Showing posts with label Julie Proudfoot. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Julie Proudfoot. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 14, 2022



The fight for women’s rights is ON, and Chicago’s Artemisia Theatre is going on offense. 

The Flower and The Fury by Alexa Juanita Jordan, directed by Artemisia founder and artistic director Julie Proudfoot, has been substituted for the previously announced Roe v US.

Jordan is an award-winning New York playwright making her Artemisia debut with The Flower and The Fury. She is a fiercely feminist writer with a provocative new work that follows three pregnant women as they contemplate abortion.

While Jessica swiftly and resolutely comes to the decision to terminate her pregnancy alone, Kennedy and Rachel both wrestle with their choices in individual yet similar circumstances. Throughout the play, the women’s interactions with each other, their partners, and the nurse at the abortion clinic, greatly impact their decisions and futures. The main action takes place during a brief stretch of time, at most a few weeks, before jumping 10 years ahead in the last three scenes, showing where the women end up. 

Reading times are 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Friday and Saturday, July 14-16, and 3 p.m. on Sunday, July 17. Each reading will be followed by a dedicated talkback to inspire compassion and social justice for women. Jordan, the playwright, will be in Chicago to lead the talkbacks on Thursday, July 14, and Sunday, July 17. Admission is free (excluding a $1.50 processing fee.) Reserve now at

Filament Theatre is located at 4041 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago’s Portage Park neighborhood, on the first floor of the Portage Arts Lofts building.

Filament is accessible via the Irving Park exit on 90/94. Turn west on Irving Park Ave. and at the six corners turn slight right onto Milwaukee Ave. Filament is on the right across from the Portage Theatre.

Metered street parking is available in front of the theater. Street parking is free on Sundays. Additional parking is available at the Laporte Ave. Public Parking Lot one block west of the theater via West Cuyler Ave.

Public transit: Take the Blue Line to Irving Park and transfer to the Irving Park Bus (#80) headed west. Get off at Cicero and Milwaukee. A Divvy station is also located across the street from Filament on West Cuyler Ave. For more information, including local dining options, go to

For more information, visit or follow the company on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

The Flower and The Fury: Meet the playwright

Alexa Juanita Jordan is a playwright and actor based in New York City. She received her B.A. in Drama at Vassar College, and a Classical Acting Diploma at the London Academy of Performing Arts (LAMDA.) Her newest work, The Flower and The Fury, was recently named a semifinalist (35 out of 655 submissions) in the Premiere Stages Play Festival this past spring. A monologue from the play will also appear in Smith and Kraus’ “Best Women’s Monologues 2022” later this year.

Jordan has written multiple full length and one-act plays about mental health, the grey area of the #metoo movement, reproductive justice, and the COVID-19 pandemic. She was awarded the Marilyn Swartz Six Playwriting Award in 2017 for her first play, Fine, at Vassar College. She then went on to receive her first New York Times review in 2018 for her performance in There’s Blood at the Wedding at La MaMa Experimental Theater Club.

In addition to writing and acting, Jordan serves as the executive director of the Juanita James Memorial Scholarship Foundation (JJMSF), in memory of her late grandmother. JJMSF provides mentoring and financial support to college-bound students from the Bronx housing projects. She is also on the board at CultureHub, a global art and technology community born out of decades of collaborating between La MaMa and The Seoul Institute of the Arts. For more, visit

The fight for women’s rights continues this fall with Julie Proudfoot’s Title X


In the fall, Artemisia follows up The Flower and The Fury with the world premiere docudrama Title X by Artemisia’s founder, Julie Proudfoot.

Title X documents the fight for abortion rights in America from 1978 to now. The play is told through the lens of eight radically different female characters: A 17-year-old wrestles with her choices under Title X. The director of a women’s clinic defends her patient’s right to reproductive justice. A member of Operation Rescue protests in front of an abortion clinic. An asylum officer interviews detainees, victims of the refugee crisis, at the Texas-Mexico border. A woman in her twenties confronts haunting memories of sexual harassment by her professor during a visit to her former college campus. A conservative congresswoman urges her pro-life supporters to fight the battle for the unborn with Christian love. A survivor of sexual assault reclaims her life after taking her boss to trial for rape. A lesbian exposes her complicated but loving relationship with her partner, who died of AIDS. In the end, the 17-year-old, now a mature woman, discovers the empowering life lessons she has learned.

“I wrote Title X over the course of a year while sheltering at home, while Trump was succeeding in reverse funding under Title 10 via coercion tactics," said Proudfoot, who will also direct. "It exposes the way the system works against women and keeps women from having autonomy and agency.”

Title X debuts November 25-December 18, 2022 at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood. First preview and press opening is Friday, November 25 at 7:30 p.m. Performances continue through December 18: Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m., Sunday at 2:30 p.m. Tickets go on sale September 9 via Theater Wit’s box office, or (773) 975-8150. 

