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  Take Me at Strawdog Theatre

Take Me

Strawdog Theatre
1802 W. Berenice Chicago

Inspired by true events, TAKE ME is the story of Shelly, a woman trapped by the trauma of a husband in a coma and the chaos that followed. Looking for solace, she finds herself pulled in to the realm of wild alien conspiracy theories. Voices from the sky tell her the answer to all her problems is to build an alien themed amusement park in Roswell, New Mexico. TAKE ME is a comic fantasia, a story about having faith in a world where there are more questions than answers. It's the second collaboration between Guarino and Langford since their hit play All the Fame of Lofty Deeds, produced by The House Theatre of Chicago.

Thru - Jun 22, 2019

Price: $35

Show Type: Comedy

Box Office: 773-528-9696

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  Take Me Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Somewhat Recommended

"...if you’re a fan of Langford’s work, you’ll find plenty here to merit a trip to Strawdog: At times, I was tempted to close my eyes, getting lost in the Bowie-esque longing you can find in these lush and potent melodies, true and vital feeling hidden in pastiche."
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Chris Jones

Chicago Reader - Somewhat Recommended

"...Langford, best known as one of the founding members of the Mekons, has penned a handful of songs that benefit greatly from the twangy rock arrangements by Annabelle Revak. A live band under Chuck Evans's musical direction accompanies the able and earnest cast of singer-actors; the musicians are dimly visible through an upstage scrim, but the show would be considerably enhanced if they were placed center stage."
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Albert Williams

Theatre By Numbers - Somewhat Recommended

"...Director Anderson Lawfer and arranger Anabelle Revak have worked to make everything besides the script as charming as possible. The stage is the curving hull of a NASA spacecraft, swarming with gorgeous projected constellations. The music is the rolicking Americana strum of guitars and violins. We should be filled with abject wonder, but it's a real shame about that libretto."
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Sean Margaret Wagner

NewCity Chicago - Somewhat Recommended

"...Bloomsmith and the rest of the ensemble are great. But the development of this quirky plot, which often plays out in the scarred mental landscape of Shelly’s mind, is too frequently weighed down by character inconsistencies and empty metaphors. It is also disjointed to the point where whole scenes appear lifted from other shows. Case in point: a very funny, but absolutely random bit involving Soviet space dogs leading a city council meeting. It was laugh-out-loud funny. It also had zero connection to the plot or anything else in the play. In a similar vein, several key characters, such as a talking blue dog from Shelly’s childhood (played wonderfully by Kamille Dawkins), are entertaining on stage but distract from the show’s overarching theme."
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Noel Schecter

Chicago Theatre Review - Not Recommended

"...At the heart of this show is a pretty solid story. A woman who chooses to believe aliens kidnapped her husband and child rather than face the dread of their loss in an interesting spin on the idea of running from the truth to escape pain. I think if both the music and fantastical trappings were pruned back to let that story shine through, this show could really be something to see. As it stands, none of the elements connect with each other, and thus, the audience. It’s a shame because the cast is clearly talented and charming as all get out, and there are a handful of genuine laughs over the night. Because of that, I want to like this more than I do, but unfortunately, by the end of the (too long, by the way) second act, I was just bored."
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Kevin Curran

Chicagoland Musical Theatre - Somewhat Recommended

"...Bookwriter Mark Guarino is a brave soul to embrace so much weirdness, but he should be mindful when it’s just weirdness for its own sake, with little thought as to how to make dream logic mesh with dramatic logic."
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Patrick O’Brien

Storefront Rebellion - Somewhat Recommended

"...Now Guarino and Langford have teamed for this fully original musical about a woman who comes to believe her husband and son have been abducted by aliens. There are charms to be found, but messiness rules the day."
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Kris Vire

Chicago On Stage - Somewhat Recommended

"...Bloomsmith is excellent as Shelly, immediately likable and believable whether in imagined love scenes with her husband, in fantastic conversations with her stuffed dog, or in anguish at her personal losses. But Guarino’s book keeps jumping all over the place and unfortunately every time its focus is on anything other than her it seems to be marking time. Scenes with a farcical doctor and nurse feel especially forced, as does a long scene with the zoning commission of Roswell, whose members are all—for some reason—Russian dogs."
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Karen Topham

Picture This Post - Recommended

"...Perhaps in a world that is increasingly full of doubt and conflict, a musical like Take Me is precisely the kind of lesson that we need. This writer has certainly not stopped thinking about the musical’s questions since she left the theater."
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Lauren Katz

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