Showing posts with label rolling world premiere. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rolling world premiere. Show all posts

Thursday, April 19, 2018

OPENING: Jane The Virgin's Ivonne Coll Stars in Teatro Vista's World Premiere of The Madres

Chi IL Live Shows On Our Radar:

Award-wining Latin film, TV and stage star Ivonne Coll, who plays matriarch Alba Villanueva on TV’s Jane The Virgin, will lead the cast of 
Teatro Vista’s Spring world premiere, 
The Madres.

ChiIL Live Shows will be out to review the World Premiere of The Madres at Victory Gardens on April 29th. The story of Argentina's terrifying reign of state sanctioned abductions and incarceration should have a voice on stage. I'm glad to hear Teatro Vista's staging this powerful work and bringing awareness of the tragedies that have been occurring for generations to Chicago audiences. Check back soon for my full review.

Set in the late 1970s during Argentina’s notorious Guerra Sucia, or “Dirty War,” The Madres by Stephanie Alison Walker tells the empowering story of three generations of women - a grandmother, a mother and a daughter - and their desperate attempt to keep their family intact in the face of state-sponsored intimidation, kidnappings and murder.

Teatro Vista Executive Artistic Director Ricardo Gutiérrez directs The Madres, which makes its debut in Chicago as a National New Play Network 2018 Rolling World Premiere.

Teatro Vista’s cast for The Madres: (from left) Ivonne Coll, Lorena Diaz,
Ramón Camín, Felipe Carrasco and Ilse Zacharias. Stephanie Alison Walker is the playwright.
Teatro Vista Executive Artistic Director Ricardo Gutiérrez will direct. 

In addition to Coll as Josefina, the grandmother, The Madres stars Lorena Diaz (Carolina, the mother), Ramón Camín (Padre Juan), Felipe Carrasco (Diego) and Ilse Zacharias (Belén, the daughter). Designers are Jose Manuel Diaz (set), Uriel Gomez (costumes), Jessica Doyle (lights) and Eric Backus (sound). Jennifer Aparicio is production manager. Stage manager is Stephanie Hurowitz. 

The Madres premieres April 21-May 27, 2018 at Victory Gardens, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, in the Richard Christiansen Theater. Previews are Saturday, April 21 at 8 p.m., Sunday, April 22 at 3:30 p.m., and Thursday, April 26 at 8 p.m. 

Performances run through May 27: Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 3:30 p.m. Tickets are $20-$45, and go on sale March 5 at 10 a.m.

For tickets and group discounts, visit, call the Victory Gardens box office, (773) 871-3000, or visit Victory Gardens (The Biograph) during box office hours. Metered, street and valet parking is available near the Biograph. The theater is easily accessed on the CTA Red, Purple and Brown lines via the Fullerton stop. The CTA 8 Halsted and 74 Fullerton buses also stop at Fullerton and Halsted, 1/2 block south of the theater. For more information, visit

Más about The Madres (The Mothers)

It's 1979 in Buenos Aires, Argentina where people are disappearing right off the street. The so-called "Dirty War" waged by the military Junta against its own people is in full-swing. Carolina and her mother Josefina are searching for “Caro’s” pregnant daughter Belén, who has been missing for twelve weeks. Then they receive a surprise visit from a priest who is now the chaplain to the military at ESMA, a known concentration camp. Next to drop by is Diego, a young soldier from the neighborhood, also stationed at ESMA. Their visits lead Josefina and Carolina to devise a plan to try to see Belén one last time. Will it work? Will they save her baby? Will they be able to save themselves?  

The “Dirty War” was the name the Argentine military dictatorship used for a period of state terrorism in Argentina from roughly 1974 to 1983, who targeted anyone believed to be a subversive or in any way associated with socialism. This included students, artists, journalists, political activists, mothers looking for the disappeared, nuns and anyone who spoke out against the military's reign of terror. As estimated 30,000 Argentines disappeared and were never heard from again.

Photo of Las Madres courtesy Argentinian photojournalist Daniel Garcia

Las Madres, also known as the Mothers of the Disappeared or Madres de los Desaparecidos, are a group of brave women who, when public protest was outlawed by the military dictatorship, marched in front of the Casa Rosada (Pink House) demanding the truth about the whereabouts of their missing children and later, grandchildren. Three of the original founding members ended up among the "disappeared." They began marching every Thursday in 1977 and continue marching today.

