Tarot cards play a small but pivotal role in Up, an offbeat drama by the playwright Bridget Carpenter about an unemployed inventor and his gravity-defying lawn chairiots, opening in June at Steppenwolf. In the spirit of the play, we sought out the South Side reader Doña Cristina (no last name; shrouded in mystery) and asked her to conduct a reading of the play’s likelihood of success. With no prompting from us, Cristina started off by announcing that the show has a cast of nine (it does) and would open in three months (we visited her March 25th; the play opens June 28th). So, will Up soar or flop?

Ace of Coins
This “best card” turned up twice, as did many others indicating money and success. But it won’t be all smooth sailing.

Eight of Swords
This card could indicate jealousy or resentment among the cast—possibly directed toward a young actress.

Jack of Clubs
“An older, light-skinned man is at the center of the production,” Cristina said. (Ian Barford plays the inventor.) His work will “make you think about your own life.” And her parting words? “Wow. Wow. Wow. I like this man. He is full of fire for his art.


GO: Up. Previews Jun 18–27; $20-$45. Regular run thru Aug 23; $20-$70. Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N Halsted. steppenwolf.org