“Dating: Adults Embracing Failure”,, a Huge Success!
Highly Recommended: Theatre In Chicago
Reviewed by: Justin Allan Kimball
I will always love a good sketch comedy show. I think it will always be dear in my heart and that is why I was very excited and a little skeptical to see “Dating: Adults Embracing Failure”. On the one hand I love sketch but “relationship” sketches can sometimes be stereotypical and way over done. Even when I entered the theater I had no idea what I was getting into because there was no set, no music and no programs. It could’ve gone either way in my opinion, and I’m SO glad it went the right way. The production may have been one of the more fun and genuine theater experiences I have encountered in Chicago. The story revolves around two actors (Josh Lanzet and Lindy Voeltner) who put on the “masks” of many different types of couples. Anywhere from an arguing older couple to a couple of Mimes who just want to find love. With some dancing and singing thrown in there, this production tells a very fun, silly and heartfelt version of modern relationships/break ups.
Lanzet and Voeltner did a fantastic job writing this piece. It started off a bit slow but by the time we met the “older couple” it really started to get a head of steam. We met so many fun and interesting people who very quickly became important to the audience. They made us laugh, but interestingly enough made us cry. There was a moment where I literally JUST met a character and then they were gone (dead) in the next scene. I had the knot in my throat sooo hard, and by the time they came back to that story line I had full on tears. Lanzet’s monologue to his fallen love was on the edge of too real for me so that just shows how fantastic it really was. You don’t often get that kind of instant development of a character. Brava. Brava. The only thing that took away from the story was some of the goofier moments in the show. I LOVE me some goofy in a show like this but some of the silly took me more out of the show then it pulled me in. For instance, the mime sequence was very fun but it felt underdeveloped compared to the rest of the show. If you are going to be a mime, REALLY be a mime. It just was a bit sloppy and the rest of the show felt so real that it made these moments stand out in a not so good light. Otherwise the performances of these two were absolutely spot on.
Now, I have really laid it on thick with how much I loved this show but there was something that very much bothered me. The technical aspects of this show were a bit lackluster. The choreography of the synchronized movements were often off and distracted from the clever lines being spouted off. I loved that during the transitions sometimes they did funny little movements that kept the audience in the show. SO, let’s change that sometimes to every time. Some of the off stage exits seemed too long and unneeded for the very little they had to do. There were no big costume changes and much of the costumes were changed on stage. It just hurt the pacing and I know they could put a more clever spin on the whole thing since they did “sometimes”. Things like this are so easy to fix and would help the production value immensely. It’s a clean show, now just polish it and make it perfect.
“Dating: Adults Embracing Failure” is a much see show for anyone who has ever been or ever plans on being in a relationship. On multiple occasions I felt myself being launched back in time to a previous relationship and having fun reminiscing on what an idiot I was. So get yourself a date and come out to the Royal George Theater.
Dating: Adults Embracing Failure runs every Friday thru Aug. 1st at the Royal George Theatre, 1641 N Halsted St, Chicago, IL 60614 at 8pm. Tickets are $20.00 adultsembracingfailure.com/tickets. (312) 988-9000