Monday, February 27, 2017

OPENING: The Scene at Writers Theatre

Chi, IL LIVE Shows On Our Radar:

Writers Theatre presents
The Scene
Written by Theresa Rebeck
Directed by Kimberly Senior

February 22 – April 2, 2017

Here at ChiIL Live Shows, I'm elated to see another female playwright/director combo tipping the scales a bit more equitably in Chicago's still male dominated theatre scene. We'll be out to review at the press opening and can't wait to check it out. We've been wowed by Kimberley Senior's past directing and we're looking forward to experiencing Theresa Rebeck's work as well

Writers Theatre, under the leadership of Artistic Director Michael Halberstam and Executive Director Kathryn M. Lipuma, continues its 2016/17 season with The Scene, written by Theresa Rebeck and directed by Kimberly Senior. The production runs February 22 – April 2, 2017 in the Alexandra C. and John D. Nichols Theatre at 325 Tudor Court, Glencoe.

What starts off with an amusing exchange at a hip Manhattan party quickly turns into something more complex. When close friends Charlie and Lewis meet Clea, a determined young woman making her mark on the New York scene, it sets them off on an emotional roller coaster. This provocative comedy-drama explores the dark edges of commitment and the struggles of balancing authenticity with ambition.

WT Resident Director Kimberly Senior, who recently directed the Pulitzer Prize-winning Disgraced on Broadway and who has helmed past WT hits The Letters, Hedda Gabler, The Diary of Anne Frank and Marjorie Prime, takes on Theresa Rebeck’s wickedly biting and often hilarious play about the search for the ever elusive “place-to-be,” and the three old friends whose lives are irrevocably changed when they discover how fragile the foundations of their relationships really are.

Senior is the recipient of the 2016 Special Non-Equity Joseph Jefferson Award for her Chicago career achievements as a trail blazer, champion and role model for emerging artists.

“I saw The Scene in its premiere at Actors Theatre of Louisville and fell in love with the play right there and then,” said Artistic Director Michael Halberstam.  “We explored getting the rights, but at that time it was Broadway bound and indeed, if it had not been for a cast scheduling conflict, it likely would have enjoyed a triumphant transfer. A decade later it has lost none of its bite and is ripe for revival. Kimberly Senior and I separately developed relationships with Theresa Rebeck, and both of us admire her tremendously. In a casual conversation about potential projects for this season we both suggested The Scene and Le Voila! The great challenge of the play is the character of Clea, and Kimberly has found a remarkable Clea for the Writers Theatre production in Deanna Myers. Smart, charismatic, vibrant and gifted, Deanna brings a fresh and contemporary take on the character and is matched in prowess by her fellow cast members: the powerful and poised Charin Alvarez (who, like Deanna, will be making her WT debut) and two Writers Theatre favorites, the talented and engaging La Shawn Banks and Mark Montgomery. Kimberly has also assembled a terrific team of designers to create the world in which word and the artist come together to tell this relevant and important story."

Prices: Prices for all performances range from $35 - $80. Purchase early for best prices.

Box Office: The Box Office is located at 325 Tudor Court, Glencoe;847-242-6000;

The cast of The Scene includes: Charin Alvarez (Stella), La Shawn Banks (Lewis), Mark L. Montgomery (Charlie) and Deanna Myers (Clea).

The creative team includes: Brian Sidney Bembridge (Scenic Designer), Nan Zabriskie (Costume Designer), Sarah Hughey (Lighting Designer), Richard Woodbury (Original Music & Sound Designer), and Scott Dickens (Properties Master). Bobby Kennedy is the Dramaturg and David Castellanos is the Production Stage Manager.

This marks the fifth show for director Kimberly Senior at Writers Theatre where she previously directed Marjorie Prime, The Diary of Anne Frank, Hedda Gabler, and The Letters. Senior recently directed the Broadway production of Disgraced which ran at the Lyceum Theatre during the 2014-2015 season. Disgraced was nominated for the 2015 Tony Award for Best Play and was awarded the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.


Kimberly Senior (Director) returns to Writers Theatre, where she is a Resident Director, after directing Marjorie Prime, The Diary of Anne Frank, Hedda Gabler and The Letters. Other Chicago credits include: Support Group for MenDisgraced, and Rapture, Blister, Burn (Goodman Theatre);  Discord4000 Miles, and The Whipping Man (Northlight Theatre); WantThe North Plan (Steppenwolf); InanaMy Name is Asher LevAll My Sons, and Dolly West's Kitchen (TimeLine Theatre); Disgraced (American Theatre Company); The Great God Pan, After the RevolutionMadagascarThe Overwhelming, and The Busy World is Hushed (Next); Waiting for Lefty (American Blues); Old TimesTheConquest of the South PoleUncle VanyaCherry OrchardThree SistersFuddy Meers, and Knives in Hens (Strawdog); Cripple of InishmaanBug, and The Pillowman (Redtwist Theatre); Thieves Like Us (The House Theatre); among others. New York Credits: Disgraced (2013 Pulitzer Prize, Broadway); Chris Gethard's Career Suicide (Judd Apatow Productions); Engagements (Second Stage Uptown); The Who and The What, and Disgraced (Lincoln Center Theater 3). Regional: Sex with Strangers (The Geffen Playhouse); Disgraced (Mark Taper Forum, Berkley Repertory Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre); The Who and The What (La Jolla Playhouse); Little Gem (City Theatre); Games AfootMurder on the Nile, and A Few Good Men (Peninsula Players); Mauritius (Theatre Squared, Fayetteville, AR).  Kimberly also directed Chris Gethard's Career Suicide for HBO/Funny or Die which will air May 6 on HBO.  Kimberly was awarded the prestigious Alan Schneider Award at the 2016 TCG Conference.  She is also a 2013 Finalist for the SDCF Joe A. Callaway Award. She is the recipient of the 2016 Special Non-Equity Joseph Jefferson Award for her Chicago career achievements as a trail blazer, champion and role model for emerging artists.

Theresa Rebeck was a finalist for the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for her play Omnium Gatherum.

Theresa Rebeck (Playwright) is a widely produced playwright throughout the United States and abroad. New York productions of her work include Dead Accounts (Music Box Theatre); Seminar (Golden Theatre); Mauritius (Biltmore Theatre in a Manhattan Theater Club Production); The Scene, The Water’s Edge, Loose Knit, The Family of Mann and Spike Heels (Second Stage); Bad DatesThe Butterfly Collection and Our House (Playwrights Horizons); The Understudy (Laura Pels Theater in a Roundabout Theatre Company production); and View of the Dome (New York Theatre Workshop). Omnium Gatherum (co-written, finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2003) was featured at the Humana Festival, and had a commercial run at the Variety Arts Theatre. Her newest work, Poor Behavior premiered at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles in 2011. Dead Accounts, commissioned by the Cincinnati Playhouse, premiered January 2012. Seminar ran on Broadway.

All of Ms. Rebeck’s past produced plays are published by Smith and Kraus as Theresa Rebeck: Complete Plays, Volumes I, II III, and IV and in acting editions available from Samuel French or Playscripts. Ms. Rebeck’s other publications are Free Fire Zone, a book of comedic essays about writing and show business. She has written for American Theatre magazine and has had excerpts of her plays published in the Harvard Review. Rebeck’s first novel, Three Girls and Their Brother, was published by Random House/Shaye Areheart Books in April 2008. Her second novel, Twelve Rooms With A View, was published by Random House/Shaye Areheart Books in May of 2010. Both novels are available online and at booksellers everywhere.

