Thursday, April 28, 2011

Arts in Action

I went to the Arts in Action event at the Goodman yesterday. Lots of media outlets reported on it because Rahm was there and an audience member asked him if he was going to tax non-profits. This comes up because Boston’s mayor has asked non-profit institutions in Boston to up their voluntary tax payments to the City and because earlier this year the Illinois Supreme Court ruled that a hospital in Peoria had to pay property taxes even though they are a non-profit because they do not provide enough free services to the community. I don’t think it’s an issue for most of us, I think it’s an issue for hospitals and universities that take up loads of space and use loads of services and have huge endowments and don’t pay any taxes. I’m not saying they should, I’m just saying I think that’s the issue. You can read about Boston here. Sounds like we will be paying for our water though…Aquarium be warned.

But the event was a great conversation and I’m sorry that they didn’t report more about that. An architect, a retail owner, a community organizer and an artist and urban planner talked about their businesses and how they create spaces in which they can thrive. I loved it because it wasn’t about the arts and what’s the problem with the arts, it was about going outside of our usual box and exploring new ways of making our worlds more creative and productive. Our thinking needs to go in that direction if we are to move beyond some of our stale old models. I was impressed by all the work these folks are doing. Our friend Rocco was there as was a representative of HUD. They talked about the NEA Our Town initiative and HUD projects that have arts at the core.

I am delighted that MacArthur Foundation, Arts Alliance Illinois and Goodman partnered on this and made it happen. I hope there are more like it in the future.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Industry Ticket Offers

Our Dad Is In Atlantis - 16th Street Theater, 6420 16th Street, Berwyn, is offering a pay-what-you-can industry performance this Thursday, April 28th at 7:30 PM. Use code “Braves” at the box office. Reserve at or 708-795-6704 x104. A limited number of $10 Industry/Student rush tickets are available for each performance through May 21 for day-of purchase only subject to availability. Box Office opens one hour before curtain.

Sex with Strangers by Laura Eason - Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted, is offering $10 tickets for performances Tuesday, May 10th through Thursday, May 12th. To redeem tickets call Audience Services directly at 312.335.1650 or visit and use code “8433.” Tickets must be reserved at least one hour before performance. Subject to availability.

One Flea Spare -Eclipse Theatre Company at the Greenhouse Theatre Center, 2257 N Lincoln Ave. is offering $10 industry tickets for all Thursday and Friday 7:30 p.m. performances through May 13. Mention INDUSTRY at the box office. Call the Greenhouse box office at 773-404-7336 or visit

Tragedy: A Tragedy by Will Eno - Red Tape Theatre, 621 W. Belmont, is offering $5 industry tickets to previews May 5 - 7 of the Chicago premiere directed by Jeremy Wechsler. Tickets available at the door (cash only) or online, code: 1S3T0U6. Please bring h/r. For more information, please visit

Patricia Hart Tribute

Members of the Chicago Theatre Community are invited to celebrate and honor the life and work of off-loop theatre pioneer and costume designer Patricia Hart, Monday, May 2, 7 - 9 p.m., at Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 North Lincoln Avenue.

Pat passed away April 10, 2011. Pat and her husband Larry are considered by many to have been among the creators of Chicago’s off-loop theatre birth in the 1960’s. In the past 20 years one of Pat's non-design activities was a unique photo-journalism project documenting the lives–and the personalities–of gorillas at Lincoln Park Zoo, particularly Jojo and Makari. Her work with the gorillas was recorded in the documentary movie “Capture” produced by Harriet Spizziri of Next Pictures. Spizziri is a co-founder of the Next Theatre Company where Pat Hart did many of the company's costume designs. The documentary has proven to be an audience favorite at film festivals around the country, including San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego. The celebration of Pat's life at Victory Gardens is hosted by Dennis Zacek and Harriet Spizziri. Inquires & RSVPs can be directed to

Free Rehearsal Space Opportunity

Attention Theatre Companies: Want to get two weeks of FREE rehearsal space?

Custer's Last Stand Festival of the Arts is seeking volunteers to operate hospitality tables June 18 and 19th from 9:30am until 9:00pm. If your company, cast or crew commits to running a table, you'll receive two weeks of free rent at the Evanston Arts Depot, home of Piccolo Theatre, at 600 Main Street in Evanston, IL.

Volunteers are an incredibly important part of the operations. By running the hospitality tables volunteers serve as a point of first contact for visitors, greeting guests, handing out information and taking donations. As a not-for-profit festival, donations help a lot!

