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CASTING ANNOUNCED FOR STEPPENWOLF'S 2016 WINTER PRODUCTIONS:
THE CHRISTIANS BY LUCAS HNATH AND
STRAIGHT WHITE MEN BY YOUNG JEAN LEE
Steppenwolf Theatre Company announced complete casting for two upcoming Chicago premiere productions: Lucas Hnath’s The Christians directed by ensemble member K. Todd Freeman (December 1, 2016 – January 29, 2017) in the Downstairs Theatre; and Straight White Men written and directed by Young Jean Lee (February 2, 2016 – March 19, 2017) in the Upstairs Theatre.
The Christians cast features ensemble member Tom Irwin as Pastor Paul and ensemble member Robert Breuler as Elder Jay with Shannon Cochran (Elizabeth), Glenn Davis (Joshua) and Jacqueline Williams (Congregant).
The Downstairs Theatre will be transformed into a mega church with a choir performing live onstage. The choir, called The Praise Team, features Faith Howard, Yando Lopez, Jazelle Morriss, Mary-Margaret Roberts and Charlie Strater. Directed by ensemble member K. Todd Freeman, the production runs December 1 – January 29, 2017.
The Straight White Men cast features ensemble members Alan Wilder (Ed) and Tim Hopper (Matt) with Madison Dirks (Jake), Ryan Hallahan (Drew) and Elliott Jenetopulos (Stagehand-in-charge). Written and directed by Young Jean Lee, the Chicago premiere production runs February 2 - March 19, 2017 in the Upstairs Theatre.
Single tickets ($20-$89) to The Christians and Straight White Men are currently on sale at 312-335-1650 or steppenwolf.org. Subscription Memberships are available through mid-October for audiences who like to lock in dates and secure seats in advance. Subscribers receive special access to buy additional shows. Flex Card Memberships are available for audiences interested in extreme flexibility with six tickets for use any time, along with perks including free exchanges, savings on single tickets and bar and restaurant discounts.
About The Christians
Pastor Paul has spent 20 years successfully growing his church from a small storefront to a gleaming megachurch, but now he fears that there may be a crack in the theological foundation. As he shares his new belief in the nature of salvation, the message is met with surprise and then growing trepidation from his closest confidantes in the congregation, threatening to create a schism within the church. Lucas Hnath’s fascinating new play looks with great complexity and compassion at the relationship between belief and behavior—and its evenhanded, unbiased take on faith in modern America can be appreciated no matter what you believe.
About Straight White Men
As Ed, a widower, prepares to celebrate Christmas, he calls his three grown sons back to the family home. Games are played, Chinese food is ordered, and brotherly pranks and trashtalk distract them from the ongoing issue that threatens to ruin the festivities: when personal identity is essential and privilege is a problem, what is a straight white man to do? Playwright/ Director Young Jean Lee takes an outside look at the traditional father/son play narrative, shedding new and often hilarious light on a story we think we know all too well.
About the 2016/17 Season
Steppenwolf’s 41st anniversary Season opens with the world premiere of Visiting Edna by David Rabe, directed by Artistic Director Anna D. Shapiro, which is currently in previews and runs through November 6. In addition to The Christians and Straight White Men, the 2016/17 also features the world premiere of The Fundamentals by Erika Sheffer, directed by ensemble member Yasen Peyankov, November 10 – December 23, 2016 in the Upstairs Theatre. ); the world premiere of Linda Vista by ensemble member Tracy Letts, directed by Dexter Bullard (March 30 – May 21, 2017); the Chicago premiere of Hir by Taylor Mac, directed by Hallie Gordon (June 29 – August 20, 2017); and an additional summer show, Pass Over by Antoinette Nwandu (June 1 – July 9, 2017).
Visitor Information & Accessibility
Steppenwolf is located at 1650 N Halsted St near all forms of public transportation and is wheelchair accessible. The parking facility consists of both a covered garage ($11 cash or credt) and an open-air lot, located just south of our theater at 1624 N Halsted. Valet parking service ($14 cash) is available directly in front of the main entrance at 1650 N Halsted St starting at 5pm on weeknights, 1pm on weekends and at 12 noon before Wednesday matinees. Street and lot parking are also available. For last minute questions and concerns, patrons can call the Steppenwolf Parking Hotline at (312) 335-1774.
Committed to making the Steppenwolf experience accessible to everyone, performances featuring American Sign Language interpretation, open captioning and audio description are offered during the run of each play. Assistive listening devices and large-print programs are available for every performance. With the expertise of Assistive Hearing Systems Ltd., Steppenwolf installed an induction loop on both the main and balcony levels of our Downstairs Theatre in 2015. There is also an induction loop installed in the 1700 Theatre.
Front Bar: Coffee and Drinks
Located in front of the 1700 Theatre is Steppenwolf’s café & bar, Front Bar: Coffee and Drinks. Open daily from 7am to midnight, Front Bar is a creative space to grab a drink, have a bite, or meet up with friends and collaborators, day or night. A morning and evening menu is curated by Chef Chris Pandel, and artisanal coffee and espresso is provided by La Colombe. Front Bar was developed with consultation from Steppenwolf’s friends and neighbors, Boka Restaurant Group (BRG), along with interior designers Karen Herold and Kayce Carter of Studio K and the marketing and design firm Grip. More info at front-bar.com.
Major support for Steppenwolf’s expanded 2016/17 programming is provided by the Lefkofsky Family Foundation, The Negaunee Foundation and the Zell Family Foundation.
Major support for Steppenwolf’s New Play Development Initiative is provided by The Davee Foundation and the Zell Family Foundation.
PwC is the corporate presenting sponsor of Straight White Men.
United Airlines is the Official and Exclusive Airline of Steppenwolf.
Steppenwolf Theatre Company is America’s longest standing, most distinguished ensemble theater, producing nearly 700 performances and events annually in its three Chicago theater spaces—the 515-seat Downstairs Theatre, the 299-seat Upstairs Theatre and the 80-seat 1700 Theatre. Formed in 1976 by a collective of actors, Steppenwolf has grown into an ensemble of 46 actors, writers and directors. Artistic programming includes a seven-play season; a two-play Steppenwolf for Young Adults season; Visiting Company engagements; and LookOut, a new multidisciplinary performance series. While firmly grounded in the Chicago community, nearly 40 original Steppenwolf productions have enjoyed success both nationally and internationally, including Broadway, Off-Broadway, London, Sydney, Galway and Dublin. Steppenwolf has the distinction receiving the National Medal of Arts, in addition to numerous other prestigious honors including an Illinois Arts Legend Award and 12 Tony Awards. Anna D. Shapiro is the Artistic Director and David Schmitz is the Managing Director. Nora Daley is Chair of Steppenwolf’s Board of Trustees.