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Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2013

Adventures in the Library

Milwaukee Chamber’s one-man show

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James Ridge is a tall man who has been known to work alone. He's also one of Wisconsin’s most captivating actors. Several years ago he put in a particularly well-rendered performance as Charles Dickens in a one-man show that played in multiple venues. Ridge returns to center stage in a one-character production late this winter as he appears in Milwaukee Chamber Theatre's Underneath the Lintel.

Ridge plays a librarian in the 2001 Glen Berger script. One man. Onstage. Doesn't exactly sound like something that's going to set the stage afire. But actually Ridge is exceedingly good at capturing an audience's attention and it's a lot of fun to hang out with him in a one-person show. And Berger's script is quite interesting as well. Evidently, someone returns a book that is 113 years overdue. And so the librarian is interested in trying to track down who returned the book using only a clue scribbled into the margin and a dry cleaning ticket. This type of story has the ability to captivate a culture drifting ever further into an information age in which this sort of mystery is harder and harder to find. This is one person. This is one talented actor and a well-written mystery.

Milwaukee Chamber Theatre's Underneath the Lintel runs Feb. 20-March 17 in the Broadway Theatre Center's Studio Theatre, 158 N. Broadway. For ticket reservations, call 414-291-7800.

Theatre Happenings

The Quasimondo Milwaukee Physical Theatre explores life, technology and automation in Robot Cabaret, a world-premiere show written and directed by Brian Rott and Michael Guthrie. It runs Feb.14-March 2 at the Milwaukee Fortress, 100 A E. Pleasant St. For ticket reservations, visit brownpapertickets.com/event/323082.

Also opening Valentine's Day: Carte Blanche Studio Theatre presents Tony Wood, Michelle White, Emily Craig and more in a live staging of three episodes of John Cleese and Connie Booth's Fawlty Towers. It runs Feb.14-March 3 at Carte Blanche, 1024 S. Fifth St. For ticket reservations, call 414-688-7313.

Boulevard Theatre continues its season with a production of the Joe DiPietro romantic comedy The Last Romance. Michael Weber plays a widower who changes his life when he takes a different path in his daily walk. The Last Romance plays at the Boulevard Theatre (2252 S. Kinnickinnic) Feb. 20-March 3. For ticket reservations, call 414-744-5757.
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