About the National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere Initiative

Teatro Vista’s production of The Madres is presented with support from the National New Play Network (NNPN) Rolling World Premiere initiative. With support from NNPN, The Madres will receive four consecutive productions in 2018, kicking off in Los Angeles with Skylight Theatre Company, then Chicago at Teatro Vista, followed by San Diego at Moxie Theatre and Austin with Shrewd Productions. NNPN’s Rolling World Premiere program supports three or more theaters that choose to mount the same new play within a 12-month period, allowing the playwright to develop a new work with multiple creative teams in multiple communities. The playwright is part of the process, working on the script and making adjustments based on what is learned from each production. For more information, visit

About Teatro Vista

Teatro Vista produces, develops and commissions plays that explore the wealth and variety of the human experience from a Latinx perspective. The company provides work and professional advancement opportunities for Latinx theatre artists, with special emphasis on the company’s ensemble members, and seeks to enhance the curricular goals of Chicago students through theatre. Teatro Vista was recently celebrated as one of “Chicago’s Cultural Leaders” by the Arts & Business Council of Chicago and received the League of Chicago Theatre’s Artistic Leadership Award.

Teatro Vista’s primary focus is producing new works by Latinx theatre artists and presenting classic plays featuring artists of color. Its artistic vision is shaped by the company’s ensemble members, a group of multi-generational, multi-ethnic and multi- disciplinary artists. They inform Teatro Vista’s artistic aesthetic by devising original works as well as by selecting plays with themes that are engaging and relevant to Chicago’s diverse population.

Teatro Vista was founded in 1990 by Edward Torres and Henry Godinez. As Teatro Vista’s first Artistic Director, Godinez guided the company during the formative years. He helped stage successful productions and establish vital relationships with other theatre companies and artists. When Godinez stepped down, Torres was appointed Artistic Director. Under Torres’ direction, Teatro Vista used the stage to engage, connect and challenge audience members using the company’s mission as his guide.

In 2012, Torres moved to New York and the Board of Directors promoted Associate Artistic Director Ricardo Gutiérrez to the position of Executive Artistic Director. In 2017, Sylvia Hevia joined Teatro Vista as Managing and Development Director. Previously, Hevia was Director of Marketing and Development of the International Latino Cultural Center and had her own multicultural event production company.

In addition to Gutiérrez, Teatro Vista ensemble members include Charín Álvarez, Max Arciniega, Desmín Borges, Cheryl Lynn Bruce, Ramón Camín, Ivonne Coll, Laura Dahl, Sandra Delgado, Liza Fernández, Khanisha Foster, Cruz Gonzalez-Cadel, Issac Gomez, Erik Juárez, Jon Lyon, Sandra Márquez, Eddie Martinez, Salome Martinez, Joe Minoso, Ayssette Muñoz, Christina Nieves, Marvin Quijada, Tommy Rivera-Vega, Gabriel Ruíz, Nate Santana, Cecilia Suarez and co-founder Edward Torres.

Teatro Vista’s Board of Directors includes Ezequiel “Zeek” Agosto, President; Rodrigo García and Rosanna Márquez, Vice Presidents; Joan Pantsios, Secretary; Tom Vega-Byrnes, Treasurer; and Bhuvana Badrinathan, Edgar Delgado, Ricardo Gutiérrez, Sylvia Hevia, Kareem C. Mohamednur and Angel Torres.

Teatro Vista is supported by The Joyce Foundation, Alphawood Foundation, Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, The MacArthur Fund for Arts & Culture at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events of the City of Chicago, The Shubert Foundation, The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelly Foundation, the Bayless Family Foundation and The Saints.

Purple Group is Teatro Vista’s Headline Season Sponsor. Teatro Vista is a Victory Gardens Resident Theater. For more information, visit

Monday, February 12, 2018

OPENING: National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere of Surely Goodness and Mercy Via Redtwist Theatre Through 3/18/18

Chi, IL LIVE Shows On Our Radar:

Redtwist Theatre presents
the National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere**
Surely Goodness and Mercy
by Chisa Hutchinson
Directed by Wardell Julius Clark

Runs Thu, Fri, Sat at 7:30pm; Sun at 3pm, through Sun, March 18

**SURELY GOODNESS AND MERCY is produced at REDTWIST THEATRE as a part of a National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere. Other partnering theaters are SALT LAKE ACTING COMPANY (SALT LAKE CITY, UT) and WRITERS THEATRE OF NEW JERSEY (MADISON, NJ). For more information, please visit

Here at ChiIL Live Shows, we're eager to check out new works, and we'll be out to see this one February 18th. Check back soon for my full review.

A powerful new drama with incredible heart and humor. Tino is a Newark schoolboy sent to live with an abusive aunt after his mother dies protecting him in a street fight. Seeking solace, Tino befriends the cantankerous lunch lady at school who has been diagnosed with MS. The moving, heartwarming climax shows these two unlikely friends helping each other navigate a harsh world. 