In television, Ms. Rebeck has written for Dream On (HBO, FOX), Brooklyn Bridge (CBS), L.A. Law (NBC), American Dreamer (NBC), Maximum Bob (ABC), First Wave (Syfy, Space), and Third Watch (NBC). She was the creator of the NBC drama Smash.  She has been a writer/producer for Canterbury’s Law (FOX), Smith(CBS), Law and Order: Criminal Intent (NBC, USA, MyNetworkTV) and NYPD Blue (ABC). Her produced feature films include Harriet the Spy, Gossip, and the independent features Sunday on the Rocks and Seducing Charlie Barker, an adaptation of her play, The Scene. Awards include the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award, the Writer’s Guild of America award for Episodic Drama, the Hispanic Images Imagen Award, and the Peabody, all for her work on NYPD Blue. She has won the National Theatre Conference Award (for The Family of Mann), and was awarded the William Inge New Voices Playwriting Award in 2003 for The BellsMauritius was originally produced at Boston’s Huntington Theatre, where it received the 2007 IRNE Award for Best New Play as well as the Elliot Norton Award. Other awards include the PEN/Laura Pels Foundation Award, the Athena Film Festival Award, an Alex Award, a Lilly Award and in 2011 she was named one of the "150 Fearless Women in the World" by Newsweek.

Rebeck is originally from Cincinnati and holds an M.F.A. in Playwrighting and a Ph.D. in Victorian Melodrama, both from Brandeis University. She is a proud board member of the Dramatists Guild, a Contributing Editor to the Harvard Review, an Associate Artist of the Roundabout Theatre Company, a Playwright Adviser and Board Member of the LARK and has taught at Brandeis University and Columbia University.

Charin Alvarez (Stella) returns to Writers Theatre where she previously appeared in the reading of Saint Joan in collaboration with The Chicago Inclusion Project. Theatre credits include 2666Pedro ParamoEl Nogalar, Dollhouse and Electricidad (Goodman Theatre), MojadaOedipus El ReyAnna in the Tropics andA Park in the House (Victory Gardens Theatre), In the time of the ButterfliesOur Lady of the UnderpassI put the fear of Mexico in ‘emDreamlandia, and Another Part of the House (Teatro Vista), Water by the Spoonful (Court Theatre), Work of Art (Chicago Dramatists) The Clean House (Remy Bumppo), What We Once Felt (About Face Theatre) Kita & Fernanda (16th Street Theatre), Esperanza Rising (Chicago Children’s Theatre), Two Sisters and a Piano (Apple Tree Theatre), Generic Latina (Teatro Luna) and La Casa de Bernarda Alba (Aguijon Theatre). Television credits include Shameless (Showtime), Chicago Fire (NBC), Chicago Code and Mob Doctor (FOX), and Boss (Starz). Film credits include Rooftop WarsArc of a BirdWere the World MineChicago OvercoatFirst and Only LessonEric’s HaircutDogwalkerRogers ParkOlympia: Manual on how to live your lifeSignature MoveEn Algun LugarPrincess Cyd, and Single File.

La Shawn Banks (Lewis) returns to Writers Theatre where he previously appeared in Isaac's Eye, The Liar, Travels With My Aunt, Old Glory, The Turn of the Screw, The Duchess of Malfi and To The Green Fields Beyond. Favorite Chicago productions include Short Shakespeare! Twelfth Night (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre), Le Switch (About Face Theatre), The Wheel (Steppenwolf Theatre Company) and A Year With Frog and Toad (Chicago Children's Theatre). Favorite regional productions include Around The World In 80 Days (Indiana Repertory Theatre), A Streetcar Named Desire, The Island, Edward Albee's Seascape, Troilus and Cressida, The Critic and Of Mice and Men (American Players Theatre). Television credits include Chicago Justice, Chicago PD (NBC), Shameless (Showtime) and The Exorcist (FOX). Film credits include The Merry Gentleman (directed by Michael Keaton) and Surprise Me!.

Deanna Myers (Clea) makes her Writers Theatre debut. Recent Chicago credits include: You on the Moors Now (The Hypocrites), the Chicago and Miami Productions of The Hammer Trinity (The House Theatre), SideShow (Porchlight Music Theatre), the New Stages Production of King of the Yees and The White Snake (Goodman Theatre), The Golden Dragon (Sideshow Theatre) and The Three Musketeers (Lifeline Theatre). Television credits include Chicago Fire (NBC) and The Drunk. Film credits include The Drunk. Deanna is a proud company member at Barrel of Monkeys, where she finds her favorite young playwrights among the students of CPS schools, and is a perpetual student at the Actors Gymnasium.

Mark L. Montgomery (Charlie) returns to Writers Theatre where he previously appeared in Hedda Gabler, The Letters and The BeatsMark has appeared in more than a dozen productions with Chicago Shakespeare Theater including Twelfth Night, Troilus and Cressida and Rose Rage: Henry VI Parts 1, 2 and 3. Other Chicago credits include Camino Real, Stage Kiss, A Christmas Carol (Goodman Theatre), Fascination (About Face Theatre), WantThe Time of Your Life (Steppenwolf Theatre), In the Next Room or the Vibrator Play, Equivocation (Victory Gardens), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Apple Tree Theatre), and In the Belly of the Beast: Letters from Prison (The Journeymen Theater Company) as well as shows with Remy Bumppo and Northlight Theatre, among others. New York credits include The Seagull, Mamma Mia! (Broadway), Macbeth (The Public), The Runner Stumbles (The Actors Company Theatre) and The Madras House (Mint Theater Company). Regional credits include Julius Caesar (American Repertory Theater and French tour) and Emma (Cleveland Playhouse). Television credits include Boss (Starz), Law & Order (NBC) and Guiding Light (CBS).

This is the first Theresa Rebeck play to be produced at 
Writers Theatre.  
Cast members Charin Alvarez (Stella) 
and Deanna Myers (Clea) will be appearing at 
Writers Theatre for the first time.

Accessible Performances
ASL-Interpreted performance: Friday, March 31, 2017 at 7:30pm
Open-Captioned performance: Saturday, April 1, 2017 at 7:30pm

Sunday Spotlight—Sunday, March 19, 2017
Are you curious about the world that surrounds your favorite plays? Sunday Spotlight offers access to the finest speakers, scholars and cultural leaders. This one-hour event extends the conversation on our stages by featuring an expert in an area connected to the play. Seating is limited. RSVP is required. Save the date!

The Making of… Series—Monday, March 27, 2017 at 6:30pm
Writers Theatre will once again host its popular The Making of… Series, providing insight into a different aspect of creating the productions seen on our stages. Enjoy a short and lively presentation by our actors, designers or other experts who will walk you through the process of preparing for and executing a production. The Making of… events are FREE and open to the public. Seating is limited. RSVP is required.

Post Show Conversation: The Word
Join us after every Tuesday evening performance (excluding previews and extensions) for a 15-minute discussion of the play, facilitated by a member of the WT Artistic Team.

