Press Quotes

The Play About the Baby

The Play About the Baby, BackStage Theatre, 2010

 "Yates and Pacas turn in dynamic portrayals of Man and Woman..." TimeOut Chicago

"[A] focused, lively BackStage Theatre production..." The Reader

"Pacas and Yates are charismatic, funny, and sort of terrifying." Chicago Theater Blog

 “Michael Pacas is gleefully sinister as the Man and Karen Yates is hilariously playful as the Woman.  They both do a wonderful job of balancing between their humor and their malice. “ Jake Lindquist, Chicago Critic

Six Degrees of Separation

Six Degrees of Separation, Eclipse Theater, 2009    

“Under Steve Scott's capable direction, however, the principal roles of Ouisa and Paul are given their just due by Karen Yates and Michael Pogue. The result is a parable to suspend our pre-formulated judgments and force us to question our own readiness to face such circumstances as Guare proposes.”Mary Shen Barnidge, Windy City Times

“Ouisa’s (Karen Yates) progress under Paul’s inspiring, if illusory, influence is driven, engaging, and realistic. Ouisa may never be a Zen master, but she does move from shallow, materialistic social climber to a woman intrigued by the potential for expansive, more meaningful relatedness. The rapid-fire exchanges between Ouisa and her husband, Flan (Eric Leonard), whether about art deals, social machinations, or Paul’s transgressions, are fun displays of technical virtuosity.” Page Listerud, Chicago Theatre Beat

“Of the 16 characters, two marvelous roles stand far above the rest: Paul, the would-be Poitier, and Ouisa, who can’t stop caring about him. Yates shows us a woman whose sense of self unravels slowly (if ever-so-gracefully).”  Web Berens, Chicago Free Press


Lust, Lies, and Marriage, Piccolo Theatre, 2008

 "When they cross the stage, the cast of Piccolo Theatre's utterly beguiling "Lust, Lies and Marriage" don't simply walk. In this sparkling, family-friendly show… they cavort. They gambol. They frolic. And the result is one of the merriest plays I've seen in some time. Fava's enthusiastic cast emotes to delicious effect in a show that revels in slapstick and well-timed funny business." Barbara Vitello, Daily Herald

"The very best commedia I've seen was a guest company presented several years ago by Court Theatre. ...This effort by Piccolo Theatre is the second-best commedia I've seen, which is saying a lot. It was developed and directed by Italian master Antonio Fava. His Piccolo troupe has a strong sense of action, comic technique and physical contrast." Jonathan Abarbanel, Windy City Times


 Yerma, Halcyon, 2007

4 out of 6 stars “…an uncommonly heated Yerma.”  Kris Vire, TimeOut Chicago

“This charmingly low-budget production of Spanish playwright/poet Federico García Lorca's Yerma proves that gringos can translate dramatic, rhythmic Spanish language into an equally intense and powerful production.”  Flavorpill CHI


 Medea, BackStage Theatre, 2006

 “Karen Yates’s performance as Medea blends slyness with feral passion…”
Kerry Reid, Chicago Reader

“As played in a bravura performance by Karen Yates, [Medea] is a woman we can empathize with…. Yates gives us a picture of a woman whose capacity to love has been killed. It’s chilling. ”
Catey Sullivan, Pioneer Press

 To the Green Fields Beyond, Writers’ Theatre, 2005

 RECOMMENDED “…marvelous ensemble playing…” Hedy Weiss, Chicago Sun-Times

“… Every actor on the Writers' Theatre stage delivers the kind of deep, from-the-heart, performance that has made Chicago one of the great theater towns of the world. Only one month into the new year and here is a play so powerful the characters were etched into my brain. 2005 will have to be an amazing year for theater for this show not to make everyone's top ten lists come next December… 4 STARS.” Jack Helbig, Daily Herald

“… a production that never disappoints.” Andrew Patner, WFMT radio

“…solidly staged, well-acted and evocatively designed…3 ½ STARS” Tim Sauers, Gay Chicago Magazine

“…the compelling acting performances in this North American premiere are a true team effort….” Robert Loerzel, Pioneer Press