About Artemisia Theatre

Artemisia Gentileschi was a great feminist painter, forgotten by history. Now, she’s celebrated as the greatest female artist prior to the modern period. It shows why women’s stories are important. They change our perspective, on the past, the present and the future.

That’s why Chicago’s Artemisia Theatre was founded, to share women’s untold stories. Since 2011, Artemisia has enriched Chicago’s culture by taking creative risks, achieving artistic excellence, and engaging the audience directly to inspire compassion and social justice for women. Through its celebrated productions of classic and all-new feminist plays, its past Fall Fest of staged readings, and its current virtual works, and upcoming world premieres, Artemisia creates career-altering opportunities for African American, Latinx, Asian, Arab and Native American (ALAANA), Caucasian and LGBTQ theater artists.

Artemisia’s leadership team is 100 percent women, because “women still struggle to find a place where they can share their stories and be their true selves as artists,” said board president E. Faye Butler. “That’s what I love about Artemisia. It’s a sisterhood of leaders, who empower women as writers, directors, performers. A place where women can bring their fire, passion and lived experience and share true stories from their perspective.”

 Artemisia Board President E. Faye Butler

Artemisia Theatre is a recent recipient of a Chi Biz Strong Grant and is also supported by the Arts for Illinois Relief Fund, Arts Work Fund, DDT Law Group, Echo Limousine, Fox Pest Control, Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, HKM Employment Attorneys LLP, Illinois Arts Council Agency, Illinois Humanities, The MacArthur Fund for Culture, Equity and the Arts at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, Rebellious Magazine for Women and Salvi Schostok & Pritchard Trial Lawyers.

For more, visit

Sunday, May 19, 2019

OPENING: Midwest Premiere of SWEET TEXAS RECKONING Via Artemisia at The Den June 7-30, 2019

ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar:

Midwest Premiere of Traci Godfrey’s 
opening June 7 at The Den

Comedy of a Texas native paying a visit home from New York 
with her new African-American wife will play throughout the 
Pride Month of June

In Traci Godfrey’s comedy, SWEET TEXAS RECKONING, Ellie is a lonely, bigoted alcoholic living in the small southeast Texas town of Sealy. She’s welcoming home her daughter Kate, now living in New York City, back for a visit. Ellie has hopes Kate will reconnect with and even marry Kate’s childhood sweetheart Alan John. Imagine Ellie’s surprise when Kate visits with her beautiful, African-American wife, Samantha.  SWEET TEXAS RECKONING was the First Place Winner of the New Works of Merit International Playwriting Contest, the Artemisia Fall Festival 2016, and the Playwriting Contest of Panndora Productions in Long Beach, California, who produced the play’s world premiere in 2016. Julie Proudfoot, who has collaborated closely with Traci on developing the play, will direct Artemisia’s staging of this heartfelt comedy. 

I'll be there for the press opening June 7th. Can't wait to check it out.  

Top L-R: Molly Lyons, Scottie Caldwell

Lower L-R: Anita Kavuu Ng’Ang’A, John Wehrman

Appearing as Ellie will be veteran Chicago actress Molly Lyons, whose resume includes such disparate roles as the cabdriver in HELLCAB (Agency Theatre Collective), Kate Mayo in BEYOND THE HORIZON (Eclipse Theatre Company) and the title role in JULIUS CAESAR (Unbraced Theatre). Ellie’s daughter Kate will be played by Scottie Caldwell, who has worked in Chicago with Lookingglass Theatre Company, Windy City Playhouse, Strawdog Theatre Company, The Gift, Commission Theatre, First Floor Theatre, and Cor Theatre, among others, and most recently played Raina in City Lit Theater's ARMS AND THE MAN. Cast as Kate’s old flame Alan John is John Wehrman, who recently appeared in A Red Orchid Theatre’s TRAITOR under the direction of Michael Shannon, and as Pato in THE BEAUTY QUEEN OF LEENANE for Bluebird Arts. Ellie’s wife Samantha will be Anita Kavuu Ng’ang’a, who has worked with Red Tape Theatre and the Goodman.

Playwright Godfrey, whose career includes acting in feature films like GRAND THEFT AUTO IV and V and television shows including LAW AND ORDER CRIMINAL INTENT, AS THE WORLD TURNS and THE SOPRANOS; as well as writing for feature films and the stage, says she drew from personal experience for SWEET TEXAS RECKONING. “Having grown up closeted in Texas, I am acutely aware of the pain and isolation of dealing with one’s sexuality,” Godfrey says. She adds, “Whether we encounter differences in thoughts about race, religion, sexuality, or political views, I believe our best approach to healing is one person, one family, one Theater at a time.”

