Two Gentlemen of Chicago Rocks

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From l, Proteus (Matt Walker), Julia (Christine Lakin), Silvia (Monica Schneider), and Valentine (Rob Nagle) in Troubadour Theater Company’s “Two Gentlemen of Chicago” at the Falcon Theatre.

Scoring another hit in their long line of Shakespearean parodies, the Troubadour Theatre Company presents a roll down laughing, entertaining Two Gentlemen of Chicago. Packing hilarious improvisation, fine acting, singing and dancing, and even a sweet and talented dog into the proceedings, the presentation successfully blends Shakespearean ruminations on love with comic mayhem.

The story, such as it is, revolves around Proteus’ (Matt Walker) romantic yearnings for both Julia (Christine Lakin) and Silvia (Monica Schneider). A mere starting point, the show covers everything from the current presidential campaign, movie greats, current films, and Toluca Lake locations, all set to the music of Peter Cetera and Chicago.

Director Walker once again inspires his cast to fine performances and let-it-rip comedy, somehow reining in attempts for the improv to take off in unexpected and wild directions. Walker himself smartly underplays his role as both comic and pondering hero, providing the anchor for the evening.

Lakin jazzes up the proceedings with her energetic, sexy choreography, fine voice, and expressive, vulnerable face. Morgan Rusler’s Duke of Milan draws laughs with his innocent and charming ribbing. Roosevelt the Pug steals the evening whenever he appears on stage, gaining huge rounds of applause.

Production work successfully helps set the mood, from Jeremy Pivnick’s elegant, straightforward lighting, to mischievous and witty costumes by Sharon McGunigle, to Jeffrey McLaughlin’s attention getting, Rat Pack-like curtain backdrops.

Two Gentlemen of Chicago colors the world with hysterical laughter and touching moments, combining romantic pop and true love.

The Falcon Theatre presents the Troubadour Theatre Company’s production of Two Gentlemen of Chicago Wednesdays-Saturdays at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 4 p.m. (no April 8 show) through April 22 at the Falcon Theatre located at 4252 Riverside Dr. in Burbank. Tickets cost $34.50-$37 Wednesday and Thursday, $39.50-$42 Friday through Sunday, with a $27 student rate. Please visit www.falcontheatre.com or call (818) 955-8101 for reservations.

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