A minimum of two people must be at the table at all times, but it's up to you and how many people you bring to divide up the time however you like. While volunteers need to be on the ball and friendly, the gig is very casual and you get to take in the vibrant atmosphere of the fair! Learn more about the festival at

A representative of your company should contact Brianna Sloane at asap!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Industry Ticket Offers

Rantoul and Die -American Blues Theater at Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 Lincoln Ave., is offering a limited number of $10 industry tickets all weekend--Friday April 29 8 p.m., Saturday April 30 5 p.m & 8 p.m., and Sunday May 1 2:30 p.m. Call (773) 871-3000 and mention this offer. Visit for more information.

Raised by Stephen Cone - the side project, 1439 W. Jarvis is offering a FREE staged reading on Sunday, May 1, at 2 p.m., for the second event in the side project's 10th Anniversary Season Staged Reading Series. Call (773) 973-2150 for reservations or visit for more information.

Soul Samurai – InFusion Theatre Company at the Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Avenue is offering $15 industry tickets for all Thursday 8:00 pm performances, beginning May 5th through June 2nd Call the Theater Wit box office at 773-975-8150 or visit Must bring headshot/resume when picking up ticket.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

On Generosity

Generosity in the theatre has been on my mind lately thanks to Polly Carl's recent HowlRound blog. If you haven't read it yet, you should definitely do that now. Polly shares some inspiring ideas for how we can all be more generous and create better conditions for that to happen.

I was thinking about it on Monday at our intern networking night at Steppenwolf. If you havent attended one of these before, they are free events where interns at Chicago area theatres can meet and network with peers and then participate in breakout group sessions with leaders from various job disciplines like Theatre Management, Marketing, Development, Education, Stage Management, Design etc... The interns always ask a lot of great questions and the breakout group leaders give really valuable and practical advice about working in Chicago theatre. I am always amazed at the willingness of Chicago artists and administrators to share knowledge with anyone who has a desire to learn. It was a fun night and a great example of mentorship. In that same spirit of generosity, what's the best advice you've ever received as a theatre artist or administrator?

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn Proclaims April 23 Talk Like Shakespeare Day

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has proclaimed William Shakespeare's 447th birthday on April 23, 2011, Talk Like Shakespeare Day in the State of Illinois—"a day on which all citizens are encouraged to express their inner thespian, incorporating Shakespearean lines into everyday conversation."

Since Regional Theatre Tony Award recipient Chicago Shakespeare Theater (CST) inaugurated Talk Like Shakespeare Day in 2009, the celebration has become an international phenomenon, with serving as the virtual home base for revelers. CST's "Where's William?" contest goes global this year to connect fans across the world with the chance to win an iPad by "dressing up" like the Bard. Revelers can download and construct a mask from, and send in pictures for their chance to win the digital device. (No doubt Shakespeare's complete works are easier to tote around in digital format!)

Entries will be accepted online until 11:59 p.m. Central Standard Time on April 23, 2011. For more information about Talk Like Shakespeare Day, visit Information about Chicago Shakespeare Theater is available at

Stockyards Theatre Project Writer’s Play to be Produced in New York

Award-winning playwright and Stockyards Theatre Project member, Laurel Haines, will see her futuristic dark comedy on stage in New York this month. Future Anxiety spent some time in the Stockyards Play for Keeps program, and now Haines’s play will be mounted at The Flea Theatre in the Tribeca area of NYC. For more information visit

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Industry Ticket Offers

One Flea Spare - Eclipse Theatre Company at The Greenhouse Theater, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave. is offering $10 industry tickets on April 21 and 22. Use codeword "industry". Tickets available by calling the Box Office at 773-404-7336. For more info, visit

Charpentier's Medea - Chicago Opera Theater at the Harris Theater is offering $35 industry tickets in sections A, B, and C for opening night, this Saturday, April 23 at 7:30pm at the Harris Theater. Use promo code INDUSTRY at or at 312.704.8414For more info:

The Goat or, Who Is Sylvia? -- Remy Bumppo Theatre Company at the Greenhouse Theatre Center, 2257 N Lincoln Ave. is offering $15 industry tickets for Thursday, April 21 at 2 p.m. and all Friday 7:30 p.m. performances through May 6. Use code INDUSTRY at or call the Greenhouse box office at 773-404-7336.

Shen Yun Show in Chicago at the Civic Opera House, 20 N. Wacker, is offering a 20% discount to Classic Chinese Dance and Music show with live orchestra. A limited number of discount tickets for the following Shows: Wed, April 20, Thursday, April 21, all at 7:30 p.m. The discount is available for these two performances only. Call the hotline at 800-515-3468 or and mention code "SYWDTH".

