Something really special is happening on the patio of Moody’s Pub in Edgewater. Brand new theater company, Rabid Bat Theatricals, composed of a lot of recent/soon to be Northwestern grads (full disclosure I know a bunch of them), are putting on Romeo & Juliet. But this isn’t “dinner theater” in that stuffy, old-fashioned sense that everyone uses as a punch line but no one ever seems to actually attend any more.
The show, directed by Ned Baker, is staged among the dining tables, some of which are occupied by people who came to get dinner or sangria (which is amazing) unaware that they were about to take part in a play. And take part is really the only way to describe being an audience member at this show, following the action requires movement, and sometimes straining to hear, but that helped to pull me into the world of the show.
Because I’m a bit of a hopeless romantic, Romeo & Juliet is one of my favorite Shakespeare plays – maybe one of my favorite plays period – which means I’ve seen it a million times in a million forms, but this production was so fresh and energetic that I fell in love with it all over again. The cast all juggle multiple roles, and instruments, and sound effect duty (and waitress dodging) with seeming ease, and have a chemistry that is almost addictive. The show is running tonight, and Monday and Tuesday of next week and you should all go.
Photo Credit – Julia Davidson