Friday, August 31, 2018

OPENING: CAROLINE, OR CHANGE Via Firebrand Theatre at The Den Theatre September 22 – October 28, 2018

Chi IL Live Shows On Our Radar:

Firebrand Theatre Announces Casting for
Music by Jeanine Tesori
Book & Lyrics by Tony Kushner
Directed by Lili-Anne Brown
Music Direction by Andra Velis Simon

September 22 – October 28, 2018 at The Den Theatre

Presented in Partnership with TimeLine Theatre Company

Firebrand Theatre, in partnership with TimeLine Theatre Company, is pleased to announces casting for its revival of the Tony Award-nominated Best Musical CAROLINE, OR CHANGE, featuring music by Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home, Violet), book and lyrics by Tony Kushner (Angels in America), direction by Lili-Anne Brown and music direction by Andra Velis Simon.

(left to right) Bre Jacobs, Rashada Dawan and Blair Robertson in a publicity image for Firebrand Theatre and TimeLine Theatre Company's production of CAROLINE, OR CHANGE. Photo by Rob Riddle/Ghost Light Headshots.

CAROLINE, OR CHANGE will feature Rashada Dawan as Caroline with Roberta Burke as Radio 3, Kevin Grubb as Grandpa Gellman, Nicole Michelle Haskins as Dotty, Rosalind Hurwitz as Grandma Gellman, Bre Jacobs as Emmie, Michael Kingston as Mr. Stopnick, Princess Isis Lang as Jackie, Alejandro Medina as Noah, De'Jah Perkins as Radio 1, Blair Roberston as Rose, Jonathan Schwart as Stuart, Lyric Sims as Joe, Sasha Smith as Moon/Washer and Emma Sipora Tyler as Radio 2.

Launching Firebrand’s 2018-19 season, CAROLINE, OR CHANGE will play September 22 – October 28, 2018, at The Den Theatre’s Heath Main Stage, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago. Tickets now on sale at Season subscriptions are currently available. 

Firebrand is the first musical theatre company committed to employing and empowering women by expanding opportunities on and off the stage.

CAROLINE, OR CHANGE is set in Lake Charles, Louisiana: the end of 1963. America is changing. Caroline Thibodeaux is a mother of four and a maid, working for the southern Jewish Gellman family. Caroline struggles with changes monumental and mundane, and her relationship with the young, grieving boy who lives in the house she cleans. Riveting, moving and awe-inspiring, CAROLINE, OR CHANGE features a virtuosic score by Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home, Violet) and a breathtaking book and lyrics by Pulitzer Prize winner Tony Kushner (Angels in America), the music ranges from Motown to Klezmer, the storytelling from political to magical.

The production team for CAROLINE, OR CHANGE includes: Lauren Nichols (scenic design), Noël Huntzinger (costume design), Cat Wilson (lighting design), Victoria Deiorio and Karli Blalock (sound design), Lacie Hexom (props design), Brigitte Ditmars (choreographer), Harmony France (producer), Heather Larkin (production manager), Adelina Feldman-Schultz. (casting director), Joshanna Robinson (run crew, child wrangler), JC Widman (stage manager) and Kirby Gibson (assistant stage manager).

PHOTO CREDIT: The cast of Firebrand Theatre and TimeLine Theatre Company's production of CAROLINE, OR CHANGE includes (top, l to r) Rashada Dawan, Roberta Burke, Kevin Grubb, Nicole Michelle Haskins and Rosalind Hurwitz (middle, l to r) Bre Jacobs, Michael Kingston, Princess Isis Lang, Alejandro Medina, De'Jah Perkins (bottom, l to r) Blair Roberston, Jonathan Schwart, Lyric Sims, Sasha Smith and Emma Sipora Tyler.

Cast (in alphabetical order): Roberta Burke (Radio 3), Rashada Dawan (Caroline), Kevin Grubb (Grandpa Gellman), Nicole Michelle Haskins (Dotty), Rosalind Hurwitz (Grandma Gellman), Bre Jacobs (Emmie), Michael Kingston (Mr. Stopnick), Princess Isis Lang (Jackie), Alejandro Medina (Noah), De'Jah Perkins (Radio 1), Blair Roberston (Rose), Jonathan Schwart (Stuart), Lyric Sims (Joe), Sasha Smith (Moon/Washer) and Emma Sipora Tyler (Radio 2).

Swings: JiGi Fabulous, Kirby Gibson, Tyler Franklin, Ted Kitterman, Micheal Lovette and Corrbette Pasko.

Location: The Den Theatre's Heath Main Stage, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Dates: Previews: Saturday, September 22 at 7:30 pm and Sunday, September 23 at 3 pm

Regular run: Thursday, September 27 – Sunday, October 28, 2018
Curtain Times: Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 3 pm
Tickets: Previews $25. Regular run $45. $20 students/industry rush tickets available at the box office. Tickets go on sale Saturday, July 28, 2018 at Season subscriptions are currently available at

About The Creative Team

Lili-Anne Brown (Director) is a native Chicagoan who works as a director, actor and educator, both locally and regionally. She is the former artistic director of Bailiwick Chicago, where she directed Dessa Rose (Jeff Award), Passing Strange (BTA Award and Jeff nomination for Best Director of a Musical), See What I Wanna See (Steppenwolf Theatre Garage Rep) and the world premiere of Princess Mary Demands Your Attention by Aaron Holland. Other directing credits include Kristiana Rae Colón's Tilikum (world premiere, Sideshow Theatre), Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story (American Theatre Company), Ike Holter's The Wolf at the End of the Block (16th Street Theatre), Lottery Day (Goodman Theatre New Stages Festival), Marie Christine (Boho Theatre), Peter and the Starcatcher (Metropolis Performing Arts), The Wiz (Kokandy Productions), Xanadu (American Theatre Company), Jabari Dreams of Freedom by Nambi E. Kelley (world premiere, Chicago Children’s Theatre), American Idiot (Northwestern University); the national tour of Jesus Snatched My Edges; and Little Shop of Horrors, Hairspray, Unnecessary Farce, Cabaret, Sweet Charity, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee at Timber Lake Playhouse. She is a member of SDC, SAG-AFTRA and a graduate of Northwestern University.

Andra Velis Simon (Music Director) is thrilled to be the Resident Music Director for Firebrand, where she music directed Lizzie and 9 to 5 for their inaugural season. Her work as a music director, adapter, arranger, pianist and vocal coach has been seen regionally at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, A.R.T. in Cambridge, Brooklyn Academy of Music, NYU’s Skirball Center, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Pasadena Playhouse, Berkeley Rep and Olney Theatre in Maryland. In Chicago, she has worked with The Goodman Theatre (The Iceman Cometh and Camino Real); The Hypocrites (Cinderella at the Theater of Potatoes, American Idiot, Pirates of Penzance, The Mikado and H.M.S. Pinafore); Theater Wit (Mr. Burns and 10 out of 12); Chicago Children’s Theatre (The Hundred Dresses, A Year with Frog and Toad, Goodnight Moon and Last Stop on Market Street), and many others. In addition, Andra has taught musical theatre performance at  Columbia College Chicago since 2008. Upcoming projects include A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder at Porchlight and Next to Normal at Writers Theatre.   

