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  Packing at Online Stream


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Half of discovering who you are is finding where you belong. PACKING, a solo performance from writer/performer Scott Bradley (Alien Queen, Carpenters Halloween, We Three Lizas), is the tale of a genderqueer vagabond leaving small-town Iowa on a three-decade long odyssey, continually reinventing himself through new identities across multiple cities. His journey captures a snapshot of recent history through personal accounts of assaults, addictions, the plague years of the AIDS crisis and the fight for marriage equality. Combining personal memoir, historical record, popular music, and ancestral frontier stories, Bradley's story illuminates the deeply personal LGBTQ struggles too-often erased from U.S. history.

Thru - Jul 15, 2020

Price: $15

Show Type: Drama

Box Office: 773-975-8150

Running Time: 1hr, 30mins

  Packing Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Somewhat Recommended

"...Bradley walks the audience through the emotional journey he has taken from growing up in Iowa, to living as a queer man during the AIDS crisis, to finding his place here in Chicago. It's a journey that deals with drug and alcohol abuse, the fight for marriage equality and, most prevalently, a nagging feeling of inadequacy stemming from childhood abuse."
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Jerald Pierce

Chicago Reader - Highly Recommended

"...I was reminded throughout of Steven Strafford's Methtacular!, also presented by About Face a few years ago, which touched on similar serious themes and used comedy to make harrowing plot points more cutting or palatable. A bit more humor here would serve Bradley's often painful story well, but the warmth expressed in his acceptance and love for his midwestern home is undeniable."
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Dan Jakes

Windy City Times - Highly Recommended

"...With Packing, Bradley reveals a serious side to himself that is therapeutic for himself and everyone else along for the ride. It's a personally brave and fulfilling story that deserves to be seen."
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Scott C. Morgan

Stage and Cinema - Highly Recommended

"...Some solo shows can be valued simply for their superb simulations of someone else’s story. Others succeed because we pay extra special attention when the chronicler actually experienced what they’re sharing. Packing, an About Face Theatre world premiere by and from Chicago theater artist Scott Bradley, has the best of both breeds of one-person plays. As they say, “he’s been there and sent back postcards” and Bradley tells his trauma with pizzazz as much as precision."
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Lawrence Bommer

Chicago Theatre Review - Highly Recommended

"...Skillfully directed with sensitivity and artistry by Chay Yew, the esteemed artistic director of Victory Gardens, Scott Bradley is wonderful in this solo performance. He paints a colorful self-portrait of a talented, caring human being who simply wants to be loved, recognized for his skills and accepted for who he is. In this touching, heartfelt, honest and often humorous performance, Mr. Bradley bares his soul and shows us that he’s Everyman. He’s just like every one of us, in so many ways. Thus, this incredible solo performance taps into our own hearts and souls and leaves us enlightened, as well as entertained."
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Colin Douglas - Highly Recommended

"...“Packing” is a journey of self-acceptance through an era that was less gay friendly. It’s Scott Bradley exposing his storied life in order to help anyone who finds themselves in the same boat. It’s a theater experience that gives voice to anyone who fled small town roots in order to find themselves."
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John Accrocco

Chicago On Stage - Highly Recommended

"...Packing is the kind of piece that will linger long after the audience leaves the theatre. Whether you are gay or straight, whether or not you have your own memories of the events Bradley describes, you will leave with this story under your skin."
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Karen Topham

Picture This Post - Highly Recommended

"...Full of honesty and triumph, Packing is must-see. Yew and Bradley's collaboration creates an experience that this writer certainly has not stopped thinking about since."
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Lauren Katz

Rescripted - Recommended

"...Luckily, the meat of the story is Scott's narration, and this is incredibly strong. Any well-lived life is hard to wrangle into a story, especially a life still in progress, but what we see here feels cohesive, relevant, and enthralling. I hunger for more queer stories like this, that both examine in unrelenting detail the effects of bigotry and trauma, and propose concrete solutions for moving past them."
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Aaron Lockman

TheatreWorld Internet Magazine - Highly Recommended

"...Reliving Scott Bradley’s story is a great way to kick off the holiday season, the triumphant story of a person who, with everything he has, demands all that life has to offer and demands that he be free from suffering, self-pity and narrow-mindedness. Although he speaks of experiencing crippling loneliness and isolation, a depth of humiliation that is unfathomable, he never lost his footing on the ladder of success. His story is an iconic inspiration to anyone who thinks they “just can’t take it anymore.” He is living proof that there’s always a better day ahead."
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Ruth Smerling

The Broadway Blog - Recommended

"...Though there's plenty of sadness to be found in life, there's also unabashed joy. Through Bradley and Yew's artistic synergy, Packing enables audiences to experience life's most profound moments."
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Lauren Emily Whalen

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