Oil Lamp's THE ODD COUPLE Review - Lots of Fun in this Old Favorite

Take a ride out to the unique, warm and welcoming Oil Lamp Theater in Glenview and treat yourself to the award-winning Neil Simon comedy, The Odd Couple.  It just opened and will run through February 22nd.  You’ll find complete information and links at the end of this review.

 

Is this your first time seeing The Odd Couple? Then drop everything and make plans to go. What a romp! Two woefully incompatible roommates (I know married couples like this, too!) demonstrate the power of friendship, the joy of companionship and the benefits of learning to just get along:

 

Felix Ungar (played so “intensely” by Steve Zeal) a judgmental neat freak whose wife can’t take it anymore (bear in mind, she throws him out even though he cooks, cleans and disinfects!)

 

 

Who is nice enough to take him in? His longtime friend Oscar Madison (played by Chris Miller), an ultra-slob but a good friend. Even if you’ve seen this play (or one of the many versions of it) and pretty much know where it’s going, you just can’t help but laugh at this pair.

Watch the marvelous mayhem unfold: their poker buddies, Murray, Speed, Vinnie, and Roy (played by Rob Weinstein, Grant Niezgodski, Zach Bloomfield, Michael Dalberg, respectively) don’t even see it coming.  And the ebullient Pigeon Sisters, Cecily and Gwendolyn (played by Elizabeth Mazur and Cristiana Barbatelli), their upstairs neighbors, are a hilarious, sugary confection.

 

 

Keith Gerth, the Oil Lamp Theater’s founder and artistic director, directs the production with remarkable ingenuity, turning this small venue—you’re never more than 25 feet from the stage-- into a charming, intimate space: the size actually becomes an asset.

 

The Oil Lamp Theater opened its doors in Glenview in July, 2012. In Oil Lamp’s unique environment, the theater space is just as much a part of the artistic canvas as the carefully selected theatrical productions. The Oil Lamp experience begins with a warm greeting that welcomes guests into a home-like environment. It includes candlelight and as if it needed an added plus, Oil Lamp Theater’s lobby is so cozy, they even serve free, home baked cookies served during intermission.  It’s also a BYOB, so if you’d like to bring your favorite wine or beer, they’ll serve it for you.  During the holidays, one guest even brought all the ingredients for egg nog.

 

Opened in 2005 at the Gerth’s condominium in Wrigleyville, now the theater has mounted 30 productions and topped 10,000 guests!

 

And now for a delightful verision of the iconic The Odd Couple. From the telling details of the sometimes tidy sometimes wrecked set to the right costumes and pitch-perfect performance, the audience can’t help but be drawn in.  I was so involved I took sides in their arguments—sometimes siding with Oscar, sometimes Felix!


Performances of The Odd Couple run through February 22nd, Thursdays through Sundays. For evening performances, doors open at 7:30 PM and shows begin at 8:00 PM. For Sunday matinees, doors open at 2:30 PM and the show begins at 3:00 PM. Tickets are $35 and are available through brownpaper website or at the Oil Lamp box office Tuesdays through Fridays from Noon-5 PM. Group rates are available.

 

Oil Lamp Theater is located at 1723 Glenview Road, just west of the intersection of Waukegan and Glenview Roads.

For more information and ticket information, visit  OilLamp website or email at [email protected] or call the box office at (847) 834-0738.

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