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  Metamorphoses at Lookingglass Theatre


Lookingglass Theatre
821 N Michigan Ave Chicago

Fourteen years ago Lookingglass debuted Metamorphoses, a play of such grace and beauty that the memory of it still lingers in the minds of audiences today. The critically-acclaimed, record-breaking Chicago engagement led to a Broadway production that garnered Mary Zimmerman the 2002 Tony Award for Best Director and catapulted Lookingglass onto the national stage. In the simple beauty of a rippling pool of water, Ensemble Member Mary Zimmerman conjured Ovid’s myths into gorgeous imagery, provocative moments and breathtaking storytelling. Metamorphoses’ long-anticipated Chicago revival will feature a number of Lookingglass Ensemble Members and original cast members.

Thru - Jan 6, 2013

Price: $28-$70

Show Type: Performance Art

Box Office: 312-337-0665

Running Time: 1hr, 40mins; no intermission

Lookingglass Theatre Seating Chart

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  Metamorphoses Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Highly Recommended

"... But the genius of this piece — and I think "Metamorphoses" is that rare work of collective theatrical genius that deserves wide exposure to a new generation — is that it does not feel so personal that you cannot find your way in, live among its stories and reboot your life."
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Chris Jones

Chicago Reader - Highly Recommended

"...Metamorphoses is perfect theatrical storytelling that never stumbles or strikes a false note. Zimmerman's approach is painterly and literary but also acrobatically physical, and the ten-member cast bring it to life, combining athletic movement with beautifully spoken narration."
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Albert Williams

Centerstage - Highly Recommended

"... Zimmerman's script is another useful tool: its tart modern edge, helps distract the audience with laughs while the heavier themes slip round the back. And the cast, who all play multiple parts, simultaneously stars and chorus, are uniformly wonderful, as are the design team. It's really one of the rare productions that does not have a weak link in the chain; it was fantastic the first time around and it is still fantastic now. Like the stories upon which it is based, this show is truly timeless."

Time Out Chicago - Highly Recommended

"...The actors splash and thrash through these effectively, affectingly told stories of love and loss, death and life, hope and change, which ebb and flow into one another as fluidly as their liquid stage. You might be given to ask, while cringing for the show’s wardrobe crew, “Why water?” But whatever else has changed leading up to the much-traveled piece’s first production in Lookingglass’s current home in the Water Tower Water Works, the water works."
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Kris Vire

Chicago On the Aisle - Highly Recommended

"... Zimmerman’s “Metamorphoses,” in its 90-minute sweep of vignettes, comprises but a fraction of Ovid’s astonishing 15-book narrative poem of collected myths that purported to explain everything about the universe, life and death included. Written in Rome during the first decade A.D., Ovid’s cheeky tome was wildly popular, and if — like me — you end up wanting to read more from the source, it’s worth noting that Zimmerman based her play on the rollicking, free verse 1994 translation of American poet David R. Slavitt. She quotes him exactly as the play opens and maintains his casual spirit throughout."
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Nancy Malitz

Stage and Cinema - Highly Recommended

"... A revival that justifies itself from the first minute on, Zimmerman’s literally fluid spellbinding begins and ends with the cautionary tale of Midas’ terrible touch. We forget that his curse was cured: A magical redemption returned his daughter from gold to flesh. So, Prospero-like, Zimmerman ends her enchantment by destroying her power to shift shapes. Reluctantly, we return to our too too solid flesh, our last vision being that of candlelit toy boats floating off like tributes to the dead."
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Lawrence Bommer

ChicagoCritic - Recommended

"... This is a major theatrical event thatsophisticated theatre patrons will enjoy; it also will please those into Greek Mythology.Since I’m nota strong fan of Greek myths, my appreciation of Metamorphoses is in the acting and the rich style. It sure was a splash! (sorry)."
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Tom Williams

Chicago Stage Standard - Highly Recommended

"... Literally plunging into their storytelling, the ten-person cast (too perfectly interwoven to deserve separate mention) gamely splash, float, drown, and paddle as they emote between ripples. Among many delights, the tale of Orpheus and Eurydice is told twice. In Ovid's familiar version the former loses his wife to hell from curiosity or doubt; Rilke's retelling imagines Eurydice so full of death that she can't see her husband's love."

Lawrence Bommer

Let's Play at ChicagoNow - Highly Recommended

"...This production is a theatrical box of chocolates. Sure, there is greek tragedy by the buckets full. But there is unexpected humor and tenderness too. The woman behind me audibly gasped five times. Me? I laughed, I cried, I worried... the human connection is continuously free-flowing. Hope springs from despair. The finale is candle-lit perfection with a memorable reunion. Don’t miss this rebirth of METAMORPHOSIS. The gods were smiling on Mary Zimmerman on this one!"
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Katy Walsh

Around The Town Chicago - Recommended

"... Mythology is not everyone’s “cup of tea”, but what we see in this work is much more contemorary and far easier to understand. Myths are a form of fairy tale and if presented as such ( which Zimmerman does to perfection) they can be fun to watch and once viewed, discuss. Midas, Phaeton,Hermes,Aphrodite and many others take on a different nature and become more realistic in this dazzling and powerful production. The storytelling is filled with mystery, romance and humor and young or old, will become a theatrical experience that will linger with you for many years to come. Having seen it many years ago, I found this production one that brought back some memories."
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Alan Bresloff

Chicago Theatre Review - Highly Recommended

"... Now Chicago’s audiences have another chance to experience the magic, because there truly is magic in this production. Zimmerman has created a mystical journey through some of the most well known ancient tales, often tales within tales. The audience is included in the making of such magic: a visible actor sounds the golden steps of Midas, seamless movement and partnering sequences sometimes tell more than words could, and most effective is the giant, rippling pool that claims most of Daniel Ostling’s set design."

Darcy Rose Coussens

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   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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