,” says Sandy Shinner who has directed five other world premieres by Johnson.