Post Show Conversation: The Artist
Join us after every Wednesday evening performance (excluding previews and extensions) for a 15-minute talk-back featuring actors from the production, facilitated by a member of the WT Artistic Team.

Pre-Show Conversation: Up Close
Join us at 6:45pm before every Thursday evening performance (excluding previews and extensions) for a 15-minute primer on the context and content of the play, facilitated by a member of the WT Artistic Team.

For more information about Writers Theatre Audience Enrichment programs visit

In an effort to promote taking public transit to the Theatre, Writers Theatre launched a new promotion in 2013. Any audience member who purchases a ticket to a Writers Theatre production and rides Metra’s Union Pacific North Line to the Theatre may snap a photo of themselves on the train and post it to their Facebook or Instagram page or their Twitter feed with a tag of @WritersTheatre and #[the title of the show], and upon showing the post at the Writers Theatre Box Office, receive $5 in cash to put toward the cost of your fare as a thank you for going green.

This promotion is available for a limited time only, and may end without warning. Ticket must have been paid for in advance. Not valid on comp tickets. More information available at

Writers Theatre is pleased to recognize BMO Harris Bank as the 25th Anniversary Season Sponsor for the 2016/17 season. ComEd is the Official Lighting Sponsor of the season. The Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation provides Foundation Support and the Artists Council Sponsors are Gail and Tom Hodges. Additional support for The Scene provided by the Director’s Society Sponsors, Cindy and David Knapp, Michael and Christine Pope, Craig and Linda Umans, and Sallyan Windt.

For more information about Writers Theatre’s 2016/17 Partners, visit

For 25 years, Writers Theatre has captivated Chicagoland audiences with inventive interpretations of classic work, a bold approach to contemporary theatre and a dedication to creating the most intimate theatrical experience possible.

Under the artistic leadership of Michael Halberstam and the executive leadership of Kathryn M. Lipuma, Writers Theatre has grown to become a major Chicagoland cultural destination with a national reputation for excellence, being called the top regional theatre in the nation by The Wall Street Journal. The company, which plays to a sold-out and discerning audience of more than 60,000 patrons each season, has garnered critical praise for the consistent high quality and intimacy of its artistry—providing the finest interpretations of both classic and contemporary theatre in its two intensely intimate venues. 

In February 2016, Writers Theatre opened a new, state-of-the-art facility. This established the company's first permanent home—a new theatre center in downtown Glencoe, designed by the award-winning, internationally renowned Studio Gang Architects, led by Founder and Design Principal Jeanne Gang, FAIA, in collaboration with Theatre Consultant Auerbach Pollock Friedlander. The new facility has allowed the Theatre to continue to grow to accommodate its audience, while maintaining its trademark intimacy. The new facility resonates with and complements the Theatre’s neighboring Glencoe community, adding tremendous value to Chicagoland and helping to establish the North Shore as a premier cultural destination.

Find Writers Theatre on Facebook at or follow @WritersTheatre on Twitter. For more information, visit

Saturday, February 25, 2017

OPENING: Chicago Premiere of Tom Stoppard's The Hard Problem at Court Theatre 3/9-4/9

Chi, IL LIVE Shows On Our Radar:

Court Theatre presents the Chicago Premiere of
The Hard Problem
By Tom Stoppard
Directed by Charles Newell

March 9 – April 9, 2017

Court Theatre, under the leadership of Marilyn F. Vitale Artistic Director Charles Newell and Executive Director Stephen J. Albert, announces casting for the Chicago premiere of The Hard Problem by Tom Stoppard, directed by Charles Newell. The Hard Problem runs March 9 – April 9, 2017 at Court Theatre, 5535 S. Ellis Avenue in Chicago. 

Court Theatre is proud to bring award-winning and renowned playwright Tom Stoppard’s highly-anticipated new play to Chicago. His new work introduces Hilary, a young psychologist working at the prestigious Krohl Institute for Brain Science. She struggles to bear the burden of her regrets as she works through a troubling issue in her research. Where does our biology end and our personhood begin?

If there is nothing but matter, what is consciousness? Will the computer someday answer all questions psychology can ask? This “hard problem” sets Hilary at odds with her colleagues, but she prays for a miracle to lead her to the solutions.

"Court Theatre has produced more of Tom Stoppard’s plays than any other contemporary playwright’s work because he such a great fit for our audience," says Charles Newell, Marilyn F. Vitale Artistic Director. "He is a writer who asks complicated questions, but our job as theatre artists is to find the heart in it all. The Hard Problem is no exception."

The cast for the Chicago premiere of The Hard Problem includes Owais Ahmed (Amal), Celeste M. Cooper (Julia), Chaon Cross (Hilary), Kate Fry (Ursula), Emjoy Gavino (Bo), Jürgen Hooper (Spike), Nathan Hosner (Jerry), Brian McCaskill (Leo), and Sophie Thatcher (Cathy).

The creative team includes John Culbert (Scenic Design), Nan Cibula-Jenkins (Costume Design), Keith Parham (Lighting Design), Eva Breneman (Dialect Design). Amanda Weener-Frederick is the Production Stage Manager.

About the Artists
TOM STOPPARD (Playwright) began his career in England in 1954 as a journalist, soon moving to London in 1960 to start work as a playwright. Plays: The Hard Problem, The Real Inspector Hound, After Magritte, Jumpers, Travesties, Every Good Boy Deserves Favour (with André Previn), Dirty Linen, New-Found-Land, Dogg’s Hamlet, Cahoot’s Macbeth, Night and Day, The Real Thing, Hapgood, Arcadia, Indian Ink, The Invention of Love, The Coast of Utopia, Rock’n’Roll, and The Hard Problem. Adaptations: On the Razzle (Nestroy), and Rough Crossing (Molnar). Tom’s most recent work for TV was Parades End; for radio, Darkside (with Pink Floyd); and for film, Anna Karenina. His film Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead won the Venice FIlm Festival Prix d’Or, and Shakespeare in Love won an Academy Award.

CHARLES NEWELL (Director/Marilyn F. Vitale Artistic Director) was awarded the SDCF Zelda Fichandler Award, “which recognizes an outstanding director or choreographer who is transforming the regional arts landscape through singular creativity and artistry in theatre.” Charlie has been Artistic Director of Court Theatre since 1994, where he has directed over 50 productions. He made his Chicago directorial debut in 1993 with The Triumph of Love, which won the Joseph Jefferson Award for Best Production. Charlie’s productions of Man of La Mancha and Caroline, or Change have also won Best Production Jeffs. Other directorial highlights at Court include Man in the Ring; One Man, Two Guvnors; Satchmo at the Waldorf; Agamemnon; The Secret Garden; Iphigenia in Aulis; The Misanthrope; Tartuffe; Proof; Angels in America; An Iliad; Porgy and Bess; Three Tall Women; Titus Andronicus; Arcadia; Uncle Vanya; Raisin; The Glass Menagerie; Travesties; Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?; The Invention of Love; and Hamlet. Charlie has also directed at Goodman Theatre (Rock ‘n’ Roll), Guthrie Theater (The History Cycle, Cymbeline), Arena Stage, John Houseman’s The Acting Company (Staff Repertory Director), the California and Alabama Shakespeare Festivals, Juilliard, and New York University. He has served on the Board of TCG, as well as on several panels for the NEA. Opera directing credits include Marc Blitzstein’s Regina (Lyric Opera), Rigoletto (Opera Theatre of St. Louis), Don Giovanni and The Jewel Box (Chicago Opera Theater), and Carousel (Glimmerglass). Charlie was the recipient of the 1992 TCG Alan Schneider Director Award, and has been nominated for 16 Joseph Jefferson Director Awards, winning four times. In 2012, Charlie was honored by the League of Chicago Theatres with its Artistic Achievement Award.