Firebrand Theatre’s 2018-19 season sponsor: Michael and Mona Heath of the HeathFund.

About the Companies

Firebrand Theatre is a musical theatre company committed to employing and empowering women by expanding their opportunities on and off the stage. Firebrand is a 501(c)(3) Equity theatre.

Company members: Artistic Director: Harmony France, Advisory Board: Lili-Anne Brown, Emjoy Gavino, Kate Garassino, Amber Mak, Danni Smith, Company Members: Kasey Alfonso, Sydney Charles, Heather Clark, Adelina Feldman-Schultz, Tyler Franklin, Amanda Horvath, Jon Martinez, Eric Martin, Amelia Jo Parish and Andra Velis-Simon.

TimeLine Theatre Company was founded in April 1997 with a mission to present stories inspired by history that connect with today's social and political issues. To date over 21 seasons, TimeLine has presented 75 productions, including 10 world premieres and 33 Chicago premieres, and launched the Living History Education Program working with Chicago Public Schools. 

TimeLine is led by Artistic Director PJ Powers, Managing Director Elizabeth K. Auman and Board President Eileen LaCario. Company members are Nick Bowling, Janet Ulrich Brooks, Behzad Dabu, Lara Goetsch, Juliet Hart, Mildred Marie Langford, Mechelle Moe, David Parkes, Ron OJ Parson, PJ Powers, Maren Robinson and Benjamin Thiem. More information at

Thursday, August 30, 2018


Chi IL Live Shows On Our Radar:

Created by Larissa Marten and Leia Squillace

is accessible #metoo for Chicago Fringe Festival

New York-based theatre collective The Herd will present its one-woman show I KILLED THE COW as part of the 2018 Chicago Fringe Festival. After an extended run in New York City at the United Solo Festival in October 2017, I KILLED THE COW will perform September 1–3 at The Playhouse at Jefferson Park (4766 N Milwaukee Ave.) in Chicago as the third leg on its national tour.

The show's recent engagement in the Minnesota Fringe Festival was named one of the Festival's "Top 10 Must See" by TWIN CITIES ARTS READER 2018.

Chicago Fringe Festival
The Playhouse at Jefferson Park
4766 N. Milwaukee Avenue (at Lawrence)

I KILLED THE COW tells the story of one woman reflecting on the moments that shaped her most: awkward first sexual encounters, rehearsing mortifying phone calls, and tuning in to doctrinal lectures on veganism. She realizes, however, that the consequences of one particular moment—her assault—have been long- repressed. Through conversations with the audience and Mother Cheetah, she resolves to no longer shy away from what has happened. She must face this moment head-on.

Co-created, written and performed by Broadway World award-winning actress Larissa Marten, I KILLED THE COW  asks: When it feels like the lawless world of sexuality is devouring you alive, how do you make your body your own?

I KILLED THE COW has been in development since July of 2015 and was born out of Marten’s reflections on her own life experiences. The play promotes a more accessible dialogue around female sexuality and sexual assault. 

“I’ve always found theatre to be an incredible tool for encouraging empathy and conversation,” says director and co- creator Leia Squillace, “Working on I KILLED THE COW has allowed me to apply that tool to an issue that is of great importance for me personally as well as globally at the present moment.” Squillace has utilized her experience with the University of Michigan’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center to create a workshop for audiences to delve further into the play’s themes and learn about sexual misconduct prevention and response.

Created by Larissa Marten and Leia Squillace
Part of the Chicago Fringe Festival
Saturday, September 1 at 5:30 PM, Sunday, September 2 at 4:00 PM, Monday, September 3 at 8:30 PM
The Playhouse at Jefferson Park
4766 N. Milwaukee Avenue (at Lawrence)
Suitable for audiences 13+. Tickets start at $10 and can be purchased at or at the door.

For more information about Chicago Fringe, visit

For more information about I KILLED THE COW beyond the Chicago Fringe Festival, visit

About The Herd 

Larissa Marten wrote and developed I KILLED THE COW, and she is also the performer. Film/TV: ON THE LINE (Jonathon Horowitz); ALL OR NOTHIN' (Charles Campbell); LOVE HAPPENS (Dinosaur Hawk); RISE (NBC); INSTINCT (CBS). NY/Regional Theatre: KILL HAMLET (Signature Theatre); HENRY VI PARTS 1, 2, 3 (Queens Shakespeare); AS YOU LIKE IT and RICHARD II (Michigan Shakespeare Festival - BroadwayWorld Best Actor); BOEING-BOEING (Majestic Theatre). Her writing has been produced at the Kennedy Center, the United Solo Festival, the Hudson Guild Theatre, and the Beckwith Theatre Company.

Leia Squillace directed and developed I KILLED THE COW. She is passionate about developing new works that highlight themes of sexual identity and gender, and leveraging applied theatre for health education. As an artist and educator, she has recently worked at Roundabout Theatre Company, American Players Theatre, Asolo Repertory Theatre, and the University of Michigan Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center. Other development credits include: GOOD KIDS (Naomi Iizuka), THE TRAIN (Detroit Boxfest), and the 2016 Kennedy Center National Undergraduate Playwriting Award winner, FAIR (Karly Thomas).

OPENING: World Premiere! of SCRAPS Via New American Folk Theatre at The Den Theatre September 1 – 29, 2018

ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar:

World Premiere!
New American Folk Theatre Presents 
By Co-Artistic Director Anthony Whitaker
Directed by Co-Artistic Director Jamal Howard
September 1 – 29, 2018 at The Den Theatre

I'll be ChiILin' with Chi, IL's New American Folk Theatre for the press opening of this world premiere on September 4th. Check back shortly after for my full review. We've adored New American Folk Theatre's past productions and are eager to see their latest.

New American Folk Theatre is pleased to present the world premiere of SCRAPS, the story of the Patchwork Girl of Oz, many years after her celebrated adventures in L. Frank Baum’s Oz book series. Written by Co-Artistic Director Anthony Whitaker* and directed by Co-Artistic Director Jamal Howard*, SCRAPS will play September 1 – 29, 2018 at The Den Theatre (2A), 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Tickets available at or by calling (773) 697- 3830.

SCRAPS features Brittney Brown, JD Caudill, Preston Choi, Kelly Combs, Jeffrey Hoge, Charlie Irving*, Vic Kuligoski and Kelsey Shipley.

Follow Scraps on her journey of self-discovery and her effort to shed herself of the patchwork quilt that she is made of in order to become a more “normal” person. Using the setting of America’s first fairy tale, this play explores racial and gender identity, and the myriad of people that make up the patchwork of this country. SCRAPS explores our capacity to love and our need to find intimacy through trust and friendship.

