Thursday, April 26, 2012

You don’t want to hear it…

Judging from how many of you open the blog when the title is advocacy, I’m thinking you don’t want to hear about it. But, here’s the deal, I was in DC last week for Arts Advocacy Day and it was very cool. We are actually lucky in Illinois, particularly in Chicago that most of our elected representatives are supportive of the arts. In fact, we were asked twice why we don’t ask for more federal support. Each of our representatives said right away that they would support our legislative agenda, which includes such things as increased funding for the NEA, encouraging charitable gifts to arts and culture, and increased funding for arts in education.

During the information sessions on Monday I heard the most astonishing thing. The Congressional Budget Office says, if everything were to remain status quo the only things Federal Income will cover by 2025 is social security, medicare and debt reduction. That’s it, nothing else. Holey Moley, that’s 13 years. We better do something about debt reduction and spending. I sound like a conservative but wow, when you hear that number it’s scary. I still don’t believe arts spending should be cut because it’s such an incredibly small amount of money in the $3.6 trillion federal budget. I literally can’t do the math because my calculator can’t handle the zeros. When I was a kid, a trillion wasn’t a number, it was a joke, like a grazillion. A millionaire used to be a really rich person, now it’s just someone who is ready to retire. I digress and I sound like a cranky old person.

Anyway, Alec Baldwin gave the Nancy Hanks lecture and he was charming and funny and entertaining. It’s always good to hear about how someone else fell in love with the arts. Alec Baldwin’s favorite musical genre is classical. How about that? On Tuesday morning we met with our congresspeople. We got to meet Bobby Rush, a thrill because of his incredible history in public life. We spent time with Jan Schakowsky and with Jesse Jackson, Jr. who encouraged us to think bigger about what we want and to ask for more.

Here are a couple of photos of the Illinois Delegation and our lawmakers. I continue to encourage you to reach out to those people who represent you on the local, state and federal level. It really makes a difference. Jan Schakowsky told us that 4-5 emails on one topic will be paid attention to – really, such a small number.


Monday, April 23, 2012

Industry Ticket Offer

Liberal Arts: The Musical! -- Underscore Theatre Company performing at the Second Stage, 3408 N. Sheffield in Chicago, is offering a limited number of $10 industry tickets for the 8 p.m. Thursday performances on April 26th, May 3, and May 10. Buy tickets at under "industry" and bring a headshot/resume or business card to the performance. Visit for more information.

We Are Proud to Present a Presentation... - Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave. is offering $15 industry tickets for the final week of performances through April 29. For tickets call 773.871.3000 or buy online and use code INDUSTRY.

Tuesdays with Morrie - Buffalo Theatre Ensemble, 425 Fawell Blvd.,Glen Ellyn, is offering $10 industry tickets for all performances May 3 to 27. Actor’s tickets are available with headshot and resume and designer tickets are available with business card or resume. Subject to availability. For more information call (630) 942-4000.

My Kind of Town - TimeLine Theatre Company, 615 W. Wellington Ave. is offering $15 industry tickets to preview performances May 1 - 9. For tickets call 773.281.8463 x 24 or visit and use code "industry."

Armitage Gone! Dance - Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, 220 East Chicago Avenue, is offering $10 industry professional tickets for performances April 26 – 28 at 7:30 p.m. by calling the box office at 312.397.4010 and mention code Broadcast. There are a limited number of tickets available for each show.

Chesapeake - Remy Bumppo Theatre Company at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln is offering $15 industry tickets for the extension performances on April 27, May 3 and 5 at 7:30 p.m., April 28 at 4 p.m. and May 6 at 2:30 p.m. For tickets call 773.404.7336 and mention code Industry.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Space Availability at Collaboraction

Collaboraction has 2 performance venues on the 3rd floor of the Flat Iron Arts Building (1579 N. Milwaukee ) with availability starting in July '12. Studio 300 is $1000 per week, hold up to 85 audience members and is available 7/23- 8/27, 11/5 - 12/2, 1/1/13 - 4/29. Studio 336 is $900 per week, holds up to 70 audience members and is available 8/13 - 10/8, 12/10/13 - 12/30, and 3/4 - 4/29/13. email to contact Associate Producer Kelly Kerwin with more questions and to set up a site visit.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Hunters and Artists

I’ve been hearing lots of ideas and theories lately, well, I hear lots of ideas and theories all the time. One interesting thing I’ve come across in advocacy work recently has been the idea of the arts partnering up with other causes that have the same interests. I was at arts advocacy day this week and while visiting our members of Congress I saw at least five other groups doing the same thing. I couldn’t help but wonder if we all got together if we couldn’t accomplish more.

