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Showing posts with label Chicago Shakespeare Theater. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Chicago Shakespeare Theater. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Chicago Shakespeare Theater Executive Director Criss Henderson To Step Down After 33 Years


Criss Henderson, who has steered Chicago Shakespeare Theater from a fledgling start-up theater in 1990 through 33 years of expansive growth, award-winning productions, and nationally recognized education and community engagement programming, has announced that he will be stepping down from his executive director role at the end of 2022.

"After more than three decades of extraordinary experiences and a lot of recent reflection, I have decided there are new creative chapters and artistic projects that I want to bring to fruition outside of the day-to-day operations of running a theater," said Henderson. "As Chicago Shakespeare passes its 36th year, I feel the Theater is ready for an infusion of fresh perspectives and next-generation vision."

"I have been leading Chicago Shakespeare for more than half my life, and I have had some truly remarkable opportunities. Now, with the buzz of artists and audiences again filling Chicago Shakespeare—and on the eve of another world premiere, The Notebook, in our theater—it feels right to make the space for myself to develop new creative projects and to open the door to new leadership that will take the company to the next thrilling level."

Under the leadership of Henderson and founder and artistic director Barbara Gaines (who announced earlier this year her plans to end her tenure in mid-2023), Chicago Shakespeare has become one of the nation’s leading regional theaters and one of Chicago’s most celebrated cultural organizations, honored with the 2008 Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre, as well as multiple Laurence Olivier and Joseph Jefferson Awards. Among decades of contributions, Henderson oversaw the Theater’s move to its home on Navy Pier in 1999 and led the recent development of The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare. In 2016 he spearheaded the citywide, yearlong celebration of Shakespeare’s legacy, Shakespeare 400 Chicago. Mr. Henderson has garnered multiple honors, including: the 2013 Cultural Innovation Award from the Chicago Innovation Awards; Arts Administrator of the Year by Arts Management Magazine at the Kennedy Center; recognition in Crain’s Chicago Business "40 under 40;" and the Chevalier de L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the Minister of Culture of France. Mr. Henderson has served on the boards of directors of the League of Chicago Theatres and Arts Alliance Illinois, and for many years as president of the Producers’ Association of Chicago-area Theaters. Mr. Henderson is director of DePaul University’s MFA/Arts Leadership Program, a two-year graduate-level curriculum in arts management training.

"Criss has led Chicago Shakespeare through every phase of the organization’s storied and successful history. In addition to the myriad business functions he oversaw, he has been a key producing force in the organization through his curation of the Theater’s WorldStage series, the development of hundreds of artistic and producing partnerships, and through the creation and implementation of many of Chicago Shakespeare’s marquee initiatives like Team Shakespeare—the Theater’s extensive program for students and teachers—and Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks, now in its 11th year," said Chicago Shakespeare Theater Board Chair Mark Ouweleen. "Criss’ entrepreneurial energy has guided and supported the Theater for decades, and he will leave us in good hands, with a very strong executive team who will help carry that spirit of adventurous creativity forward."

Added Barbara Gaines, "Criss made a lot of magic happen here for many years…. Chicago Shakes wouldn’t be as spectacular an institution without him. I’ll be thrilled to see what amazing innovations he’ll bring to new audiences in the future."

The Board of Directors plans to bring in interim leadership before Henderson departs at the end of the year while it conducts an international search for the leaders who will carry the Theater "into the next act of the extraordinary story of Chicago Shakespeare," said Ouweleen. Henderson will continue on a consulting basis with Chicago Shakespeare through 2023, as needed, to support a smooth leadership transition.

"It has been a great honor to help build this company from, literally, ‘two planks and a passion’ into the leading and essential arts organization it is today," said Henderson. "The extraordinary evolution of Chicago Shakespeare was the result of many, many partnerships—with Barbara, artists, educators, program and administrative staff, board members, and most importantly, the people of Chicago. I have had the pleasure to work alongside so many talented and committed people over the years—I know I leave this theater that I love in a very strong place, ready to embrace an exciting and vibrant future."


ABOUT CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER

A Regional Tony Award recipient, Chicago Shakespeare Theater produces a bold and innovative year-round season—plays, musicals, world premieres, family productions, and theatrical presentations from around the globe—alongside education programming for students, teachers, and lifelong learners, and engagement with communities and artists across the city.

Founded in 1986, the Theater has evolved and expanded to present as many as twenty productions and 650 performances annually and has been honored with numerous national and international awards. Chicago Shakespeare is the city’s leading presenter of international work and has toured its own productions to five continents. The Theater is dedicated to welcoming the next generation of theatergoers; one in four of its audience members is under the age of eighteen.

Recognized as a national leader in a 2014 White House ceremony, the Theater’s arts-in-literacy programs support the work in classrooms across the region by bringing words to life onstage for tens of thousands of students each year and through a variety of professional learning opportunities for teachers. Its free Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks program has fostered creative community engagement with artists across the city for more than a decade.

As a nonprofit organization, Chicago Shakespeare works to embrace diversity in all its forms, prioritize inclusion, provide equitable opportunities for growth and success, and offer an accessible experience for all. The Theater strives to engage today’s artists and audiences in active and critical conversations with the work of its namesake playwright, William Shakespeare.

Located on Chicago’s iconic Navy Pier, Chicago Shakespeare’s campus features the Jentes Family Courtyard Theater, The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare, and the Thoma Theater Upstairs. Onstage, in classrooms and neighborhoods across the city, and in venues around the world, Chicago Shakespeare is a multifaceted cultural hub—inviting audiences, artists, and community members to share powerful stories that connect and inspire. www.chicagoshakes.com


Wednesday, March 9, 2022

William Shakespeare’s ALL’S WELL THAT ENDS WELL at Chicago Shakespeare Theater April 22–May 29, 2022

 ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar 

Chicago Shakespeare Theater announces cast and creative team

William Shakespeare’s

ALL’S WELL THAT ENDS WELL

directed by Shana Cooper

in the Courtyard Theater, April 22–May 29, 2022


Featuring Alejandra Escalante, Dante Jemmott, Ora Jones, Francis Guinan, Emma Ladji, Mark Bedard, Elizabeth Ledo, William Dick, Patrick Agada, Casey Hoekstra, Joseph Aaron Johnson, Jeff Kurysz, Pablo David Laucerica, and Tanya Thai McBride

Chicago Shakespeare Theater announces the cast and creative team for the upcoming production of William Shakespeare’s All’s Well That Ends Well, staged by acclaimed director Shana Cooper. No challenge can match the power of a determined woman. In love with a young man who does not return her affection, the resourceful Helena will go to any length to turn her visions of romance into reality—only to discover that happy endings are never quite as simple as they seem in fairy tales. Shakespeare’s rarely seen dark comedy is brought to new life in the uniquely intimate setting of the Courtyard Theater, April 22–May 29, 2022.

"The beautiful thing about All’s Well That Ends Well is that it’s about these transitional moments in life—about growing up and growing older—in the midst of profound loss and major shifts in the world… and I think we’re all in that space," shared director Cooper. "It’s ultimately a joyful ride through the intricacies of self-exploration and self-discovery."

Director Shana Cooper is known for her visceral approach to both classical texts and new works, often infusing movement and music to complement the muscularity of language. A company member at the acclaimed Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Cooper has directed at leading companies, including Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Seattle Rep, and Yale Repertory Theatre. She notably staged the world premiere of Terra Firma off-Broadway in 2019. Her work has most recently been seen in Court Theatre’s The Lady from the Sea.

Appearing as Helena is Alejandra Escalante, a veteran of seven seasons at Oregon Shakespeare Festival. In addition to credits at American Players Theatre and Guthrie Theater, Escalante has also notably appeared at Goodman Theatre as Isabella in Measure for Measure and in featured roles in 2666, The Upstairs Concierge, and Song for the Disappeared. Portraying Bertram, the young nobleman at the center of Helena’s affection, is Dante Jemmott—who recently made an acclaimed debut as Romeo in R+J at the Stratford Festival in 2021. 

Esteemed performer Ora Jones is Bertram’s mother, the Countess of Roussillon. Jones has appeared on Broadway as Madame de Volanges in Les Liaisons Dangereuses and Mrs. Phelps in Matilda the Musical, both on Broadway and in the first national tour. Her notable Chicago Shakespeare roles include Katherine of Aragon in Henry VIII, Queen Charlotte in The Madness of George III, and Maria in Twelfth Night. Francis Guinan portrays the ailing King of France. An ensemble member since 1979, Guinan has appeared in more than 40 productions at Steppenwolf Theatre Company. He made his Chicago Shakespeare debut in the world premiere of The Book of Joseph.

Emma Ladji is Helena’s accomplice, Diana. With multiple credits at Chicago Shakespeare, Writers Theatre, and Goodman Theatre, Ladji has also been an artist-in-residence at Links Hall and presented work at the New Now Festival in Amsterdam. Appearing as Parolles is Mark Bedard, who has performed off Broadway in Julius Caesar and A Midsummer Night’s Dream in addition to seven seasons at Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Jeff Award-winner Elizabeth Ledo plays Lavache, the clown of the Countess’s court. An artistic associate of About Face Theatre and recipient of the Lunt-Fontanne Fellowship, Ledo has memorably appeared at Chicago Shakespeare as Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Phoebe in As You Like It, and Myrtle in The King’s Speech. William Dick is Lafew. Highlights of Dick’s long theatrical career include Blind Date and Father Comes Home from the Wars (Parts 1, 2, and 3) at the Goodman Theatre; We All Went Down to Amsterdam at Steppenwolf; and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Henry VIII at Chicago Shakespeare. 

