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  The Dream Of The Burning Boy at Profiles Theatre - The Alley Stage

The Dream Of The Burning Boy

Profiles Theatre - The Alley Stage
4147 N. Broadway Chicago

Since the sudden death of his favorite student, high-school teacher Larry Morrow has been falling asleep at his desk and dreaming. The school's guidance counselor hangs inspirational posters designed to help everyone "process their emotions” while the student's sister and friends find little solace in their schoolwork. The Dream of the Burning Boy is a bittersweet story of choices made, opportunities lost, and finding the strength to move on.

Thru - Apr 28, 2013

Thursdays: 8:00pm
Fridays: 8:00pm
Saturdays: 5:00pm & 8:00pm
Sundays: 7:00pm

Price: $20-$40

Show Type: Drama

Box Office: 773-549-1815

Running Time: 1hr, 20mins; no intermission

  The Dream Of The Burning Boy Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Somewhat Recommended

"...director Joe Jahraus' production has some deftly directed individual moments, especially those in which the young actors (Joel Collins is also part of that group) let rip, but it struggles to find the right consistent tone. It feels woolly, muddy and overly staccato in places (the best scenes seem to come in bursts and then dissipate) and doesn't stay true to the best course: painful truths, slowly revealed as life goes on anyway."
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Chris Jones

Chicago Sun Times - Recommended

"...The 90-minute play, which takes its title from Sigmund Freud's "The Interpretation of Dreams," is now receiving its Midwest premiere by Profiles Theatre where, under director Joe Jahraus, four hugely impressive young actors (one still in high school and three in college) join several veterans."
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Hedy Weiss

Chicago Reader - Recommended

"...Events accumulate rather than build. Though Joe Jahraus's staging never manages to replace what's missing, it definitely helps. As the English teacher, Darrell Cox offers a vivid portrait of a man stuck in himself. Joel Collins is fun to watch as a charmingly feckless friend of Dane's, and Alaina Stacey is full-out formidable as Dane's profoundly pissed-off sister."
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Tony Adler

Windy City Times - Recommended

"...In the end, though, the show belongs to the teenagers, played by actors barely a year away in age from their personae and thus capable of imbuing their dialogue with the unimistakeable authenticity of adolescent confusion at their first encounter with death-in particular, Alaina Stacey (a senior at Whitney Young High School) as the ambivalent Rachel, whose stubborn bravado in the face of mixed feelings over her brother's memory makes us want to assure her (noting the irony as we do) that loss will come easier with experience."
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Mary Shen Barnidge

Time Out Chicago - Somewhat Recommended

"...David West Read's 2011 work presents convincing, clashing portraits of grief, even as it relies on soap-operatic twists to surpass a PSA level of gravitas. Read provides a reason for Mr. Morrow's favoritism toward the lost kid (who's nicely played by Vic Kuligoski in a pair of scenes). What neither the playwright nor director Joe Jahraus supply is an explanation for the script's woefully contracted universe. Why do we spend three extended moments with a bumbling guidance counselor (Eric Burgher, displaying his usual full-on charm but not justifying his character's prominence) yet never meet another of Dane's teachers? Read's school play is tied up a bit too tidily."
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Kris Vire

Chicago On the Aisle - Highly Recommended

"...“The Dream of the Burning Boy,” playwright David West Read’s painfully honest look at loss and the secret chambers of heartache, is enjoying an all-too-brief run at Profiles Theatre with Darrell W. Cox in a performance of ironic eloquence as the teacher who cannot speak his heart."
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Lawrence B. Johnson

ChicagoCritic - Recommended

"...Like viewing one of those Thorne rooms at the Art Institute, Profile Theatre's Midwest debut of The Dream of the Burning Boy is intimate, filled with pithy detail, and indicative of an achingly larger environment that only be glimpsed through a glass dimly. Covering a vast swath of emotional reactions to death, Dream is an evocative work buoyed by some great performances."
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Clint May

Chicagoland Theater Reviews - Highly Recommended

"..."The Dream of the Burning Boy" is one of those plays that give hope to the future of American drama. It's adult (in the best sense of this beleaguered word). It takes a difficult theme ripe for over sentimentality and audience manipulation and totally engages the viewer's attention with its authentic voice. The scene between Morrow and Dane's mother may be a stumbling block with its revelation that some viewers will claim sends the show into soap opera. That's ultimately in the eye of the beholder, but the real and often pungent dialogue and the crackling confrontations carry the day. Plus the cast, both the kids and the adults, really is excellent."

Dan Zeff

Chicago Theater Beat - Recommended

"...The Dream of the Burning Boy (the title referring to Freud's description of a dream where a father would rather see a son in pain than imagine him dead) delivers an impressive cross-section of wide-ranging bereavement."

Lawrence Bommer

  Related Articles

Role Playing: Darrell W. Cox sees theater's core in closed-off teacher of 'Burning Boy'
From Chicago On the Aisle
Lawrence B. Johnson

  The Dream Of The Burning Boy 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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