Thursday, July 28, 2011

Stay True to the Chaos

I just read Polly Carl’s blog post on Howl Round about social skills in the theatre and although its not the point of the piece, she brings up the question of institutions and I’ve been having some conversations lately about whether or not theatres should be run more like rehearsal rooms or to put it more eloquently, should the administrative decision making process mirror the artistic decision making process. Interesting right? Polly points out that the process of making a play follows a certain hierarchy – because plays are made under time constraints (4-6 weeks of rehearsal time), there isn’t time for complex processes to be carried out – everything goes through the director and she makes the calls. But what about choosing a play for production? Choosing a play can take years. I’ve worked for theatres for 5 years, where plays stay on the list for production all 5 years and don’t get produced, other plays are chosen during the course of the season for that same season. It’s messy and chaotic and I believe that’s how art gets made. The administrative side can no more be contained by a “process” than the artistic side can. We have to remain ready to turn on a dime and make things happen. While we have a lot to learn from corporations and business writers and other non profits and from our forbears in our own industry, we also need to stay true to the chaos. I think I’m going to put it on the list of core values.


Industry Ticket Offer

Fiesta Sin Fronteras (Party Without Borders) - Bailiwick Chicago & Teatro Luna at the Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave., are offering $12 advance & $17 door tickets to their benefit for THE NORTH/SOUTH PLAYS, on Saturday, July 30, from 7-11 p.m., Includes open bar, food, live Latina and rock bands, and dancing. Use the code BORDERS & bring H/R or business card with you. For tickets, call (312) 237-0878 or buy at

The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek - Eclipse Theatre at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave. is offering $8 industry tix on Thursday July 28 and $10 industry tix on July 29 at 7:30 p.m. Bring a headshot/resume, business card, or mention "industry" at the box office. For reservations call 773-404-7336. for more info.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Last Call

The 2nd annual Chicago Theatre (anti) Conference is coming up in just a couple weeks at Theater Wit. Why is it an anti-conference you may be asking? Because its designed to maximize conversation and exploration rather than just presentation. The full weekend schedule will be announced soon, but you can take a look at our most-current line-up of presenters and panelists. It's a pretty amazing group of people. We still have a couple final presenter slots to fill, so if you have an idea for a presentation you should send us your information in the next couple days. We hope that even if you aren't presenting anything that you'll register and join the conversation. We look forward to seeing everyone at Theater Wit in a couple weeks!

Not for Profit Incorporation and Tax Exemption Workshop

Lawyers for the Creative Arts
Thursday, September 8, 2011, 5:30-9 p.m.

213 W. Institute Place, Ste. 403
The cost is $100 for one person, and $125 for two people.
This workshop will discuss whether to start a NFP, how to establish a NFP, as well as certain recurring operating problems. It will also cover in detail how to obtain a 501(c) (3) tax exemption and discuss several legal issues regarding maintaining tax exempt status. A full package of documents is included. Although this workshop is intended for artists of all types, it has been very popular with lawyers as well as it provides comprehensive coverage of the subject.

Please call LCA at 312-649-4111 to register

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Industry Ticket Offers

The Original Grease - American Theater Company, 1909 W. Byron, is offering a limited number of half-price ($22.50) industry tickets on Wednesdays, July 20, 27 and August 3 at 8 p.m. To purchase these tickets, please stop in at the box office, call 773.409.4125, or go online at and use the special discount code KISS IT (there is a service fee for tickets purchased online.)

The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek - Eclipse Theatre at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave. is offering $8 industry tix this week for all previews on July 21, 22, and 23. Bring a headshot/resume, business card, or mention "industry" at the box office. For reservations call 773-404-7336.

Friday, July 15, 2011

20% Theatre Company Yard Sale

20% Theatre Company is holding a Yard Sale on Saturday, July 23rd beginning at 11 a.m. on the corner of Berwyn and Glennwood in the Andersonville Neighborhood. ALL PROCEEDS will benefit 20% Theatre Company. All members of the public and other theatre companies are welcome to come check it out! We've been cleaning out our closets, down-sizing storage units, and ransacking Mom's basement only to bring the best of treasure to the table! Come check out our goods, eat our cookies, and take home a few yard sale gems. So much stuff! Thank you to all who have donated so far! Donations are still being accepted, contact us before July 20th with your priceless booty.