In Minnesota, Minnesota Citizens for the Arts partnered with hunters, environmentalists and others to pass the Minnesota Clean Water Land and Legacy Amendment to the Constitution. The Amendment states that a portion of the Minnesota sales tax will support these initiatives with a percentage going to clean water, wildlife habitat, arts and cultural resources and parks and trails. The Amendment will bring $7.5 billion to these areas over the next 25 years.

Hunters and artists probably aren’t the two groups you would think would have a natural affinity, but they came together and achieved this historic amendment. We are all hearing the drumbeat of collaborate, by which is meant – reduce your expenses by merging functions of your organizations, but I am starting to think there might be value in more partnerships that go outside of our field. I don’t think we look enough outside our own discipline for partnerships and inspiration, never mind outside the field, and I include my own organization in that criticism. We could be leading by example in terms of being bi-partisan and we could uncover new advocates for theatre in unexpected places.


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Steppenwolf Garage Rep 2013 Informational Meeting


Is this you?

Steppenwolf Theatre Company is now accepting applications from storefront theatre companies for Garage Rep 2013.

Garage Rep
Three Plays. Three Companies. One stage.
Steppenwolf’s Garage Rep presents the work of three of Chicago’s most innovative storefront theatre companies in rotating rep under Steppenwolf’s banner.

Informational Meeting
6 - 8pm on April 23
Garage Theatre
For all interested companies: Learn about the application process. Bring your questions. Hear from alums of Garage Rep. Please RSVP to Katherine Marshall at

Visit to download the application.
Applications are due by June 1, 2012 at 5pm.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Industry Ticket Offers

Andrea Martin with musical accompanist by Seth Rudetsky - UP Comedy Club, 230 W. North Ave, is offering $45 industry tickets to May 11 & 12 at 7pm and May 13 at 1pm. To redeem visit or call directly at 312-662-4562 and use code “LAUGH”. Tickets are subject to availability.

La Musica -Salomee Speelt at Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W Chicago, is offering a limited number of $18 tickets for opening week on April 19-20-21 at 7:30 p.m. For tickets call 646-469-7992 or email

BRI-KO. All Silent. All Funny. – Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave in Chicago is offering $5.00 industry tickets for the 2pm matinee on Saturday 4/21 at Stage 773. Call 773.327.5252 and mention this offer or order online with codeword industry. Visit for more information and to order online.

Little Shop of Horrors – Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave in Chicago is offering $15.00 industry tickets for the performance Thursday April 19th at 8pm. Call 773.327.5252 and mention this offer or order online with codeword industry. Visit for more information and to order online.

Sexy Baby - Hell in a Handbag at Mary's Attic, 5400 N. Clark, is offering a $15 industry rate for general admission seating for the entire run from April 26- June 16. Use code word 'industry' online, at the door or call 1-800-838-3005. Go to for more details.

2012 Met Life Nuestras Voces National Playwriting Competition

Guidelines & Application

Time stamped Deadline: Friday, June 1, 2012.

In 2000 MetLife Foundation and Repertorio Español joined forces to establish The MetLife Nuestras Voces National Playwriting Competition in the hopes of discovering new American plays by established and emerging Latino playwrights writing about the many themes and topics relevant to the Hispanic communities across the United States—plays that may be under the radar in other venues. It has been our privilege to promote and develop new plays, encourage bright new talent to continue writing plays by providing this forum.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

On Advocacy

I am going to Arts Advocacy Day in Washington next week. I wrote about it after I got back last year. I was really happy I went – we get to sit down with congresspeople and/or their staffers and talk about issues of policy and budget that matter to us. They actually listen and respond. I learned a lot last year about advocacy. Typical issues concern funding for the NEA, visas for foreign artists, funding for Arts Education, the usual. I’m wondering if there is anything anyone would like me to bring up in these meetings. While I’m certain that most of you are equally concerned with the above issues, are there any in particular that you would like to see emphasized? Have you heard any new ways of talking about the arts that might grab people’s attention?

While we are talking about advocacy, have you signed the petition supporting a robust and important cultural plan for Chicago? Yesterday we passed our goal of 3000 signatures by May 8! Sign today and help us get to the new goal of 5,000, I bet we can even do that one by May 8. And please re-post the request for your friends, audiences and supporters to sign.


Gorilla Tango Skokie Theatre Open House

ATTN: Producers, Directors, Playwrights! Gorilla Tango’s Skokie Theatre is having an OPEN HOUSE on Saturday, April 28 from 3pm - 5pm (7924 Lincoln Ave. Skokie, IL 60077). Want to come check out the space? Meet with someone face-to-face to discuss getting your show(s) onstage in 2012? Drop on by! Free parking in nearby public lots as well as free parking in Bank of America lot Saturday afternoons and evenings. Drop-ins welcome, or RSVP to For more info, contact Suzanne at or 773-598-4549.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Industry Ticket Offer

The Improv Play - InFusion Theatre Company at the DCA Storefront Theater, 66 E. Randolph in Chicago, is offering $12.50 industry tickets on Thursdays at 7:30pm and Sundays at 3pm from April 15th through May 20th. Email or call 312-742-TIXS (8497). Visit for more information.