Comments Co-Artistic Jamal Howard, “Scraps is such a special script that uses a familiar fantasy world – Oz – to dive into a woman's journey of self discovery and love. Many of us know what it feels like to be different and Scraps has a chance to disguise herself and live out a fantasy she didn't even realize she had. Her story of searching for truth and meaning in life is universal.” 

The production team for SCRAPS includes: Anthony Whitaker (scenic and puppetry design), Zachary Ryan Allen/The Spirit of Oz (costume design), Garrett Steinke (lighting design), John Nichols (sound design), Keith Ryan (wig design) and Shelby Burgus (stage manager).

Cast (in alphabetical order): Brittney Brown (Scraps), JD Caudill (Ozma/Aunt Em), Preston Choi (Ojo the Unlucky), Kelly Combs (Princess Langwidere, Jack Pumpkinhead), Jeffrey Hoge (Uncle Henry, Dr. Pipt), Charlie Irving* (Dorothy, Barometra), Vic Kuligoski (Prince Evring, Tin Man) and Kelsey Shipley (Margolotte, Betsy, The Queen).

Understudies: David Gallo, Katie Incardona and Ashley Joy.

Location: The Den Theatre (2A), 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago 
Dates: Previews: Saturday, September 1 at 7:30 pm and Sunday, September 2 at 6 pm
Press performance: Tuesday, September 4 at 7:30 pm 
Regular run: Friday, September 7 – Saturday, September 29, 2018.
Curtain Times: Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 6 pm
Tickets: Previews: $10. Regular run: $25. Tickets go on sale Thursday, August 2, 2018 at or by calling (773) 697- 3830.

*Denotes New American Folk Theatre Company Members

SCRAPS is made possible in part through a grant from The Saints.

About the Artists

Anthony Whitaker (Playwright) is the Co-Artistic Director of New American Folk Theatre (NAFT) and wrote the book and music for Dirty Girl, Salome Goes All the Way!, My Life Is A Country Song and The Marvelous Land of Oz. An expert in all things Oz, Anthony developed Scraps in The New Colony Writer's Room led by Evan Linder. Highlights of Anthony's work with NAFT include Directing the Jeff-nominated Summer of Daisy Fay, producing Dark of the Moon and performing in the Midwest Premieres of Deep in the Heart of Tuna, Johnny Drago's Trash and Hot Pink, or Ready to Blow. Chicago performance credits include ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas (Emerald City Theatre), Shockheaded Peter (Black Button Eyes) and A Funny Thing Happened... (Porchlight). He is a music and theatre educator throughout Chicago as well as a songwriter and musician. Anthony is represented by Big Mouth Talent.

Jamal Howard (Director) is the Co-Artistic Director of New American Folk Theatre (NAFT) as well as the Artistic Associate at Emerald City Theatre (ECT), where he most recently directed and choreographed the Midwest premiere of Magic Tree House: Showtime with Shakespeare and The Wiz. With NAFT, Jamal directed the original musicals, My Life is a Country Song and Dirty Girl, a part of Underscore Theatre's Chicago Musical Theatre Festival, Dark of the Moon and Kennedy's Children. Originally from San Jose, CA, his love for theatre began at age eight when he started performing in musicals. Jamal graduated from Loyola  University Chicago with a B.A. in Theatre and co-founded NAFT in 2012. He was featured on stage in NAFT's productions of Trash, The Marvelous Land of Oz, Two From the Trailer Court and Witches Among Us. He directed, choreographed and taught performing arts in grade schools on Chicago’s south side as well as The Beverly Arts Center. Other directing and choreography credits include Once on This Island, Hairspray!, Cats, Wendy and Peter (co-wrote) and Little Shop of Horrors.

About New American Folk Theatre

New American Folk Theatre is dedicated to folk theatre, music, education, and stories that shine a new light on the American tale. We strive to educate the public on works worthy of inclusion to the American theatrical canon. Using the resources around us, we create art that often dives into a mix of magical realism, southern gothic, pop culture, and the irreverent. We produce impactful theatre and artistic projects that help us learn and grow as a society. For additional information, visit

Ticket Giveaway: House Theatre of Chicago's World Premiere, BOREALIS 8/30-10/21/18

Chi IL Live Shows On Our Radar:



Both Playwright and Director Make their Debut with The House in this Epic Adventure Through the Corporate Guts of Big Oil 

Here at ChiIL Mama and ChiIL Live Shows, it's our great pleasure to partner up once again with The House Theatre of Chicago on a ticket giveaway for our readers. The House has a well deserved national reputation for epic productions and amazing feats of storytelling. They've long been favorites of ours and we make it a point to catch every show they mount. Whether you've never seen one of their shows or you're a regular, take a few minutes to enter at the bottom of this post, and you may be one of two lucky winners to enjoy a show "on the house".

The House Theatre of Chicago is proud to announce casting and the production team for the company’s season opener, Borealis. Director Monty Cole helms the professional premiere of playwright Bennett Fisher’s epic adventure through the corporate guts of Big Oil. Borealis runs August 30 through October 21 at Chopin Theatre’s Upstairs Theater, 1543 W. Division St., Previews begin Thursday, August 30 and play through Friday, September 7. Opening/press night is Saturday, Sept. 8 at 8 p.m. 

The performance schedule is Thursdays - Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. (September 23 and October 7) or 7 p.m. (September 9, September 16, September 23, October 14 and October 21). Preview tickets are $20 and regular run tickets range from $30 to $50. $20 same-day tickets for students and industry professionals are available for all dates, seats permitting. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit or call 773.769.3832.

When a redacted and ominous letter arrives from her brother on the oil fields, thirteen-year-old Cozbi sets off for Anwar, Alaska to find him. Armed with a book on corporate communication strategy and a sharp axe, Cozbi battles her way through an Arctic wilderness in pursuit of her missing brother. But she'll have to face more than a multi-tentacled HR rep to learn the truth. Part mythic journey, part workplace satire, Borealis is a dark and funny adventure about family obligation, career aspiration and what we leave behind to make our way to the top. 

Cozbi’s search-and-rescue tale to the inner workings of Big Oil travels between mundane cubicles crawling with monstrous executives to desk-jockeys trapped by the dangerous ice-bound surround and out to the slick, sea-soaked rigging platforms. The House employs an immersive design with huge pipelines traversing up, around and behind the audience creating unique pathways and playing spaces for actors.

Borealis was first developed at the Kennedy Center MFA Playwrights workshop in 2014. It received further development at UC San Diego, the Unicorn Theater, Mixed Blood, Cutting Ball Theater, Custom Made Theater Company, the Alliance Theater (Kendeda Prize Finalist), and The House Theatre of Chicago and the Chicago Performance Lab through the Theatre and Performance Studies Program at the University of Chicago.