SWEET TEXAS RECKONING was the winner of Artemisia’s 2016 Fall Festival of new play readings. At that point, it had already enjoyed a fully staged production by Panndora Productions in Long Beach, California earlier that year. The ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER named that production one of the year’s 10 Best, calling it a “superbly crafted comedy-drama … very much along the lines of the great works of Horton Foote, known for his lifelike dialogue and realistic approach to characters whose roots are often in the Deep or Rim South.” 

Since 2016, Proudfoot, who is a story analyst for HBO Films, has worked extensively with Godfrey to further develop and refine the script for this production. Proudfoot says, “I’m thrilled to see SWEET TEXAS RECKONING arrive at this stage of Artemisia’s process of developing new plays about women created as rich, nuanced characters who have agency,”

Artemisia will stage the Midwest Premiere of SWEET TEXAS RECKONING during Pride Month 2019 - from June 7-30, 2019 at The Den. Tickets for SWEET TEXAS RECKONING are $25 and are now on sale at Windy City Times ( is the official media sponsor of 

Traci Godfrey (Playwright) has writing credits including the screenplays SPITTING IMAGE, THE PINK PERFECTION, and HOTTER THAN GEORGIA ASPHALT.  Her stage play SWEET TEXAS RECKONING was the First Place Winner of the New Works Of Merit International Playwriting Contest, Artemisia’s Fall Festival 2016, and Panndora Production’s Playwriting Contest 2015 where it received exceptional reviews with the full production.  SWEET TEXAS RECKONING was also a Finalist in both the NYC Thespis Festival 2015 and South Carolina’s CENTRE STAGE Playwriting Festival and was named “Best Of 2016 Theatre” in the Ocean County Register.  Some of her acting credits include long-time roles on LAW AND ORDER CRIMINAL INTENT and AS THE WORLD TURNS as well as numerous stage roles in New York, London and regionally.

Julie Proudfoot (Director) is the founder and Executive Artistic Director of Artemisia, A Chicago Theatre, a story analyst for HBO Films and an adjunct professor in the creative writing program at Roosevelt University.  Julie has 20 plus years of experience as a professional director and dramaturge developing and producing new work.  Julie won critical and audience acclaim for her direction of BELFAST GIRLS by Jaki McCarrick, in 2015, which played to sold-out houses as Artemisia’s American Premiere at the Den Theatre.  Julie curates Artemisia’s annual search for new feminist plays to be featured in its Fall Festival and selects from the festival a play to be developed into a world or regional premiere production in Chicago.  Julie has worked extensively with Traci Godfrey over the past two years developing SWEET TEXAS RECKONING for full production after directing its staged reading for Artemisia Fall Festival 2016.  Julie is thrilled to be nurturing feminist playwrights with Artemisia’s one-of-a-kind development process that culminates in remarkable and unforgettable productions.

June 7 – 30, 2019
Wednesdays – Saturdays at 7:30 pm and Sundays at 3 pm
The Den Theatre
1331 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago
All seats $25.00
More info & tickets at

Founded in 2011, Artemisia is a professional theatre dedicated to the development and production of all new feminist plays that center on women who have agency, independence, and are the focal point of their own narratives. An annual search for cutting-edge and empowering stories culminates in a groundbreaking premiere production in Chicago.  Artemisia is a 501 c 3 organization and relies on public support to fund theatre that promotes equality and social justice for all women and girls. 

Artemisia Gentileschi was a Baroque artist whose paintings depicted violence with fierce honesty and elegance. For centuries after her death, her art was attributed to men. Feminist curators in the late 1970’s rediscovered Artemisia, who is now considered the greatest female painter prior to the modern period. A common theme in Gentileschi’s later work is women in moments of power, or triumph, which is why she is the perfect namesake for Artemisia. 

Thursday, March 7, 2019

NEXT FRIDAY: One Night Only Staged Reading of All New Feminist Play "Reap The Grove" March 15th at The Den Theatre

ChiIL Live Shows on our radar

By Caity-Shea Violette

One night only staged reading of an all-new feminist play
Directed by Julie Proudfoot
March 15, 2019 - 7:30 PM 

**Winner of the 2017 Artemisia Fall Festival**

Staged reading of dramedy REAP THE GROVE set for Friday, March 15 at The Den

Caity-Shea Violette’s play of a family of women reconnecting in the face of a life-altering decision was the winner of the 2017 Artemisia Fall Festival

Caity-Shea Violette’s heartbreakingly funny new play is a riveting story about a family of women struggling to reconnect as they react to an unexpected end-of-life decision. This new dramedy was the winner of Artemisia’s 2017 Fall Festival of new plays, earning it this staged reading. Artemisia’s Founding Artistic Director Julie Proudfoot will direct the reading, to be performed at The Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee, on Friday, March 15 at 7:30 pm.

