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  Gidion's Knot at Profiles Theatre - The Alley Stage

Gidion's Knot

Profiles Theatre - The Alley Stage
4147 N. Broadway Chicago

Over the course of a 90-minute parent/teacher conference, a grieving mother and an emotionally overwhelmed primary school teacher engage in a fraught conversation about the tragic suicide of Gidion, the mother's son and the teacher's student. Gidion may have been bullied severely -- or he might have done the abusing. As his story slowly reveals itself, the women try to reconstruct a satisfying explanation for Gidion's act as well come to terms with their excruciating feelings of culpability.

Thru - Mar 9, 2014

Price: $35 - $40

Show Type: Drama

Box Office: 773-549-1815

Running Time: 1hr, 25mins; no intermission

  Gidion's Knot Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Recommended

"...In the best moments of this involving play, there's a very useful (and courageous) discussion of how our collective nervousness at what troubled students might do has stifled the imagination, especially the potentially violent imagination, of the young. If a school has a zero-tolerance policy in regard to anything that might be perceived as a threat to fellow students, how might a creative writer who happens to be a kid actually be able to make things up? He or she should restrict themselves to the nonviolent, you might say. But Adams is pointing out that great poets, novelists and thinkers rarely self-censor in such a way. Especially when they were young."
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Chris Jones

Chicago Sun Times - Not Recommended

"...Hot topics do not necessarily make for good plays. Exhibit A: Johnna Adams' "Gidion's Knot," a 90-minute drama that is offensive on so many levels it is difficult to know where to begin when enumerating them. The fact that the play has been picked up by more than a dozen regional theaters this season is irrelevant; it signifies only that this is a trendy work, not a truthful one."
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Hedy Weiss

Chicago Reader - Somewhat Recommended

"...Some scenes are poetic and profound, but most are not. Some of the discomfort may be intentional, and it's deeply felt in this intimate staging. Katie Springmann's lively yet unobtrusive classroom set helps evoke the many characters who are mentioned but unseen."
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Keith Griffith

Windy City Times - Somewhat Recommended

"...The confrontational dynamic's progress is further protracted by Adams' propensity for inserting serial tacits into her written text ( published in American Theatre magazine ), so that a dozen "speeches" may be voiced with less than five words. Under Joe Jahraus' direction, Amy J. Carle and Laura Hooper retain their gravity with admirable aplomb—even after Heather's diabetic cat joins the list of disclosures—for the 80 minutes necessary to bring it all to catharsis, but when Corryn huffs, "I would think that the reasons for [my son's] suspension would have come up in the first half hour of conversation," we share her impatience."

Mary Shen Barnidge

Time Out Chicago - Recommended

"...Adams, an alumna of the Theatre School at DePaul, packs a lot into her 75-minute piece beyond the central mystery of what, specifically, happened to Gidion. As the two women circle each other, ostensibly waiting for the school's principal to join them, Adams touches on divergent ideas of childhood development and educational policy: Are kids fragile creatures whose innocence must be preserved, or is our overprotective idealism stifling to creativity and natural maturation? They're valid questions, and in Carle and Hooper's pair of tough, vivid performances, Gidion's Knot also becomes an arresting picture of the limits of our ability to fully know even those closest to us."
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Kris Vire

Chicago On the Aisle - Recommended

"...While it isn’t exactly a monodrama, Johnna Adams’ play “Gidion’s Knot,” about a mother looking for answers after her fifth-grade son kills himself, is a provocatively detailed – and less than flattering — portrait of the mom, with the only other character, the boy’s teacher, serving essentially as interlocutor. And Amy J. Carle’s performance at Profiles Theatre as the self-absorbed, reluctantly self-questioning mother is a wrought with painful precision. "
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Lawrence B. Johnson

Stage and Cinema - Recommended

"...While it isn't exactly a monodrama, Johnna Adams' play "Gidion's Knot," about a mother looking for answers after her fifth-grade son kills himself, is a provocatively detailed - and less than flattering - portrait of the mom, with the only other character, the boy's teacher, serving essentially as interlocutor. And Amy J. Carle's performance at Profiles Theatre as the self-absorbed, reluctantly self-questioning mother is wrought with painful precision."
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Lawrence Bommer

ChicagoCritic - Highly Recommended

"...I was mesmerized by the performances here. Laura Hooper plays the distraught teacher with a tear-eyed melancholy as well as a staunch defender of her actions. Amy J. Carle is commanding as the free-thinking college literature professor with a feminist and independent spirit. Both move in and out of aggression and vulnerability as the conference takes unpredictable turns. This is a riveting, explosive drama filled with catharsis that yields no plausible resolution for either. This is theatre at its finest: a rich script played truthfully by two fine actors. Find time to experience this moving work."
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Tom Williams

Around The Town Chicago - Recommended

"...Sometimes it is difficult to give a play a rating that I am content with. In the case of “Gideon’s Knot”, now in it’s Midwest Premiere at Profiles Theatre, I fin the acting extraordinary, the staging very intimate , but the story one of great discomfort. Of importance to my readers is, value! Is the play worth the cost of a ticket and in some cases, changing ones schedule to get to the theater at all. Again, while I find the overall production, an 85 minute two person play very intense drama, the content of the story, as it plays out is one that was uncomfortable for many of tonight’s Theater Thursday sold out crowd."
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Alan Bresloff

Chicago Theater Beat - Highly Recommended

"...If you’re in the mood for some intense theater, Gidion’s Knot is definitely a guarantee. Sometimes I like to watch the audience’s reactions to the play they’re watching, and the audience on the night I went looked as though they were holding their breaths by the end of it."

Patrick Dyer

  Gidion's Knot 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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