OWAIS AHMED (Amal) makes his Court debut. He is a Chicago native and ensemble member of Definition Theatre Co. Theatre credits include: The Invisible Hand (Milwaukee Rep), Orange (Mixed Blood Theatre), The Qualms (Steppenwolf Theatre), Heartland (PlayPenn), Blood & Gifts (Timeline Theatre), The Reckoning of Kit (First Floor Theater), Red Handed Otter (A Red Orchid Theatre), and Samsara (Victory Gardens). Other theatre credits: Anon(ymous), The Merchant of Venice, Much Ado About Nothing and Passion Play. Film/TV credits: Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice, Age Of Ice and Empire. Owais is represented by Gray Talent.

CELESTE M. COOPER (Julia) returns to Court Theatre. Celeste most recently played Delia in Blues for an Alabama Sky. Some theatre credits include: Measure for Measure (Goodman); Stick Fly (Windy City Playhouse/ nominated for Best Featured Actress from BTAA), Never the Sinner (Victory Gardens Theater), Ruined (Eclipse), understudying Animal Farm (Steppenwolf); The Hammer Trinity (House/ Adrienne Arsht in Miami),The Mecca Tales (Chicago Dramatists); How We Got On (Citadel), Our Lady of 121st Street (Eclipse), her original one woman shows- Fight 4 Your Life, and later The Incredible Cece (MPAACT & Stage 773). Celeste is a recipient of The Most Promising Actress Award from the Black Theater Alliance for her portrayal of Josephine in Ruined, which led her to becoming an ensemble member and casting associate with Eclipse Theatre Company. Her TV/ Film credits include a recurring role as the Medical Examiner on Chicago PD (NBC), Spike Lee’s Chiraq, Sense8 (Netflix), and various other projects. Ms. Cooper has a B.A. in Speech Communications & Theatre from Tennessee State University and an M.F.A. in Acting from DePaul University Theatre School.

CHAON CROSS (Hilary) Chicago credits include: Life SucksBrothers Karamazov (Lookingglass Theatre Company); One Man, Two GuvnorsProof (Joseph Jefferson Nomination), Uncle VanyaThe Glass MenagerieScapinThe Romance Cycle, and Phèdre (Court); Cyrano (Court Theatre and Redmoon Theater); As You Like ItPrivate LivesCymbelineTroilus and CressidaThe Two Noble Kinsmen, and The Taming of the Shrew (Chicago Shakespeare); The Wheel and The Cherry Orchard (Steppenwolf); Macbeth (Lyric Opera of Chicago); and Grace (Northlight Theatre). Regional credits include Lady Windermere’s Fan (Milwaukee Repertory Theater) and Pride & Prejudice (Cleveland Play House). TV credits: The Exorcist (FOX), Chicago Fire (NBC), Boss (Starz), and Detroit 1-8-7 (ABC). Film: My Dog Skip (Warner Bros).

KATE FRY (Ursula) returns to Court Theatre, where she has performed in over a dozen productions, including Electra, The Romance Cycle, Twelfth NightThe Cherry OrchardMy Fair Lady, and Caroline, or Change. Other Chicago area credits include work with Writers Theatre (Arcadia, Marjorie Prime, Hedda Gabler, The Letters, Oh, Coward!,  A Minister’s Wife); Chicago Shakespeare Theatre (several productions, including As You Like It, Henry IV Parts One and Two, The Merchant of Venice, The Molière Comedies); Northlight Theatre (Outside Mullingar, The Miser); Victory Gardens (In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play); as well as work with Theatre at the Center, Marriott Theatre, Apple Tree Theatre, and Candlelight Playhouse. Elsewhere, she has worked at McCarter Theatre Center in Princeton, NJ, Center Theatre Group in L.A., Repertory Theatre of St Louis, and Lincoln Center. She is the recipient of three Joseph Jefferson awards, an After Dark award, Chicago Magazine’s actress of the year, and the Sarah Siddons award for Chicago’s leading lady.

EMJOY GAVINO (Bo) returns to Court, where she was last seen as Chrysothemis in Electra. Representative Chicago credits include The Hypocrites, Second City (national tour), Northlight, Steppenwolf, Victory Gardens, Remy Bumppo, Paramount, Broadway Playhouse, Lookingglass, The Neo-Futurists, and Goodman. Regional credits include Repertory Actors Theatre, Book-It Repertory, ACT, and Village Theatre.  Film/TV: The ExorcistMob DoctorChicago FireEmpire, and Chicago Med.  Emjoy is the casting director of Gift Theatre, a company member with Barrel of Monkeys, and is the founder and producer of The Chicago Inclusion Project.

JÜRGEN HOOPER (Spike) makes his Court Theatre debut. Broadway: Brighton Beach Memoirs. Chicago: Life & Limb, Huck Finn (Steppenwolf) Rabbit Hole (Goodman), The Comedy of Errors, AmadeusShort Shakespeare! Romeo & Juliet (Chicago Shakespeare), Isaac's EyeThe Chosen (Writer's Theatre), The Dark at the Top of the Stairs (American Theatre Company), Paradise Lost (TimeLine Theatre), What's Wrong With Angry? (Circle Theatre, Non-Equity Jeff Award Best Principle Actor - Play). Regional: The Mousetrap, The Game's Afoot (Indiana Rep) The Game's Afoot (New Theatre), Wanamaker's Pursuit (Arden Theatre Co.), The Cherry Orchard (Milwaukee Rep). TV/Film: Chicago Med, Crisis, Chicago Fire (NBC), Suits (USA) and the film Game Day.

NATHAN HOSNER (Jerry) makes his Court Theatre debut. Chicago credits include productions with Writers Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, The Goodman Theatre, Northlight Theatre, The Paramount Theatre, About Face Theatre, First Folio Theatre, Shaw Chicago, and The Shakespeare Project of Chicago. Other credits include: Peter and the Starcatcher (first national tour) and productions with American Players Theatre, The New Theatre, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre, The BoarsHead Theater, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Door Shakespeare, and the Madison Repertory New Play FestivalNathan is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, London.

BRIAN MCCASKILL (Leo) is making his Court Theatre debut. Previous credits include Windy City Playhouse, Lyric Opera, Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Shattered Globe Theatre, TimeLine Theatre and Raven Theatre. He has received one Jeff Award, four Jeff Award nominations and two After Dark Awards for his theatrical work. Film and television credits include Chicago P.D.CrisisPrison Break and numerous commercials.

SOPHIE THATCHER (Cathy) makes her Court Theatre debut in The Hard Problem. Credits include The Diary of Anne Frank (Writers Theatre), Oliver! (Drury Lane Theatre), The Secret Garden (Light Opera Works), and work with Theatre at the Center and Provision Theater. Television credits include Chicago P.D. (NBC), a recurring role on The Exorcist (Fox), and commercials for the Illinois Office of Tourism.