The company also includes Patrick Agada (Second Lord Dumaine), Casey Hoekstra (First Lord Dumaine), Joseph Aaron Johnson (Rinaldo), Jeff Kurysz (First Soldier), Pablo David Laucerica (Ensemble), and Tanya Thai McBride (Mariana).

Award-winning choreographer Stephanie Martinez is the production’s Movement Designer. In addition to being the founder and artistic director of contemporary dance company PARA.MAR, Martinez has devised original creations for Joffrey Ballet, Ballet Hispánico, and Luna Negra Dance Theater, among others. Joining Cooper and Martinez on the creative team are Scenic Designer Andrew Boyce, Costume Designer Raquel Barreto, Lighting Designer Adam Honoré, Sound/Composition by Paul James Prendergast, and Hair & Make-up Designer Richard Jarvie. The team also includes Magic Consultant Nate Dendy (who memorably appeared as Ariel in Aaron Posner and Teller’s production of The Tempest at Chicago Shakespeare in 2015), Verse Coach Gregory Linington, Assistant Director Mallory Metoxen, Assistant to the Movement Designer Noelle Kayser, Intimacy Director Sarah Scanlon, and Casting by Bob Mason. The stage management team features Katrina Herrmann as Stage Manager and Kate Ocker as Assistant Stage Manager. Katie Lupica and Manna-Symone Middlebrooks are Assistants to the Director.

Chicago Shakespeare strives to make its facility and performances accessible to all patrons through its Access Shakespeare programs. Accessible performances for All’s Well That Ends Well include:

Open-captioned Performances – Wednesday, May 18, 2022, at 1:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

A text display of the words and sounds heard during a play, synced live with the action onstage.

ASL Duo-interpreted Performance – Friday, May 20, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.

All dialogue and lyrics are translated into American Sign Language by two certified interpreters.

Audio-described Performance – Sunday, May 22, 2022, at 2:00 p.m

A program that provides spoken narration of a play’s key visual elements for patrons who are blind or have low vision.

More information on the production at www.chicagoshakes.com/allswell or on social media at #cstAllsWell.

All’s Well That End’s Well is presented April 22–May 29, 2022, in Chicago Shakespeare’s Courtyard Theater. Single tickets ($49–$90) are on sale now. Special discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. For more information or to purchase tickets, contact the Box Office at 312.595.5600 or visit the Theater’s website at www.chicagoshakes.com



Chicago Shakespeare’s most up-to-date health protocols can be found at www.chicagoshakes.com/health.


ABOUT CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER

A Regional Tony Award recipient, Chicago Shakespeare Theater produces a year-round season—featuring plays, musicals, world premieres, family productions, and theatrical presentations from around the globe—alongside nationally recognized education programming, each year serving tens of thousands of students, teachers, and lifelong learners. Founded in 1986, the Theater’s onstage work has expanded to as many as twenty productions and 650 performances annually. Dedicated to welcoming the next generation of theatergoers, one in four audience members is under the age of eighteen. As a nonprofit organization, Chicago Shakespeare works to embrace diversity, prioritize inclusion, provide equitable opportunities, and offer an accessible experience for all. On the Theater’s three stages at its home on Navy Pier, in classrooms and neighborhoods across the city, and in venues around the world, Chicago Shakespeare is a multifaceted cultural hub—inviting audiences, artists, and community members to share powerful stories that connect and inspire.


Thursday, November 4, 2021

OPENING: David Strathairn In Remember This: The Lesson of Jan Karski at Chicago Shakespeare Theater Through November 14, 2021

 Chicago Shakespeare Theater presents

Remember This: The Lesson of Jan Karski

Starring Academy Award-nominee David Strathairn in timely story of moral courage now playing in limited engagement through November 14, 2021

Chicago Shakespeare Theater presents Emmy Award-winner and Academy Award-nominee David Strathairn

Following each performance, audiences are invited to stay for a 20‐minute talkback with David Strathairn, Derek Goldman, and Clark Young

Here at ChiIL Live Shows, we've enjoyed David Strathairn's talents on screen for decades, and we're looking forward to catching him on stage on opening night. We've been binge watching Blacklist for weeks, now that it's streaming on Netflix, so it'll be great to see Strathairn embodying a decidedly less insidious character at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. Can't wait to see Strathairn capture the remarkable life of the self-described “insignificant, little man” who spoke truth in the halls of power in a timely story of moral courage. I'm eager to hear more of Jan Karski's story and glad his bravery has not been lost to history. Check back soon for my full review. 

Joining Goldman on the creative team are Scenic Designer Misha Kachman, Costume Designer Ivania Stack, Lighting Designer Zach Blane, Assistant Lighting Designer Peter Leibold, Original Music and Sound Design by Roc Lee, Movement by Emma Jaster, and Production Stage Manager Andrew Neal.

The central figure of the play is Jan Karski, a courier for the Polish Underground resistance during World War II. In 1942, Karski volunteered to walk through the Warsaw Ghetto and a Nazi extermination camp before traveling to London to report to the Allied Nations on the conditions of occupied Poland and, specifically, the Holocaust. He personally delivered his eyewitness account—and urgent appeal for intervention on behalf of the Jewish people—to British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden, and later, President Franklin D. Roosevelt at the White House. His report was ignored. After the war, Karski earned his PhD at Georgetown University, where he was a beloved professor in the School of Foreign Service for 40 years. Karski didn’t share his story for decades until filmmaker Claude Lanzmann persuaded him to speak of his experiences for the first time in the celebrated documentary Shoah. Karski was made an honorary citizen of Israel and was awarded the distinction “Righteous Among the Nations” by Yad Vashem. Karski died in Washington, DC, in July 2000. He was awarded a posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama at a White House ceremony on May 29, 2012.

On Monday, November 8, at 7:00 p.m., Chicago Shakespeare partners with the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Skokie, Illinois, to present a free event: “Performing Memory and Witness: The Lesson of Jan Karski.” Live performances of selections from the play serve as the backdrop for a panel discussion about how theater can serve as a powerful call to action. Panelists include Remember This artists David Strathairn, Derek Goldman, and Clark Young, as well as Devika Ranjan, a Chicago-based theater-maker, ethnographer, and educator, and Della Pollock, Professor Emerita at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Event registration linked here.

Best known for acclaimed performances in Good Night, and Good Luck, Nomadland, and Lincoln, David Strathairn takes on the role of real-life World War II hero Jan Karski. After surviving the devastation of Poland by Nazi Germany, Karski risks his life to carry the first eyewitness reports of the Holocaust to the White House,

Chicago Shakespeare strives to make its facility and performances accessible to all patrons through its Access Shakespeare programs. 

Accessible performances for Remember This include:

• Open-captioned Performances – Thursday, November 11, 2021, at 7:45 p.m.

A text display of the words and sounds heard during a play, synced live with the action onstage.

• ASL Duo-interpreted Performance – Friday, November 12, 2021, at 7:45 p.m.

All dialogue and lyrics are translated into American Sign Language by two certified interpreters.

• Audio-described Performance – Sunday, November 14, 2021, at 3:00 p.m.

A program that enables patrons who are blind or have low vision to more fully experience live performances by providing spoken narration of a play’s key visual elements.

More information on the production at www.chicagoshakes.com/rememberthis or on social media at #cstRemember.

 Remember This: The Lesson of Jan Karski is now playing through November 14, 2021 in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare. Run time is 90 minutes (no intermission), followed by a 20-minute talkback with the artists. Single tickets ($43–$75) are on sale now. Special discounts will be available for groups of 10 or more. For more information or to purchase tickets, contact Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s Box Office at 312.595.5600 or visit the Theater’s website at www.chicagoshakes.com.