Borealis_Headshot Block.jpg: (L to R) Johnny Arena+ (Ensemble #1), McKinzie Chinn (Burke), Desmond Gray (Absalom), Ben Hertel+ (Ensemble #2), Paige Hoffman+ (Ensemble #3: McKnight/Langley/Zebedee, Internal Understudy for Burke), Madhura Jugade (Abbot & Cozbi Understudy), Juan Munoz (Absolom & Ensemble #3 Understudy), Karissa J. Murrell Myers* (Abbot), Oly Oxinfry (Ensemble#1 and #2 Understudy), Tia Pinson (Cozbi)

The cast of seven includes three House Company Members: Paige Hoffman+, Johnny Arena+, and Ben Hertel+. Returning guest artists include Desmond Gray (The Nutcracker, Hatfield & McCoy) and Tia Pinson (Hatfield & McCoy) as brother and sister, as well as new guest artists McKinzie Chinn and Karissa J. Murrell Myers*. The understudies are Madhura Jugade, Juan Munoz, and Oly Oxinfry. 

The Production and Design team includes Eleanor Kahn, scenic designer; Izumi Inaba^, costume designer; Lee Keenan+^, lighting designer; Sarah Espinoza, sound designer; Matthew Muñiz+, composer; Ellie Terrell, properties designer; Breon Arzell, choreographer; Gaby Labotka, fight choreographer; Abhi Shrestha, assistant director and Amalie Vega*, stage manager. 

*Member Actor’s Equity Association

+Company Member of The House Theatre of Chicago

^Member of United Scenic Artists, Local USA 829 


Bennett Fisher is an artistic associate and former Shank Fellowship Playwright in Residence at Victory Gardens Theater in Chicago and a company member of Campo Santo and People of Interest and the Cutting Ball Theater. His other plays include Damascus (recently presented by Strawdog in Chicago, Samuel Goldwyn Award, O'Neill Conference finalist), Don't Be Evil, Candlestick, Campo Maldito, and the dialogue for the immersive theater experience The Speakeasy, currently running in San Francisco. His work has been presented and produced by the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Strawdog Theater Company, La Jolla Playhouse's WOW Festival, the Alliance Theater, the Kennedy Center MFA Playwrights Workshop, Florida Repertory Theater, the Martin E. Segel Center, Burbage Theater Company, People of Interest, Ubuntu Theater Project, Theater Emory, the Unicorn Theater, Sleepwalkers Theater, New Conservatory, the Cutting Ball Theater, Custom Made Theatre Company, and others. Fisher has been commissioned by The House Theater of Chicago, Theater Emory, Campo Santo, and others. His screenplay version of Damascus was optioned by Bill Mechanic and Pandemonium and he is currently developing work with e1 based on the experience of the former CIA officer-turned-whistleblower John Kiriakou. As an actor, dramaturg, and director, he has collaborated with California Shakespeare Theatre, Stanford Summer Theatre, Just Theater, Crowded Fire, Pear Ave Theatre, Adirondack Shakespeare Company, Marin Shakespeare Company, and many others. He received his MFA from UC San Diego in 2016.           

Monty Cole is a director based out of Chicago and Los Angeles. Cole has directed for The Goodman Theatre, The Alley Theatre, Victory Gardens Theater, American Theatre Company, Definition Theater Company/ALTA, The House Theatre of Chicago, the Chicago Theater Marathon, California Institute of the Arts and others. Cole directed the critically acclaimed and Jeff Award winning production of The Hairy Ape for Oracle Productions. Cole is working with collaborator and choreographer Breon Arzell on revitalizing In Dahomey, the first black written and performed Broadway musical from 1903 for the Center for New Performance. Recently, Cole directed William Shakespeare's Hamlet at The Gift Theatre and Kiss by Guillermo Calderon at the Haven Theatre Company. Cole is currently finishing his MFA Directing degree at the California Institute for the Arts.


The House is Chicago's premier home for intimate, original works of epic story and stagecraft. Founded and led by Artistic Director Nathan Allen and driven by an interdisciplinary ensemble of Chicago’s next generation of great storytellers, The House aims to become a laboratory and platform for the evolution of the American theatre as an inclusive and popular artform.

The House was founded in 2001 by a group of friends to explore connections between Community and Storytelling through a unique theatrical experience. Since becoming eligible in 2004, The House has been nominated for 70 Joseph Jefferson Awards (22 wins), became the 
first recipient of Broadway in Chicago’s Emerging Theater Award in 2007, and was awarded a 
2014 National Theatre Company Grant by the American Theatre Wing, founder of the Tony Awards. The 17th season of original work will begin with Borealis in the fall of 2018 and The House will continue its mission to unite Chicago in the spirit of Community through amazing feats of Storytelling.   

Winners will be chosen at random and announced here and via our social media outlets on September 7th. Winners will also be e-mailed. Enter early and often through midnight September 6th.

Disclosure: Thanks to House Theatre for providing tickets for our giveaway and for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

OPENING: Olivier Award Winner for Best Play, Six Degrees of Separation at Redtwist Theatre 9/5-10/7/18

Chi IL Live Shows On Our Radar:

Redtwist Theatre presents
Six Degrees of Separation
By John Guare
Directed by Steve Scott

Opens Saturday, September 8, 2018, at 3pm
Runs Thu, Fri, Sat at 7:30pm; Sun at 3pm, through Sun, October 7

(Note: The play includes a brief scene with nudity)

What happens when a total stranger enters your life and changes it forever?
Based on a true story, this Olivier Award winner for Best Play examines the impact of a charming young con man on a mature wealthy woman when she suddenly begins to care for his well-being.

$15: Sept 5-7, 7:30pm
Opens Sept 8, 3pm
Runs thru Oct 7, 2018
(no evening show on Sept 8)
Thu, Fri, Sat, 7:30pm; Sun, 3pm

Tickets: $35-40
(seniors/students $5 off)
Early Bird Season Flex Tix: 5 for $99
Offer good thru Sept 9
or call 773-728-7529

Featuring Redtwist company members & Jeff Award-winners
Jacqueline Grandt & Brian Parry, as Ouisa & Flan
And new Redtwist company member, Donovan Session, in the role of Paul

CAST (in alphabetical order)
Colton Adams (Woody), Zach De Nardi (Doug), Nick Dorado (Larkin), Elena Victoria Feliz (Elizabeth), David Gallo (Ben), Grace Glasgow (Tess), Darryn Glass (Dr. Fine), Jacqueline Grandt (Ouisa), Tom Lally (Detective/Doorman), Jim Morley (Geoffrey), Devon Nimerfroh (Rick), Brian Parry (Flan), Bryan Renaud (Trent), Debra Rodkin (Kitty), Donovan Session (Paul), Daniel Shtivelberg (Hustler/ Policeman)

