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A CurtainUpChicago Review
It is the issues in 'Trust' that inspired David Schwimmer to create this production. Our hope is to create an exciting and important piece of theatre and that the play, film and our community partnerships will bring maximum attention to this important matter.— David Catlin, Lookingglass Theatre artistic director
It's no surprise that Trust, now in a highly engaging Lookingglass world premiere, originated as a screenplay discovered by company directors David Schwimmer (returning to his roots) and Heidi Stillman. With its jump cuts, parallel scenes, dovetailing action and real-life 3-D, it feels like a very watchable movie (which in fact it also is). Add to that Dan Ostling's scene design, a supple video wall that delivers textured backdrops along with the crucial "instant messages" that fuel an unstoppable plot.
Philip R. Smith and Alison Torem
Trust takes a harsh look at the latest way in which Yeats' "ceremony of innocence is drowned" circa 2010. Tragically topical, the plot's as scary as it is familiar: Annie, a 14-year-old girl from suburban Wilmette feels trapped by the contradictions of adolescent angst, at the (lack of) mercy of the popular girls and not sure her parents believe in her either. At a website called TeenChat.net, Annie meets and exchanges pictures with a guy named Charlie who "gets me." Suddenly she has a friend who offers unconditional "trust," thinks she's pretty, and gives her sports tips that help her score.
Relentlessly and believably, this secret friendship with a boy whose age keeps increasing each time he writes tests that "trust" and exposes the fractures in Annie's torn-up family. Philip R. Smith powerfully plays the anguished, helpless father to Allison Torem's teenage girl who falls through all the cracks. As "Charlie," Raymond Fox embodies the kind of clever chameleon who flourishes in the Internet's darkest depths.
Nothing new here. But, given the authenticity and accuracy of the look, sound and feel of Trust, that's no drawback whatsoever.
Written by David Schwimmer and Andy Bellin, based on the screenplay by Bellin and Rob Festinger
Directed by Schwimmer and ensemble member Heidi Stillman
Cast: Christine Mary Dunford, Raymond Fox and Philip R. Smith with Amy J. Carle, Spencer Curnutt, Keith Kupferer, Zanny Laird, Zoe Levin, Marianna Oharenko, Morocco Omari and Allison Torem.
Set: Dan Ostling
Costumes: Mara Blumenfeld
Lighting: Christine Binder
Sound: Rick Sims and Michael Griggs
Properties: William Anderson
Multimedia design: Bridges Media.
Time: I hours, 40 minutes: no intermission
Lookingglass Theatre Company Water Tower Water Works, 821 N. Michigan Ave. at Pearson
From 3/03/10; opening 3/13/10; closing 4/25/10
Reviewed by Larry Bommer 3/13/10
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