ABOUT CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER

A Regional Tony Award recipient, Chicago Shakespeare Theater produces a year-round season—featuring plays, musicals, world premieres, family productions, and theatrical presentations from around the globe—alongside nationally recognized education programming, each year serving tens of thousands of students, teachers, and lifelong learners. Founded in 1986, the Theater’s onstage work has expanded to as many as twenty productions and 650 performances annually. Dedicated to welcoming the next generation of theatergoers, one in four audience members is under the age of eighteen. As a nonprofit organization, Chicago Shakespeare works to embrace diversity, prioritize radical inclusion, provide equitable opportunities, and offer an accessible experience for all. On the Theater’s three stages at its home on Navy Pier, in classrooms and neighborhoods across the city, and in venues around the world, Chicago Shakespeare is a multifaceted cultural hub—inviting audiences, artists, and community members to share powerful stories that connect and inspire us. www.chicagoshakes.com


THE COUNTDOWN TO REOPENING BEGINS

“Come Together” Event Series

STREAMING THE WORLDSTAGE

Ontroerend Goed’s TM 

a WorldStage production from Belgium directed by Alexander Devriendt

on Chicago ShakesSTREAM

January 2022

STUDENTS IN CONVERSATION WITH SHAKESPEARE

Chicago Shakespeare SLAM

in high schools across the region and onstage at Chicago Shakespeare

January 2022

PRE-BROADWAY WORLD PREMIERE

• Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks presents DREAM: A Community Reimagining of A Midsummer Night’s Dream – August 24–September 4, 2021

• Screening of Othello: The Remix at Shakespeare’s Globe – September 14, 2021

• No Malice Film Celebration in partnership with Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation and the Roger and Chaz Ebert Foundation – September 19, 2021

• Re-lighting of the Marquee – October 6, 2021

10th YEAR OF CREATIVE COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks presents DREAM:

The Notebook

music and lyrics by Ingrid Michaelson | book by Bekah Brunstetter | based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks |

directed by Michael Greif and Schele Williams

In The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare

March 15–April 24, 2022


SPRING INTO SHAKESPEARE IN THE COURTYARD

All’s Well That Ends Well

by William Shakespeare | directed by Shana Cooper in the Courtyard Theater

April 22–May 29, 2022


WORLD PREMIERE MUSICAL EVENT

It Came from Outer Space

book, music and lyrics by Joe Kinosian and Kellen Blair | directed by Laura Braza

in the theater Upstairs at Chicago Shakespeare

May 25–June 26, 2022


LEADING DIRECTOR HELMS NEW PRODUCTION

The Tempest

by William Shakespeare | directed by Sheldon Epps

September–October 2022

A Community Reimagining of A Midsummer

Night’s Dream

created with Cruz Gonzalez-Cadel, Cage Sebastian Pierre, GQ, Joriah Kwamé, Chicago Shakespeare Theater and Me’Lo The Generation Hero and DJ Jeremy Heights, Englewood • Move Me Soul, Austin • Segundo Ruiz Belvis Cultural Center, Hermosa • Javier “Rese” Torres, Little Village • Alexis Willis, West Pullman • Yin He Dance, Chinatown

with designs by Fulton Street Collective, West Town

in Chicago Park District Parks across the city

August 24–September 4, 2021

EXTENDED BY POPULAR DEMAND

As You Like It

by William Shakespeare | adapted & directed by Daryl Cloran conceived by Daryl Cloran and the Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival

in the Courtyard Theater

now playing through December 5, 2021


WORLD-CLASS ARTISTRY ON OUR STAGES

Remember This: The Lesson of Jan Karski

by Clark Young and Derek Goldman | directed by Derek Goldman | starring David Strathairn

in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare

November 3-14, 2021


THE HOLIDAY TRADITION CONTINUES

Q Brothers Christmas Carol

written by Q Brothers Collective (GQ, JQ, Jax, Pos) | directed by GQ and JQ | developed with Rick Boynton

in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare

December 7-23, 2021


CELEBRATING THE TALENT OF OUR CITY’S ARTISANS

Holiday Artisan Market @ Chicago Shakespeare

Virtual pop-up shop with 100% proceeds to local artists

December 2021

Friday, October 22, 2021

ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar: Fall 2021 Theatre Favorites in Chicago

ChiIL Live Shows on our radar

Mask up and see some shows! Photo credit: Milan Pejnovich 
Pictured: Milan Pejnovich, Bonnie Kenaz-Mara (ChiIL Mama), Catherine Hellmann, Deb Frels

The ghost lights have been on 24/7 as stages across the US went dark for over 18 months, while covid ravaged our country. It's not over yet, but with vax cards in hand and masks on faces, we are finally able to gather in person again. Treat yourself! There are many stellar shows on stage in Chicago this fall and we've never been happier to gather with friends and family for a change of scene and some epic story telling. Here are just a few of our favorites. 

Photo credit: B Kenaz-Mara

CHICAGO MAGIC LOUNGE

5050 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60640

312-366-4500

https://www.chicagomagiclounge.com/


Music & Magic

Mondays at 7:00pm

Tickets: General Admission $20


Photo credit: B Kenaz-Mara

The Showcase

Tuesdays at 7:00pm

Tickets: Standard: $35; Front Row: $40

Luis Carreon and Paige Thompson, August 10-August 31.

 

Photo credit: B Kenaz-Mara


The Signature Show

Thursdays-Sundays at 7:00pm, Fridays and Sundays at 10pm 

Tickets: $50-$55 (Standard); $65-$75 (Premium, includes 654 Club admission)

Featuring Special Guest Nick Diffatte

654 Club features Luis Carreon 

Special Guest Nick Diffatte is quickly becoming one of the most talked about and in-demand young comic magicians working today. His unique brand of entertainment seamlessly blends dry humor, quick wit, and incredible skill. His performances are presented with perfect comedic timing and a deadpan delivery that has kept audiences laughing uncontrollably all over the country for over 14 years. Most recently, Nick has been seen in a residency at the Planet Hollywood Casino in Las Vegas, The World Famous Magic Castle in Hollywood, luxury cruise lines and “The Late Late Show with James Corden” on CBS.


 

CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER

800 E. Grand Ave., Chicago, IL 60611

312-595-5600

www.chicagoshakes.com

As You Like It

By William Shakespeare

Adapted & directed by Daryl Cloran

Conceived by Daryl Cloran and the Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival

In the Courtyard Theater

Regular Run: October 16 – November 21, 2021 

 

Photo credit: B Kenaz-Mara

Set in the ‘60s, the exuberant celebration of love features nearly 20 musical numbers from The Beatles songbook, performed live onstage, including “She Loves You,” “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” “Let It Be,” and “Here Comes the Sun.” The company includes Melanie Brezill (Celia) Adam Wesley Brown (Forest Lord/Hymen), Tony Carter (Oliver), Austin Eckert (Charles the Wrestler/Amiens), Lachrisa Grandberry (Audrey), Kevin Gudahl (Duke Senior/Duke Frederick), Heidi Kettenring (Phoebe), Kayvon Khoshkam (Touchstone), Kieran McCabe (Forest Lord), Steven Pringle (Adam/Sir Oliver Martext), Liam Quealy (Orlando), Lakeisha Renee (Rosalind), and Nancy Voigts (Corin).

 

Remember This: The Lesson of Jan Karski

By Clark Young and Derek Goldman

Directed by Derek Goldman

Starring David Strathairn

In The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare

Press Opening: November 4, 2021 at 7:45pm

Regular Run: November 5 – November 14, 2021

 

Academy Award-nominated actor David Strathairn takes the stage in a tour-de-force solo performance, Remember This: The Lesson of Jan Karski. Best known for acclaimed performances in Good Night, and Good Luck, Nomadland, and Lincoln, Strathairn takes on the role of real-life World War II hero Jan Karski. After surviving the devastation of Poland by Nazi Germany, Karski swears allegiance to the Polish Underground and risks his life to carry the first eyewitness reports of the Holocaust to the White House, where his warnings are met with inaction and disbelief. Strathairn captures the remarkable life of the self-described “insignificant, little man” who spoke truth in the halls of power in a timely story of moral courage.

 


Q Brothers Christmas Carol

Written by Q Brothers Collective (GQ, JQ, Jax, Pos)

Directed by GQ and JQ

Developed with Rick Boynton

In The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare

Preview Performances: December 8 – December 9, 2021

Press Opening: December 10, 2021 at 7pm

Regular Run: December 11 – December 23, 2021

 

The Theater’s raucous and irreverent holiday tradition returns in a special limited engagement in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare. Created and performed by Chicago hip hop sensations the Q Brothers Collective (GQ, JQ, Jax, and Pos) and developed with Creative Producer Rick Boynton, this wildly entertaining 80-minute reinterpretation of the Charles Dickens classic mashes up hip hop with contemporary musical styles ranging from reggae and dancehall music, to dubstep and epic rock ballads—all underscored with beats spun live at the turntables by DJ Supernova


COURT THEATRE

5535 S. Ellis Avenue, Chicago, IL 60637

(773) 753-4472

www.courtheatre.org

 

Photo credit: B Kenaz-Mara


The Tragedy of Othello, The Moor of Venice

by William Shakespeare

Directed by Charles Newell and Gabrielle Randle-Bent

Featuring Kelvin Roston, Jr as Othello

Regular Run: October 17 - November 21, 2021

In addition to live performances, a digital version will be available to stream on-demand.

 

Photo credit: B Kenaz-Mara

Othello—the noble general, husband, scholar, and traveler—fights for his life, right to love, and position in society. When Othello’s closest confidant objects to his actions, their brotherhood is shattered, provoking a series of tragic events for Othello and everyone around him.

Co-directors Charles Newell and Gabrielle Randle-Bent helm this theatrical examination of humanity and tragedy in Shakespeare’s fraught and famous work. Through scenic design that place audiences in the middle of the action, this telling grapples with how complex notions of race, gender, and complicity at the heart of the play’s murderous events speak to a world on the brink of change.

 



DRURY LANE THEATRE

Drury Lane Theatre

100 Drury Lane

Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181

(630) 530-8300

http://drurylanetheatre.com

 

Photo credit: B Kenaz-Mara


Forever Plaid

Written and Originally Directed and Choreographed by Stuart Ross 

Musical Continuity Supervision and Arrangements by James Raitt

Originally Produced by Gene Wolsk

Directed and Choreographed by Paul Stancato

With Music Direction by Valerie Maze

Preview Performances: September 17 – September 22, 2021

Press Opening: Thursday, September 23 at 8:00 p.m.