UNDERSTUDIES (in alphabetical order)
Cathleen Brumback (Tess/Elizabeth), Dwayne Everett (Paul), Michael D. Graham (Geoffrey/Detective/Larkin/Dr. Fine/Doorman), James Hesla (Flan), Victoria Montalbano (Ouisa/Kitty), James Ogburn (Woody/Doug/Trent/Rick), Alex Rocha ((Hustler/Ben/Policeman)

Steve Scott (Director), Max Colvill (Assistant Director), Elaena Hoekstra (Stage Manager), Beth Weinstock (Assistant Stage Manager), Jessie McCarty (Production Manager), Shea Messinger (Set Designer/Scenic Charge), Adrienne Miikelle (Lighting Designer), Eric Backus (Sound Designer), Meagan Beattie (Costume Designer), Hillarie M. Shockley (Props Designer), Seph Mozes (Dramaturg), Ari Craven (Graphic Designer), Jan Ellen Graves (Photographer), E. Malcolm Martinez (Box Office Manager), Charles Bonilla & Johnny Garcia (Box Office Associates), Brennan T. Jones (Co-Producer), Michael Colucci (Co-Producer)

Redtwist is located at 1044 W Bryn Mawr, 2 blks W of LSD, 2 blks E of the Red Line EL station. Valet parking for Redtwist is available across the street in front of Francesca’s Bryn Mawr for most performances—hours vary. Dining is not required. Limited FREE street parking is available on side streets. There is metered street parking via app or 3-hour Paybox on Bryn Mawr Av and 2-hour Paybox on side streets. Free on Sundays, and after 10pm Mon thru Sat. Parking & Policies

Redtwist Theatre, 1044 W. Bryn Mawr, Chicago, 773-728-7529,

Six Degrees of Separation is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York.
Six Degrees of Separation was originally produced by Lincoln Center Theatre, New York City.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018


ChiIL Live Shows

RED TAPE THEATRE is proud to present…

Written by: Young Jean Lee 

Directed by: Wardell Julius Clark
Associate Director / Music Director: Sydney Charles

Cast: Sheldon Brown, Hunter Bryant, Eric Gerard, Marcus D. Moore, Kiayla Ryann

Producer: Kyle Land*
Line Producer / Production Manager: Jenn Thompson*
 Artistic Director: Max Truax*
Stage Manager: Michelle Altman
Assistant Stage Manager: Chris Lyons
Choreographer: Breon Arzell
Scenic Designr: Joy Ahn
Lighting Designer: Daniel Friedman

Properties Designer: Jennifer Wernau
Costume Design: Rachel Sypniewski
Sound Design: John Nichols III
 Poster Design: Bridget Schultz*
Still Photos: Austin Oie*
* indicates Red Tape Theatre Company member

Opens: Friday, September 7th, 2018 at 8PM
Closes: Saturday, October 13th, 2018 at 8PM
Runs: Fridays, Saturdays at 8PM / Sundays at 7PM / Mondays (Industry Night) at 8PM

Admission: FREE ADMISSION thanks to our donors to the FREE THEATRE MOVEMENT

Where: THE READY, 4546 N Western Ave
For Information/Reservations: Reserve free tickets via:

What: In THE SHIPMENT, Young Jean Lee uses her razor-sharp and unsettling humor to upend the surface stereotypes and tropes of African Americans that permeate our media, entertainment industry, and the dominant culture (aka white perceived) narrative. Audiences are confronted with clichés, distortions, and brilliant sleights of hand that force us to go beyond the lampoon and shift the lens through which we perceive race in order to confront our own bias.

Wardell Julius Clark (DIRECTOR) hails from Fairfield, Alabama. Wardell is a actor, director, producer and social justice activist. He is also an Associate Artist with TimeLine Theatre Company, and serves as a teaching artist in the Living History Program, as well as a teaching artist for Victory Gardens Theatre. Chicago Directing credits include Insurrection: Holding History (Stage Left Theatre), Surely Goodness and Mercy (Redtwist Theatre) , Associate Director for Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (Court Theatre), The One Minute Play Festival, Shola's Game (National Black Theatre), Assistant Director for The Scottsboro Boys (Porchlight Music Theatre); Satchmo At The Waldorf and Gem Of The Ocean (Court Theatre). Select Acting Credits include Suddenly Last Summer (Raven Theatre); Silent Sky (First Folio Theatre); Apartment 3a (Windy City Playhouse); Gem Of The Ocean (Court Theatre); A Raisin In The Sun (TimeLine Theatre); The Whipping Man (Northlight Theatre); We Are Proud To Present... and The Gospel According To James (Victory Gardens Theatre); Invisible Man (Court Theatre); The Beats (16th Street Theater); Ghosts Of Atwood (MPAACT); and Topdog/Underdog (American Theater Company/Congo Square Theater). Regional credits include Othello, Macbeth, The Learned Ladies (Theater at Monmouth); The Whipping Man (Cardinal Stage); Cymbeline (Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival); Fences (Carver Theatre). Wardell has appeared on TV in Chicago Fire Seasons 1 and 4, as well as Shamless on Showtime. He holds a BFA in Acting from The Theatre School, at DePaul University. He is also an Associate Artist with the Black Lives, Black Words theatre collective. Represented by Gray Talent Group.

Sydney Charles (ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR) is an award-winning actress that hails from Chicago, IL. Selected theatre credits include: Father Comes Home From the Wars(Goodman Theatre), Guess Who's Coming to Dinner(Court Theatre), Lottery Day (Goodman Theatre - New Stages), The Fly Honey Show, Spamilton Chicago (Royal George Theatre), An Octoroon(Definition Theatre Company), Dorothy in The Wiz at (Kokandy Productions), Zora in the world premiere of Prowess (Jackalope Theatre), and the title role in Dessa Rose (Bailiwick Chicago). Her directing debut was with Wildclaw Theatre with their yearly Deathscribe Festival of Horror Plays. Sydney can also be seen in episodes of The Haven web series, The T web series, and has appeared on Showtime's Shameless. She is also an artistic associate with Firebrand Theater--the newly formed feminist musical theater company. Sydney thanks God for every opportunity she is given and her circle for supporting her every step of the way. Represented by Stewart Talent.

Young Jean Lee (PLAYWRITE) is a Korean-American playwright, director, and filmmaker. She is the Artistic Director of Young Jean Lee's Theater Company, a not-for-profit theater company dedicated to producing her work. She has written and directed ten shows for Young Jean Lee's Theater Company and toured her work to over thirty cities around the world. Lee was called "the most adventurous downtown playwright of her generation" by Charles Isherwood in The New York Times and "one of the best experimental playwrights in America" by David Cote in Time Out New York. With the 2018 production of Straight White Men at the Hayes Theater, Lee became the first Asian American woman to have a play produced on Broadway.

