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  Eat Your Heart Out at Rivendell Theatre

Eat Your Heart Out

Rivendell Theatre
5775 N. Ridge Avenue Chicago

Eat Your Heart Out, the hit of the 2012 Humana Festival of New Plays, intertwines the stories of six people and delves into the complexities of family, body image and hearts and minds consumed by longing. Alice (Mary Cross*) and Gabe (Michael Szeles) are desperate to adopt a child and create a family. Single mom Nance(Katherine Keberlein) is eager to connect with her overweight teenage daughter Evie (Anne Joy). Evie is trying to get her geeky best friend (Andrew Goetten) to like her as much as she likes him. Woven through these stories is Nance's attempt to find love on with Tom (Charlie Strater) as all six characters dance around their own loneliness.

Thru - Jul 12, 2014

Price: $20-$30

Show Type: Comedy/Drama

Box Office: 773-334-7728

Running Time: 1hr, 30mins;no intermission

  Eat Your Heart Out Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Recommended

"..."Coffee's the date that says 'I'm not committing to a meal,'" says Tom, the jittery and eager-to-please guy on a blind date near the beginning of Courtney Baron's "Eat Your Heart Out." The play at first appears to be the theatrical equivalent of a quick pick-me-up - the blind date as a crucible for all our romantic foibles feels pretty well-worn, after all. But Baron ends up offering some substantial insights into the tangled ways we try to present ourselves at our best - only to slip up when what we want threatens to slip from our grasp."
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Kerry Reid

Chicago Reader - Highly Recommended

"...Regina Garcia’s versatile set makes us feel like we’re peering into a diorama, a little window into the five characters’ lives. And the play’s basic building blocks—daughter hates mother, couple wants baby, boy gets rejected—are launched into orbit through Baron’s sharp, pointed writing and the cast’s electric delivery. Anne Joy gives a particularly nuanced performance as Evie, a resentful, overweight teen who trips into love via sarcasm. Sometimes, the show says, it’s better to be pushed than never to fall at all."
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Chloe Riley

Centerstage - Highly Recommended

"...Directed by Hallie Gordon, the play is alternately hilarious and sensitive in it's dealings with the fragile emotions of these people. The story is all about expectations and anxieties, and what happens when we stress too much on them. Gordon leads us through an emotional freefall that renders nothing but empathy from the audience. Keberlein starts out at an high pitch, but accomplishes the difficult of showing Nance at several different emotional stages. She often has to switch between them on a dime, and succeeds wonderfully. Joy is a natural born comedienne, with a unique brand of humor that rises out of her consistently calm demeanor. Cross also does a very nice job as Alice, unleashing her pain and insecurity with grace."

Will Cameron

Time Out Chicago - Highly Recommended

"...The comedy in the home interview scenes makes the more dramatic moments hit with gut-wrenching impact. Just like everyone else in this cast, Alice and Gabe are facing a personal apocalypse, but there’s still hope. The end of Baron’s play is its greatest triumph, bringing all the storylines together without resorting to overly convenient plot contrivances. Baron paves the way to a poignant finale without drawing attention to the construction, and the performers navigate the tricky emotional currents of the script to reach that finish line with confidence and grace."
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Oliver Sava

ChicagoCritic - Highly Recommended

"...Theatre is capable of doing many things, but one thing it does exceptionally well is allow the viewer to step right into the lives of others. Eat Your Heart Out is one of those plays where you forget that you’re sitting in a theatre and instead become a fly on the wall of someone else’s life. This is not one to miss."
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Michael Gerrity

Chicago Stage Standard - Highly Recommended

"...Hallie Gordon (Director) uses the small stage well as she moves her actors from scene to scene without hesitation and guides them adroitly though this 90 minute intermissionless ride. She manages the inherent trouble in Regina Garcia's set as best she can. Garcia's set, although beautiful to look at and fitting nicely into the "alley style" playing space has two major problems...columns. The columns help divide the four separate locations of the play, but prove to be a neck craning, pain in the neck. Diane Fairchild's moody lighting enhances the proceedings as do Christine Pascual's terrific costumes."

Rand Ringgenberg

Around The Town Chicago - Highly Recommended

"...This is a solid 90 minutes of story telling that has just a few confusing moments, but for the most part is tender and caring and can open one's eyes to things that we tend to ignore, that should be looked at in great detail. While there were some very funny moments in the scenes involving Gabe and Alice with their plight to "get a child", one must understand that Nance's job is to make sure that she gets the proper information to the agency so they place the child in the best possible environment available. While we can laugh, we must pay attention. This is true of the weight problem for Evie. She is not fat because of her father leaving! She is not fat because her mother works to hard! She is fat because she eats the wrong things and far to much of it. While one might laugh at some of what baron brings to us, we must also make sure that we are learning from this and passing it along to those we care about."
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Alan Bresloff

The Fourth Walsh - Highly Recommended

"...EAT YOUR HEART OUT masterfully portrays people struggling to be honest with each other. The intense conversations are peppered with abrupt humor. These lives unravel in an untidy heaping mess. The truths revealed are life altering… or maybe not. The unfinished ending was perfect for the imperfection of reality."
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Katy Walsh

  Eat Your Heart Out Photo Gallery

   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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