By James Asmus
Directed by Andrew Hobgood
Produced by The New Colony
At Royal George Theatre
Powerful relationship drama well acted
The New Colony theatre company has a marvelous world premiere drama now running at the upstairs at the Royal George theatre. This show is not your run-of-the-mill relationship drama. Not by yards! Calls to Blood is as 80 minute, tightly drawn and well directed (by Andrew Hobgood), relationship drama that starts out with a typical situation. Jacob (Gary Tiedemann) and Alison (Sara Gitenstein) are a perforct married couple of six years. The indeed do love each other, they get along terribly well and life is perfect for them. Their two best friends Kirk (Evan Linder) and Suellen (Mary Hollis Inboden) are each looking for an idealized relationship such as Jacob and Alison have so the marrieds set up Kirk and Suellen to meet over a home cooked dinner (by Alison).
That matchmaking doesn’t go over too well yet Alison announces that she and Jacob are trying to have a child. As the show develops we learn that Alison has had three miscarriages and she is going through medical treatment and tests. We also see that Kirk and Suellen, two zany singles, have more in common than merely sexual attraction. Kirk is an attorney and he helps Jacob find his real birth parents in order to help find out if there is anything in the family history about birth defects.
The shocking turn that this true story takes trenders the happy couple into two tragic figures. I’ll not reveal more but trust me, this show will get you thinking about enjoying every moment of happiness you can. There is only one truth that could destroy Jacob and Alison. You’ll be amazed at what that is and, remember, it is a trues story.
The four actors–Evan Linder, Gary Tiedmann, Sarah Gitenstein and Mary Hollis Inboden offer compellingly honest and deeply emotional performances. This is a little gem of a play well worth seeing My only problem was why the producers felt that needed an intermission (which droned on) when the show’s actual time is about 80 miutes?
The dramatic tension would have increase even more without an intermission. Just a thought.
As it now plays, Calls to Blood is a riveting drama with empathetic characters.
At the Royal George Studio Theatre, 1641 N.Halsted, Chicago, IL, call 312-988-9000, tickets $25, $20 seniors, Students/Industry $15, Thursdays thru Saturdays at 8 pm, running time is 90 minutes with intermission.