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Theater Thu May 22 2014
Charles Ives Take Me Home at Strawdog Theater is a strong show with no lack of laughs or message. This is a three person show consisting of:
• Composer Charles Ives (Jamie Vann) who see the world from a Zen place of inner peace.
• John Starr (David Belden), whose life and surroundings need to be bent to his own ideas and as a father the social structure of dominating his daughter is well in place.
• Laura Starr (Stephanie Chavara), daughter of John and the energetic driving piece to puzzle.
We watch as Laura grows up from a little girl to an adult, bumping heads with her father all along the way, learning to live much more like Charles Ives, whom she never met, than her father, who idolized the man.
Father and daughters, it is said, have a special relationship. It was also common knowledge, 25 years ago, that if you were a blue collar father you could not openly support children who wanted to go into the arts. Charles Ives Take Me Home puts both of these concepts on display, kind of.
Let's start with John, who was raised in Indiana, arguably one of the biggest sporting states in the union, and followed his passion for music leaving the Midwest far behind. His daughter has the same sort of passions he does but it is for basketball. Charles Ives and his ghost check in now and again with John trying to give guidance, teaching and sharing the art of life and the world. Unfortunately, it seems no matter how much art knowledge John had in his life, the joy was missing. The thing we say about art making you whole just never came about for him. But the love and respect his daughter has for her father never slips; it is a deep bond and for Laura. It may take a while for her to be ready to see that, but when she does it is universally magical.
This show had a lot of fun movement and director Keira Fromm shows she has as much passion as any of the characters in this show.