Tuesday December 18 9:46 am

Spotlighting events along the south shore of Lake Michigan

"Curve of Departure" - Review by Alan Bresloff

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The patriarch of this family is Rudy ( Nussbaum at his best). The deceased is his son, who as we learn, he hated, yet loved! With him, his ex-daughter-in-law, Linda ( a divine performance by Penelope Walker), who has become his right hand and has pledged to take care of him. Her son, and his grandson, Felix (deftly handled by Sean Parris) arrives with his boyfriend, Jackson ( a solid performance and character development by Danny Martinez) complete the “family” that is gathered to pay respects to a man that they would prefer forgetting.

Bonds’s story is about more than this gathering of a somewhat dysfunctional family to attend a funeral. It is about each of the family members and how the past has paved the path for their future. In the case of Rudy, his future is one that scares him and so rather than become a burden, he would prefer ending it. Linda, who is a dedicated teacher, realizes that her ex-father-in-law needs her in his time of decline and rather than put him in a home, would retire and make sure that his end comes on his terms. Felix and Jackson are faced with their own personal problems and choices that they must make for their own futures. How deep is their love and to what ends will they go for each other?

This is a brilliant script, superbly directed and perfectly performed. I can guarantee that you will feel the emotion that this family is going through ( you might need a tissue or two) and along the way, will have a laugh or two and be reminded someone in your own familt. These characters are real! This production is solid. From the costumes (Alexis Chaney), the sound (Andre Pluess), lighting (Heather Gilbert) and props (Lydia Hanchett) each detail is sheer perfection. This is a piece that will not only entertain you, it will also open your mind. I wonder if there might be a sequel or even a prequel in the future. This story could easily be told as to what happens to these people after the funeral, or for that matter, how did they get to this point in their lives. Meanwhile, I suggest you find the time to get to Northlight Theatre 9501 Skokie Blvd., in Skokie to see “Curve of Departure” and Mike Nussbaum at work.

“Curve of Departure” will continue thru October 21st with performances as follows:
Wednesdays 1 p.m. and 7: 30 p.m.
Thursdays 7:30 p.m.
Fridays 8 p.m.
Saturdays 2:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Sundays 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. (on 9/30)

Tickets range from $30- $88 and can be purchased at the box office, by calling 847-673-6300 or online at www.northlight.org. Student tickets are $15 (subject to availability)

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