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Step Up Productions’ “Crimes of the Heart” Review – Lovable Dysfunctional Family

By Amy Munice

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(left to right) Amanda Powell, Elizabeth Antonucci and Sarah-Jayne Ashenhurst in Step Up Productions’ CRIMES OF THE HEART by Beth Henley, directed by Brad Akin. Photo by Michael Brosilow.

 

When she isn’t reminding every woman in the audience of her one-time struggle with pantyhose too small, the gossipy and overbearing cousin, Chick (played by Lindsey Pearlman), of three sisters from a small Mississippi town goes to great lengths to let them and you know that they are “white trash” poster girls. 

 

 

Trash?  True, one did try to murder her husband earlier that day (Babe, played by Elizabeth Antonucci) and another is known as being loose and available (Meg, played by Amanda Powell), while the third, Lenny (played by Sarah-Jayne Ashenhurst) has taken to sleeping on a cot in her kitchen. 

 

 

But how could you call these three zany sisters anything but lovable if you’ve known them for but a few minutes? 

 

Better yet, treasure them for more than two hours in Step Up Productions’ “Crimes of the Heart”.  You’ll be going to an improbable universe where horses get struck dead by lightening but a nice conversation at a bake sale is interpreted as amazingly unusual.

 

 

You’ll care about all the characters in this story right off the bat, thanks to the excellent Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning script by Beth Henley.

 

 

Go for the story; go for the acting.   While the cast, and especially the actresses, truly shine, the portrayal of off-beat space cadet Babe by Elizabeth Antonucci will likely especially glue to your memory banks. 

 

 

Yes, this is also a movie, but in the intimate Athenaeum Theatre you get to share anew that last time you giggled uncontrollably at a most inappropriate time with someone you were close to .  It’s those type of shared intimate moments in this play that make it so enjoyable.

 

Now through June 14.

 

Step Up Productions at The Athenaeum Theatre (Studio One)

2936 North Southport Avenue

Chicago

 

For tickets call The Athenaeum Box Office at 773 935 6875 or visit the Step Up Productions website.

 

Published on May 13, 2015

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