(Chris Jones’s article appeared in the Chicago Tribune, 4/11.)
"Those people could be my neighbors," I heard one woman remark at the conclusion of "After the Revolution," the current production at the Next Theatre in Evanston. Actually, Amy Herzog's impressive 2010 play is set in Greenwich Village, where, to paraphrase one of her characters, you could not walk down a street in the 1940s without running into a communist sympathizer.
But in director Kimberly Senior's fine production of a play about the perils of being a child of an ultra-leftist family, Keith Pitts' set also makes subtle reference to the Arts and Crafts homes occupied by the lakefront liberals of Evanston, Rogers Park and thereabouts. And those who grew up in such book-filled homes, paid for with the fruits of teaching or writing, those of the same generation as the playwright, will doubtless sympathize with Herzog's central character of Emma, a radically tutored young woman who finds out that progressives can be shrill, prejudiced, judgmental, elitist, morally compromised and otherwise disappointing.