GREAT EXPECTATIONS

from the novel by Charles Dickens
adapted by Gale Childs Daly
directed by Jason Gerace
Season 26
November 11—December 22, 2013
★★★½ If you're tired of the mutterings of old Ebenezer and yet still crave some of that Dickensian moral pudding, then consider the unexpected sleeper of a new show at the Strawdog Theatre. Therein, six fine actors tell the multicharacter tale … Gale Childs Daly's exceptional new adaptation is uncommonly tight and suspenseful. With their multiple plots, Dickens novels often are tough to adapt. This one keeps the storytelling, and the hero, front and center. Truly, it's a riveting cutting and shaping that is never dull for a moment. Much of that is due to Jason Gerace's direction; the staging hardly is pretentious, but the stakes are thrillingly high throughout.
— Chicago Tribune
★★★★★ … The venerable storefront ensemble's new adaptation of Dickens's Great Expectations, performed by six actors, is an unexpected pleasure … Daly's lithe adaptation smartly trims Dickens's expansive plot and cast without feeling like it sacrifices too much. It's a great pleasure watching strong young Chicago talents … embody numerous characters, transmuting in front of you … Strawdog's compelling production greatly exceeds expectations.
— Time Out Chicago
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED… What makes the crucial difference in Strawdog Theatre's magnificent production of "Great Expectations" - easily among the finest shows of the year - is that its supremely gifted ensemble of six actors not only captures all the superficial qualities of Dickens' marvelous characters (and they play about 40 of them), but they furrow deep into their hearts and souls. The many individual quirks are unquestionably amusing, revealing and richly theatrical, but there is something far greater going on here. Along with Gale Childs Daly's flawless adaptation and Jason W. Gerace's diamond-cut direction, it is this emotional undertow that makes this production soar. The show is a stunner on every level.
— Chicago Sun-Times
JEFF AWARDS RECOMMENDED

A cast of six quick-change their way through nearly 40 characters as the classic novel is reinvented as a fast-paced theatrical feat. An orphan is plucked from poverty and thrust into the upper class, his benefactor's identity and motives hidden by lawyers and other minions. As Pip tries to find love and a living in his radically changed circumstances, he untangles a fascinating web of secret identities and hidden pasts.

Jason Gerace, the critically acclaimed director of Redtwist Theatre's Opus, makes his Strawdog debut.

cast
Amanda Drinkall
Narrator (Estella)
John Ferrick *
Narrator (Joe)
Kyle Gibson *
Narrator (Magwitch)
Megan Kohl
Narrator (Havisham)
John Taflan *
Narrator (Herbert)
Mike Tepeli
Pip
production
Author
Charles Dickens
Adaptor
Gale Childs Daly
Director
Jason Gerace
Set Design
Joanna Iwanicka
Light Design
Costume Design
Props Design
Emily Guthrie
Musician
Hilary Holbrook
Fight Choreographer
Dialects
Kathy Logelin
Stage Manager
Michelle Maier
Production Manager
Mike Mroch
* = Strawdog company member
Photography by Jon Cole Media
Production photo by Chris Ocken
Photo by KBH Media
Photo by Donald Cardiff
Photo by John Flak
Photo by Dave Brennan
Production photo by TCMcG Photography