Regular Run: September 24 – November 7, 2021

 

Photo credit: B Kenaz-Mara

On the way to their first big gig, tragedy strikes Forever Plaid, a “guy group” specializing in barbershop quartet harmonies and pitch-perfect melodies. Forever Plaid begins when the guys are given the chance to perform from the afterlife. This smash hit musical is a nostalgic homage to the music of the ‘50s and includes hits such as “Three Coins in the Fountain” and “Love is a Many-Splendored Thing.”

The cast of Forever Plaid features Brian Eng (Sparky), Michael Ferraro (Frankie), Yando Lopez (Jinx) and A.D. Weaver (Smudge).




MERCURY THEATER

3745 N Southport Ave, Chicago, IL 60613

(773) 325-1700

www.mercurytheaterchicago.com

 

Sister Act                                                                                                 

Book by Bill and Cheri Steinkellne, and Douglas Carter Beane

Directed by Reneisha Jenkins

Music Direction by Diana Lawrence

Choreography by Christopher Chase Carter

Featuring Chicago Legends Alexis J. Roston (Deloris) and Hollis Resnik (Mother Superior)

Preview Performances: November 5 – November 10, 2021

Press Opening: November 11, 2021 at 7:30pm

Regular Run: November 12, 2021 – January 9, 2022


This feel-good musical comedy is based on the hit 1992 film that has audiences jumping to their feet!  Featuring original music by Tony and Oscar winner, Alan Menken (Newsies, Beauty and the Beast, Little Shop of Horrors), this uplifting musical was nominated for five Tony Awards, including Best Musical.  When disco diva, Deloris Van Cartier, witnesses a murder, she is put in protective custody in the one place the cops are sure she won't be a found: a convent! Disguised as a nun, she finds herself at odds with both the rigid lifestyle and uptight Mother Superior. Using her unique disco moves and singing talent to inspire the choir, Deloris breathes new life into the church and community but, in doing so, blows her cover.  Sister Act is reason to rejoice!

 


 

NORTHLIGHT THEATRE

9501 Skokie Blvd in Skokie, IL 60077

(847) 673-6300

http://www.northlight.org/

 

Songs for Nobodies

By Joanna Murray-Smith

Directed by Rob Lindley

Music Direction by Andra Velis Simon

Featuring Bethany Thomas

Preview Performances: September 23 – September 30, 2021

Press Opening: October 1, 2021at 8pm

Regular Run: October 2 – October 31, 2021

 

This tour-de-force performance celebrates the iconic work of Judy Garland, Patsy Cline, Billie Holiday, Edith Piaf and Maria Callas. Share in the unexpected encounters between these legendary divas and the ordinary women whose lives were changed by their brush with fame. Featuring such favorites as “Come Rain or Come Shine,” “Crazy,” and “Ain’t Nobody’s Business If I Do,” Songs for Nobodies illuminates the power of song to share a story, heal a heartbreak, and inspire a dream.

 

The World Premiere of

Mr. Dickens’ Hat

A Play with Music

By Michael Hollinger

Directed by David Catlin

Music Direction by Chuck Larkin

Preview Performances: November 26 – December 2, 2021

Press Opening: December 3, 2021 at 8pm

Regular Run: December 4, 2021 – January 2, 2022

 

In a cozy Victorian shop sits the hat of Charles Dickens, who once used it to carry water to the victims of a train wreck (that’s true!). When a pair of bumbling thieves plots to steal it (that’s imaginary!), young Kit sets out to foil their plan, save the hat, and free her father from debtors’ prison. Filled with a host of colorful characters, constables, and carolers, this warm winter’s tale with original music brings to life the universal lesson: “Beneath our hats, we are all the same.”

 



THE SECOND CITY

Mainstage

1616 N. Wells Street, Chicago

312-337-3992

www.secondcity.com

The Second City presents its 109th Mainstage revue

Happy to Be Here*

Press Opening: September 30, 2021 at 7pm

You’re gonna want to sit down for this news. We’re warming up the bentwood chairs and ready to invite you back inside our theater! Join humans on stage making humans in the audience laugh as we toast being together again. Our Mainstage performances are a celebration of our resilience, our relationships, and our mutual need to get back into the habit of making eye contact. We’ve been pushed apart both physically and politically for way too long…now it’s time to enjoy some good, clean (or at the very least...ultra-hygienic) togetherness.



ChiIL out in Chi, IL, mask up, and see some shows! As always, check back with ChiILLiveShows.com (adult) and ChiILMama.com (family friendly) early and often for original reviews, arts and entertainment news, photo filled recaps, giveaways, and more. See you out there!

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

World Premiere Musical Production The Notebook Opens at Chicago Shakespeare Theater September 22, 2020

ChiIL Live Shows on our radar

Chicago Shakespeare Theater 
to Stage World Premiere Musical Production
The Notebook
beginning September 22, 2020
Music and lyrics by Ingrid Michaelson
Book by Bekah Brunstetter
Based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks
Directed by Michael Greif


Chicago Shakespeare Theater announces that it will stage the World Premiere musical The Notebook, based on the classic best-selling novel by Nicholas Sparks that inspired the hugely popular film. The highly anticipated musical adaptation features music and lyrics by multi-Platinum singer-songwriter Ingrid Michaelson with book by playwright Bekah Brunstetter—best known as a writer and producer on NBC’s hit series This Is Us. Staged by celebrated Broadway director Michael Greif (Dear Evan Hansen, Next to Normal, Grey Gardens, RENT), The Notebook will premiere September 22–November 8, 2020 in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare.

Chicago Shakespeare Theater has established itself as a key partner in the development of new plays and musicals. The Notebook comes on the heels of the Theater’s wildly successful North American premiere of the new musical SIX, which enjoyed a record-breaking extended run at Chicago Shakespeare in Summer 2019—and begins performances on Broadway at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre on February 13, 2020.

Chicago Shakespeare Creative Producer Rick Boynton shared, “We are excited to partner with Ingrid, Bekah, and Michael to develop and premiere this moving and universal story. Chicago Shakespeare has a long history of collaborating with the world’s great artists and we look forward to working with this stellar team as we bring this breathtaking musical to life on our stage.”

A deeply moving portrait of the enduring power of love, The Notebook chronicles the decades-long love story between a mill worker named Noah and a privileged debutante named Allie. Beginning with a whirlwind summer romance in North Carolina in the 1940s, their love affair spans an entire lifetime—in spite of the differences that threaten to pull them apart. The World Premiere production will feature a diverse, multi-generational cast, reflecting the timeless and universal nature of the story. Casting is underway and will be announced at a later date.

Known for her distinctively soulful folk-pop style that explores universal themes like self-doubt, betrayal and love, singer-songwriter Ingrid Michaelson is a force in the music industry, with four Top 20 albums and two Platinum singles: “The Way I Am” and “Girls Chase Boys." Michaelson’s nine studio albums have been released on her own independent label Cabin 24 Records and her original songs have soundtracked important moments in hundreds of television series and feature films. Michaelson made her Broadway debut as Sonya in Natasha, Pierre, & the Great Comet of 1812 in 2017.

On The Notebook, Michaelson shared, “I have loved the movie and the story for so many years now that the idea of turning it into a musical overwhelmed me. The concept of unending devotion and love wrapped up in memory and family is something very close to my own personal life. The story sings to me so perfectly. I cannot wait to see our beautiful story truly come to life in one of my favorite cities.”

Michaelson joins forces with bookwriter Bekah Brunstetter, a supervising producer and writer on NBC’s Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning series This Is Us. An accomplished playwright, Brunstetter’s plays have been produced at major regional theaters including South Coast Repertory, Atlantic Theater Company, and The Old Globe. Her most recent work, The Cake, debuted off-Broadway at the at Manhattan Theatre Club in March 2019 to rave reviews.

Brunstetter noted, “This project has my entire heart. I'm extremely excited to keep exploring it with Ingrid and Michael, and to get to do so in Chicago is a playwright's dream. Some of my most favorite productions of my plays have been the Chicago incarnations, so I feel incredibly lucky that we get our first stab at the show in such a smart theater town.”

The World Premiere production of The Notebook is directed by Broadway’s Michael Greif. A four-time Tony Award-nominee, Greif’s Broadway credits include Dear Evan Hansen, Next to Normal, and Grey Gardens—as well as the landmark 1996 original production of RENT, among others. The multi-Obie Award-winner has staged a host of Off-Broadway productions at Second Stage, Signature Theatre, and The Public Theater, and directed FOX’s Rent: Live telecast.

Greif said, “Bekah and Ingrid have written a smart, passionate, timely musical adaptation of a great love story. I’m excited to return to Chicago to premiere it in a great theater town with smart, passionate, and very discerning audiences.”

Tickets to The Notebook will go on sale this winter. To be the first to hear updates on the World Premiere musical, sign up at www.chicagoshakes.com/TheNotebook and follow the production on social media at #TheNotebookChicago and via @chicagoshakes.

