Chicago Reader: Subconscious Romance
By Alejandro Riera
May 11, 2023
"What is it like to be a character in a dream?,” asks the protagonist of Waking Life (2001), Richard Linklater’s first stab at rotoscope animation. The question lies at the heart of clown, mime, and musician Marvin Quijada’s The Dream King, Teatro Vista’s new production codirected by ensemble member Sandra Marquez and Physical Theater Festival Chicago cofounder Alice da Cunha (I worked as an on-and-off publicist of the festival for several years). In fact, the movie’s meditations on the nature (and reality) of dreams led Quijada to ask if, as one character in the movie claims, you can meet someone interesting in your dreams, what would happen if you fell in love with someone in your dreams?
“That’s like the most magical and also the most tragic because you can’t see the person you fell in love with in real life, which is where you want to see them. You only see them in your dreams,” said Quijada during a Zoom interview prior to the play’s first tech rehearsal.