THE CAST (in alphabetical order) 
Cast: Renee Lockett (Bernadette), Katrina D. RiChard (Alneesa), Donovan Session (Tino), Charlita "Charli" Williams (Deja)
Voiceover: Brianna Buckley (Teacher), Wardell Julius Clark (Minister), Julia Skeggs (Principal)
Understudies: Nicholia Aguirre (Bernadette), Nic Bell (Tino), Sophie Hoyt (Deja),  Jessica Vann (Alneesa)

Wardell Julius Clark (Director), Brianna Buckley (Assistant Director), Brennan T. Jones (Stage Manager), Josy Gonzalo (Assistant Stage Manager), Buzz Leer (Tech Director), Lauren Nichols (Set Designer), Daniel Friedman (Lighting Designer), Grover Hollway (Sound Designer), Kotryna Hilko (Costume Designer), Dana Macel (Props Designer), Natalie Santoro (Scenic Charge), Almanya Narula (Fight Designer), Jan Ellen Graves (Graphic Designer/Marketing), Charlie Hano (Casting Director), Noelle Simone (Dramaturge), E. Malcolm Martinez (Box Office Manager), Charles Bonilla & Johnny Garcia (Box Office Associates), James Fleming & Michael Colucci (Producers)

Opens: Sat, February 17, 3pm (note: there is no evening performance on opening day)
Showtimes: Thu, Fri, Sat, 7:30pm; Sun, 3pm
Understudy Performance: $20, (seniors & students $5 off), Tue, Mar 13, 7:30pm
Closes: Sun, March 18
Previews: $15; Wed, Thu, Fri, Feb 14, 15, 16, at 7:30pm
Tickets: Thursdays, $35; Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, $40 (seniors & students $5 off)
 Call: 773-728-7529 

This play is highly relevant given our polarized political climate which shows a disturbing resurgence of marginalizing certain groups of people. We're especially grateful to Chisa for writing such a beautifully heartwarming story and we look forward to having her with us during the process of producing this brand new play. Also, Redtwist is thrilled to welcome an entire team of exciting guest artists to collaborate on the project of this NNPN Rolling World Premiere.

In an under-funded public school in Newark, New Jersey, a motherless, bible-toting boy with a photographic memory and a tender heart befriends the cantankerous woman who works in the cafeteria. Against all odds, they help each other through the bullshit of growing up and growing old. --Chisa Hutchinson

Chisa Hutchinson's socially probing plays, which include SHE LIKE GIRLS, SEX ON SUNDAY, THE SUBJECT, DEAD & BREATHING, and SOMEBODY'S DAUGHTER among others, have been presented by such venues as Second Stage Theater, City Parks' Summerstage, the Lark, the National Black Theater, the Contemporary American Theater Festival, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, and Atlantic Theater Company. She's won a GLAAD Award, the John Golden Award for Excellence in Playwriting, a Lilly Award, a New York Innovative Theatre Award, the Paul Green Award, a Helen Merrill Award, the Lanford Wilson Award, and has been a finalist for the highly coveted PoNY Fellowship. She's also been a Lark Fellow, a Dramatists Guild Fellow, a resident at the William Inge Center for the Arts, a New York NeoFuturist, a staff writer for the Blue Man Group, a Humanitas Fellow, and most recently, Resident Playwright at Second Stage Theater. In addition to venturing into screenwriting, Chisa is currently a proud fourth-year year member of New Dramatists and a Creative Writing Professor at the University of Delaware. (B.A. Vassar College; M.F.A NYU - Tisch School of the Arts.)

Wardell Julius Clark hails from Fairfield, Alabama. Chicago Acting Credits include SILENT SKY (First Folio Theatre); APARTMENT 3A (Windy City Playhouse); GEM OF THE OCEAN (Court Theatre); A RAISIN IN THE SUN (TimeLine Theatre); THE WHIPPING MAN (Northlight Theatre); WE ARE PROUD TO PRESENT... and THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO JAMES (Victory Gardens Theatre); INVISIBLE MAN (Court Theatre); THE BEATS (16th Street Theater); GHOSTS OF ATWOOD (MPAACT), for which he received the Black Theater Alliance Denzel Washington Award for Most Promising Actor; and TOPDOG/UNDERDOG (American Theater Company/Congo Square Theater). Regional credits include THE WHIPPING MAN (Cardinal Stage); CYMBELINE (Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival); FENCES (Carver Theatre). Chicago Directing Credits include The One Minute Play Festival, SHOLA'S GAME (Black Lives, Black Words Chicago 2), Assistant Director for SATCHMO AT THE WALDORF and GEM OF THE OCEAN (Court Theatre). TV/Film: Chicago Fire Seasons 1 and 4, Transformers: Dark the Moon. Wardell is an Associate Artist with TimeLine Theatre Company, where he also serves as a Teaching Artist in the Living History Program, he is also an Associate Artist with the Black Lives, Black Words theatre collective. He holds a BFA in Acting from The Theatre School, at DePaul University.