Multicultural Social Hour

Steppenwolf Garage Theatre
Monday, April 30th, 6pm-8pm


Topic: Is Chicago Theatre Still White? How far have we come since Parsi and Piatt's 2006 Time Out article, and what's next.

Please Read: Why is Chicago Theatre so WHITE, and how we can fix it? (Time Out Chicago, 2006)

Steppenwolf Garage Lobby
Located near North/Clybourn Red Line Stop

The Multicultural Social Hour is a networking group of young professionals who are dedicated to promoting diversity within the professional world of theatre.

The Steppenwolf 2012 Fellows would like to bring awareness to everyone's innate diversity expertise. Therefore, we encourage you to bring a guest that would not normally attend a diversity event, but could offer a unique perspective.

Director/Dramatist Exchange

Monday, April 23rd, 2012, 7pm to 9pm
Steppenwolf Theatre Company
Administrative Offices, 758 West North Avenue, 3rd Floor

The event will be co-hosted by Douglas Post (Chicago Regional Rep, DG) and Elizabeth Margolius (Co-Founder and Co-Artistic Director of DirectorsLabChicago).

This two-hour networking session will introduce directors to dramatists who are working on new plays and/or new musicals in the Chicago area. After a brief introduction, dramatists and directors may mingle and talk further.

If you would like to attend, please e-mail us at:

The first 15 directors who respond will receive a reservation to the event. In order to secure a reservation, you must submit a statement with your initial e-mail. Please include this statement in the body of your email. This one-page statement should consist of three things: (1) your contact information, (2) your professional biography (one paragraph only, written in the third person) and (3) a brief directorial statement describing your aesthetic and the kind of work that excites you. After we receive these materials, your reservation will be confirmed. Then, prior to the event, you will receive statements from all the dramatists as well as statements from the other attending directors.

There is no fee to attend this event. Drinks will be served!!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Producers Wanted for GT’s Skokie Theatre

Gorilla Tango Theatre is looking for a wide variety of productions for their beautiful 140-seat Skokie Theatre. Primetime slots (Fridays and Saturdays!) are available through the spring, summer and into the fall. The Skokie Theatre is an historic 100 year old theatre, renovated with state of the art light and sound equipment. The theatre is also a fully functioning movie theatre and can be used for film screenings or that creative extra in a theatre, music or dance production. The usual GT Producer’s Deal applies, including free rehearsal space, box office, and media support. There is free off-street parking on weekday evenings and weekend afternoons and evenings.For a tour of the Skokie Theatre and an appointment to talk about producing with GT, Inc. contact Suzanne Coors at or call 773-598-4549.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Arts in Sacred Places Orientation

April 17, 2012, 4 - 8PM
Chicago Temple, 77 W. Washington, James Parlor

If you are an arts leader looking to find a home for offices, rehearsals, exhibits or performances and are also looking to increase your audience...

If you represent a congregation looking to connect with the community in new ways and better use your space to support the arts...

Partners for Sacred Places invites you to attend a free introductory training and networking session on developing new partnerships between a congregation and arts institution, or strengthening an existing relationship.

Following a new planning study in Philadelphia and recent success in facilitating new partnerships between houses of workshop and arts organizations, Partners is excited to launch the latest addition to their Arts in Sacred Places program in Chicago.

Food will be provided. Artists and congregations interested in creating homes for arts in sacred places are welcome to attend. Space is limited.

Please RSVP to Questions? Contact Dawn Marie Maltieri at

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Industry Ticket Offer

The March - Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted, is offering $20 industry tickets for preview performances April 5 - 14, 2012 (excluding Saturday evening performances). To redeem visit or call Audience Services directly at 312-335-1650 and use code “10182” Tickets must be reserved at least one hour before performance. Subject to availability.

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater -Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Congress Pkwy, is offering 50% off tickets* for Wednesday, April 11, Thursday, April 12 and Friday, April 13 at 7:30pm. Use code LEAGUE. Tickets available at 800.982.ARTS, or the Auditorium box office. *Available on price levels 2-4 only. Based on availability.

The Receptionist - Steep Theatre, 1115 West Berwyn, is offering $15 industry tickets for the first two weeks of performances of their Midwest Premiere through April 22. Visit or call 866-811-4111 and use the code "teacups".