ABOUT CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER
Under the leadership of Artistic Director Barbara Gaines and Executive Director Criss Henderson, Chicago Shakespeare has redefined what a great American Shakespeare theater can be—a company that defies theatrical category. This Regional Tony Award-winning theater’s year-round season features as many as twenty productions and 650 performances—including plays, musicals, world premieres, family programming, and presentations from around the globe. Chicago Shakespeare is the city’s leading presenter of international work, and has toured its own productions across five continents. The Theater’s nationally acclaimed arts in literacy programs support the work of teachers, and bring Shakespeare to life on stage for tens of thousands of students annually. Each summer, the company tours a free professional production to neighborhood parks across Chicago. In 2017 the Theater unveiled The Yard, which, together with the Jentes Family Courtyard Theater and the Thoma Theater Upstairs, positions Chicago Shakespeare as Chicago’s most versatile performing arts center.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

OPENING: North American Premiere of Critically Acclaimed New Musical SIX at Chicago Shakespeare Theater May 14–June 30

ChiIL Live Shows on our radar


Chicago Shakespeare Theater announces
 North American premiere cast of
 critically acclaimed new musical 
SIX,
by Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss
May 14–June 30



The Queens of Chicago Shakespeare’s North American premiere production of SIX, written by Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss and directed by Lucy Moss and Jamie Armitage, presented in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare, May 14–June 30, 2019. Pictured: Andrea Macasaet (Boleyn), Brittney Mack (Cleves), Anna Uzele (Parr), Abby Mueller (Seymour), Samantha Pauly (Howard), and Adrianna Hicks (Aragon). Photo by Jeff Sciortino.



The six wives of King Henry VIII headline 
electrifying pop-concert musical in The Yard at 
Chicago Shakespeare

Chicago Shakespeare Theater announces the Queens of the critically acclaimed new musical SIX, written by Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss, which makes its North American premiere in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare, May 14–June 30, 2019. The six wives of King Henry VIII headline an electrifying pop-concert spectacle—flipping the narrative on the one-sided story from our history books. After its runaway debut at Edinburgh Festival Fringe and a sold-out UK tour, the musical phenomenon is now taking London by storm with an open-ended run on the West End, now nominated for five Olivier Awards, including Best New Musical.



Directed by Lucy Moss and Jamie Armitage, the Chicago Shakespeare production will feature Adrianna Hicks(Aragon), Andrea Macasaet (Boleyn), Abby Mueller (Seymour), Brittney Mack (Cleves), Samantha Pauly(Howard), and Anna Uzele (Parr). Nicole Kyoung-Mi Lambert and Mallory Maedke have been cast as the Alternate Queens.

Best remembered by the popular rhyme, "divorced, beheaded, died; divorced, beheaded, survived," the Queens now take control of the mic to reclaim their identities beyond the shadow of their infamous spouse—remixing five hundred years of historical heartbreak into an exuberant celebration of twenty-first-century empowerment. Backed by an all-woman band the "Ladies in Waiting," the score traverses the spectrum of modern-day pop with a soundtrack that has charged up the global music charts.




Pictured: Adrianna Hicks (Aragon), Andrea Macasaet (Boleyn), Abby Mueller (Seymour), Brittney Mack (Cleves), Samantha Pauly (Howard), and Anna Uzele (Parr). Photo courtesy of Chicago Shakespeare.

Adrianna Hicks portrays Catherine of Aragon, the tenacious queen leading the way who rebuffs Henry’s attempts to send her to a nunnery with the feminist dance anthem "No Way." Hicks made her Broadway debut in the Tony Award-winning revival of The Color Purple, and went on to star as Celie in the production’s highly acclaimed National Tour. In addition to appearing in Broadway’s Aladdin, she has toured internationally throughout Europe in productions of Sister Act, Legally Blonde, and Dirty Dancing.

Portraying the flirty and fun-loving Anne Boleyn with her cheeky pop melody "Don’t Lose Ur Head" is Andrea Macasaet. A graduate of the prestigious Canadian College of Performing Arts, Macasaet has been seen frequently onstage at the Winnipeg Studio Theatre in memorable roles, including Heather Duke in Heathers the Musical, Christmas Eve in Avenue Q, and Marcy Park in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. She also starred as Kim in the Victoria Operatic Society’s production of Miss Saigon.

As the soulful Jane Seymour—"the only one he truly loved"—with the heart-wrenching torch song "Heart of Stone" is Abby Mueller. Direct from starring in the Broadway and original National Tour productions of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical and Broadway’s Kinky Boots, Mueller returns to Chicago Shakespeare, where she notably appeared in the world premiere musical The Three Musketeers. Her off-Broadway credits include the developmental workshop performance of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s School of Rock at Gramercy Theatre, and A Minister’s Wife at Lincoln Center Theater.

Brittney Mack is the hip-hop powerhouse Anna of Cleves who, after being rejected because of the King’s unrealistic beauty standards, reaps the spoils of her newfound liberation in "Get Down." A native of Chicago’s South Side, Mack is a veteran of the National Tour of Memphis and the off-Broadway production Black Nativity Now. She has also appeared as a featured dancer on FOX’s hit series Empire.

Samantha Pauly appears as the feisty Katherine Howard, who nevertheless persists despite a challenging past of being used and abused by men in power in "All You Wanna Do." Memorable Chicago performances include Eva Perón in Evita and Betsy Nolan in Honeymoon in Vegas at Marriott Theatre, as well as Jovie in Elf the Musicaland Amber von Tussle in Hairspray! at Paramount Theatre.

Rounding out the sextet of Queens is the fiercely independent Catherine Parr, portrayed by Anna Uzele—with her show-stopping power anthem, "I Don’t Need Your Love." Uzele recently debuted on Broadway in the Tony Award-winning revival of Once on this Island as Andrea Devereaux. Regionally, she has appeared off Broadway in The Holes in Human Flesh, and in multiple productions with Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma.

Joining the Queens as Alternates, each covering multiple roles, are Nicole Kyoung-Mi Lambert and Mallory Maedke. Lambert is currently appearing as Crystal in Mercury Theater’s Little Shop of Horrors. She has also performed in Porchlight Theater productions of Memphis and In the Heights, as well as Marriott Theatre’s Seussical. Maedke has been making her mark in musicals on Chicago stages, including most recently in Paramount Theater’s Legally Blonde, The Little Mermaid, Mamma Mia, and Hairspray!, as well as in the Jeff Award-nominated company of Hair at Mercury Theater.

The "Ladies in Waiting" are Julia Schade (Keyboard/Conductor/Assistant Music Director), Kimi Hayes (Guitars), Stacy McMichael (Electric Bass), and Sarah Allen (Drums).





Presented by Chicago Shakespeare Theater by arrangement with Kenny Wax, Global Musicals, George Stiles & Kevin McCollum, SIX boasts an impressive multi-national creative team. Directors Lucy Moss and Jamie Armitage and the original creative team are joined by Jeff Award-winning Music Director Roberta Duchak, as well as Assistant Director Megan E. Farley. The Yard is transformed into a rocking pop concert venue by Scenic Designer Emma Bailey, Costume Designer Gabriella Slade, Sound Designer Paul Gatehouse, and Lighting Designer Tim Deiling. The score features orchestrations by Tom Curran and vocal arrangements by Joe Beighton. SIX features original choreography by Carrie-Anne Ingrouille, in addition to the work of Associate Choreographer Melody Sinclair.

For more information, visit www.chicagoshakes.com/SIX or follow the Queens’ ascent at #cstSIX on @chicagoshakes.

SIX will be presented in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare, May 14–June 30, 2019. Single tickets ($32–$55) are on sale now. Special discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. For more information, contact Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s Box Office at 312.595.5600 or visit the Theater’s website at www.chicagoshakes.com.

CST strives to make its facility and performances accessible to all patrons through its Access Shakespeareprograms. Accessible performances for SIX include:
ASL Duo-interpretation – Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 7:45 p.m.
Open-captioning – Thursday, June 20, 2019 at 7:45 p.m.
Audio-description – Sunday, June 16, 2019 at 3:00 p.m. (optional Touch Tour begins at 1:00 p.m.)

ABOUT CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER
Under the leadership of Artistic Director Barbara Gaines and Executive Director Criss Henderson, Chicago Shakespeare has redefined what a great American Shakespeare theater can be—a company that defies theatrical category. This Regional Tony Award-winning theater’s year-round season features as many as twenty productions and 650 performances—including plays, musicals, world premieres, family programming, and presentations from around the globe. Chicago Shakespeare is the city’s leading presenter of international work, and has toured its own productions across five continents. The Theater’s nationally acclaimed arts in literacy programs support the work of teachers, and bring Shakespeare to life on stage for tens of thousands of students annually. Each summer, the company tours a free professional production to neighborhood parks across Chicago. In 2017 the Theater unveiled The Yard, which, together with the Jentes Family Courtyard Theater and the Thoma Theater Upstairs, positions Chicago Shakespeare as Chicago’s most versatile performing arts center.

Monday, March 11, 2019

Maurice Jones To Play Title Role in Chicago Shakespeare Theater's Hamlet


Chicago Shakespeare Theater announces updated casting for
Hamlet
Maurice Jones steps into title role



Joins company featuring: Karen Aldridge, Timothy Decker, Larry Yando, Sean Allan Krill, Paul Deo, Jr., Rachel Nicks, Mike Nussbaum, Greg Vinkler, Kevin Gudahl, Alex Goodrich, Samuel Taylor, Sarah Chalcroft, and Callie Johnson

Chicago Shakespeare Theater announces that Maurice Jones has stepped into the title role of the Theater’s upcoming production of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, staged by Artistic Director Barbara Gaines, in the Courtyard Theater, April 17–June 9, 2019. 

