Showing posts with label SILENT SKY. Show all posts
Showing posts with label SILENT SKY. Show all posts

Saturday, December 23, 2023

Citadel Theatre's SILENT SKY February 16 Through March 17, 2024

ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar

Citadel Theatre’Announces Cast and Creative Team for 

Lauren Gunderson’s Drama of the First Female Astronomers

Full cast and crew have been announced for Citadel Theatre’s upcoming production of SILENT SKY by Lauren Gunderson, one of the most produced playwrights in the U.S. Beth Wolf, nominated in the 2022 Jeff Awards – Equity wing for her direction of Citadel’s OUTSIDE MULLINGAR (nominated for Best Production of a Play – Midsize) returns to direct this drama celebrating the contributions of Henrietta Leavitt and other 19th century female astronomers employed at the Harvard Observatory who, because of their gender, were not recognized at the time for their work. SILENT SKY will open on Friday, February 16 (following previews on February 14 and 15) and play through Sunday, March 17, 2024.

Leading Wolf’s cast as Henrietta Leavitt will be Melissa Harlow, a member of Actors Equity Association who just completed a run as Mary Bailey in IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: A LIVE RADIO PLAY with The Repertory Company of St. Louis. Playing Williamina Fleming and Annie Cannon, Henrietta’s fellow “human computers” at the Harvard Observatory, are Cameron Feagin and Anne Lentino of Promethean Theatre Ensemble. Feagin recently appeared with Promethean in the title role of RICHARD III as well as in A TOWN CALLED PROGRESS. Lentino and Feagin both appeared in that company’s highly regarded BLUE STOCKINGS in 2019. Adam Thatcher, of Citadel’s 2023 holiday hit SHE LOVES ME, will play Henrietta’s love interest Peter Shaw. Laura Michele Erle, who co-wrote and recently appeared in THREE SISTERS, FOUR WOMEN with SoHo Repertory Theatre in New York City, will play Henrietta’s sister Margaret Leavitt.  Understudies are Paige Klopfenstein (Henrietta Leavitt), Kelly Levander (Williamina), Tina Shelley  (Annie Cannon), Josh Bernaski (Peter Shaw), and Emily Turner (Margaret Leavitt). 

Top row L-R: Laura Michele Erle, Cameron Feagin, Melissa Harlow, Anne Lentino

Middle row L-R: Adam Thatcher, Josh Bernaski, Paige Klopfenstein, Kelly Levander

Lower row L-R: Tina Shelley, Emily Turner

The creative and production team for SILENT SKY, in addition to Wolf as stage director, are Trevor Dotson (Set Designer), Rachel Sypniewski (Costume Designer), Joel Zishuk (Lighting Designer), Stefanie Senior (Sound Designer), Patrick McGuire (Properties Designer), Cate Gillespie (Dialect Coach), Chris Owens (Projection Designer), and Sheryl Williams (Intimacy Designer). Rounding out the production team are Brian Wasserman (Master Carpenter), Alex Trinh (Stage Crew), Erin Galvin (Stage Manager), and Scott Phelps and Ellen Phelps (Production Managers).

Citadel Theatre is in residence in the West Campus of the Lake Forest School District at 300 S. Waukegan Road, Lake Forest. Further information and ticketing is available on the company’s website at or by phone at 847-735-8554, ext. 1.

Friday, February 16 - Sunday, March 17, 2024

(Previews February 14 and 15 @ 7:30 pm)

Press Opening Friday, February 16 at 7:30 pm

Thursdays*, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 pm, Sunday matinees at 3 pm. Wednesday matinees at 1 pm on February 21 and March 6.

*No performances on Thursdays February 22 and March 7.

Preview ticket prices $20. Regular run prices Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays $40; Saturdays and Sundays $45.00. Discounts available for groups, seniors and students.

Citadel Theatre, located in the West Campus building of the Lake Forest School District 300 S. Waukegan Road, Lake Forest, IL

Tickets available online at or by phone at 847-735-8554, ext. 1


When 19th-century astronomer Henrietta Leavitt began work at the Harvard Observatory in the early 1900s, she wasn’t allowed to touch a telescope or express an original idea. Instead, she joins a group of women “computers,” charting the stars for a renowned astronomer who has no time for the women’s probing theories. As Henrietta, in her free time, attempts to measure the light and distance of stars, she must also take measure of her life on Earth, trying to balance her dedication to science with family obligations and the possibility of love. SILENT SKY explores a woman’s place in society during a time of immense scientific discoveries, when women’s ideas were dismissed until men claimed credit for them.


Beth Wolf (Director) is the founder and Producing Artistic Director of Midsommer Flight, where she has directed eleven Shakespeare plays in Chicago parks since the company's founding in 2012, including critically acclaimed productions of CYMBELINE, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, THE TEMPEST, TWELFTH NIGHT, and HAMLET, among others. Her production of OUTSIDE MULLINGAR at Citadel was nominated for Best Production and Best Direction of Play (Midsize) in the 2022 Jeff Awards. Other recent credits include THE SUFFRAGE PLAYS at Artemisia, THE ROOMMATE at Citadel Theatre (Equity Jeff Recommended), AND NON-PLAYER CHARACTER at Red Theater (2020 Non-Equity Jeff nomination for Projection Design). Other Chicago credits include LIAR!, which won first place in the City Lit Art of Adaptation Festival; ROSENCRANTZ & GUILDENSTERN ARE DEAD, BLACK MAGIC: AN EVENING OF SHAKESPEARE, BURY THE DEAD, and THE FANTASTICKS (Promethean Theatre Ensemble, where she was formerly the Artistic Director and co-founder); and various staged readings and assistant directing credits with Remy Bumppo, Idle Muse, City Lit Theater, and more. Beth is a proud Northwestern University graduate with a double major in Theatre and Gender Studies. She lives in Chicago with her husband and their two young children.

Lauren Gunderson (Playwright) has been one of the most produced playwrights in America since 2015, topping the list thrice including 2022/23. She is a two-time winner of the Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award for I AND YOU and THE BOOK OF WILL, the winner of the Lanford Wilson Award and a finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. She is a playwright, screenwriter, musical book writer and children's author who lives in San Francisco. She graduated from NYU Tisch as a Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship. 

Scott Phelps (Artistic Director) is in his 22nd year as the Artistic Director at Citadel. He’s acted in and directed dozens of Citadel productions over the two decades since founding this North Shore theatre in 2002 with his friend and lifelong companion, Ellen. Earlier in 2023, he starred in the leading role of Pastor Paul in THE CHRISTIANS. He has acted/directed in NYC, and in his home state of California, trained as an actor at the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts in Santa Maria, CA, received his BFA from the University of Utah, and did an apprenticeship at the Actors Theatre of Louisville in KY. For 18 years Scott worked for a promotional company and raised his three daughters and his son in Lake Forest. Recently he has been taking on the next chapter of his life — the role of “Beepa” to his grandchildren. Although he is unsure if he is old enough to play that part, he’s been enjoying the challenge.

Citadel Theatre is one of Chicagoland’s premier live theatres, producing hundreds of performances annually and inspiring audiences for nearly 22 years. Founded by Scott and Ellen Phelps in 2002, Citadel Theatre is comprised of its Main Stage performances and its theatre acting classes for children. A proud member of the League of Chicago Theatres and the Lake Forest/Lake Bluff ArtsLink, Citadel Theatre offers a unique intimate theatre experience that transports you to another setting and leaves you feeling exhilarated and wanting more. A recognized 501(c)3 non-profit organization, Citadel can accept tax-deductible donations. For more information, ticketing, and to donate, please visit Citadel online at or call 847.735.8554.

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