In REAP THE GROVE, Sandra and Nan have a loving marriage, estranged daughters and a very special problem.  Sandra has decided to end her life on her own terms following a terminal diagnosis.  She summons her two daughters, Judith and Beckah, home to spend her final days with them.  REAP THE GROVE examines this family of women authentically, fearlessly and with a big dose of smart humor.  

Proudfoot’s cast for the reading includes Denise Hoelfich  (Compass Theatre’s WHAT WE’RE UP AGAINST) as Sandra; Justine Serino (of productions with The Gift, Silk Road Rising and many others) as Nan; Tina El Gamal (I CALL MY BROTHERS with Interrobang) as Beckah; and Elisabeth Del Toro (SHE KILLS MONSTERS with The Cuckoo’s Theater Project) as Judith.

Playwright Caity-Shea Violette is a Chicago native currently pursuing her MFA in playwriting at Boston University. She will return to Chicago for this one-night-only reading and participate in a post-reading discussion led by director Julie Proudfoot.  Violette has been working closely on the script with Proudfoot, who is a story analyst for HBO Films and Fremantle Media in addition to her work as a stage director and actress. Violette says, “Artemisia will be a powerful home to nurture this story and further empower me to push my artistic bravery to new heights to discover and honor each layer of these four women."

REAP THE GROVE is another example of Artemisia’s mission to find and develop dynamic and empowering new plays with compelling female characters who have agency, independence, and are the focal point of their own narratives. The company’s development process includes its annual Fall Festival, in which new scripts each year are given public readings; a close collaboration between Artistic Director Proudfoot and the playwright on a developmental workshop with audience discussion of each festival’s winner the following year; and a culminating fully-staged production of that play with a multi-week run the year after that.  Artemisia will stage the Midwest Premiere of SWEET TEXAS RECKONING by Traci Godfrey, winner of Fall Festival 2016, from June 7-30, 2019 at The Den.

Tickets for REAP THE GROVE are $15 and are now on sale at

CAITY-SHEA VIOLETTE (playwright) is a Chicago-based playwright and actress. Her national award-winning work has been seen in Washington D.C., New York City, Minneapolis, Las Vegas, Toronto, Denver, and Chicago. She holds a BFA in Theatre from the University of Minnesota, Duluth and is a graduate of the St. Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists. Caity-Shea is currently pursuing her MFA in playwriting at Boston University and is passionate about exploring trauma, invisible disabilities, and gender-based violence, by creating new work for women.

Caity-Shea’s awards and recognition include: National Award Winner of the 2019 Susan Glaspell Playwriting Festival, Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival New Play Competition (National Finalist), The Kennedy Center's National Partners of the American Theatre Playwriting Excellence Award (Winner), Shakespeare's Sister Playwriting Fellowship (National Semi-Finalist), InspiraTO Playwriting Contest (Winner), Kennedy Center’s Irene Ryan Acting Competition (National Finalist), Kennedy Center's David Mark Cohen National Playwriting Award (National Semi-Finalist), Kennedy Center's National Ten-Minute Play Competition (National Finalist, National Semi-Finalist), Kennedy Center's John Cauble for Outstanding Short Play (Regional Runner-Up). More information available at 

JULIE PROUDFOOT (Director) As Founder and Artistic Director, Julie is the vision behind Artemisia, selecting the plays that are featured each season in the annual fall festival and developing and directing the theatre’s premiere productions.  An actor, director and producer, Julie is proud to be part of the amazing Chicago Theatre community and make the city home to Artemisia.  Julie’s work as an actor was most recently seen on NBC’s popular series CHICAGO MED, and as a performing understudy in TimeLine’s outstanding production of A SHAYNA MAIDEL. Julie has also acted with Shakespeare Project of Chicago, Equity Library Theatre, Nebraska Rep and Artemisia, among others, and has numerous Off-Broadway and regional theatre credits.  Julie is a story analyst for HBO Films and Fremantle Media and has extensive experience developing, directing and producing new work.

The Den Theatre
1331 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago
All seats $15.00
More info & tickets at

Founded in 2011, Artemisia, A Chicago Theatre is a professional, not-for-profit theatre that produces all-new, dynamic and empowering plays that center on women who have agency, independence, and are the focal point of their own narratives, to create gender parity both onstage and off. Each season, Artemisia produces its Fall Festival of new play readings as well as fully staged productions of new plays it has developed. Artemisia is a 501 c 3 organization and, as such, relies heavily on public support to fund theatre that promotes equality and social justice for all women and girls.  

Artemisia Gentileschi was a Baroque artist whose paintings depicted violence with fierce honesty and elegance. For centuries after her death, her art was attributed to men. Feminist curators in the late 1970’s rediscovered Artemisia, who is now considered the greatest female painter prior to the modern period. A common theme in Gentileschi’s later work is women in moments of power, or triumph, which is why she is the perfect namesake for Artemisia.

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