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  A Doll's House at Writers Theatre

A Doll's House

Writers Theatre
325 Tudor Court Glencoe

This focused one-act adaptation of the Henrik Ibsen classic reinvigorates the compelling story of the vibrant young Nora Helmer, deeply devoted to her husband Torvald. However, all is not as it appears: when Nora takes action to protect her husband, she unwittingly puts them both in jeopardy, testing the bonds of their marriage and forcing them to take stock of their relationship and ask themselves how well they truly know one another...

Thru - Dec 15, 2019

Price: $35-$80

Show Type: Drama

Box Office: 847-242-6000

Running Time: 1hr, 30mins

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  A Doll's House Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Recommended

"...Alvarez, a significant talent to emerge in Chicago, is present in each moment of the show. It’s true that she’s stronger here moment by moment than in the clarification of an overall arc, but it’s tough to find that roadmap in this particular play, which has a dazzling array of reversals of fortune, especially when cut down in this way."
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Chris Jones

Chicago Sun Times - Recommended

"...Delgado and Halberstam’s adaptation (staged by Definition Theatre in a slightly different version in 2015) is often a bit on the nose. Torvald’s lectures often sound more like right-wing thesis statements than spontaneous dialogue. But then the dialogue hits you with the scathing precision of a master barber manicuring Torvald’s unctuous face — such as when he informs Nora that “no man would sacrifice his honor over love.” Nora responds with eviscerating logic: “Millions of women do it every day.”"
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Catey Sullivan

Daily Herald - Highly Recommended

"...Every writer needs a good editor -- even pioneering writers like 19th-century playwright Henrik Ibsen. And he has them in writer/actor Sandra Delgado and Writers Theatre artistic director Michael Halberstam, who've refined Ibsen's proto-feminist "A Doll's House" in a most entertaining way."
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Barbara Vitello

Chicago Reader - Highly Recommended

"...In Lavina Jadhwani's nimble, acerbic staging, Cher Álvarez's vivacious Nora doesn't get much time to breathe before the enormity of what she's facing as a result of that long-ago forgery crashes in on her. Meantime, Greg Matthew Anderson's self-important Torvald can't see beyond his own desires for a toy wife. As feminist writer-philosopher Lou Andreas-Salome has noted, his "delight in simple gaiety and loveliness is . . . a conventional person's reluctance to face any serious struggle which could disturb the aesthetic somnolence that allows him to enjoy life with self-satisfaction.""
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Kerry Reid

Chicago On the Aisle - Highly Recommended

"...The 90-minute distillation of Ibsen’s “A Doll’s House” now on display at Writers Theatre is a fast ride to a shattering finish – an emotional grinder that goes instantly and unflinchingly to the core of this still-remarkable story of a woman’s painful self-discovery, and it never lets up."
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Lawrence B. Johnson

Let's Play at ChicagoNow - Recommended

"...Writers Theatre continues the 2019/20 season with a reboot on Ibsen's classic tale 'A Doll's House' adapted by Sandra Delgado and Michael Halberstam with a fresh and captivating streamlined one-act 90-minute production. The duo, along with director Lavina Jadhwani tells the tale of a tragic hypocrisy Victorian middle-class marriage and the fate of a woman living in Norway, in the late 1800s around Christmastime."
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Rick and Brenda McCain

Around The Town Chicago - Highly Recommended

"...Most theater audiences are familiar with Henrik Ibsen’s “A Doll House”, a three act story dealing with love and hate, and relationships in general. Michael Halberstam and Sandra Delgado have adapted this play to a new, streamlined 90 minutes of solid theater and this version is now on the Gillian stage at their venue. This is the “black box” that they redo for every production."
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Alan Bresloff

WTTW - Highly Recommended

"...As it turns out, everyone in this “Doll’s House” feels trapped in some profound way, and each of them is wracked by fear and desire. The tension is palpable. But ultimately it is Nora - part brilliant minx, part unexpected rebel - who declares her independence and slams the door. Alvarez takes you with Nora every step of the way."
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Hedy Weiss

Chicago Theatre Review - Highly Recommended

"...Through this drama, audiences will see how, while many strides have been made in women's rights since the play first opened in 1879, this play is still auspiciously appropriate today. Lavina Jadhwani's direction is smart and dynamic, always keeping this story in motion. She brings to life the point in which Nora, Tovald's little songbird, who he keeps caged in this doll's house makes the difficult decision to become her own person."
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Colin Douglas

Chicagoland Theater Reviews - Somewhat Recommended

"...Overall I didn’t find the adaptation illuminating in its condensation. The characters and plot points were preserved, though in reduced form that squeezed some juice out of the narrative. But mostly the play holds the stage and the finale that leads to Nora’s walking out on her husband is still gripping, if too sudden. A more charismatic, or at least more experienced, leading performance would be desirable, though the Writers Theatre actress may get there yet. But overall the production is shorter, but not an improvement."
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Dan Zeff

Chicago Theater and Arts - Recommended

"...Ibsen's "A Doll House" is based on the true story of novelist Laura Kieler, a friend of Ibsen who did get an illegal loan so she could take her ill husband to Italy. Her husband reacted like Torvald does, but divorced her before committing her to an asylum, then taking her back."
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Jodie Jacobs

PicksInSix - Recommended

"...In the end, Nora's transformation from captive to free spirit is complete. Whether that transformation will change our perception about the dynamics of love and loss in the here-and-now will be the question you ponder on the way home. In retrospect, while Nora's intentions may be virtuous, they appear unorthodox to everyone around her. And when her make-believe world finally comes crashing down and she is left with "nothing at all... not even grief," the only option that remains is change."
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Ed Tracy

   This show has been Jeff Recommended*

*The designation of "Jeff Recommended" is given to a production when at least ONE ELEMENT of the show was deemed outstanding by the Joseph Jefferson Awards Committee.

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