By Sarah Myers.
Directed by Jacob Harvey.
Produced by Solo Celebration &
The Other Theatre Co.
At the Greenhouse Theatre, Chicago.
Stream of conscious solo show is confusing and disjointed.
The Other Theatre Co.’s website contains the following explanation of I Do Today:
“Failed relationships, former lovers and half-eaten wedding cake clutters the mind of one Jewish woman determined to track the trajectory of love and loss in her life thus far. As the play builds a constantly confounding and quickly changing family tree of many marriages (and even more divorces), it poses questions about how modern marriage fits in with potentially outdated ideals. Bisexuality, Kabbalah and baby teeth dangle from the many branches of this thoughtful play, exploring how we might use our inheritances to reimagine what’s possible.”
I posted the above because, despite a determined performance by Carin Solkaitis, I Do Today is a confounding solo show that first confused me then bored me throughout. I never realized how long a 75 minute one-act can be! Silkaitis uses a maker to draw her family tree as she tries to remember and analyze within her subconscious mind her notions of family, love, bisexuality, divorce, marriage, being a Jewish family and all sorts of trivia. This disjointed storytelling at first was innovative but increasingly became monotonous the boring. Billed as a funny show, I found little to laugh at – only the usual friends of the cast belly-laughed, few others laughed. This show became an overwhelming exorcise in over telling a story.
As I left the theatre, i asked myself who is the audience for this show? Jewish theatre patrons? Lovers of solo shows? I Do Today only contains one of the three elements that make solo shows work: a terrific performance by the actor (Carin Silkaitis was terrific and work hard to make the material work.) But, this show lacks the other two essential elements: no celebrity or historical figure and a strong comprehensive script.
In this case, the script doomed the show. The woman’s internal explorations became too much for audiences to handle. Too bad Carin Silkaitis had such material to work with! I don’t believe there is an actress slive that could make Sarah Myers acript stage worthy.
Date Reviewed: September 7, 2016.
For more info checkout the I Do Today page at theatreinchicago.com.
At the Greenhouse theatre, 2257 N. lincoln, Chicago, IL call773-404-7336, www.greenhousetheater.org, tickets $34 -$48, Thursdays thru Saturdays at 7:30 pm, Saturdays and Sundays matinees at 2 pm, running time is 75 minutes without intermission, through October 9, 2016.