Wed & Thurs:       7:30 p.m.
Fridays:                8:00 p.m.
Saturdays:            3:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m.
Sundays:              2:30 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.

Location: Court Theatre, 5535 S. Ellis Ave.
Tickets: $38-$48 previews
                        $48-$68 regular run

Box Office:       Located at 5535 S. Ellis Avenue, Chicago; (773) 753-4472 or

Sponsors:         Nuveen Investments; Kirkland & Ellis LLP; Michael Charles Litt

Now in its 62nd season, Court Theatre is guided by its mission to discover the power of classic theatre. Court endeavors to make a lasting contribution to American theatre by expanding the canon of translations, adaptations, and classic texts. Court revives lost masterpieces, illuminates familiar texts, and distinguishes fresh, modern classics. Court engages and inspires its audience by providing artistically distinguished productions, audience enrichment activities, and student educational experiences.

Court Theatre's 2016/17 Season is sponsored by Barbara and Richard Franke.

OPENING: Picnic at American Theater Company

Chi, IL LIVE Shows On Our Radar:

Jeff Award-winner Molly Brennan to star as Hal in
American Theater Company’s
Directed by ATC Artistic Director Will Davis
March 17 - April 23, 2017

Here at ChiIL Live Shows, we're excited for ATC's next production, Picnic. We've been long time fans of Molly Brennan and Malic White's exceptional work and the cast contains many of our favorites on the Chicago scene. We can't wait to see the results of collaborating with Director, Will Davis, ATC's new Artistic Director.

American Theater Company (ATC) continues its Season 32 with William Inge's Pulitzer Prize-winning Picnic. ATC’s Artistic Director Will Davis directs a cast featuring Jeff Award-winner Molly Brennan (Hal), Robert Cornelius (Howard), Alexia Jasmene (Millie), Patricia Kane (Flo Owens), Laura McKenzie (Mrs. Potts/Piano Player), Jose Nateras (Alan), Michael Turrentine (Rosemary) and Malic White (Madge). Picnic runs from March 17 - April 23, 2017 (Press opening: Wednesday, March 22).  

Closeted and dogged by an acute sense of failure for most of his life until he ended it, William Inge wrote some of the great lyrical plays of the American mid-century, and Picnic was his masterpiece, his playground and, quite possibly, his fantasy. In this loving reimagining, Davis puts Inge at the center of his Pulitzer Prize-winning play and animates what is both sacred and profane about small town life against the backdrop of dust bowl hymns and love songs. Part séance, part love letter to a ghost, this Picnic explores a life lived at the periphery of one’s own desire.

“My number one goal here is to not have a conversation about what kind of body is playing the role of what kind of body,” says Davis. “I cast this show to reflect the queer longing I feel emanating from the heart of Inge's play. From my view, Inge's cannon is defined by a question about desire and his terror of it. Each of his works asks questions about heeding the call of the heart and being punished for it. I see this as a reflection of the times he lived in and his experience of homophobia both internal and external. This production will pivot between experiencing the text through the lens of queer fellowship and experiencing the text through the lens of closeted longing. As is always true what we say is not what we mean and my casting choices for this show are meant to pull that divergence into focus.”

Picnic’s design team includes Evvie Allison (choreography), Joe Schermoly (set), Melissa Ng (costumes), Rachel Levy (lights), Miles Polaski (sound) and Abigail Cain (props).

Performance schedule
Previews: Friday, March 17 at 8 p.m.; Saturday, March 18 at 8 p.m.; and Sunday, March 19 at
2 p.m.
Press Opening: Wednesday, March 22 at 7 p.m.
Regular Run: March 23- April 23: Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m.; Saturdays at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.; Sundays at 2 p.m.

Single tickets for Picnic range from $20-$38 and are available by calling the ATC box office at 773-409-4125, or visiting Season subscriptions are also on sale now and range from $40-$112.50, with special pricing available for members under the age of 35.

Molly Brennan (Hal) is a clown, actor and theatre maker in town. In Chicago, she has performed at Lookingglass, Goodman, Steppenwolf, Neo-Futurists, About Face, Lifeline, Second City, Lyric Opera, House, Factory, and others. She has toured the U.S. extensively as well, most notably Denver Arts Center, PS 122 in NYC, the Arsht in Miami, Alliance in Atlanta, and the Kennedy Center.

Robert Cornelius (Howard) makes his ATC debut with Picnic. He was most recently seen in the Hypocrites production of WIT. Robert has performed in Chicago and around the country as an actor for over three decades at theaters including Victory Gardens, Court Theatre, The Goodman, First Folio, Drury Lane, Milwaukee Rep, Indiana Rep, Montana Rep, St Louis Black Rep, and many others. Favorite productions include Blues for an Alabama Sky, The Rivals, Takunda, Aida, You Can't Take it With You, Member of the Wedding, and Taming of the Shrew.

Alexia Jasmene (Millie) makes her ATC debut with Picnic. Past credits include Kin Folk (The New Colony), Merry Christmas, Mulch Pile (Mercy Street), Mary Shelley Sees the Future (Runaway Labs), Cathedrals (Living Canvas), Transformations (Nothing Without a Company & Living Canvas) and Temperance Vs. Tolerance (Step Up Productions). She is a trans woman that is an actor, musician, and story teller in Chicago and can be seen performing at various open mics around the city for music and poetry.

Patricia Kane (Flo Owens) makes her ATC debut with Picnic.  Past credits include The Whale, In the Next Room or the vibrator play and Hannah Free at Victory Gardens Theatre (as well as the film version of Hannah Free, starring Sharon Gless); What Once We Felt, Pulp, Seven Moves, Fascination, The Terrible Girls, Whitman, Dancer from the Dance, The Gift and Cloud Nine (About Face Theatre); Finding the Sun and Dancing at Lughnasa (Goodman Theatre); All in the Timing (Northlight Theatre); as well as productions with Collaboraction, Live Bait, Stage Left, Bailiwick, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, and NYC’s Tectonic Theatre Group.  

Laura McKenzie (Mrs. Potts/Piano Player) makes her ATC debut with Picnic. Past credits include Six Characters in Search of an Author (The Hypocrites), Alice, Beer and Picked Up (Neo-Futurists) and many shows with the Factory Theater. Laura has written music and lyriacs for several shows including Hey! Dancin'! Hey! Musical! (Factory Theater) and Sparky (Lifeline Theatre). She is a company member with Barrel of Monkeys and The Factory Theater and is one half of the facemelt duo The Laura On Laura Comeback Tour.

Jose Nateras (Alan) makes his ATC debut with Picnic. Recent credits include Cymbeline (Strawdog), Reprise (Adventure Stage Chicago), The Van Gogh Cafe (Filament Theatre), The Grapes of Wrath (The Gift Theatre), Othello(u/s*) and Since I Suppose (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre), My Soul's Shadow (Manual Cinema), Balm in Gilead (u/s Griffin Theatre), Romeo & Juliet (with Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival and Teatro Vista), Hit the Wall (u/s The Inconvenience); among others. He's toured with Montana Shakespeare in the Parks (Hamlet, Twelfth Night) and appeared on NBC's Chicago Fire, as well as in spots for Onion Labs, Radar Studios, and others.

