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  The Firebirds Take the Field Reviews
The Firebirds Take the Field
The Firebirds Take the Field

The Firebirds Take the Field
Rivendell Theatre
Thru - May 27, 2017

Show Information

Rivendell Theatre

  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune- Somewhat Recommended

"...However, the performances in Fisch's supple staging are often deliciously on point. Gerachis finds the anguished center of doubt underneath Avery's carefully constructed sarcasm. Spence makes Helen, who can't quite shake her yearning for her high school glory days, a figure of sympathy rather than pity - a crucial distinction that finds emotional heft here."
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Kerry Reid

Chicago Reader- Recommended

"...Rivendell Theatre's world-premiere production of Lynn Rosen's play works both as a biting critique of how our society treats women and as an insightful rumination on the ways unfulfilled hopes and desires can haunt or even poison one's life. Though based on an actual case in upstate New York, this story works much better as a metaphorical tale than a medical mystery-the emotions ring true even if the science seems iffy."
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Windy City Times- Highly Recommended

"...Lynn Rosen's play explores the dynamic of what is properly called "conversion disorder" through the microcosmic narrative of former townie-turned-Big-Pharma doctor Avery responding to a plea from divorced ex-BFF Helen for an investigation into the mysterious malady whose adverse publicity threatens the recovery of their abandoned municipality. As identification of the contagion's source grows ever more elusive, even Avery succumbs to the crippling malaise before an epiphany enables our physician to heal herself and the others around her."
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Mary Shen Barnidge

ChicagoCritic- Recommended

"...This well-acted play is a combination of medical mystery, personal character sketch, and family dynamic study. The resolution is plausible, leaving room for thought. We empathise with many of the characters. Meighan Gerachis' Dr. Avery, Jessica Erwin's Penelope and Tara Mellon's Kathy were particularly effective."
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Tom Williams

NewCity Chicago- Recommended

"..."Firebirds" is about history, expectation and expression. "Let us be furious!" Dr. Kahn exclaims toward the play's conclusion, following her epiphany about the emotional confinement women in particular experience. Think about "Nasty Woman" and then remember that that was last year. To follow a Darwinian chain of logic is to recognize that women have been suppressing themselves for the benefit of others (read: men) for thousands of years. Emotion is still viewed by our culture as unseemly. To be feminine is to be polite; to be masculine is to be strong and silent. Either way, the power of cultural repression is a force both strong and deeply insidious."
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Kevin Greene

Chicago Theatre Review- Highly Recommended

"...And, phantom cheerleaders aside, the show is pointed reminder about a very real problem. The “Girl Disease” or “Conversion Disorder” as it is more properly called, is more prevalent than we’d care to admit. And, exceptions and media branding aside, is a distinctly female affliction. Rosen’s work, and Rivendell Theater Ensembles’s, creates a truly feminist story: about a band of women, with shining virtues and tragic flaws in equal measure, struggling against each other, their society, the natural world, and their own secret selves. And this story of suffering, with all it’s sparkling wit and pounding reverses, though not tied up in some pretty, triumphal position, offers us an moving ending that is not unlike hope."
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Ben Kemper

Picture This Post- Recommended

"...Overall, FIREBIRDS will be a good watch for anyone intrigued by stories based on real life and also involved a medical mystery. It’s a well written mystery that doesn’t give too much away and is led by a phenomenal cast that transports you to this small town life."
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Alexis Bugajski