Theo Ubique presents ASPECTS OF LOVE. Alex is in love with Rose. The problem is Alex is 17 and Rose is an actress. Still, he manages to woo her away to ‘his’ villa. It turns out the villa is his Uncle George’s. And turns out Rose prefers George. After a tumultuous affair with Alex, Rose wants to marry George. She feels their marriage will be the normality she craves. Which is true with the addition of George’s long term mistress Giulietta. Luckily, Giulietta and Rose love each other immediately. So, the menage a trois works. Fast forward thirteen years, Rose and George have a daughter, Jenny. And she loves loves her cousin Alex. And even though Alex is holding a torch for Jenny’s mom, he realizes he loves Jenny too. (She is 12?!) When he meets Giulietta, he realizes he loves her too. What’s a guy to do that loves so passionately and indiscriminately? ASPECTS OF LOVE has aspects I LOVE and aspects I dislike.
First, the singing in this show is spectacular! The haunting and repeating melody of “Love Changes Everything” bookcases the show with a memorable aria by Matthew Keffer (Alex). His strong conviction is initially hopeful, later wistful and closes the show with a twinge of bittersweet. His rendition played over and over in my head for hours. The center of much deserved adoration is Chicago Diva Kelli Harrington (Rose). When Harrington sings, people hold their breath as to not miss a moment of her perfectly pitched singing. She is extraordinary. Although the entire ensemble is harmoniously talented, another standout is Rochelle Therrien (Jenny). Therrien sings with a youthful brightness. Her adorability and precociousness translate beautifully into her songs. Under the musical direction of Jeremy Ramey, the singing in this show is some of the best to be heard anywhere in Chicago. In one scene, Director Fred Anzevino orchestrates a cool carnival backdrop. Despite the appealing visual aesthetics, I’m only just aware of it because I’m completely captivated by the singing that remains the show’s focal point.
The *SINGING* is the reason to see this show. The Maestro Andrew Lloyd Webber triumphed in this score. The Playwright ALW didn’t fare as well. Based on the novella by David Garnett, the story should be called Aspects of Lust. Who knew Telemundo made porns? The story is one big soap opera that is dissatisfying. I do believe “Love changes everything.” I just don’t believe any of these characters ever really learn what love is.
Running Time: Two hours and forty-five minutes includes an intermission
At No Exit Cafe, 6970 N. Glenwood
Based on the novella “Aspects of Love” by David Garnett
Book by Andrew Lloyd Webber
Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber
Lyrics by Don Black and Charles Hart
Directed by Fred Anzevino
Music direction by Jeremy Ramey
Thursdays at 7:30pm
Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm
Sundays at 7pm
EXTENDED Thru May 19th
Buy Tickets at www.theoubique.org