Michael Turrentine (Rosemary) makes his ATC debut with Picnic. Past credits include The Grapes of Wrath (The Gift Theatre), Pirandello's Henry IV (Remy Bumppo Theatre Company), The Hairy Ape (Oracle Productions), La Cenerentola and The Merry Widow (The Lyric Opera), In Love and Warcraft (Halcyon Theater), How's It Going to End? (InGen Productions), as well as understudying at Chicago Children's Theater and The Hypocrites. He is also an Artistic Associate with Barrel of Monkeys.

Malic White (Madge) is a punk performer, playwright and gender warrior who has been an ensemble member at the Neo-Futurist Theater since 2012. Chicago stage credits include Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind, Pop Waits (Neo-Futurists), and American Idiot (the Hypocrites). Film credits include Princess Cyd, Signature Move, and The Year I Broke My Voice. Malic's original performance work has been featured at Woolly Mammoth Theater, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Jay Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park, Davenport’s Piano Bar, Logan Square Auditorium, and Tour de Fat.

William Inge (Playwright, 1913-1973) was a playwright, teacher, and novelist born in Independence, Kansas, who wrote a string of successful plays throughout the 40s and 50s. His play Come Back, Little Sheba earned him the title of most promising playwright of the 1950 Broadway season. This success was followed in 1953 by Picnic (winner of the 1953 Pulitzer Prize) and again in 1955 by the highly-revered Bus Stop. Inge’s fame continued to grow as The Dark at the Top of the Stairs, a reworking of his first play Farther Off From Heaven opened on Broadway in 1957. The Dark at the Top of the Stairs, considered to be Inge’s finest play, is one in which he draws most directly from his own past. He spent the final years of his life writing two novels: Good Luck, Miss Wyckoff in 1970 and My Son Is a Splendid Driver in 1971. Inge committed suicide on June 10, 1973 at the age of 60.

Will Davis is a director and choreographer focused on physically adventurous new work and old plays in new ways. He is also the newly appointed artistic director of American Theater Company ( ATC). Recent projects include: Evita, re-imagined for the Olney Theatre Center, Men on Boats by Jaclyn Backhaus for Clubbed Thumb's Summerworks, Playwrights Horizons and ATC; DUAT by Daniel Alexander Jones for Soho Rep; Orange Julius by Basil Kreimendahl; Mike Iveson’s Sorry Robot for PS122’s COIL Festival; and two productions of Colossal by Andrew Hinderaker for Mixed Blood Theater and the Olney Theatre Center, for which he won a Helen Hayes award for outstanding direction. Davis has developed, directed and performed his work with New York Theatre Workshop, Clubbed Thumb, the New Museum, the Olney Theatre Center, the Alliance Theatre, the Playwright's Realm, the Fusebox Festival, New Harmony Project, the Orchard Project, the Ground Floor Residency at Berkeley Rep, Performance Studies International at Stanford University, and the Kennedy Center. He is an alum of the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab, the NYTW 2050 Directing Fellowship and the BAX (Brooklyn Art Exchange) artist in residence program. He holds a BFA in Theatre Studies from DePaul University and an MFA in Directing from UT Austin.

About American Theater Company
American Theater Company (ATC) challenges and inspires its community by exploring stories that ask the question, "What does it mean to be an American?" ATC’s Ensemble includes Patrick Andrews, Kareem Bandealy, Jaime Castañeda, Kelly O’Sullivan, Tyler Ravelson, and Sadieh Rifai.

American Theater Company is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and CityArts grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, the Lloyd A. Fry Foundation, Polk Bros. Foundation, the MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at Prince, and the Shubert Foundation.

OPENING: Beyond Caring and Jeff Award Winning Moby Dick at Lookingglass

Chi, IL Live Shows On Our Radar;

Lookingglass Theatre Company Presents
the U.S. Premiere of 
Beyond Caring, 
written and directed by Alexander Zeldin
in association with Dark Harbor Stories

and the return of Lookingglass’ critically-acclaimed production of 
Moby Dick,
adapted from the novel by Herman Melville and directed by Ensemble Member David Catlin,
in association with The Actors Gymnasium

Tickets On-Sale Now

Lookingglass Theatre Company announces casting for the final two shows of its 2016-2017 season, including the U.S. Premiere of Beyond Caring, written and directed by Alexander Zeldin in association with Dark Harbor Stories, a company led by Ensemble Member David Schwimmer and Tom Hodges, as well as the remount of the Jeff Award-winning Moby Dick, adapted from the novel by Herman Melville and directed by Ensemble Member David Catlin. Single tickets for Beyond Caring and Moby Dick are currently on sale and may be purchased through the box office at (312) 337-0665 or

The cast of the U.S. Premiere of Beyond Caring includes Ensemble Member J. Nicole Brooks (Becky), Edwin Lee Gibson (Phil), Wendy Mateo (Susan), Caren Blackmore (Grace) and Keith Gallagher (Ian).

The creative team for Beyond Caring includes Ensemble Member Daniel Ostling (scenic and lighting design), Ensemble Member Mara Blumenfeld (costume design), Josh Anio Grigg (sound design and composition) and Amanda Herman (props design). Tess Golden is the Production Stage Manager.

The cast of Moby Dick includes Ensemble Members Kareem Bandealy, Anthony Fleming III and Raymond Fox who return to reprise their roles as Starbuck, Queequeg and Stubb from the critically-acclaimed 2015 production. Also returning to the production is Artistic Associate Kasey Foster (Fate 2), along with Jamie Abelson (Ishmael) and Micah Figueroa (Cabaco). Joining the cast are Kelley Abell (Fate 3), Cordelia Dewdney (Fate 1) and Nathan Hosner (Ahab).

The creative team for Moby Dick includes Courtney O'Neill (scenic design), Sully Ratke (costume design), William C. Kirkman (lighting design), Artistic Associate Rick Sims (sound design), Isaac Schoepp (rigging design), Amanda Herrmann (props design) and Artistic Associate Sylvia Hernandez-Distasi (choreography).

About Beyond Caring and Moby Dick:

The U.S. Premiere of
Beyond Caring
March 22–May 7, 2017
Press opening:  Saturday, April 1 at 7:30 pm
Written and Directed by Alexander Zeldin
In Association with Dark Harbor Stories
Featuring Ensemble Member J. Nicole Brooks (Becky), Edwin Lee Gibson (Phil), Wendy Mateo (Susan), Caren Blackmore (Grace) and Keith Gallagher (Ian).

Unseen. Unheard. Unknown.

At the margins of society, on the knife-edge of survival, they work for low wages, in harsh conditions. No safety net. No insurance or protections. No guarantee of work tomorrow.

This critically-acclaimed piece, most recently produced at the UK’s National Theatre and re-imagined for Chicago by writer/director Alexander Zeldin, is a gritty portrait of those who cling precariously to the bottom rung of the ladder. Full of life, humor, and tenderness, it sheds light on America’s shadow economy and shines an unflinching spotlight on the incendiary intersection of race and class.

