One of the best tests for any theater ensemble is how well it can deliver despite technical problems or how well it can perform even when the cast appears to outnumber the audience. Kudos to Theater Wit for being able to work the fact that the show’s spotlight operator had apparently been arrested on the way to the theater—as the house manager informed the tiny matinee audience that was waiting well beyond curtain time—right into the material of the show itself. To be able to roll with such punches and not let it disturb comic timing or the ability to sing and dance up a storm makes you wonder what this show could do if it were attracting the audience that it deserves. Evoking the Bob Hope and Bing Crosby “Road” movies of the 1940s and weaving vintage though uncredited vaudeville songs into the fabric of a clever and tuneful original musical score that become musical numbers in the shows within the show as well as developing plot details, such as they are, “Two for the Road” is big on entertainment values and succeeds largely because of the chemistry of leads Will Clinger and James Fitzgerald, set off by Lindsey Pearlman taking on the Dorothy Lamour role. Despite preserving the unnecessary use of the “J” word for World War II Japanese and adding occasional profanity and vulgarity at odds with the form, “Two for the Road” by and large succeeds in preserving the comedy, romance and adventure of the classic “Road” films. (Dennis Polkow)
Theatre Building Chicago, 1225 W. Belmont, (773)327-5252. $30. Through April 22.