Most recently appearing on Broadway in The Lifespan of a Fact opposite Daniel Radcliffe, Jones is an accomplished classical performer whose Broadway credits include Saint Joan staged by Tony Award-winner Daniel Sullivan, The Cherry Orchard featuring Diane Lane, Romeo and Juliet starring Orlando Bloom and Condola Rashad, and Julius Caesar with Denzel Washington—as well as credits at the Public Theater and Roundabout Theatre Company. The role of Hamlet was originally to be played by Raúl Esparza who had to withdraw from the production due to scheduling conflicts.



Joining Jones in the Hamlet company are Karen Aldridge (Gertrude), Timothy Decker (Claudius), Larry Yando (Polonius), Sean Allan Krill (Horatio), Paul Deo, Jr. (Laertes), Rachel Nicks (Ophelia), Mike Nussbaum (Gravedigger), Greg Vinkler (Gravedigger/Player King), Kevin Gudahl (Osric), Alex Goodrich (Rosencrantz), Samuel Taylor (Guildenstern), Sarah Chalcroft (Voltemand/Player Queen), Callie Johnson (Reynalda), and Drew Shirley (Barnardo), as well as ensemble members Al'Jaleel McGhee and Sam Pearson.

Cast of Hamlet

Celebrated actress Karen Aldridge takes on the role of Gertrude, queen of Denmark. In addition to numerous credits with Goodman Theatre, Writers Theatre, and Chicago Shakespeare, Aldridge originated the role of Tamyra in Tracy Letts’s Pulitzer-Prize-nominated Man from Nebraska at Steppenwolf Theatre, as well as Mrs. Phelps in the Broadway production of Matilda the Musical. She also starred in the international tours of Battlefield and Le Costume, both directed by the legendary Peter Brook. Timothy Decker portrays Hamlet’s uncle and adversary Claudius. Decker has appeared onstage at Chicago Shakespeare, Goodman Theatre, and American Blues Theatre, where he garnered the Jeff Award for his performance in Toys in the Attic. He notably completed a four-year run with 1,600 performances as Sam Philips in Million Dollar Quartet at the Apollo Theatre. In his twenty-fifth Chicago Shakespeare production, Larry Yando performs the role of Polonius. The five-time Jeff Award-winner—named “Best Actor in Chicago” by Chicago Magazine—is a mainstay on Chicago stages, including eleven seasons as Ebenezer Scrooge in the Goodman Theatre’s A Christmas Carol. Veteran of the National Tour of The Lion King, Yando recently concluded a critically acclaimed European tour of Peter Brook’s Battlefield.

Sean Allan Krill portrays Hamlet’s close friend and confidante Horatio. Krill debuted on Broadway as Sam Carmichael in Mamma Mia!, a role which he reprised in the production’s North American tour; additional Broadway credits include On a Clear Day You Can See Forever and Honeymoon in Vegas. He recently appeared in American Repertory Theater’s world premiere production of the Alanis Morrissett musical Jagged Little Pill, which is headed to Broadway in Fall 2019. Appearing as Laertes is Paul Deo, Jr., who has previously performed in the Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park production of Troilus and Cressida, as well as Shakespeare Theater Company’s Twelfth Night and Romeo and Juliet. Rachel Nicks takes on the role of Ophelia. Nicks has appeared Off-Broadway in Final Follies, War, And I and Silence, and The Good Negro, as well as in productions with McCarter Theatre and The Old Globe.

Portraying the Gravediggers are Mike Nussbaum and Greg Vinkler. A seven-time Jeff Award-winner, Nussbaum’s illustrious career at Chicago Shakespeare has included notable performances in Henry VIII, Shylock in The Merchant of Venice, and Follies. The Sarah Siddons Society honoree starred in Peter Brook’s international touring production of The Cherry Orchard, as well as in the original Broadway productions of David Mamet’s American Buffalo and Glengarry Glen Ross. Now 95 years old, Nussbaum is hailed “the oldest working actor in the United States.” Vinkler has appeared in nearly forty Chicago Shakespeare productions, garnering Jeff Awards for his performances in King Lear, Hamlet, and Twelfth Night. He made his Broadway debut in the 2009 revival of West Side Story, and has appeared regionally with Milwaukee Repertory Theatre and Peninsula Players Theatre, where he also serves as artistic director—and in Chicago with Writers Theatre, Court Theatre and Goodman Theatre. Multiple Jeff Award-winner Kevin Gudahl is Osric. A veteran of more than forty Chicago Shakespeare productions, Gudahl has also appeared onstage at Court Theatre, Goodman Theatre, and Writers Theatre, in addition to five seasons with the Stratford Festival.

As Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Alex Goodrich and Samuel Taylor, respectively. Goodrich has previously appeared on Chicago Shakespeare’s stages in Love’s Labor’s Lost, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and The Taming of the Shrew. Goodrich frequently appears at Northlight Theatre and Marriott Theatre, where his performance in the world premiere musical Hero earned him a Jeff Award. Taylor returns to Chicago Shakespeare after memorable performances in Macbeth, Henry V, Julius Caesar, The School for Lies, and The Feast: an Intimate Tempest. His numerous Shakespeare credentials include teaching courses on the playwright at the University of Chicago and co-founding the Back Room Shakespeare Project.

Sarah Chalcroft returns to Chicago Shakespeare after appearing in King Charles III to perform the roles of Voltemand and the Player Queen. Playing Reynalda is Callie Johnson, who garnered a Jeff Award for her performance in Porchlight Music Theatre’s Pal Joey and has also appeared at Drury Lane Theatre and Marriott Theatre.

As a leading director of Shakespeare internationally renowned for her populist and dynamic interpretations, Barbara Gaines has staged more than sixty productions at Chicago Shakespeare throughout her distinguished career, garnering the prestigious Honorary OBE (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) and Joseph Jefferson Awards for Best Production (Hamlet, Cymbeline, King Lear, and The Comedy of Errors), and for Best Director (Cymbeline, King Lear and The Comedy of Errors). Joining Gaines on the Hamlet creative team are Scenic Designer Scott Davis, Costume Designer Susan E. Mickey, Lighting Designer Robert Wierzel, Sound Designer Lindsay Jones, Projection Designer Mike Tutaj, Wig and Make-up Designer Richard Jarvie, and Fight Choreographer Matt Hawkins. Tyrone Phillips is the production’s Associate Director.

For more information, visit www.chicagoshakes.com/hamlet.

Hamlet is presented in Chicago Shakespeare’s Courtyard Theater, April 17–June 9, 2019. Single tickets ($48–$88) are on sale now. Special discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. For more information or to purchase tickets, contact Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s Box Office at 312.595.5600 or visit the Theater’s website at www.chicagoshakes.com.

Chicago Shakespeare strives to make its facility and performances accessible to all patrons through its Access Shakespeare programs. Accessible performances for Hamlet include:

Audio-description – Sunday, May 19, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. with optional touch tour at 12:00 p.m.

ASL Duo-interpretation – Friday, May 31, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Open-captioning – Thursday, June 6, 2019 at 1:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.


ABOUT CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER
Under the leadership of Artistic Director Barbara Gaines and Executive Director Criss Henderson, Chicago Shakespeare has redefined what a great American Shakespeare theater can be—a company that defies theatrical category. This Regional Tony Award-winning theater’s year-round season features as many as twenty productions and 650 performances—including plays, musicals, world premieres, family programming, and presentations from around the globe. Chicago Shakespeare is the city’s leading producer of international work, and has toured its own productions across five continents. The Theater’s nationally acclaimed arts in literacy programs support the work of teachers, and bring Shakespeare to life on stage for tens of thousands of students annually. Each summer, the company tours a free professional production to neighborhood parks across Chicago. In 2017 the Theater unveiled The Yard, which, together with the Jentes Family Courtyard Theater and the Thoma Theater Upstairs, positions Chicago Shakespeare as Chicago’s most versatile performing arts center.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

OPENING: The National Theatre of Great Britain’s An Inspector Calls To Play Chicago Shakespeare Theater's The Yard Through March 10, 2019

ChiIL Live Shows on our radar

Chicago Shakespeare Theater presents 
the National Theatre of Great Britain’s landmark production
of JB Priestley’s classic thriller
AN INSPECTOR CALLS
Staged by Stephen Daldry (The Crown, Billy Elliot)
Limited engagement in The Yard

February 19–March 10, 2019


I'll be out February 20th for the press opening, so check back soon for my full review.

Chicago Shakespeare Theater presents the National Theatre of Great Britain’s award-winning production of JB Priestley’s classic thriller An Inspector Calls, hailed by the Evening Standard as “an epic for our epoch, a thrillingly physical piece of theatre—with the power to stir the heart as much as the mind.” The production is staged by Stephen Daldry, whose extraordinary career spans genres from the hit Netflix series The Crown; to films, with Oscar-nominated pictures like The Reader, The Hours, Billy Elliot, and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close; to the stage, where his Billy Elliot the Musical was honored with ten Tony Awards, and his current production of The Inheritance is enjoying an acclaimed run in London’s West End.