Beyond Caring will be produced in association with Dark Harbor Stories. Dark Harbor Stories is a company led by David Schwimmer and Tom Hodges dedicated to producing original stories with a social conscience in theatre, television and film. Lookingglass Ensemble Member David Schwimmer brought this project to Lookingglass, and is working closely with writer/director Alexander Zeldin on the production, and collaborating with Lookingglass to develop the necessary attention and funds for this exciting project.

ALEXANDER ZELDIN (Writer/Director) is a writer and director for theatre. He trained on the Jerwood Young Directors course at The Old Vic and has taken part in residencies at the Egyptian Centre for Culture and Art and at Studio Emad Eddin in Cairo. His critically-acclaimed play, Beyond Caring, which examined the effects of zero hours contracts had its World Premiere at The Yard Theatre in Hackney in 2014, before transferring to the Temporary Theatre at the National Theatre in London in 2015. In 2015, Alex was the recipient of The Quercus Trust Award and was appointed as Associate Director at The Birmingham Repertory Theatre. Beyond Caring toured the UK in 2016 and his new play LOVE just opened at the National Theatre in London.

CAREN BLACKMORE (Grace) is making her Lookingglass debut with Beyond Caring. She was last seen in Court Theatre's production of Electra. Her Chicago theatre credits include: a one woman show, The MLK Project: The Fight For Civil Rights (Writers Theatre), Spill (TimeLine Theatre), Jitney! (Court Theatre), The Joe Tex Story (Black Ensemble Theater), and she has also worked with Pegasus Players, Stockyards Theatre Project, Theater Wit, The Loop Players, Congo Square Theatre Company, eta Creative Arts Foundation and MPAACT. Caren has attended New Freedom Theatre in Philadelphia and is a graduate of Oberlin College and the Eugene O'Neill National Theater Institute

J. NICOLE BROOKS (Becky/Lookingglass Ensemble Member) is an actor, wordsmith, and director. Recent stage credits include the acclaimed comedy Immediate Family directed by Phylicia Rashad (Goodman Theatre; Mark Taper Forum), and Lucas Hnath’s Death Tax (Lookingglass Theatre). She is author of Black Diamond: The Years the Locusts Have Eaten (published by Methuen), Fedra Queen of Haiti (published University of Illinois Press) and has several plays in development. Directing credits include Thaddeus & Slocum: A Vaudeville Adventure, Black Diamond, and Mr. Rickey Calls a Meeting (Lookingglass Theatre). Prized ribbons: TCG Fox Foundation Resident Actor Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts, LA Ovations, African American Theatre Alliance of Chicago, Jeff Award Nominations, and Black Theater Alliance Awards.

KEITH D. GALLAGHER (Ian) is making his Lookingglass debut. Chicago: Mary Page Marlowe, Marie Antoinette (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); The Gospel of Franklin, Man in Love (Steppenwolf First Look); Awake and Sing, The Lieutenant of Inishmore (Northlight Theatre); Shining City (Goodman Theatre); Tracks (TUTA Chicago); Arcadia (Court Theatre); The Real Thing (Remy Bumppo Theatre Company). Regional: A Raisin in the Sun (Geva Theatre Center); The Gospel According to James (Indiana Repertory Theatre); The Lieutenant of Inishmore (The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis); Shining City (Huntington Theatre Company). TV: Chicago Fire; Chicago P.D.; Detroit 187.

EDWIN LEE GIBSON (Phil) is making his Lookingglass debut. Off Broadway: Love and Information, U.S. premiere (The Minetta Lane Theatre/New York Theatre Workshop); The Seven (New York Theatre Workshop); The Bellagio Fountain Has Been Known To Make Me Cry (Concrete Temple Theatre, NYC); Turquoise (Dixon Place, NYC); The Death of Bessie Smith (New Brooklyn Theatre); The Diary of Black Men (Fairfield Halls, London). Chicago credits: The Royale (American Theater Company); St. James Infirmary (Congo Square Theatre Company). Awards: OBIE Award - Outstanding Performance. TV: recurring role as Orton Freeman on Law and Order: SVU (NBC); Shameless (Showtime). Film: Mom and Dad (Armory Films/Brian Taylor); Marshall (Chestnut Ridge Prods/ Reginald Hudlin); Blood First (NaRa Films).

WENDY MATEO (Susan) returns to the Lookingglass after last appearing as “Mother-in-Law” in Blood Wedding (2016) and “Maria” in Big Lake Big City (2013). Other Chicago credits include Tumbao: The Misadventures of la Familia Pilón at Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s 1700 Theatre and Don Chipotle produced by The Playground Theater. Wendy can also be seen on the many comedy stages around Chicago and at Mas Mejor online with the comedy duo, Dominizuelan. TV credits include: Shameless (Showtime), Chicago P.D. (NBC), and The Exorcist (FOX).

Moby Dick
June 7–September 3, 2017
Press Opening: Saturday, June 17 at 7:30 pm
Adapted and Directed by Ensemble Member David Catlin
From the book by Herman Melville
In Association with The Actors Gymnasium
Featuring Ensemble Members Kareem Bandealy as Starbuck, Anthony Fleming III as Queequeg (2015 Jeff Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role) and Raymond Fox as Stubb, and Artistic Associate Kasey Foster (Fate 2), with Jamie Abelson (Ishmael), Micah Figueroa (Cabaco), Kelley Abell (Fate 3), Cordelia Dewdney (Fate 1) and Nathan Hosner (Ahab).

Winner of four Jeff Awards, including Best Production, fresh off a national tour to the Alliance Theatre, Arena Stage and South Coast Repertory, the critically-acclaimed Moby Dick returns to the Lookingglass stage in this harrowing and intoxicating exploration of revenge, obsession, and destiny.

Madness rages like the angry sea when man pits himself against leviathan in Herman Melville’s epic and poetic tale, furiously reimagined by director David Catlin (Lookingglass Alice).

Climb aboard the Pequod with Ishmael, Starbuck, and the intrepid crew on a voyage into the darkest reaches of the human psyche with an insatiably driven Captain Ahab at the helm in reckless pursuit of the legendary white whale.

David Catlin (Adaptor/Director/Ensemble Member) Lookingglass directing credits include: Lookingglass Alice and The Little Prince. Other regional directing credits include: McCarter Theatre (Princeton, NJ), Arden Theatre (Philadelphia), New Victory Theater (NYC), Syracuse Stage, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Alliance Theatre (Atlanta) and The Getty Villa (Los Angeles). Other recent directing credits include: The Phantom Tollbooth (DePaul) and Moby Dick (Northwestern University). David teaches acting with Northwestern University’s theatre department.

KELLEY ABELL (Fate/Innkeeper) returns to Lookingglass after previous appearances in Peter Pan (A Play) and Moby Dick. Other credits include: Moby Dick (Arena Stage, South Coast Repertory Theatre, and Alliance Theatre); 42nd Street and Fiddler on the Roof (Paramount Theatre); Mr. Burns: A Post Electric Play (Theater Wit); Dorian (The House Theatre of Chicago); Bat Boy: The Musical and Titanic (Griffin Theatre). She has also worked with Goodman Theatre, The Marriott Theatre, and Chicago Children’s Theatre, and is a graduate of Northwestern University.