The King and I - Porchlight Music Theatre at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. is offering a 25% off discount for all shows this weekend April 22-24. Call 773-327-5252 or go online at and enter the code LEAGUE. Shows Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 2:30 p.m.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Industry Ticket Offers

A Twist of Water – The Mercury Theater, 3745 N. Southport, is offering a limited number of $15 industry tickets for performances in April . Call 773-325-1700 and mention this offer or visit and enter the code INDUSTRY when purchasing.

Rantoul and Die--American Blues Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave., is offering $10 industry tickets on Friday April 22 8 p.m., Saturday April 23 8 p.m., and Sunday April 24, 2:30 p.m.). Call 773-871-3000 and mention the codeword "Ice Cream". Visit for more information.

Private Lives - Buffalo Theatre Ensemble, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn is offering $10 industry tickets for all performances May 5 to 29. 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.

Teatro de Ciertos Habitantes’ El gallo: opera for actors – The Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E. Chicago Avenue, is offering a limited number of $10 industry tickets for their presentation of this new play by the Mexico City-based theatre company. This offer is valid only for the 7:30pm show on Wednesday April 27th. Call 312.397.4010 and mention this offer. Visit for more information.

Cold Cold Feet - Diamante Productions at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave, is offering $12 industry tickets for all Thursday performances, from May 6th to June 5th, at 8 p.m. To purchase industry tickets, use the code INDUSTRY on the phone or at the box office and present a headshot/resume or industry business card at pick-up. Please note there is a small box office charge per ticket. For tickets call 773-327-5252.

White Noise: A Cautionary Musical - Royal George Theatre Center, 1641 N. Halsted, is offering FREE industry tickets to the following performances: April 16 at 5 and 8 p.m. and April 17 at 2 and 5 p.m. and April 22 at 8 p.m. April 23 at 5 and 8 p.m. and April 24 at 2 and 5 p.m. Tickets must be reserved at least 24 hours in advance. For tickets email:

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Then what are we fighting for?

I joined several of our colleagues in other disciplines as a part of the Illinois Delegation at Arts Advocacy Day in Washington last week. We were capably led by Scarlett and Ra at Arts Alliance Illinois. It was a fun and enlightening couple of days, learning about lobbying techniques and issues and visiting with our elected officials. One of whom when told the budget for the NEA called the entire budget “budget dust,” meaning it is such a small amount of money she can’t believe people care about cutting it.

While I was there I thought of three things I wanted to put in the blog, put now I can only remember two of them. Kevin Spacey gave a lecture and the one thing that sticks with me is a story he told about Churchill who, when told that the budget for arts would have to be cut to fund the war effort during WWII said “then what are we fighting for?” I just loved that. The other thing is that after Kevin spoke, a guy from Oklahoma who is on the board of Americans for the Arts spoke briefly and at the end of his remarks he said “Don’t get hit.” Anybody have any idea what that might mean?

It felt really meaningful to be there and to be talking to people and educating people about issues that are important to artists and arts organizations. Alec Baldwin was there and Hill Harper and lots of other people, you should come next year, but in the meantime, you can check out and look at everything that went on.


Free Creativity in Assessment workshop from CAPE

You are cordially invited to a free hands-on workshop on deepening our practice in assessing learning in theater and drama presented by the Office of Arts Education of Chicago Pubic Schools and the Chicago Arts Partnerships in Education (CAPE)

Creativity In Theater Assessment and Practice
10 AM - 1 PM
Monday, April 18, 2011
at Victory Gardens Biograph Theater

2433 North Lincoln Avenue
continental breakfast
bring a bag lunch

10 - 11 AM:
Becoming as Creative in our Assessment of Theater as We Are in Our Practice

11 AM - 12 PM:
Planning Theater Instruction Aligned with The Chicago Guide for Teaching and Learning in the Arts

12 - 1 PM:
Introducing the Arts Assessment Toolbox

To register for this free assessment workshop send the following information to Alice Magelssen:

Your Name:
Your Theater Organization:
Your Email:
Your Telephone:

or Fax to 312-870-6147 attn: Alice Magelssen
or telephone Alice Magelssen 312 -870-6140

This assessment workshop made possible by generous support from Searle Funds at The Chicago Community Trust and the Lloyd A. Fry Foundation.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Produce It Workshop

The Institute for Arts Entrepreneurship presents Produce It, a panel and workshop focused on the process and challenges of finding your audience, getting them to your venue, and keeping them connected long after the lights go down. This event is not only for performing artists, as the 'art' of self producing is no doubt interdisciplinary. Speakers include Discopoet Khari B, T. Daniel of T. Daniel Creations, Janice Bond of SAVANT/SAVANT. It is a great opportunity to meet professional artists and network with other emerging artists.

Saturday April 16th, 10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Greenhouse Theater Center

2257 N. Lincoln Ave. Chicago

Tickets are $5 in advance or $10 at the door.

