Skokie Theatre Answers Age-Old Relationship Question with ‘The Princess Strikes Back’

What happens when you realize that all of your relationships have lived or died based on your partner’s ability to live up to your first teenage crush on a fictional movie character?

Coming to Chicago at the renowned Skokie Theatre on August 11 and August 18, The Princess Strikes Back answers that question in a way everyone can relate to. It will make you smile until your cheeks burn and laugh like you haven’t laughed in years.

Capturing the beauty of what it’s like going from teenager to adult, as well as some of the sorrows, the historic Skokie Theatre is bringing the ideal show for a summer night of lighthearted fun to Chicago’s North Shore in the form of The Princess Strikes Back.

The Princess Strikes Back is a one-woman romantic comedy that has won awards and rave reviews around the country, with the Orlando Sentinel gushing over the show’s universal appeal while Shaw Media calls it “a beautiful, touching story of the maturing process” and one that “should be shared with as many communities and theater audiences as possible.”

“Growing up is something that everyone goes through. One day we’re cute little kids and the next day the hormones start flowing,” says Wayne Mell, managing director of the Skokie Theatre. “The Princess Strikes Back captures the joys and pains of growing up in a way that touches the heart but also makes you cackle with laughter all night.”

Written and starring celebrated actress and storyteller Victoria Montalbano, The Princess Strikes Back has been compared to Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe that Lilly Tomlin made famous. Part of that is because of the witty, relatable humor of the script. Another part of the appeal is Montalbano’s effortless charisma. Audiences simply love Montalbano.

Other titles The Princess Strikes Back has been lovingly grouped with include Carrie Fisher: Wishful Drinking, The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler, Billy Crystal’s 700 Sundays, and the autobiographical An Evening with Jason Alexander and his Hair. They are all one-person shows that audiences find universally appealing.

MadKap Production and Truth & Justice Entertainment will be bringing the award-winning touring production of The Princess Strike Back to the beautiful, state-of-the-art Skokie Theatre at 7:30 PM on Friday, August 11 and Friday, August 18. Tickets are available at or by calling (847) 677-7761.

Having seen this show, I can say that Victoria Montalbano is a brilliant storyteller. She wraps the audience in her hand and takes them on a fantastic journey. With fun cultural references, this look back on the joys and pains of growing up is a show that everyone can relate to.

Who hasn’t felt out of place? Who hasn’t felt confused inside? Who hasn’t desperately wanted to be accepted and loved? Teens, young adults, parents, and seniors all connect to the magic of this delightful show.

While the title The Princess Strikes Back suggests at least some allegiance to George Lucas’ Star Wars empire, audiences are pleasantly surprised that there is no need to have even seen a Star Wars movie to enjoy the Montalbano’s stories, humor, and wisdom. There are plenty of fun cultural references ranging from Jonathan Larson’s Tony-winning hit RENT to Sesame Street’s Oscar the Grouch, to Michael Flatley’s Riverdance.

Coming to Chicago after successfully navigating the touring circuit with performances from Florida to Indiana, The Princess Strikes Back is a beautiful and heartwarming story of the maturing process, of romance and heartbreak, and ultimately learning to love, treasure, and accept oneself – which is the most important part of the maturing process.

“Change is a normal part of life. The adventures we face as we go through these inner changes create our life story,” explains Montalbano. “We are always a work in progress and that makes for some interesting stories and it’s always important to be able to laugh at yourself but also accept yourself. It’s a special feeling when audiences are moved by your experiences like we’ve been lucky enough to see with The Princess Strikes Back. I honestly feel a connection to everyone in the audience.”

“A couple is made of two people, so for it to be a strong couple the two people must be strong individuals. For us to accept love into our lives, we have to love ourselves first,” explains Skokie Theatre executive director Wendy Kaplan. “The Princess Strikes Back is a lesson in learning about ourselves and ultimately to love and accept ourselves. It’s a beautiful message.”

Skokie Theatre is currently presenting a riveting production of the Tony-award-winning musical HAIR starring Joey Chelius and Shraga D. Wasserman, and featuring Jack Chylinski, Jonah Cochin, Niki-Charisse Franco. Sam Hook, Ben Isabel, Justice Largin, Bridgett Martinez, Cristian Moreno, Alexandria Neyhart, Julie Peterson, Chevy Dixon Saul, and Hannah Silverman under the direction of Derek Van Barham and music direction of Jeremy Ramey.

HAIR is another kind of nostalgia for people of a certain age but also a fun new experience for younger people,” reflects Kaplan. “HAIR and The Princess Strikes Back both deal with bygone eras and exploration of feelings, but in totally different ways. The one thing you know you’ll always get at the Skokie Theatre is a commitment to excellence. Whether it’s a musical everyone knows like HAIR or a hot new ticket like the tour of The Princess Strikes Back, at Skokie Theatre we strive to create memories that you’ll treasure.”

Of the production of HAIR running through July 30, Chicago Theatre & Concert Reviews says “Niki-Charisse Franco delivers the opening number of Aquarius with such passion it sets the tone for the next few hours of pure entertainment.” Splash Magazine sums up the communal opinion of Chicago theater critics, calling the Skokie production “a fabulous interpretation of the rock musical”. 

The Skokie Theatre is located 7924 Lincoln Avenue, in Skokie, IL. The beautiful performing arts theater features a historic outer façade and a fully modernized interior where patron comfort is always at a maximum. There is ample free parking.

The Princess Strikes Back plays Friday, August 11 and Friday, August 18 at 7:30 PM.

HAIR plays Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 PM and Sundays at 2 PM through July 30.

Information on HAIR, The Princes Strikes Back, and all the other exciting entertainment events coming to Skokie Theatre is available at or by calling (847) 677-7761.

To purchase tickets to The Princess Strikes Back directly visit

To purchase tickets to HAIR directly visit

Peace. Love. Trust.

Rikki Lee Travolta

For more reviews visit: Theatre in Chicago – your source for What’s on Stage in the Chicago Area

Victoria Montalbano photos by Sarah Elizabeth Larson


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One comment

  1. Very clever to have two such colorful nostalgic pieces in one theater! And Rikki Lee is correct-having seen THE PRINCESS STRIKES BACK, I can state Victoria is a charming storyteller!

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