The March, at the Steppenwolf Theater, is an adaptation of an E.L. Doctorow novel on William Tecumseh Sherman’s Civil War’s March to the Sea. Although the history was interesting, we found some of the characters around whom this history was artificially and unconvincingly wrapped, to be unlikable and uninteresting. To make things worse, we had trouble deciphering the Southern accented words of even some of the more interesting characters. Although we initially looked forward to the play, neither of us enjoyed it, finding it one of the weakest of the many Steppenwolf productions we have seen.
The Iceman Cometh, at the Goodman Theater, is one of Eugene O’Neal’s masterpieces. The Goodman production starred a very compelling Nathan Lane as the gregarious Hickey, who is hiding a very dark secret. While Brian Dennehy is less convincing as Larry, the cast was aided by some strong supporting performances as very convincing alcoholics who, although temporarily encouraged by Hickey’s infectious optimism, are clearly beyond redemption. While this production is almost certainly destined for Broadway, it is, in our view, in desperate need of some pruning to cut perhaps an hour and one intermission from its five-hour running time. You might want to wait for it there. In fact, you may not have much of an option, since the current Goodman run is almost totally sold-out.