Culture Magazine

Review: Pirate Bones (Lincoln Square Theatre)

By Chicagotheaterbeat

Review: Pirate Bones (Lincoln Square Theatre)   
  
Pirate Bones 

Written and Directed by Kristina M. Schramm
at Lincoln Square Theatre, 4754 N. Leavitt (map)
thru Nov 24  |  tickets: $12-$20   |  more info 
  
  
  
   Read entire review
  


     

     

An unlikely friendship carries a stuttering storyline

     

Review: Pirate Bones (Lincoln Square Theatre)

  

Lincoln Square Theatre presents

  

Pirate Bones

Review by Keith Glab

It’s 1959. An immigrant German mother and daughter live next door to a middle-class black family with minimal culture clash. Kristina M. Schramm, executive/creative director of Lincoln Square Theatre, directs her own play, Pirate Bones.

Review: Pirate Bones (Lincoln Square Theatre)Schramm also designs the set, which both clearly denotes the time period and cleverly transforms a porch into a bedroom between acts. It’s hard to understand why she chooses the setting she does, however, as the culture of the play – from single mothers easily succeeding in the workplace to people openly speaking of divorce to the lack of racial tensions – aren’t reflective of the late 50s.

Edina (Gina DeLuca) is an adolescent growing up without a father. She buries her emotional troubles in Peter Pan fantasies. Oda Mae (Ashley J. Dearborn), a mentally challenged 25-year old, fantasizes about her wedding day. Her parents indulge their daughter in this dream, and the two girls become inseparable in their shared escapism.

This unlikely friendship between Edina and Oda Mae reads as both sweet and believable. DeLuca easily passes for an educated girl in her early teens who is often frustrated with Oda Mae’s poor grammar. Her Edina is outwardly strong and capable, but her inner vulnerabilities aren’t hidden too far beneath the surface. Dearborn excels at giving Oda Mae the look in her eyes of someone who struggles to grasp concepts that others take for granted. She imbues the character with real warmth.

The story plods along with low stakes and little narrative drive until Edina encounters a violent man (Donald Kubeczko) at the end of the first act. This scene plays out choppily, but it manages to terrify nonetheless. The second act works better, as the undercurrent of this encounter ominously affects everything else that occurs.

Review: Pirate Bones (Lincoln Square Theatre) Review: Pirate Bones (Lincoln Square Theatre)

Two detectives visiting Oda Mae’s mother Della (Carolyn E. Nelson) many years after these events took place serve as bookends for the story. This framing doesn’t completely work, though. Della isn’t present for many of the events in the play, so what the audience sees isn’t the story she’s telling, and we therefore can’t know precisely how much she knows nor what she tells the detectives. Nelson does a great job playing the age difference, and indeed her character is the strongest of the ensemble. Her monolog telling how Oda Mae became developmentally challenged is quite moving and perhaps the highlight of the production.

Della’s relationships with the other characters always prove interesting, but the relationship between Edina and her mother (Joy Thorbjornsen-Coates) might be explored more. Meanwhile, the characters Georgia (Mary Helena) and Regina (Judith Laughlin) have no function in the story other than as light comic relief, and the play would work better with one detective rather than two that are underdeveloped. Some of these superfluous pieces could be cut to give more attention to the interactions between the primary characters.

This production isn’t too far from being quite compelling, but as currently constructed, you need to sift through some debris to uncover the hidden treasures of Pirate Bones.

  

Rating: ★★½

  

  

Pirate Bones continues through November 24th at Lincoln Square Theatre, 4754 N. Leavitt (map), with performances Thursdays-Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm. Tickets are $12-$20, and are available by phone (773-275-7930) or online through BrownPaperTickets.com. More information at LincolnSquareTheatre.org.  (Running time: 1 hour 45 minutes, includes an intermission)

Review: Pirate Bones (Lincoln Square Theatre)

Photos by Tom Snow


     

artists

cast

Ashley J. Dearborn (Oda Mae), Gina DeLuca (Edina), Charles Glenn (Darling Davis), Mary Helena (Georgia Keeper), Brendan Hutt (Detective Chambers), Donald Kubeczko (Man), Judith Laughlin (Regina Trout), Carolyn E. Nelson (Della), Ed Schultz (Detective Johnson), Joy Thorbjornsen-Coates (Augusta Melkampf)

behind the scenes

Kristina Schramm (director/set design); Nathaniel Nesheim-Case (stage manager); Gina Patterson (lighting); Kim Baker (props); Erica Hohn (costumes); Rachel Ramirez (asst. stage manager); Tom Snow (photos)

12-1074


You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Film Review: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

    It's not often that I allow myself to be seriously put-off by critic reviews. I generally don't have a lot of faith in them, because they are one person's... Read more

    The 16 September 2013 by   Kittyfairy
    ENTERTAINMENT, MOVIES
  • Review: ‘The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones’

    I know what you are all thinking; The Raccoon the trendiest, most informative site in town, with the most attractive of contributors are doing a review on a... Read more

    The 17 September 2013 by   The Raccoon
    CURRENT, ENTERTAINMENT, MOVIES
  • Pirate Kit Review

    Recently Interplay sent us one of their Craft Party kits. Craft party is a new range which offers party time crafty activities for up to 6 kids. Read more

    The 25 February 2014 by   Lpbarton
    ARTS & CRAFTS, FAMILY
  • Book Review: City of Bones

    Title: City of Bones Author: Cassandra Clare Series: The Mortal Instruments (book 1) Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books Publish Date: 3/27/2007 Genre: YA... Read more

    The 22 August 2012 by   Storycarnivores
    BOOKS
  • Album Review - CHVRCHES - The Bones Of What You Believe

    Has there been a more keenly anticipated début album by a Scottish artist? CHVRCHES have played a blinder since the frankly magnificent Lies came out last... Read more

    The 22 September 2013 by   Scottishfiction
    ENTERTAINMENT, MUSIC
  • S&S Review: Borderlands 2: Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate's Booty

    Title: Borderlands 2: Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate's Booty Format: PS3, Xbox 360, PC Release Date: October 16, 2012 Publisher: 2K Games Developer: Gearbox... Read more

    The 22 October 2012 by   Sameo452005
    GAMING, TECH
  • Book to Movie Review–The Mortal Instruments City of Bones

    cover links to IMDb The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones Summary (from IMDb): When her mother disappears, Clary Fray learns that she descends from a line of... Read more

    The 26 August 2013 by   Megan Love Literature Art & Reason
    ENTERTAINMENT, MOVIES

Add a comment