An Inspector Calls is featured in a special limited engagement in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare, February 19–March 10, 2019.

Winner of 19 major accolades, including multiple Olivier, Tony, Drama Desk, and Critics Circle Awards, this international touring production of An Inspector Calls is the longest running revival of a play in history—now seen by more than 4 million theatregoers worldwide. This suspenseful masterpiece begins when the mysterious Inspector Goole calls unexpectedly on the prosperous Birling home, shattering their peaceful family dinner party with his investigation into the death of a young woman. Revelations shake the foundations of the family’s lives, prompting an examination of their consciences.

The Washington Post called it, “elegant…an evening of many dark and twisting delights.” The Guardian hailed it, “spine-tingling. Lushly operatic, yet hard as steel—grabs you by the throat and won't let you go” and The Telegraph raved, “there’ll never be a better production… always speaks to the changing political moment.”

Artistic Director Barbara Gaines shared, “We’re elated to share Stephen Daldry’s award-winning production with Chicago. The larger-than-life scale of this thriller will have audiences on the edges of their seats—and you’ll see why they call it the ‘theatrical event of a generation’ in the UK. Simply no one does this work better than Stephen Daldry.”

The company features Liam Brennan (Inspector Goole), Christine Kavanagh (Sybil Birling), Jeff Harmer (Arthur Birling), Lianne Harvey (Sheila Birling), Hamish Riddle (Eric Birling), Andrew Macklin (Gerald Croft), and Diana Payne-Myers (Edna). Rounding out the ensemble are Chris Barritt, Adam Collier, Chloe Orrock, and Beth Tuckey.

The creative team for An Inspector Calls creative team includes Associate Director Julian Webber, Tony Award-winning Scenic and Costume Designer Ian MacNeill, two-time Olivier and Tony Award-winning Lighting Designer Rick Fisher, and Composer Stephen Warbeck—who notably garnered an Academy Award for his original score for Shakespeare in Love.

For more information, visit www.chicagoshakes.com/inspector.

An Inspector Calls will be presented in The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare, February 19–March 10, 2019. Single tickets ($46–$88) are on sale now. Special discounts will be available for groups of 10 or more. For more information, contact Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s Box Office at 312.595.5600 or visit the Theater’s website at www.chicagoshakes.com.

ABOUT STEPHEN DALDRY
Stephen Daldry (Director), lauded for his work as director and producer of film, theater, and television, is Executive Producer and Director on the highly acclaimed Netflix series The Crown. He directed The Inheritance by Matthew Lopez to critical acclaim and a sell-out run at the Young Vic Theatre; it transferred to the Noel Coward Theatre this fall and will premiere next year on Broadway. Currently, Daldry’s coproduction, with director Justin Martin, of The Jungle by Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson is playing to huge acclaim at the Playhouse Theatre after its highly successful run at the Young Vic Theatre and will have its American premiere this month at St Ann’s Warehouse in New York. He was Creative Executive Producer of the Opening and Closing Ceremonies for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. He has also directed at the National Theatre, the Public Theatre in New York and transferred many productions both to Broadway and the West End, including his award-winning 1992 National Theatre production of An Inspector Calls. Billy Elliot the Musical opened at the Victoria Palace Theatre in 2005 where it ran for 11 years. It has also played on Broadway, in Holland, Seoul, Sydney, Melbourne, Chicago, Toronto, Tokyo and across the US. In 2009, the production won ten Tony awards, including Best Musical, more than any other British show in Broadway history. It recently completed an 18 month tour of the UK and Ireland, finishing its highly successful run in Hamburg. Daldry directed The Audience and Skylight to critical acclaim both in London and on Broadway with Skylight winning a Tony award for Best Revival. His first four films, Billy Elliot, The Hours, The Reader and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, together received 19 Academy Award® nominations and two wins. His film, Trash, set in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, was nominated for Best Film Not in the English Language at the 2015 BAFTAs. He also directed for BBC Radio and Television. He is Co-Director of Pier 55 in New York and also on the Board of The Perelman Arts Center at the World Trade Center, Ground Zero, New York. Daldry started his career at the Sheffield Crucible Theatre and directed extensively in Britain’s regional theaters. In London he was Artistic Director of the Gate Theatre and the Royal Court Theatre where he headed the £26 million redevelopment.

CAST
Liam Brennan (Inspector Goole) THEATRE: Richard III, Twelfth Night (Shakespeare’s Globe/The Apollo Theatre/Belasco Theatre, New York); Measure for Measure, Edward II, Richard II, Twelfth Night, Macbeth (Shakespeare’s Globe); Union, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, A View From The Bridge, Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, The Winter’s Tale, The Merchant Of Venice, Othello, Anna Karenina, Montrose, The Gowk Storm, The Taming Of The Shrew, Hobson’s Choice, Mary Rose, Mr. Bolfry, Trivial Pursuits, Loot (all Royal Lyceum Edinburgh); Macbeth (Royal Lyceum/Nottingham Playhouse); Tom Fool (Glasgow Citizens Theatre/Bush Theatre); Stranger Babies, The Found Man, Men in White Suits, Things We Do for Love, The Speculator, Family, King Lear, Knives in Hens, Wormwood (Traverse Theatre); Babycakes (Clyde Unity/Drill Hall); The Merchant of Venice (Sheffield Crucible); Rumplestiltskin (Cumbernauld Theatre), Twelfth Night (Salisbury Playhouse/China Tour). TELEVISION: Shetland, Swine Fever, High Road, Machair, Bad Boys, Taggart and Strathblair II. FILM: No Man’s Land, Feet Steps and Gas Attack. Radio Includes: Cloud Howe, Take Me to Necropolis, Red and Blue, The True Story of Bonnie Parker, Sullom Voe, Down and Out in Auchnakinnan, Piper Alpha, Much Ado About Nothing, La Princesse De Cleves, Of Mice and Men, Macbeth, Rob Roy and Master Of Ballantrae. Liam won the 2006 CATS Award for Best Actor for his performance in Tales From Hollywood (Perth Theatre).

Jeff Harmer (Arthur Birling) THEATRE: Berrard in the National tour of Bird Song Fox on The Fairway, Out Of Order, Donkey’s Years, Romeo & Juliet, As You Like It, Funny Money (Vienna’s English Theatre), Made in Dagenham (Hornchurch), Sweet Charity (New Wolsey Theatre Ipswich), I Dreamed A Dream (National Tour), The Witches of Eastwick (Watermill Theatre), Aladdin (Alhambra Theatre), Buddy (Channel Islands), Othello, Richard III (Ludlow Festival), Privates on Parade (West Yorkshire Playhouse & Birmingham Rep), Mamma Mia! (International Tour), The Hot Mikado (Watermill Theatre Newbury and National Tour), Dick Whittington, The Comedy of Errors (Northcott Theatre, Exeter), The Rivals, The Blue, A Christmas Carol (Swan Theatre Worcester) The Roy Orbison Story (Bill Kenwright National Tour), Return to the Forbidden Planet, Chicago (Frankfurt), Vanity Fair (Sherman Theatre), The Comedy of Errors (National Tour), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Dracula, The Wind in the Willows (Liverpool Playhouse) Stagestruck (Grand Swansea), Du lac Eurydice (Whitehall Theatre), The Forsyte Saga (National Tour).TELEVISION AND FILM: Diana Her True Story (NBC), A Life (CH4), Poirot, The Bill, Family Affairs (CH5), Westbeach (BBC), Kidnap & Ransom (ITV), The Runaway (SKYTV), The Italian Consul (Film Italia), Saplings (BBC Radio 4), Gilbert Without Sullivan (BBC Radio 4). TRAINING: The Webber Douglas Academy.

Lianne Harvey (Sheila Birling) THEATRE: Juliet in Romeo and Juliet (U.K. and International tour), Relatively Speaking (Oldham Coliseum, Harrogate Theatre), The Railway Children and Trials of Mary (Eastern Angles), Heartbreak House (Union Theatre), Enveloped in Velvet (Arts Theatre), The Daughter in Law, Mercury Fur, The Witch of Edmonton (Whilst at RADA).TELEVISION: Not Safe for Work (Channel 4). FILM: The female lead in 2017 feature film Bikini Blue (for multi Academy Award-nominated Studio Filmowe Zebra, Warsaw). TRAINING: The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.