JAMIE ABELSON (Ishmael) previously appeared at Lookingglass in the initial run of Moby Dick, as well as Peter Pan (A Play) and Treasure Island (Understudy). Other recent projects include Red Kite Treasure Adventure and Red Kite Blue Sky (Chicago Children’s Theatre); The Lieutenant of Inishmore (Northlight Theatre); Eurydice (Victory Gardens Theater); Scenes from the Big Picture (Irish Theatre of Chicago); As Told by the Vivian Girls (Dog and Pony Theatre Co.); columbinus (Raven Theatre); and Hope Springs Infernal & Dorian (The House Theatre of Chicago). Regional credits include Moby Dick (Alliance Theatre, Arena Stage, South Coast Repertory). Jamie holds a BFA in Drama from the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU. 

KAREEM BANDEALY (Starbuck/Ensemble Member) has previously been seen at Lookingglass in Blood WeddingMoby Dick, The Little Prince, Big Lake Big CityBengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, The Last Act of Lilka Kadison, and Peter Pan. Select Chicago credits: A Christmas Carol, Rock ‘N’ Roll, Gas For LessKing Lear (Goodman Theatre); The Wheel (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); Oklahoma! (Paramount Theatre); The Good BookThe Illusion (Court Theatre); Julius CaesarHamlet, The CaretakerHeartbreak House (Writers Theatre); A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Edward IIRomeo and Juliet (Chicago Shakespeare Theater); A Disappearing NumberBlood and Gifts (TimeLine Theatre); Othello (The Gift Theatre). Regional: The Merry Wives of WindsorThe Three MusketeersThe Tempest (Illinois Shakespeare Festival); Love’s Labours Lost (Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival); Julius CaesarStuff Happens (PICT Classic Theatre), and four seasons at Orlando Shakespeare Theater. Film: several credits including The Merry Gentleman (dir. Michael Keaton). TV: Chicago Fire (NBC). Kareem is a recipient of the 2011 3Arts Artist Award.

CORDELIA DEWDNEY (Fate) returns to Lookingglass with Moby Dick after the National Tour this past year to Alliance Theatre, Arena Stage, and South Coast Repertory). Last summer she appeared on Chicago Med. Cordelia is a graduate of Northwestern University with degrees in Theatre and English and a proud alum of the British American Dramatic Academy.

MICAH FIGUEROA (Cabaco/Captain of New Bedford Whaling Ship) returns to Lookingglass after appearing in the original production of Moby Dick in 2015, and in Lookingglass Alice. Chicago theatre credits include: Tall Girl and the Lightning Parade (Walkabout Theater); The Winter Pageant (Redmoon Theater); Distance to the Moon (First Floor Theater). Regional theatre credits include: Moby Dick (Alliance Theatre, Arena Stage, South Coast Repertory); In the Beginning, Henry IV (Dallas Theater Center); The Farnsworth Invention, Wild Oats (Theatre Three); Coriolanus, Cyrano de Bergerac, Macbeth (Shakespeare Dallas); Titus Andronicus (Kitchen Dog Theater); Sense and Sensibility (Stolen Shakespeare Guild). He earned a BFA from Southern Methodist University and the British American Drama Academy.

Anthony Fleming III (Queequeg/Ensemble Member) was last seen at Lookingglass in Moby Dick in 2015 and Lookingglass Alice in 2014, which marked his tenth production of the show and where he completed 555 total performances. Other Lookingglass productions include Big Lake, Big City, Mr. Rickey Calls a Meeting, Arabian Nights, 1984, Icarus, Fedra and Race. Select regional theater credits: Ma Rainey with Milwaukee Repertory Theater and Clybourne Park with Arizona Theatre Company. Anthony is a Chicagoan who has been working since 1997 on Chicago stages, including Victory Gardens Theater, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Goodman Theatre, Court Theatre, Chicago Theater Company, and Piven Theatre Workshop. 

KASEY FOSTER (Fate/Artistic Associate) has been performing, producing, and directing in Chicago since 2004. She recently returned to Chicago after performing in the National Tour of Moby Dick and was newly named an Artistic Associate with Lookingglass. Kasey has appeared regionally at Arena Stage (Washington, D.C.), Alliance Theatre (Atlanta), Berkeley Repertory Theatre (CA), and most recently in Chicago with Lookingglass' Treasure Island, and Manual Cinema's Mementos Mori. She sings with Chicago bands: Grood, Babe-alon 5, Old Timey, and This Must be the Band. She has directed/choreographed over thirty original works, and produces an annual series called Dance Tribute. 

RAYMOND FOX (Mr. Stubb/Captain Boomer/Captain Gardiner/Ensemble Member) last appeared at Lookingglass in Thaddeus and Slocum: A Vaudeville Adventure. Off-Broadway/Broadway: Metamorphoses (Second Stage Theatre, Circle in the Square Theatre). Regional Credits: Goodman Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Arena Stage, Arden Theatre, South Coast Repertory Theatre, Remy Bumppo Theatre Company, Route 66 Theatre, Hartford Stage, American Repertory Theatre, Indiana Repertory Theatre, Alliance Theatre, Meadow Brook Theatre, The House Theatre of Chicago, Mark Taper Forum, Court Theatre, McCarter Theatre, Kansas City Repertory Theatre, First Folio Theatre, Canada’s Stratford Festival and TimeLine Theatre (Blood and Gifts, 2013 Equity Jeff Award for Supporting Actor). Education: Northwestern University and the A.R.T. Institute at Harvard University.

NATHAN HOSNER (Captain Ahab) makes his Lookingglass debut. He recently played Lord Aster in the first national tour of Peter and the Starcatcher. Chicago credits include productions with Writers Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Court Theatre, Goodman Theatre, Paramount Theatre, About Face Theatre, and First Folio Theatre. Regional credits include productions with American Players Theatre, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Indiana Repertory Theatre, New Theatre, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre, Door Shakespeare, and The BoarsHead Theater. Nathan is a graduate of The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. 

About Lookingglass Theatre Company
Inventive. Collaborative. Transformative. Lookingglass Theatre Company, recipient of the 2011 Regional Theatre Tony Award, was founded in 1988 by eight Northwestern University students. Now in its 29th season, Lookingglass is home to a multi-disciplined ensemble of artists who create story-centered theatrical work that is physical, aurally rich and visually metaphoric. The Company has staged 66 world premieres, received 116 Joseph Jefferson awards and nominations, and work premiered at Lookingglass has been produced in New York City, Los Angeles, Seattle, Berkeley, Philadelphia, Princeton, Hartford, Kansas City, Washington D.C., and St. Louis. Lookingglass original scripts have been produced across the United States. In 2016, Lookingglass received the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions.

The Lookingglass Theatre in Chicago's landmark Water Tower Water Works opened in June 2003. In addition to developing and presenting ensemble work, Lookingglass Education and Community programs encourage creativity, teamwork and confidence with thousands of community members each year.

Lookingglass Theatre Company continues to expand its artistic, financial and institutional boundaries under the guidance of Artistic Director Heidi Stillman, Executive Director Rachel Kraft, Producing Director Philip R. Smith, Connectivity and Engagement Director Andrew White, General Manager Michele Anderson, a 25 member artistic ensemble, 23 artistic associates, an administrative staff and a dedicated board of directors led by Chairman John McGowan of CTC| myCFO (a part of BMO Financial Group) and President Nancy Timmers, civic leader and philanthropist. For more information, visit

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