Sheldon Brown (ENSEMBLE) is a 2014  graduate of Acting at Emerson College in Boston. His recent credits include Time Is On Our Side (understudy performed) at About Face Theatre, 1980 or Why I Voted for John Anderson at Jackalope Theatre, A Wonder In My Soul at Victory Gardens (understudy performed). Man In The Ring at Court Theatre, Feral with MPAACT Theatre Company and more. He also has numerous credits in Boston including The Grand Inquisitor directed by Peter Brook, and The Shakespearean Jazz Show, a collaborative new work that turns Shakespeare into New Orleans street jazz at the New York Musical Festival.

Hunter Bryant (ENSEMBLE) is a New Jersey native  actor/ writer and graduate of The Theatre School at DePaul. Recent Chicago credits include The Aristophanesathon (Hypocrites), Dontrell Who Kissed the Sea (First Floor Theatre) and Our Town (Redtwist Theatre.) Be on the lookout for his upcoming films How Is This The World (directed by Sadie Rogers) and First Dance (directed by Megan Artes.) Follow his work on instagram: @Behunting

Eric Gerard (ENSEMBLE) is honored to be working on this show, with such a talented team. Other Chicago credits include: TO CATCH A FISH (Timeline Theatre); AKEELAH AND THE BEE (Adventure Stage Chicago); KING LIZ (Windy City Playhouse); OCTAGON (Jackalope theatre); MY MANANA COMES (Teatro Vista); ANNAKARENINA (Lifeline Theatre); THE ROYALE (American Theatre Co.) Eric is an Instructor, and proud graduate of THE ACADEMY, at BlackBox Acting. He is represented by Hayes Talent.

Marcus D. Moore (ENSEMBLE) is thrilled to be working with Red Tape Theatre for the first time! His theatre credits include Drury Lane Theatre (Cat On A Hot Tin Roof u/s), Jackalope Theatre (Franklinland and 1980 Or Why I'm Voting For John Anderson (u/s)), Stage Left Theatre (Insurrection: Holding History u/s), Haven Theatre and Collaboraction Theatre. Tv credits include co-starring roles on NBCs Chicago Fire and Fox Networks' APB. Much love to my agents at Gray Talent Group!

Kiayla Ryann (ENSEMBLE) makes her debut at Red Tape Theatre with The Shipment. Chicago credits include: Lexi, Hookman (Steep Theatre), Miriamne, Winterset (Griffin Theatre) and Trisha, Five Women Wearing the Same Dress (Loop Players) as well as understudying The Crucible at Steppenwolf. Kiayla received her BA from Bradley University and is a School at Steppenwolf 2016 Album. She is grateful to God for her amazing supportive family, friend, and team. Represented by Stewart Talent.


“The public interest is best served by the free exchange of ideas.” – John Kane

Red Tape believes that access to the arts is essential for our community’s ability to engage in a free exchange of ideas. As an art form, the immediacy of theatre provides a powerful platform for this exchange. We strive to remove the barriers that exist between our community and an increasingly commodified culture. Starting in January of 2018, we will offer all of our quality theatrical productions to the public free of charge.

Red Tape will be able to offer our work free of charge thanks to the generous support of our Members, each of whom make an automated monthly donation in an amount of their choose (or a onetime donation). Each donation enables Red Tape to share our work with more people and to engage a growing community in discourse through the arts.

Simply put, we believe everyone should be able to see theatre without the financial stress of ticket price. We are a theatre of free ideas. We are a theatre of free access. We are a free theatre.

Saturday, August 25, 2018




Here at ChiIL Live Shows and ChiIL Mama, we enjoyed hanging out with Broadway In Chicago and the Company of TOOTSIE, a New Comedy Musical Pre-Broadway World Premiere at Cadillac Palace, for the TOOTSIE press conference. I'll also be out on opening night, September 30th, so check back shortly after for my full review. 

Here's my press conference Facebook LIVE video footage and stills.

The following cast and creatives were present:

• Santino Fontana (Michael Dorsey/Dorothy Michaels) & Lilli Cooper (Julie Nichols)
•Sarah Stiles (Sandy Lester) & Andy Grotelueschen (Jeff Slater)
•John Behlmann (Max Van Horn) & Michael McGrath (Stan Fields)
•Julie Halston (Rita Marshall) & Reg Rogers (Ron Carlisle)
•Tony Award-winner David Yazbek (Music & Lyrics) & Robert Horn (Book)
•Scott Ellis (Director)
•Denis Jones (Choreographer)

Broadway In Chicago and Scott Sanders Productions are thrilled the world premiere Chicago production of the new comedy musical, TOOTSIE, will play a pre-Broadway engagement at Broadway In Chicago’s Cadillac Palace Theatre (151 West Randolph Street) from September 11 – October 14.  The production will go to Broadway in spring 2019.

TOOTSIE tells the story of a talented but difficult actor who struggles to find work until an audacious, desperate stunt lands him the role of a lifetime.


TOOTSIE features an original score by Tony Award-winner David Yazbek (The Band’s Visit, The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels), a book by Robert Horn (13; Dame Edna, Back with a Vengeance), choreography by Tony Award nominee Denis Jones (Holiday Inn, Honeymoon in Vegas), and musical direction by Andrea Grody (The Band’s Visit). TOOTSIE will be directed by seven-time Tony Award nominee and Olivier Award winner Scott Ellis (She Loves Me, On the Twentieth Century). 

The design team for TOOTSIE includes scenic designer David Rockwell, costume designer William Ivey Long, lighting designer Donald Holder, sound designer Brian Ronan, hair and wig design by Paul Huntley, make-up design by Angelina Avallone. Casting is by Jim Carnahan C.S.A. Music supervision is by Andrea Grody & Dean Sharenow, vocal arrangements by Andrea Grody, dance arrangements by David Chase, orchestrations by Simon Hale, and music coordination by Dean Sharenow.

TOOTSIE is produced by Scott Sanders Productions, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, Carol Fineman, Columbia Live Stage, Sally Horchow, James L. Nederlander, Judith Ann Abrams, Robert Greenblatt, Benjamin Lowy, Cindy and Jay Gutterman/Marlene and Gary Cohen, Stephanie P. McClelland, Michael Harrison/David Ian, A Few Good Women Productions, Adam Blanshay Productions, JAA Productions/Stella LaRue, Silva Theatrical Group, Roy Furman, Peter May, Seriff Productions LLC, The John Gore Organization, Tom McGrath/, Chris and Ashlee Clarke, Jonathan Littman, The Woodland Hills Broadway Group, 2 JS AND AN A, INC., and Independent Presenters Network.

