Utah Repertory Theater: Bare | Sugar Space Arts Warehouse | Theater | Salt Lake City Weekly


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Utah Repertory Theater: Bare Staff Pick

When: Thursdays-Saturdays, 7:30 p.m. Continues through Jan. 31 2015
Price: $16-$18
Utah Repertory Theater Company's production of Bare is the product of a deep emotional connection with rich material by a talented group of collaborators. Based on the book by Jon Hartmere and Damon Intrabartolo, Bare makes clever use of Romeo & Juliet—that the use was clever is itself an accomplishment, given how exhausted R&J is as a reference in popular culture—to parallel and foreshadow its gay love story at a Catholic boarding school. >What lends Bare its emotional heft is less literary cleverness than the fullness of the characters, and the empathy with which they're crafted. Even the "unsympathetic" characters are granted full lives. Part of that is in the acting, and this ensemble is superb. Lead actors Brock Dalgleish, John Patrick McKenna and Emilie Starr all have ample room to shine, and do, brightly. In another performance of note, late replacement Carolyn Crow did a remarkable job with a key supporting role, to the point where if there hadn't been an announcement, one never would have known she hadn't had the part all along. Beyond the terrific work eliciting rich and harmonious performances, director Johnny Hebda creates compelling visuals. He uses Chase Ramsey's ingeniously designed set to create sight lines that work with and enhance the text, and effectively employs multimedia for expository purposes. (Danny Bowes)
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