RSVP via the link below to reserve your seat:

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Industry Ticket Offers

Circle Mirror Transformation - Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave. is offering $15 industry tickets for the following performances this week April 12-15 at 8 p.m. Use code EMAIL to get your discounted tickets. Order online at or call 773.871.3000.

Passing Strange - Bailiwick Chicago at the Chicago Center for the Performing Arts, 777 N. Green St. is offering $5 industry tickets for preview performances on Friday, April 22nd and Saturday, April 23rd at 8 p.m. To purchase industry tickets, use the code INDUSTRY on the phone, online (next to "Enter Coupons") or at the box office and present a headshot/resume or industry business card at pick-up. Please note there is a $3.00 facility fee per ticket. For tickets: or call (312) 733-6000.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Free Office Furniture Available

Items include a 60 x31 x 29.5 office desk, a 60 in. wall cabinet, a mobile orange chair, and a mobile large bright red office chair. If you are interested in receiving these items as a donation contact: Francisco Abad, 312-493-1833 or

Industry Ticket Offer

The Metal Children by Adam Rapp - Next Theatre Company, 927 Noyes St. Evanston is offering $10 industry tickets on Thursday, April 14 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online with the code INDUSTRY (case sensitive) at or by calling 847-475-1875 ext 10. Tickets can also be purchased at the door.

Space Availability at The Building Stage

The Building Stage is available for performance rental from early June through the end of August, 2011. Our cool, industrial West Loop venue functions as a flexible blackbox with inspiring dimensions and seating for up to 99 patrons. Rental includes theater space; back stage area; use of lighting, sound, and theatrical equipment; and our stock of curtains, platforms, power and hand tools.

For more information, including rental rates, tech specs, and contract details, please contact Blake Montgomery at

Friday, April 8, 2011

New Call-In Radio Show with Ed Bus on WBEZ

This Saturday, April 9, from 7pm to 9pm on WBEZ, check out the try-out of new call-in radio show Ward Issues featuring Alderman Ed Bus of the 53rd Ward. This is a great chance to make a case for the importance of theatre and the arts in the neighborhood, and be part of, as Justin Kaufman says, “…radio history. Or at least, history on the radio. Or at least, a really funny, fake experiment.”

Read more about this special edition of Ward Issues and Alderman Bus and make your case for local theatre Saturday night on WBEZ.

Rehearsal Space Available at Gorilla Tango

Looking for Rehearsal Space?

GTT now has two recently renovated rehearsal rooms available for $12/hour!

Gorilla Tango Theatre is pleased to announce its new second-floor rental rooms are ready and available at 1919 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago 60647 (Western stop on O'Hare Blue Line). These private rooms are available to GTT and non-GTT producers alike, include individually controlled AC and centralized heating, 10 foot ceilings, and carpeted floors. Rooms can be scheduled out online at for $12/hour (two hour minimum).

For more info, check out the website or email

Note: sorry - no amplified music/drum rehearsals (acoustic and mp3 player music - OK).

Free Event at Court Theatre on April 10

Orlando Lives: Virginia Woolf’s Orlando in Global Adaptation and Performance

Sunday, April 10, 2011 at approximately 4:30 (following the 2:30 matinee)
Court Theatre, 5535 S. Ellis

This illustrated talk begins with Orlando's inspiration in Virginia Woolf's love affair with Vita Sackville-West and the "revolutionary" theory of biography that Woolf brings to life in the androgynous, immortal poet Orlando and his/her adventures. It surveys Orlando's ongoing lives from Sally Potter's 1992 film to Lady Gaga and takes a closer look at two widely-performed theatrical adaptations by Robert Wilson and Sarah Ruhl.

Christine Froula, professor of English, Comparative Literature, and Gender Studies at Northwestern University, is the author of Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Avant-Garde and Modernism's Body: Sex, Culture, and Joyce. She is the librettist for John Austin's opera Heloise and Abelard.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Chicago Theatre Intern Networking Event

Monday, April 18, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Steppenwolf Yondorf Hall, 758 W. North Ave.
Meet and network with interns at other Chicago theatre companies. Take part in breakout groups by job discipline led by established and emerging leaders in the Chicago theatre community. Don't miss this amazing opportunity to make connections and learn from the experience of leaders in the theatre community.

RSVP to before Friday, April 15 to attend.

Director/Dramatist Exchange

Monday, April 25th, 2011, 7 to 9 pm

Steppenwolf Theatre Company

Administrative Offices
Yondorf Rehearsal Hall
758 W. North Avenue, 2nd 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 no later than Monday, April 18th, 2011 at:

The first 20 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!!