TOOTSIE is based on the story by Don McGuire and Larry Gelbart and the Columbia Pictures Motion Picture. For more information visit:

TOOTSIE individual tickets are on-sale now. Group tickets for 10 or more are on sale now by calling Broadway In Chicago Group Sales at (312) 977-1710.  For more information, visit

Sunday, August 19, 2018


Chi IL Live Shows On Our Radar:

AUGUST 22 – NOVEMBER 4, 2018

Lusia (Emily Berman, left) and Rose (Bri Sudia) are two sisters trying to reconnect after years of separation brought on by the rise of the Nazis.
Photo by Lara Goetsch

Vanessa Stalling to make her TimeLine directorial debut,
Emily Berman and Bri Sudia to star as separated sisters 
in Barbara Lebow’s moving exploration of 
family, faith, and forgiveness

Here at ChiIL Live Shows, we're looking forward to Timeline's season opener and I'll be out for the press opening. Check back soon for my full review. I've enjoyed Vanessa Stalling's directing all over town, particularly at House Theatre and The Goodman, and I'm eager to see her Timeline directing debut. Timeline has long been a favorite of ours for thought provoking choices and stellar production values. We're also huge fans of their lobby installation tie-ins with each show. I can't wait to see what they have in store for us this season.

(Top, from left) Playwright Barbara Lebow, director Vanessa Stalling, and cast members Emily Berman, Carin Schapiro Silkaitis (bottom, from left) Charles Stransky, Alex Stein, Bri Sudia, and Sarah Wisterman. 

TimeLine Theatre Company announces the cast and creative team for the launch of its 22nd season—a revival of A Shayna Maidel, Barbara Lebow’s moving family drama about two sisters reunited after years of separation caused by the rise of the Nazis.

Director Vanessa Stalling, who recently helmed the Goodman Theatre’s critically acclaimed production of Sarah DeLappe’s The Wolves, makes her TimeLine debut with A Shayna Maidel.

Previews begin August 22. Press Night is Wednesday, August 29 at 7:30 p.m. Opening Night is August 30 and performances run through November 4 at TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington Ave., Chicago. For tickets and information, visit or call the TimeLine Box Office at (773) 281-8463 x6.

A powerful and poignant drama, A Shayna Maidel begins with the story of a daughter and her father, Rose and Mordechai Weiss, who escaped Poland shortly before World War II and have adapted to life as new Americans in New York City. In their escape, they were forced to leave behind Rose's sister Lusia and her mother. When Rose and Lusia are reunited, Rose struggles to engage with an older sister who, having survived the horrors of war overseas, now seems a stranger. And Lusia—haunted by vivid memories of her past—is uncertain about connecting with a family she’s never known.

Stalling’s revival of A Shayna Maidel for TimeLine will feature Emily Berman (she/her) as Lusia and Bri Sudia (she/her) as Rose. The cast also includes Carin Schapiro Silkaitis as Mama (she/her), Alex Stein as Duvid (he/him), Charles Stransky as Mordechai (he/him) and Sarah Wisterman as Hanna (she/her). Note: Carin Schapiro Silkaitis steps in for Hanna Dworkin, originally announced as Mama.

The production team includes TimeLine Associate Artist Collette Pollard (Scenic Designer, she/her); Samantha C. Jones (Costume Designer, she/her); Rachel K. Levy (Lighting Designer, she/her); Jeffrey Levin (Sound Designer and Composer, he/him); Elise Kauzlaric (Dialect Designer, she/her); and Deborah Blumenthal (Dramaturg, she/her).

Written in 1984, A Shayna Maidel was widely produced by America's leading regional theaters and became a long-running success Off Broadway from 1987 to 1989. The New York Times hailed A Shayna Maidel as “a tribute to the sustaining power of family,” The Hartford Journal Inquirer called the play “an emotional powerhouse of almost overwhelming proportions,” and the Atlanta Constitution raved that “anyone who sees it will not soon forget it.” The Chicago Reader, in a 2002 review, wrote that it presents “history as intimate as a snapshot,” underscoring the play’s fit with TimeLine’s history-based mission. 

Fast forward to this April, when The New York Times reported that 41 percent of Americans, as well as 66 percent of Millennials, “cannot say what Auschwitz was,” and lack “basic knowledge” about the Holocaust. 

“Don’t we know our own history?” responded Stalling. “It's disturbing to recognize our country's current ignorance about the Holocaust while at the same time witnessing rising anti-Semitism and white nationalism. Rather than shaping a world informed by the mistakes and traumas of our past, our lack of historical knowledge is shaping a country that feels like it's regressing. Simply put, our ignorance is dangerous.”

Vanessa Stalling (Director) most recently directed Joshua, by Ali Viterbi, for the Wagner New Play Festival. Prior to that, she directed Sarah DeLappe’s The Wolves at The Goodman, which earned a four-star review from Chicago Tribune critic Chris Jones, who called her “a specialist in immersive productions and a true artist.” Other productions include Lauren Yee's Hookman at Steep Theatre, and United Flight 232, a production she adapted from the book Flight 232 by Laurence Gonzales, for The House Theatre of Chicago, which received Jeff Awards for Outstanding Production – Midsize Theatre and Ensemble. Stalling was a primary artist at Redmoon Theater, serving as a director, performer, and Associate Artistic Director. As an artist at Redmoon, she directed several productions, including a remount of The Cabinet, which toured Brazil as part of the FILO Festival; Last of My Species; Winter Pageant; Princess Club; Twilight Orchard; and roaming performances for President Obama's Halloween celebrations at The White House. She has held teaching positions at Roosevelt University, Columbia College, University of Chicago, and is an assistant professor of directing at the University of California San Diego's Department of Theatre & Dance. She was the 2016 Michael Maggio Fellow at the Goodman Theatre and a Newcity 2018 Player. 

Barbara Lebow (Playwright) is a California resident who grew up in New York, moved to Atlanta in the 1960s and joined The Academy Theatre's developmental workshop, eventually becoming playwright in residence. Among her plays with first productions there are A Shayna Maidel (which ran Off Broadway 1987-89 and continues to receive regional and international productions), The Left Hand Singing, The Keepers, Cyparis, Little Joe Monaghan, The Adventures of Homer McGundy Revised, Trains, and Tiny Tim is Dead. In addition to her own writing, Lebow facilitates play creation with disenfranchised segments of the population including homeless and addicted individuals, youth at risk, developmentally and physically disabled persons, and women in prison. In recent years, she has worked with residents of Los Prietos Boys Camp, supported by a grant from the Fund for Santa Barbara. She has received a Guggenheim Fellowship in Playwriting, a TCG/Pew Theatre Artists Residency, an NEA/TCG Residency, an Atlanta Mayor's Fellowship in the Arts, a Georgia Governor's Award in the Arts, and a Distinguished Service Award from the Santa Barbara County Probation Department. Other recent plays include The Phenom; Plumfield, Iraq; La Niñera: The Nursemaid; and Killing Spiders. Her newest play, The Hebbles, deals with the effects of a mass shooting on one small American family.


Previews of A Shayna Maidel are Wednesday, August 22 through Saturday, August 25 at
8 p.m.; Sunday, August 26 at 2 p.m.; and Tuesday August 28 at 7:30 p.m.

Press Night is Wednesday, August 29 at 7:30 p.m.

Opening Night is Thursday, August 30 at 7:30 p.m.

