(Chris Jones’s article appeared in the Chicago Tribune, 10/30.)

A fresh and welcome wind is blowing up the Malay Peninsula — well, across the Marriott Lincolnshire golf course, at least — with the famed suburban theater's very fine new production of "The King and I," the debut at that locale of the director Nick Bowling, hitherto known for his intimate, immersive productions at Chicago's TimeLine Theatre.

Bowling's new production does not entirely throw away the familiar Marriott playbook. For one thing, the show stars one of this theater's most loyal stars, Heidi Kettenring, an actress who, in the deceptively tricky role of Anna, plays up the way Oscar Hammerstein was satirizing the English schoolteacher type while simultaneously appealing to 1940s notions of postcolonial Western superiority.



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