All stories by Hugh Iglarsh on BroadwayStars

Thursday, May 16, 2024

This Heat: A Review of “Turret” at A Red Orchid Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

Performative intensity is a good thing, but it’s not enough to carry a play. We see this clearly in “Turret,” a show with too much heat and not enough light.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Thursday, May 9, 2024

Revenge Comedy: A Review of “The Thanksgiving Play” at Steppenwolf Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

Under-plotted, more static than flowing, anticlimactic and sometimes over the top, “The Thanksgiving Play” is not a polished work of theater. But it is a powerful provocation, a real boo…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Secrets Not Revealed: A Review of “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone” at the Goodman Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

Veteran director Chuck Smith, our foremost August Wilson interpreter, has crafted an emotionally highly charged, exuberant, well-paced production. But even with Smith’s steady hand on the …

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Shamanic Shakespeare: A Review of Eddie Izzard Performing “Hamlet” at Chicago Shakespeare Theater by Hugh Iglarsh

Izzard’s dazzling performance holds up a mirror not just to nature, but to ourselves.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Monday, April 1, 2024

An Introverted Romance: A Review of “Love Song” at Remy Bumppo by Hugh Iglarsh

With its engaging characters, pointed and fast-paced dialogue, unpredictable but logical storyline and luminous poetic flourishes, “Love Song” is a show that will charm the pants off eve…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Thursday, March 14, 2024

Apocalyptic Cuteness: A Review of “End Days” at Theatre Above the Law by Hugh Iglarsh

“End Days” reminds us that the overtones of strangeness, precariousness and disequilibrium that define reality these days began exactly at the moment when the American public lost its se…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Monday, February 26, 2024

The Fix Is In: A Review of “The Smuggler” at Jackalope Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

It’s solid, gripping writing, delivered with crystalline sincerity, and it hits like a sledge hammer.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Modern-Day Rhapsody: A Review of the Joffrey Ballet’s “Studies in Blue” at the Lyric Opera House by Hugh Iglarsh

The Joffrey Ballet’s current—and spectacular—evening of dance is a modern-day rhapsody in blue, exploring with skill and sensitivity the range of moods and meanings associated with tha…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Friday, February 16, 2024

Timely Message, Dated Play: A Review of “Waiting for Lefty” at Gwydion Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

Its message about the need to stand and fight against a rigged system is as relevant as ever. The work itself, though, has not aged well.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Thursday, January 25, 2024

Brecht at his Best: A Review of “Mother Courage and Her Children” at Trap Door Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

"This is one of the finest productions of a Brecht play I’ve seen in Chicago, or anywhere else for that matter."

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Lost in Translation: A Review of “Can’t Pay? Won’t Pay!” at Gwydion Theatre Company by Hugh Iglarsh

The theme of budget-busting inflation is all too relevant right now in the United States. That said, it’s no easy task updating and transposing Fo’s almost fifty-year-old tale of the ins…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Wednesday, November 1, 2023

A Promising Start: A Review of “AmericanMYTH: Crossroads” at Free Street Theater by Hugh Iglarsh

Visually scintillating, musically varied and appealing, animated by the shamanic, shape-shifting energy of its griot/narrator, “AmericanMYTH: Crossroads” has a hell of a lot going for it…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Monday, October 9, 2023

Something Is Happening Here: A Review of “The Zoo Story” at Gwydion Theatre Company by Hugh Iglarsh

Gwydion Theatre, a company making its local debut, has chosen its first Chicago play well and executed even better.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Too Much Goes Unmentioned: A Review of “The Nacirema Society” at Goodman Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

“The Nacirema Society” could have been an edifying experience for viewers, as well as an entertaining one. That road hasn’t been taken, and the result is a comedy whose laughs lack dee…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Friday, September 15, 2023

A Classic American Millerdrama: A Review of “A View from the Bridge” at Shattered Globe Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

More ominous and socially observant than a typical melodrama, Arthur Miller’s “A View from the Bridge” is hard to categorize. It’s its own thing—call it a classic American Millerdr…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Wednesday, July 26, 2023

Pinteresque Perfection: A Review of “No Man’s Land” at Steppenwolf Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

Harold Pinter’s “No Man’s Land”—the Nobel Prize-winning writer’s 1975 play, masterfully revived at Steppenwolf—is a rich and strange theater experience.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Friday, July 7, 2023

Stillness Is the Move: A Review of “A Distinct Society” at Writers Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

The personal good intentions and grandiose philosophizing offered here might distract us, but they won’t do much to save us.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Friday, June 9, 2023