Regular performances continue through November 4: Wednesdays and Thursdays at
7:30 p.m. (except no performance on Wednesday, September 19, and additional matinee performance on Thursday, September 20 at 2 p.m.); Fridays at 8 p.m.; Saturdays at
4 p.m. and 8 p.m. (except no performance September 1 at 4 p.m.); and Sundays at
2 p.m.


—    Post-Show Discussions: A brief, informal post-show discussion hosted by a TimeLine Company Member and featuring the production dramaturg and members of the cast on Wednesday, September 5; Thursday September 13; Sunday, September 16; Thursday, October 11; Sunday, October 14; and Wednesday, October 17.

—    Pre-Show Discussions: Starting one hour before these performances, a 30-minute introductory conversation hosted by a TimeLine Company Member and the production dramaturg on Sunday, September 30, and Wednesday, October 3.

—    Company Member Discussion: A post-show discussion with the collaborative team of artists who choose TimeLine’s programming and guide the company’s mission on Sunday, September 23.

—    Captioned Performance: An open-captioned performance with a text display of words and sounds heard during the performance on Saturday, September 29 at 4 p.m.

—    Sunday Scholars Panel Discussion: A one-hour post-show discussion featuring experts on the themes and issues of the play on Sunday, October 7.
All discussions are free and open to the public. For further details about all planned discussions and events, visit


The best way to secure seats to A Shayna Maidel is to purchase a 2018-19 TimeLine Theatre FlexPass Subscription, on sale now, offering four amazing shows, starting at only $88.

Single tickets go on sale July 10, 2018. Preview tickets are $25. Single tickets to regular performances are $40 (Wednesday through Friday), $49 (Saturday evenings) and $54 (Saturday and Sunday matinees). Student discount is 35% off regular price with valid ID. TimeLine is also a member of TCG’s Blue Star Theatre Program and is offering $25 tickets to U.S. military personnel, veterans, first responders, and their spouses and family.

Discounted rates for groups of 10 or more are available. Ticket buyers age 18-35 may join TimeLine’s free MyLine program to obtain access to discounted tickets, special events and more. Visit for more about Blue Star, MyLine and other available discounts.

To purchase a FlexPass, single tickets or for more information, visit or call the Box Office at (773) 281-8463 x6.


A Shayna Maidel will take place at TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington Ave., in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood, near the corner of Wellington and Broadway, inside the Wellington Avenue United Church of Christ building. TimeLine is served by multiple CTA trains and buses. TimeLine offers discounted parking at the Standard Parking garages at Broadway Center ($8 with validation; 2846 N. Broadway, at Surf) or the Century Mall ($9 with validation; 2836 N. Clark), with other paid parking options nearby, plus limited free and metered street parking.


TimeLine Theatre is accessible to people with disabilities. Two wheelchair lifts provide access from street level to the theatre space and to lower-level restrooms. Audience members using wheelchairs or who need to avoid stairs, and others with special seating or accessibility needs should contact the TimeLine Box Office in advance to confirm arrangements. See DISCUSSION & ACCESSIBILITY EVENTS above for information about the open-captioned performance for patrons who are deaf or hard of hearing.


In addition to A Shayna Maidel, TimeLine’s Theatre’s 2018-19, four-show subscription season includes: 

—    Master Class, Terrence McNally’s acclaimed play about the formidable opera star Maria Callas, inspired by a series of classes she taught at Julliard in the 1970s, directed by TimeLine Associate Artistic Director Nick Bowling, music directed by Doug Peck, and starring TimeLine Company Member Janet Ulrich Brooks (The Audience), presented at Stage 773, October 19 – December 9, 2018.

—    The Chicago premiere of Cardboard Piano by Hansol Jung, a powerful story of faith, love, and the human capacity for forgiveness set amidst violent conflict in northern Uganda, directed by TimeLine Company Member Mechelle Moe, January 9 – March 17, 2019.
—    The Chicago premiere of Too Heavy for Your Pocket by Jiréh Breon Holder, a hopeful and moving story taking place at the height of the Civil Rights Movement that explores family, responsibility, and the personal sacrifices that enable progress, directed by TimeLine Company Member Ron OJ Parson, April 24 – June 29, 2019.

Save on tickets to TimeLine’s 2018-19 Season with a FlexPass Subscription. Four tiers, priced from $88 to $204, are now on sale. For more information and to purchase, call (773) 281-8463 x6 or visit


In addition to its 2018-19 four-show subscription series, TimeLine Theatre is excited to be partnering with Firebrand Theatre—Chicago’s new musical theatre company committed to employing and empowering women—on Firebrand’s upcoming fall production of the Tony Award-nominated musical Caroline, or Change, featuring music by Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home, Violet), book and lyrics by Tony Kushner (Angels in America), and direction by Lili-Anne Brown. Rashada Dawan stars in the title role as Caroline.

Riveting, moving and awe-inspiring, Caroline, or Change features music ranging from Motown to Klezmer, and storytelling from political to magical. This production will be presented at Firebrand’s resident home, The Den Theatre, located at 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood.

PLEASE NOTE: Caroline, or Change is not included in TimeLine’s 2018-19 FlexPass Subscription, but the partnership will include exclusive ticket opportunities for TimeLine subscribers and patrons.


TimeLine Theatre Company, recipient of the prestigious 2016 MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions, was founded in April 1997 with a mission to present stories inspired by history that connect with today's social and political issues. To date over 21 seasons, TimeLine has presented 75 productions, including 10 world premieres and 33 Chicago premieres, and launched the Living History Education Program, now in its 12th year of bringing the company's mission to life for students in Chicago Public Schools. Recipient of the Alford-Axelson Award for Nonprofit Managerial Excellence and the Richard Goodman Strategic Planning Award from the Association for Strategic Planning, TimeLine has received 54 Jeff Awards, including an award for Outstanding Production 11 times.

TimeLine is led by Artistic Director PJ Powers, Managing Director Elizabeth K. Auman and Board President Eileen LaCario. Company members are Nick Bowling, Janet Ulrich Brooks, Behzad Dabu, Lara Goetsch, Juliet Hart, Mildred Marie Langford, Mechelle Moe, David Parkes, Ron OJ Parson, PJ Powers, Maren Robinson and Benjamin Thiem.

Major corporate, government and foundation supporters of TimeLine Theatre include Alphawood Foundation, The Chicago Community Trust, The Crown Family, The Ensemble Studio Theatre/Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Science & Technology Project, Forum Fund, The Joseph and Bessie Feinberg Foundation, Lloyd A. Fry Foundation, Illinois Arts Council Agency, Laughing Acres Family Foundation, A.L. and Jennie L. Luria Foundation, MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at Prince, The Pauls Foundation, Polk Bros. Foundation, and The Shubert Foundation.

TimeLine is a member of the League of Chicago Theatres, Theatre Communications Group, Choose Chicago, Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce, Chicago Green Theatre Alliance, and Chicago’s Belmont Theater District.

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