"The Trinity River Plays" ★★★

Regina Taylor's premiering trilogy is not really a trilogy at all. Nope, the work the Goodman Theatre and Dallas Theater Center are co-producing is actually a long, meandering, deeply personal three-act drama — in desperate need of a clear-eyed edit and yet the kind of emotional, revealing play that comes out of the life-upending death of a loved one. One wishes Taylor had cut back on all those forced and uninteresting poetic reaches — about the moon, gardening, roots — and just stuck to her real-life characters and their deeper human truths. But "The Trinity River Plays" benefits from a deeply empathetic central performance from Karen Aldridge and is fascinating nonetheless. Through Feb. 20 at the Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn St.; $25-$78 at 312-443-3800 or goodmantheatre.org - CHRIS JONES
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