A Victory Against Invisibility: “Being Seen” at the Den Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

The play is a real-time portrayal of an audition, that lonely, scary ordeal for actors.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Monday, May 22, 2023

Loveless Truths: A Review of “The Whistleblower” at Theater Wit by Hugh Iglarsh

Eli is a TV writer who has become sick of writing fictional stories about fantasy heroes, and instead decides to speak only hard, personal truths designed to free himself and others from the…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Friday, May 5, 2023

Workplace War Zone: A Review of “In the Back/Out the Floor” at Stage Left by Hugh Iglarsh

The minimum-wage workplace as depicted in this world premiere drama is a nightmare of tedious toil, endless surveillance and absolute disrespect.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Monday, April 24, 2023

Surface Level: A Review of the Joffrey Ballet’s The Little Mermaid by Hugh Iglarsh

The five lead dancers skillfully meld precise, athletic movement—in a contemporary ballet mode—with expressive theatricality.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Friday, March 31, 2023

A Well-Intentioned Hell: A Review of “Babel” at Redtwist Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

The plot concerns two couples–one lesbian, the other heterosexual–who wish to have a baby in a society where childbearing is treated as a highly regulated privilege, available only to li…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Thursday, March 23, 2023

Art Isn’t Nice: A Review of “The Threepenny Opera” at Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

There’s nothing “nice” about “Threepenny,” a no-holds-barred assault on every aspect of bourgeois existence, from religion to marriage and family to the military to law and order.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Friday, March 3, 2023

Opposing Possibilities: A Review of “Heisenberg, The Uncertainty Principle” at Griffin Theatre Company by Hugh Iglarsh

British writer Simon Stephens’ 2015 two-hander references physicist Werner Heisenberg’s 1927 discovery that it is impossible for an observer to precisely discern both the position and ve…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Monday, February 27, 2023

Overheated: A Review of Anna in the Tropics at Remy Bumppo by Hugh Iglarsh

In Nilo Cruz’ Pulitzer Prize-winning 2003 play, cigars symbolize all kinds of things, from capitalist commodity to an older, slower lifestyle to religious burnt offering, like smoke throug…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Monday, February 20, 2023

Gorgeous Surface, Hidden Depths: A Review of Joffrey Ballet’s “Anna Karenina” at the Lyric Opera House by Hugh Iglarsh

Joffrey Ballet’s magnificent revival, an adaptation of Tolstoy’s vast novel of illicit love among the nobility of Czarist Russia, captures the book’s tragic, inexorable power.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Friday, February 10, 2023

Not-So-Funny Valentine: A Review of “Almost, Maine” at Oil Lamp Theater by Hugh Iglarsh

A set of nine love-themed comic vignettes presented in time for Hallmark’s and Fannie May’s favorite holiday, Valentine’s Day.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Humdrum Horror: A Review of “The Birthday Party” at City Lit by Hugh Iglarsh

Harold Pinter’s “The Birthday Party” suggests that what we think of as the habits of ordinary life are often a kind of smokescreen designed to block awareness of underlying arrangement…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Polarized in Paradise: A Review of “Cabin Fever” at Adamson Road Theatre Company by Hugh Iglarsh

Four couples have gathered together for a weekend retreat designed to strengthen their marriages and reset their moral and spiritual compasses, under the soothing, cliché-laden guidance of …

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Predictable Chaos: A Review of “It Runs in the Family” at Citadel Theatre Company by Hugh Iglarsh

Ray Cooney’s 1987 British farce, offers unredeemed silliness of the slamming-door and double-take variety. More of a live-action cartoon than a play, it will appeal mainly to those who fav…

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Wanting to Be Seen: A Review of “Trouble in Mind” at TimeLine Theatre by Hugh Iglarsh

“Trouble” is a backstage work set during the rehearsal period for a new and controversial race-themed play, written by a white man, that’s set to open on Broadway.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM

All that Chat

May 30, 2023: Grey House - Lyceum Theatre
Jun 26, 2023: Just For Us - Hudson Theatre
Jul 24, 2023: The Cottage - Hayes Theater
Nov 16, 2023: Spamalot - St. James Theatre
Dec 18, 2023: Appropriate - Hayes Theater
Mar 07, 2024: Doubt - Todd Haimes Theatre
Apr 14, 2024: Lempicka - Longacre Theatre
Apr 17, 2024: The Wiz - Marquis Theatre
Apr 18, 2024: Suffs - Music Box Theatre
Apr 25, 2024: Mother Play - Hayes Theater
Jun 10, 2024: The Drama Desk Awards