If you were one of the millions who flocked to theaters this weekend to see Pixar's new masterpiece, "Up" — run, don't walk, or tie balloons to your house, whatever — you can continue the fanciful theme of oddball guys fulfilling their dreams by way of helium tank when the Steppenwolf Theatre Co. closes its current season later this month with, er, "Up."
It's not a stage version of the current animated movie. This "Up" is an acclaimed play by Bridget Carpenter and directed by ensemble member Anna D. Shapiro. The story sounds familiar, though: "On the best day of his life, Walter Griffin built a flying machine that reached the clouds. Ever since, he’s tried to recapture that authentic moment of feeling completely free. His son Mikey dreams of a different path to freedom: getting rich. And his wife Helen just dreams of a husband who will keep his feet on the ground. Up is a quirky, bittersweet tale about an American family trying to escape the boundaries of the everyday by harnessing the power of the imagination." Carpenter discusses her inspiration in a video here.
"Up" plays June 18 - Aug. 23 in Steppenwolf’s Downstairs Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted. Tickets are $20-$45 for the previews, $20-$70 for the regular run.