National New Play Network (NNPN) is the country's alliance of non-profit professional theaters dedicated to the development, production, and continued life of new plays. Since its founding in 1998, NNPN has supported more than 250 productions nationwide through its innovative National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere program, which provides playwright and production support for new works at its Member theaters. Additional programs--its annual National Conference, National Showcase of New Plays, and MFA Playwrights Workshop; the NNPN Annual and Smith Prize commissions; its residencies for playwrights, producers and directors; and the organization's member accessed Collaboration, Festival, and Travel banks and online information sessions--have helped cement the Network's position as a vital force in the new play landscape. NNPN also strives to pioneer, implement, and disseminate ideas and programs that revolutionize the way theaters collaborate to support new plays and playwrights. Its most recent project, the New Play Exchange, is changing the way playwrights share their work and others discover it by providing immediate access to information on more than 16,250 new plays by living writers. NNPN's 30 Core and 75 Associate Members--along with the more than 250 affiliated artists who are its alumni, the thousands of artists and artisans employed annually by its member theaters, and the hundreds of thousands of audience members who see its supported works each year--are creating the new American theater. | 

Redtwist is located at 1044 W Bryn Mawr, 2 blks W of LSD, 2 blks E of the Red Line EL station. 

Valet parking for Redtwist is available across the street in front of Francesca's Bryn Mawr for most performances-hours vary. Dining is not required. 

Limited FREE street parking is available on side streets. There is metered street parking via app or 3-hour Paybox on Bryn Mawr Av and 2-hour Paybox on side streets. Free on Sundays, and after 10pm Mon thru Sat. 

Friday, May 12, 2017

OPENING: Relativity at Northlight 5/11-6/18

Chi, IL LIVE Shows On Our Radar:

The National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere of
By Mark St. Germain
Directed by Artistic Director BJ Jones
May 11 - June 18, 2017

The cast is Mike Nussbaum, Katherine Keberlein and Ann Whitney.

The creative team includes Jack Magaw (Set Design), Rachel Laritz (Costume Design), JR Lederle (Lighting Design), and Andrew Hansen (Sound Design). Rita Vreeland is the stage manager.

We'll be out on the 19th for the press opening. Check back soon for our full review.

In 1902 Albert and Mileva Einstein had a baby daughter. After 1904 she was never seen or spoken of again. Forty years later, a reporter interviews Einstein about this mysterious piece of his past, revealing shocking secrets about his family and his personal life. While the reporter questions Einstein on his theory of relativity and his decisions, she also poses a query of her own: to be a great man, does one first need to be a good man?

The author of Freud’s Last Session and Becoming Dr. Ruth showcases his signature blend of insight, intellect, humor and heart in this fictional account of a legendary figure.

The Box Office is located at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Boulevard, in Skokie.  Box Office hours are Monday-Friday 10:00am-5:00pm, and Saturdays 12:00pm-5:00pm. On performance days, the box office hours are extended through showtime. The Box Office is closed on Sundays, except on performance days when it is open two hours prior to showtime.

Tickets for previews are $30-$57.  The regular run is $30-$81.  Student tickets to any performance (subject to availability) are $15.

Curtain times are: Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m.; Wednesdays at 1:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; Thursdays at 7:30 p.m.; Fridays at 8:00 p.m.; Saturdays at 2:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.; Sundays at 2:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.

Northlight Theatre aspires to promote change of perspective and encourage compassion by exploring the depth of our humanity across a bold spectrum of theatrical experiences, reflecting our community to the world and the world to our community.

Now in its 42nd season, the organization has mounted over 200 productions, including more than 40 world premieres. Northlight has earned 198 Joseph Jefferson Award nominations and 34 Awards.  As one of the area’s premier theatre companies, Northlight is a regional magnet for critical and professional acclaim, as well as talent of the highest quality.

Northlight is supported in part by generous contributions from Allstate Insurance; the Paul M. Angell Family Foundation; Robert & Isabelle Bass Foundation; BMO Harris Bank; Henrietta Lange Burk Fund; The Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation; The Chicago Community Trust; ComEd, An Exelon Company; The Davee Foundation; Edgerton Foundation for New American Plays Award; Evanston Community Foundation; Full Circle Foundation; Illinois Arts Council, a state agency; Kirkland & Ellis Foundation; The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation; Melvoin Award for Playwriting; Modestus Bauer Foundation; National Endowment for the Arts; NorthShore University HealthSystem; The Offield Family Foundation; The Pauls Foundation; Room & Board; Sanborn Family Foundation; The Shubert Foundation, Inc.; The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust; The Sullivan Family Foundation; Tom Stringer Design Partners; Turner Construction; and the Venturous Theater Fund of the Tides Foundation.

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