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  Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth at Lookingglass Theatre

Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth

Lookingglass Theatre
821 N Michigan Ave Chicago

Traveling storytellers Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth captivate audiences with spell-binding tales. But one day, The Big Bad Wolf mysteriously dies before his story is complete. Fairytales disappear from the pages, characters are utterly forgotten, and Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth must journey through the stories to restore order before they are lost forever.

Thru - Feb 19, 2017

Price: $35-$75

Show Type: Comedy/Drama

Box Office: 312-337-0665

Running Time: 1hr, 30mins

Lookingglass Theatre Seating Chart

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  Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Somewhat Recommended

"...None of that is to imply this show lacks resonance — there are some quite lovely moments and excursions into the realms of the fantastical, and you well may find that the visuals and wise ideas are more than enough to entertain your group for 90 minutes as part of a visit downtown. These are two quite special performances, in a world that is similarly theatrical and distinctive."
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Chris Jones

Chicago Sun Times - Highly Recommended

"...The delicate but steely Whiting, and the more contained Taylor are a match made in heaven whose acting skills, and puppet voices and manipulations are so polished yet natural you almost take them for granted in this exquisitely imagined and very Lookingglass-like work."
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Hedy Weiss

Chicago Reader - Recommended

"...Written and directed by longtime ensemble member Doug Hara, Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth concerns a well-dressed, polite and proper husband-and-wife team of itinerate storytellers (played with panache by Samuel Taylor and Lindsey Noel Whiting) who find themselves enmeshed in the very tales they tell. The play is diverting enough, if thin, but what really brings the show to life are John Musial's virtuosic set design and a dazzling array of puppets (designed by Blair Thomas), projections, and shadow animations."
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Jack Helbig

Windy City Times - Highly Recommended

"...Mrs. Pennyworth's solution for placating the rampaging beast's wounded vanity without disturbing the cosmological order may prove elusive to playgoers upon first viewing, but the brilliant technical effects in this Lookingglass production are more than enough to rivet audiences' attention for the 90 minutes of the performance. Prosthetic fauna and silhouette mannequins display an agile flexibility rarely seen among their puppet kin through the dazzling realms. There are also a sweeping musical score and a steampunkish gypsy-wagon for our time-traveling sleuths ( played by lone human actors Samuel Taylor and Lindsey Noel Whiting )—neither of whom are ever reduced to mere facilitators, but emerging as fully realized fabula-deserving personalities in their own right."
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Mary Shen Barnidge

BroadwayWorld - Highly Recommended

"...Hara's production succeeds in feeling both epic and intimate, but the true stars of the show are Blair Thomas' small and large scale puppet designs, shadow puppet animations by Drew Dir, Sarah Fornace and Julie Miller (for Manual Cinema Studios) and projection design by Mike Tutaj. All manage to conjure up some magical imagery that enhances the tapestry of the storytelling. The puppets -deftly manipulated by both Taylor and Whiting, are awe-inspiring. Two puppets really stand out: Fenrir, a wolf responsible for the destruction of the world and the giant boar Sæhrimnir, both of Norse mythology. The production sparks the imagination and gets at the heart of why storytelling matters."
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Misha Davenport

Stage and Cinema - Highly Recommended

"...With its winsome blend of magic realism, sci-fi fantasy, eco-awareness, and elegant escapism, Lookingglass’s latest is much more than a literary divertissement. For all its coy to precious mind games, it’s a serious statement on the worth of wonder to the world we endure. More than storytelling shenanigans of the Sondheim persuasion (Into The Woods), Whiting and Taylor’s adventures are searches for identity, shared ground among all the dynamic differences that fuel the world’s yarns and legends."
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Lawrence Bommer

ChicagoCritic - Highly Recommended

"...As theatre, Mr. &Mrs. Pennyworth is a wonderful, often whimsical, theatrical experience that stimulants our imaginations as we are sympathetic to both the fairy tale folks and the Pennyworths. The extraordinary stage graft greatly enhances the play. Both Taylor and Whiting were solid but the tech elements also contribute much to world created on Michigan Avenue at Lookingglass Theatre. This is a gem that will quickly become a theatre class by Lookingglass Theatre. Don't miss it!"
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Tom Williams

Around The Town Chicago - Highly Recommended

"...Who's afraid of the "big bad wolf"? Most everyone, I guess! But what if there was no "big Bad wolf?" What if he was killed? Would all the fairy tales that include this character be lost? Forever? "Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth", now in its World Premiere at Lookingglass Theatre takes us into the exploration of just this. Written and directed by Doug Hara, this is 90 minutes of a pure theatrical and imaginative story that will become a theatrical experience that every audience member will hold dear for a good deal of time to come."
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Alan Bresloff

NewCity Chicago - Highly Recommended

"...Of course, our subconscious gets plenty of assistance from the consummate professionals at Lookingglass. While “Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth” may not feature the athleticism of “Thaddeus and Slocum” or the sheer audacity of “Moby Dick,” the relative smallness of the production is effective and efficient. At ninety minutes, there is room enough for contemplation on the vitality of villains (what is a hero without one?) as well as a montage tour of some of the world’s most popular myths and legends."
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Kevin Greene

Chicago Theatre Review - Highly Recommended

"...There’s much to recommend in this deceptively simple, eloquently told tale of two people who love each other and what they do. Completely willing to make the ultimate sacrifice, these two characters represent all of us. This captivating and sometimes frightening play is a love story, a murder mystery and a soaring flight of fantasy. It tells of heroes and villains who often share the same tale. But most of all Doug Hara’s new play is a tribute to the power and universality of storytelling, both quiet, personal chronicles and adventurous, nail-biting cliffhangers, that keep the listener on the edge of his seat. The story of the Pennyworths is a sparkling holiday gift that keeps on giving, right into the New Year."
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Colin Douglas

Chicagoland Theater Reviews - Highly Recommended

"...Lookingglass ensemble member Doug Hara is the driving force as writer and director of this original work. Hara obviously has a deep appreciation for the power and importance of storytelling (which is a pillar on which Lookingglass was founded). Some of his ideas about storytelling as a bulwark of our culture are stimulating but toward the end of the show the verbiage tends to bog down the play. Whiting does a masterful job of keeping the conceptualizing afloat but the monologues still tend to crowd the show’s pictorial pleasures."

Dan Zeff

The Fourth Walsh - Highly Recommended

"...I imagine children would enjoy these fractured fairytales illustrated with such playful quirkiness. I loved it for all that and the deeper takeaways. Hara teases out the importance of pain and drama in any life story. He anchors all his tales within the uplifting Pennyworths' love story. I highly highly recommend spending time with MR. AND MRS. PENNYWORTH. They will make you believe in love and life and the vivid pursuit of both."
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Katy Walsh

Third Coast Review - Highly Recommended

"...The real magic of the show isn't in the plot or characters though; it is rooted in the production values. Playwright and director Doug Hara realized that early on and decided to hire a team of specialists starting with Manual Cinema to help manifest the multiple scene changes and facilitate the two actors many character changes. Indeed, the screen projections at times steal the show with their cinematic quality, seamlessly blending animations with projections, sound and shadow puppetry in a mesmerizing way."
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Kim Campbell

  Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth 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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