• Amanda Clifford
  • Falling prey to a simplistic conceit: Exit, Pursued by a Bear

In honor of Pride Week, the Neo-Futurists present 30 Queer Plays in 60 Straight Minutes, a greatest-LGBTQ-hits collection drawn from the hundreds of two-minute plays written for their long-running show Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind. Reader intern Sharon Lurye advises audiences to expect the typical frenzied pace—plus lots more crossdressing than usual. Speaking of greatest hits, Dan Jakes recommends Time After Time, a Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre revue offering some of the best work (both well-known and obscure) by Broadway songwriting legend Jule Styne. Definitely not recommended are two touring jukebox musicals: (a) the schlocky, uninspired, and—given the existence of Mamma Mia!—just plain unnecessary pseudo-ABBA show Dancing Queen and (b) Rock of Ages, which, in its Broadway Playhouse incarnation, serves up racist stereotypes and casual misogyny along with 80s rock tunes.

But it’s not only the bad stuff that comes in pairs. Reader critics suggest you see two musicals inspired by historical events. Albert Williams praises the “first-rate theatrical storytelling” of Lookingglass Theatre’s new Eastland, based on the disastrous 1915 wreck of a steamer in the Chicago River. And Kerry Reid says strong acting and a lovely score distinguish BoHo Theatre’s revival of Floyd Collins, which recounts the media frenzy that ensued when the titular spelunker became trapped below ground in 1925.