Industry Ticket Offer

The Front Page - TimeLine Theatre Company, 615 W. Wellington Ave., is offering $20 industry tickets for the final weekend of performances July 15-17. For tickets call 773-281-8463 x6 and use code "industry." For more information visit

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Tweets for Seats

In lieu of a blog this week, I share with you this great article by Kris Vire about our very own Joe Wescott – we’re so proud of him and his tweets.

“A DOLL’S HOUSE to the left of me, HEARTBREAK HOUSE to the right. Here I am stuck in the MIDDLETOWN with you.”

“Not to give too much away, but we have tickets for SCHMILLION SCHMOLLAR SCHMAURTET this weekend. You should schmet schmum.”

“Somebody call Phil Ponce cuz we’ve got CHICAGO tonight! And the next night and the night after that too!”

Tweets like these greet the Twitter followers of Hot Tix, the half-price ticket service run by the League of Chicago Theatres. Besides creatively letting its tweeps know what shows are available on its list in 140 characters or less, @HotTix links to theater news and reviews and engages followers with trivia questions and hashtag games.

Most of Hot Tix’s thousands of tweets have come from Joe Wescott. A Hot Tix employee for four years, he was recently promoted to associate manager of the service, which sells tickets both online and at a pair of brick-and-mortar outlets, one in the Loop and the other on the Magnificent Mile.

"I did it every once in a while, and then it was like, ‘Joe’s good at this, we need him to do it,’ ” Wescott says of the Twitter account. “I would get phone calls if I was at the other location saying, ‘Will you tweet this?’ ”

Over coffee one recent morning down the street from the Randolph Street Hot Tix outlet, Wescott, 25, says he thinks of his role on Twitter as an extension of what he and his coworkers do at the physical locations. “Theater advocates is what we’re called. Because we don’t always sell tickets; we don’t get every show,” he says.

Read the entire Time Out Chicago article.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Industry Ticket Offer

Lighthousekeeping - New Leaf Theatre at the DCA Storefront Theater, 66 E. Randolph in Chicago, is offering $15 industry tickets for Thursday, Friday, Saturday at 7:30 p.m. or Sunday at 3 p.m. through July 17th. Email or call 312-742-TIXS (8497). Visit for more information.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

You Go!

I used to work for a regional theatre where we essentially shut down from June-September. There wasn’t any point in trying to sell tickets because you just couldn’t during the summer.

An extraordinary amount of shows are extending and selling out in Chicago this summer and all I have to say to that is Yippee! We continue to attract audiences during the very short Chicago summer and hopefully many of you are growing with new audiences.

This is the first time that I can remember so many shows at once having such successful runs. So…You go! (Does that phrase date me? If so, can someone supply me with another.)


Drury Lane Oakbrook Costume Sale

Drury Lane Oakbrook Theatre is holding a costume sale on the following dates:

Friday July 15 from 10 - 5
Saturday July 16 from 10 - 3
Monday July 18 from 10 - 5
Tuesday July 19 from 10 - 5

Drury Lane Theatre
100 Drury Ln.
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181

Some of the sale items include pieces from Aida, Spamalot, Hot Mikado, Funny Girl, Cabaret, Dames at Sea, Anything Goes, High School Musical, Little Shop of Horrors and many, many more. Some vintage items, dresses, hats, stock items, wigs, animals, and LOTS of fun ideas for Halloween!


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Massive Theatre Garage Sale

Collectibles, vintage items, tons of costumes, housewares, unique props – not your everyday type of sale! Fri. July 15, 9am-4pm & Sat. July 16, 9am-3pm. ATTIC PLAYHOUSE – 410 Sheridan Road, Highwood, IL 60040 – located inside on 2nd floor. (Just north of Route 22 / Half Day Road • One block east of Green Bay Road • Across from the Highwood train station). Call (847) 433-2660 or for directions. Cash only / all sales final. Something for everyone - Don’t miss this unique opportunity! ****SPECIAL ADVANCE SALE FOR THEATRE INDUSTRY: THURS. JULY 14, 6-9PM!!!****

Industry Ticket Offer

TROGG! A Musical - Hell in a Handbag Productions at the Chopin Theatre, 1543 W. Division St. is offering $10 industry tickets for all Thursdays until July 14. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. Use code word ‘industry’. Available online, at the box office or call 1-800-838-3006. See for show details.