Showing posts with label Sweet Texas Reckoning. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sweet Texas Reckoning. Show all posts

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, May 16, 2019

Season Announced: ARTEMISIA 2019-2020 Season To Feature Two Fully-Staged Productions

ChiIL Live Shows on our radar

Season to kick off in November with THE SUFFRAGE PLAYS by Shaw and Evelyn Glover and conclude in June 2020 with World Premiere of Lauren Ferebee’s EVERY WAITING HEART.

Lauren Ferebee, winner of Artemisia Fall Festival 2018. Her play EVERY WAITING HEART will be developed at Artemisia to be presented as a world premiere in June 2020.  

In a departure from the company’s previous production model, but not from its mission of fostering the development of new feminist plays, Artemisia Theatre will mount two fully staged productions in 2019-20 and forego its Fall Festival of New Play Readings.  Artemisia’s previous seasons consisted of the Fall Festival and a single fully-staged production. 

Artemisia Founding Artistic Director Julie Proudfoot says, “While we will continue to actively solicit and develop new scripts, we’re excited about the opportunity to champion new work by reaching the larger audiences that will be attracted to fully staged productions. Additionally, we will revisit landmark feminist dramas in full productions to celebrate and learn from these classic pieces.” In that spirit, the company’s 2019-20 season will include both an evening of one act plays from the canon of British Suffrage Drama of the early 20thCentury, and the World Premiere of the winner of Artemisia’s 2018 Fall Festival – the drama EVERY WAITING HEART, by Lauren Ferebee.

Playwright Lauren Ferebee and Artistic Director Julie Proudfoot are thrilled about their artistic collaboration and partnership.  

Lauren Ferebee:  “It means so much to me to be working with a theatre that privileges the complex and intricate narratives of women's lives. It is especially meaningful for this play, which looks at different generations of women and what strength has meant to them. I am proud to be working with a theatre whose namesake was one of the greatest women artists of all time, a theatre whose work carries her legacy into our shared future.” 
Julie Proudfoot:  "EVERY WAITING HEART is extremely special and sublime in its fierce feminist examination of the characters’ shared crisis of faith.  Playwright Lauren Ferebee has given us something previously unseen and incredibly unique and inspiring."


Artemisia’s season opener will be THE SUFFRAGE PLAYS, running November 1-24 at The Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. The program will be three one-act comedies focused on the importance of voting rights for women and will celebrate the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in America. 

One of the most influential writers of suffrage plays was Evelyn Glover, who dramatized the arguments of working-class women in particular, because of the criticism that was leveled at the Suffrage Movement - that only middle-class women would benefit from sexual equality and the vote. Artemisia’s THE SUFFRAGE PLAYS will include two of her most popular plays. A CHAT WITH MRS. CHICKY, which depicts a conversation between a suffragette charwoman and an upper-class matron; and MRS. APPLEYARD’S AWAKENING. The latter play is a comedy in which an anti-suffrage activist comes to realize the fallacies and illogic of her views.  THE SUFFRAGE PLAYS will also include George Bernard Shaw’s one-act comedy PRESS CUTTINGS, a farce satirizing British politicians and attitudes against suffrage.  The comedy imagines a time when suffrage activism led to an imposition of martial law and a chaotic society.

SPRING 2020 – The World Premiere of EVERY WAITING HEART

Artemisia’s Spring 2020 production will be the World Premiere of EVERY WAITING HEART, by Lauren Ferebee. The drama will be performed at The Den in June 2020 and directed by Artemisia Founding Artistic Director Julie Proudfoot. This winner of Artemisia’s 2018 Fall Festival, EVERY WAITING HEART centers on the relationship between an overworked single mother and her rebellious teenaged daughter. Sherri and Annette have been an unbreakable mother-daughter duo since childhood, but Annette's sudden rebellion terrifies her mother.  Desperate for help, Sherri goes to a speed-dating event at a Pentecostal church that unexpectedly changes the course of both of their lives and fractures the bond that has held them together for so long. A deep and intimate dive into what it means to be a strong woman, EVERY WAITING HEART is an unflinching examination of faith and the many variations of love. 


Artemisia will continue its annual search for all-new feminist plays that empower women.  Chicago playwrights as well as playwrights with whom Artemisia has a working relationship will be invited to submit each year for consideration.  Artemisia’s Artistic Director Julie Proudfoot will curate the submissions and select one play to be fully developed into a world or regional premiere production in Chicago.  Ten plays and playwrights are finalists under consideration for Artemisia’s 2020-2021 Theatre Season.

In proud partnership with media sponsor Windy City Times, Artemisia Theatre presents SWEET TEXAS RECKONING during National Pride Month, June 7th-30th.

The voice of Chicago's Gay, Lesbian, Bi, Trans, and Queer community since 1985.


Artemisia's Midwest Premiere of SWEET TEXAS RECKONING, by Traci Godfrey, is funded in part by a grant from the Paul M. Angell Family Foundation. 

Artemisia is supported by the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation. The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation's Gen Ops Plus strategy in the Chicago region provides general operations grants and an array of other kinds of support to help grantees sustain their artistry and strengthen their operations.

Artemisia's 2018-19 Theatre Season is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.

Artemisia Fall Festival 2018 was made possible in part by a grant from the Illinois Humanities, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Illinois General Assembly.

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