Christine Kavanagh (Sybil Birling) THEATRE: Hedda Gabler (National Theatre U.K. tour), Man and Superman (National Theatre), The Importance of Being Earnest (Harold Pinter Theatre), Albert Speer (National Theatre), The Liar (Old Vic), The Rehearsal (Almeida and Garrick), Basket Case (Northampton Royal Derngate), A Doll’s House (Lyric, Belfast), Macbeth (RSC), Hamlet (Nottingham Playhouse), All My Sons (Redgrave Theatre), The Revengers Comedies (Scarborough), Last Easter (Birmingham Rep), Much Ado About Nothing (RSC), She Stoops to Conquer (Oxford Playhouse), Travesties (Oxford Playhouse), The Rivals (York Theatre Royal).TELEVISION: Vera (ITV), Titanic (ITV), Room with a View (ITV), A Very British Coup (Skreba Films), The Blackheath Poisonings (Central Films), Catherine Cookson/The Glass Virgin (Festival film and ITV), Chimera (Zenith Films), Drop the Dead Donkey (Hat Trick/Channel 4), Frank Stubbs (Noel Gay TV), In His Life the John Lennon Story (NBC), Inspector Lynley (BBC), Inspector Morse (Channel 4), Island Gardens (BBC), Doctors (BBC), Jonathan Creek (BBC), Manchild (BBC), Minder (Thames TV), Ruth Rendell Mysteries – May and June, Ruth Rendell Mysteries – No crying he makes (TVS), Seaforth (BBC), Sleeper (BBC), The Bretts (Central TV), Return of Sherlock Holmes (Tiger Aspect), Agony Too (BBC), Material Girl (Carnival Films), The Saint (D L Taffner), Doctor Who (BBC), The Sleeper, Underbelly (BBC Initial films). FILM: Man and Superman NT Live (National Theatre). RADIO: Home Front, I Claudius, and Charles Paris for BBC radio four, member of the BBC radio drama company, and she narrates audio books.

Andrew Macklin (Gerald Croft) THEATRE: The Baleful Lie (Tristan Bates Theatre), Jane Wenham: The Witch of Walkern (Out of Joint/Watford Palace/Arcola Theatre/Tour), The Beauty Queen of Leenane (Curve Theatre), Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me (Chipping Norton Theatre), The Mercy Seat (York Theatre Royal), King Lear, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Three Sisters (Abbey Theatre), The Only True History of Lizzie Finn (Southwark Playhouse), Brighton (Garter Lane Arts Centre), The Beauty Queen of Leenane (Watford Palace), I’ll be the Devil (RSC/Tricycle), All Over Town, The Irish Curse (Project Theatre, Dublin), 24 Hour Plays: Lucy’s Brief Guide to Being Human (Old Vic), Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk (Salisbury Playhouse), The Cure at Troy (Floodtide Theatre Company), Much Ado About Nothing (Bath Theatre Royal), Don’t Look Back (dreamthinkspeak), Markings (Attic Theatre Company), A Passionate Woman (Mill at Sonning). TV: Jubilee Nurse, Mr. Selfridge, Fair City.

Diana Payne-Myers (Edna) was a dancer at Ballet Rambert at the Mercury Theatre, Notting Hill Gate, 1948. She has most recently worked in Scotland with Barrowland Ballet (Natasha Gilmore’s Glasgow based company) in A Conversation with Carmel 2013 (co-produced by Scottish Arts & Stratford East) at the Tramway Theatre, Glasgow; Stratford East, London & 2 Scotland tours concluding the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2011. Other recent credits include: Further work with Matthew Hawkins at Edinburgh Festival (2007), Red Ladies (2014) at the Southbank Centre, Malvern & Margate, God’s Garden with Arthur Pita – created and presented in Ipswich followed by performances in Birmingham & later with a company at the Royal Opera House, London. Diana has also performed at the 2000 Sydney Olympics Arts Festival with DV8 Physical Theatre company piece Can we afford this? The cost of living (Everest Theatre, Sydney). It later toured to London and Hong Kong. Other work with DV8 includes Strange Fish (European tour) and Bound to Please which toured Europe 1999-2000. Diana returns to the role of Edna having performed in An Inspector Calls at the Garrick Theatre, the Aldwich Theatre, two UK tours & the Australia tour.

Hamish Riddle (Eric Birling). Prior to training he was a member of the National Youth Theatre Rep Company. THEATRE: Manning (The Arches/Encounter Festival/Brno), Tory Boyz, Prince Of Denmark, Romeo And Juliet, Pope Joan, Black And White, As You Like It (N.Y.T.) and Prince Of Denmark (National Theatre). Theatre whilst training includes: 13, The Country Wife, Merchant of Venice and The Seagull (all for R.C.S.) Hamish also took part in the London 2012 Olympics Welcoming Ceremony as part of the N.Y.T. TRAINING: The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

CREATIVE TEAM
Tony-Award winning Set and Costume Designer Ian MacNeil’s work includes Billy Elliot the Musical in the West End, Australia on Broadway (Tony Award - Best Designer); Albert Speer, Machinal (Critic’s Circle Award-winner) and An Inspector Calls (also West End and International; Olivier and Critic’s Circle Awards-winner) at the National; Far Away, Via Dolorosa (also on Broadway and the West End), This is a Chair, Death and the Maiden (also West End), Plasticine (Evening Standard Award-winner Best Designer) and A Number for the Royal Court; Afore Night Come (the Young Vic); The Ingolstadt Plays, Figaro Gets Divorced and Jerker at the Gate; Enter Achilles and Bound to Please for DV8; and Festen (The Almeida – also West End and Broadway; Evening Standard Award- winner, Best Designer). Recent designs include Vernon God Little and A Doll’s House at the Young Vic and Brooklyn Academy of Music; In Basildon at the Royal Court; Desire Under the Elms at the Lyric Hammersmith; The Amen Corner at the National Theatre; Betrayal on Broadway; Birdland at the Royal Court, and Everyman at the National.

Lighting Designer Rick Fisher is the winner of two Olivier Awards for Best Lighting Design and two Tony and Drama Desk Awards for An Inspector Calls and Billy Elliot the Musical (Broadway). He first lit this production of An Inspector Calls in York in 1990 and then again at the National Theatre in 1992. THEATRE: Peter Pan (Regent’s Park); The Audience (with Helen Mirren in London and Broadway, and subsequently with Kristin Scott Thomas in London); The Merchant of Venice (Almeida Theatre / RSC); Sunny Afternoon (Hampstead / West End); Porgy and Bess (Regent’s Park); Billy Elliot (West End / Australia / Broadway / US Tour / Holland); Brigit & Bailegangaire (Druid Theatre, Galway); The Merchant of Venice, Othello, Twelfth Night (Singapore); Judas Kiss (Duke of York’s); Chariots of Fire (Gielgud), Richard III (RSC); Tribes (Royal Court); An Inspector Calls (West End/Broadway); Betrayal, Old Times (Donmar); Jerry Springer the Opera, Blue/Orange (National Theatre/West End). MUSICAL AND OPERA: Daughter of the Regiment, Rigoletto, Salome (Santa Fe Opera); Sweeney Todd (Houston Grand Opera); Oscar (Philadelphia); Falstaff (Japan & Los Angeles); The King and I, Sweeney Todd (Chatelet, Paris); The Sound of Music (Buenos Aires); The Tsarina’s Slippers (Royal Opera House); Die Entfuhrung aus dem Serail , Maometto II (Garsington); La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein (Santa Fe). DANCE: Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake (London / Los Angeles / Broadway / World Tour).

Academy Award-winning Composer Stephen Warbeck began studying piano and composing at the age of four. After eight years of working as a composer and performer for the stage Stephen began writing music for film and television and has since built up considerable filmography credits. He has written music for more than 40 television projects and has received five BAFTA nominations and in 2013 a BAFTA Award for his work on Henry IV, Parts 1 & 2. Other recent television projects include Indian Summers and first two series of A Young Doctor’s Notebook. Stephen has scored many feature films including: Mon Roi, Seve, Polisse, Proof, Mrs. Brown, Mystery Men, Quills, Billy Elliot, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Birthday Girl and Shakespeare in Love, for which he won an Academy Award. His other notable stage productions include: the Globe’s Richard II, the Donmar’s Temple, the RSC’s Wolf Hall and Bring Up The Bodies; the Royal Court’s The River and Jerusalem (both West End and Broadway transfers) and The Seagull; The National Theatre’s The Red Lion, The Silver Tassie, This House, The Veil; John Madden’s Proof, Sam Mendes’ To The Green Fields Beyond; Old Times and Betrayal at the Harold Pinter Theatre and many productions for Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, The Almeida and West End theatres. In addition to composing for film and television, Stephen has written music for numerous radio plays and written several concert pieces. Peter Pan is his first ballet score.

Associate Director Julian Webber adapted and directed The Three Musketeers at the Young Vic Theatre, which was nominated for a Barclay’s Theatre Award in 2002; more recently, the West End revival of The Shape of Things by Neil Labute, and The Barber of Seville at the Bristol Old Vic in a new adaptation by Lee Hall. For eight years Julian was Artistic Director of Soho Rep, New York and is currently Associate Director for Billy Elliot the Musical, for which he won a Helpmann Award for the production in Sydney, Australia, and last year, mounted in Holland.

ABOUT CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER
Under the leadership of Artistic Director Barbara Gaines and Executive Director Criss Henderson, Chicago Shakespeare has redefined what a great American Shakespeare theater can be—a company that defies theatrical category. This Regional Tony Award-winning theater’s year-round season features as many as twenty productions and 650 performances—including plays, musicals, world premieres, family programming, and presentations from around the globe. Chicago Shakespeare is the city’s leading presenter of international work, and has toured its own productions across five continents. The Theater’s nationally acclaimed arts in literacy programs support the work of teachers, and bring Shakespeare to life on stage for tens of thousands of students annually. Each summer, the company tours a free professional production to neighborhood parks across Chicago. In 2017 the Theater unveiled The Yard, which, together with the Jentes Family Courtyard Theater and the Thoma Theater Upstairs, positions Chicago Shakespeare as Chicago’s most versatile performing arts center.

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