Chicago Theater Review: THE BURDEN OF NOT HAVING A TAIL (Sideshow Theatre Company)

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by Paul Kubicki on July 3, 2013

in Theater-Chicago

THE BURDEN OF NOT HAVING A GOOD SCRIPT

Having now seen Sideshow Theatre’s The Burden of Not Having a Tail, I can report that, despite its billing, it did little to prepare me for the apocalypse — but then, it Paul Kubicki's Stage and Cinema review of Sideshow Theatre Company's BURDEN OF NOT HAVING A TAIL at Chicago Dramatists.didn’t do much for me at all. It’s founded on an interesting idea: A woman who is on the verge of (well, I guess past) psychological collapse, explains her preparations for the end of the world. However, the execution of the show is more apocalyptic than revelational. Desperately lacking internal logic and thematic coherence, Carrie Barrett’s script is far less fun than the majority of end-of-the-world theories already in existence. It’s not twisted so much as dumb and clumsy, and it isn’t particularly insightful even within its exceptionally narrow scope.

While she attempts to offer us a glimpse into the head of an Armageddon “prepper,” all she really suggests is that some of these people are emotionally scarred – but isn’t Paul Kubicki's Stage and Cinema review of Sideshow Theatre Company's BURDEN OF NOT HAVING A TAIL at Chicago Dramatists.that already obvious? Karie Miller plays the solitary woman as slightly unhinged, but doesn’t take us far enough past the lacking source material. An improv actress by training, she never quite manages to make the show feel like any more than a sketch (which feels too long, even at an hour and fifteen minutes). She is done few favors by Megan A. Smith’s clunky staging and an unnecessarily cluttered set. As a result, Burden is not that funny, nor does it pack the emotional punch it seems to intend. The ending couldn’t come soon enough, and the entire affair is not quite enough to justify leaving your bunker.

Paul Kubicki's Stage and Cinema review of Sideshow Theatre Company's BURDEN OF NOT HAVING A TAIL at Chicago Dramatists.photos by Jonathan L. Green

The Burden of Not Having a Tail
Sideshow Theatre Company
Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave.
scheduled to end on August 4, 2013
for tickets, visit Sideshow Theatre

for more shows, visit Theatre in Chicago

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