Thursday, March 28, 2013

More Awesome

We had our annual World Theatre Day celebration yesterday. It was toned down from the usual blow-out, we did a panel discussion at lunch time. Four companies shared their experience working for the most part on European plays, mostly in translation and their experiences of touring and exchanges in Europe. It was a great and wide ranging discussion ranging from how artists are so much better supported in Europe to how sometimes a British translation just doesn’t work for an American audience. The companies represented were Bergen Anderson from Akvavit, Jackie Stone from TUTA, Patrizia Acerra from International Voices Project and Beata Pilch from Trap Door. All intelligent, funny and engaging women. The panel was moderated by Kris Vire from Time Out Chicago, who is also a pretty smart cookie and asked great questions.

I always get inspired when I listen to conversations like this and afterward I had a little extra spring in my step, thinking about not only what great work Chicago companies are doing but how perhaps this conversation might open up the door for more touring and collaboration with companies from around the world. The artistic directors were actually very forthcoming in how they raise the money (or not) and who they partner with to get the work done. There were lots of intense conversations going on afterward. So…just another example of how extraordinary Chicago is.


Voice Screenings for Professional Singers

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

A Conversation with Young Jean Lee and Thomas Bradshaw

Young Jean Lee and Thomas Bradshaw—two of today’s most exciting playwrights—hold a conversation on MCA Stage. Lee and Bradshaw are best known in Chicago for acclaimed debuts: The Shipment, performed by Young Jean Lee’s Theater Company at MCA Stage in 2010; and Mary, Bradshaw’s 2011 commission for The Goodman Theatre. This talk occurs in conjunction with Young Jean Lee’s Theatre Company performance of UNTITLED FEMINIST SHOW, on MCA Stage at the Edlis Neeson Theater April 18–21, 7:30 p.m. Learn more.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Industry Ticket Offers

Julius Caesar - Babes With Blades at Raven Theatre, 6157 N. Clark St., is offering industry nights on 3/28, 4/4, 4/11, and 4/18. Half off general admission ticket price with proof of industry affiliation. Offer only good by calling in advance at 773.904.0391 or going directly to the box office.

Limitation of Life - Hell in a Handbag Productions at Mary's Attic, 5400 N. Clark St. is offering $15 industry tickets for all performances through May 10 with code word ‘industry’ online or at the door.

Pedro P├íramo - Goodman Theatre, 170 N Dearborn, is offering $10 off tickets for closing performances March 29 - 31. Use code “FRIEND” online at Available online only. Not valid on previously purchased tickets or in combination with other offers.

Measure for Measure - Goodman Theatre, 170 N Dearborn, is offering 50% off tickets for performances March 29 - 31. Use code “INDUSTRY” online at Available online only. Not valid on previously purchased tickets or in combination with other offers.

Friday, March 22, 2013

City Lit Seeks Submissions for Art of Adaptation Festival

City Lit Theater Company seeks submissions to The Art of Adaptation, its festival of stage adaptations of non-dramatic literature.

The festival will take place July 19th, 20th, and 21st at City Lit Theater, 1020 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue. We anticipate it will consist of 6 to 10 adaptations presented in various combinations over the course of the weekend. A panel of Jeff Award winning judges will view all performances and award a $500 cash prize to the adaptor of the piece judged the best of the festival.

1. All pieces must be between 5 and 20 minutes.
2. It must be an adaptation of non-dramatic material—a short story, an essay, a memoir, poetry, an excerpt from a novel, a video game, what have you; but not material from a play.
3. Each adaptor is responsible for whatever royalties might be due on your piece, as well as for your own rehearsal process. City Lit will not provide rehearsal space prior to tech rehearsal, nor will it provide services of a director or any actors for any piece.
4. All pieces will be performed on the same simple unit set with the same simple light plot (including one special per piece). A stock of furniture will be provided. If your piece requires furniture beyond the provided stock, it is your responsibility.
5. City Lit will provide performance space, backstage and front-of-house crew, publicity, programs, tickets and the $500 cash prize.

To submit a proposal for entry into the festival, send a one-page description of the project you are proposing, and ten pages of your adaptation script, to Katy Nielsen at City Lit Theater, 1020 West Bryn Mawr Avenue, Chicago IL 60660.

Proposals must be postmarked no later than May 31st.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

All Ways

I was talking to one of my smart smart friends the other day. She works for a regional theatre and she said that she is starting to see a dearth of new plays due to the recession. Huh? I said. She said yeah…we are seeing now the effects of the fact that people cut back on commissions and development of new plays in 2008-2010. So in the regionals, everyone is scrambling to try to get that 1-4 character play that everybody else wants. That play has had some development and some success, preferably in New York. Interesting. One of the best arguments I’ve heard yet for continuing to develop new plays. Because the people want them. Terry Teachout wrote an article in 2010 about how Americans actually like new plays and even edgy plays. As it turns out this is an issue for more than just me and her and especially in the Regional theatres. But what it really brought out for me in thinking about it is that in Chicago it is different. In Chicago you can go to that theatre and see that show that was in New York last year that you really wanted to see. You can also see that off-broadway play that you read about in the New Yorker. You can see some Shakespeare the likes of which are unparalleled in the world. You can see some classic straight plays and musicals done in new and unexpected ways. You can see devised work and ensemble pieces and shows about just about anything, done just about every way including naked, in drag, all male, all female, underwater, in a car. All ways. Lucky damnit, that’s what we are.


NEFA National Theater Project Creation and Touring Grants

NEFA's National Theater Project (NTP) Creation & Touring Grants provide funds for creation and preparation for touring of collaborative, devised projects. These grants are highly competitive and are awarded to approximately six projects annually.

Learn more about Creation & Touring Grants goals and criteria.

• March 21, 2013: Preliminary Application (Inquiry) deadline
• May 2013: Projects selected to submit full requests notified
• August 2012: Selection and announcement of NTP projects

The application is now available! Click for details and to apply.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Industry Ticket Offers

Beautiful Broken - Broken Nose Theatre, at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N Lincoln Ave, is offering $15 industry tickets to all regular run performances, March 29th-April 21st, Fridays and Saturdays at 8PM and Sundays at 3PM, as well as two special industry performances on Sunday, April 7th and 14th at 7PM. Industry tickets can be purchased in person or by calling the Greenhouse box office at 773-404-7336. Visit for more information.

The La Ronde Project (La Ronde, The Blue Room, F**king Men) - Street Tempo Theatre at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. takes La Ronde, Arthur Schnitzler's famously provocative play of 1900, and performs it in repertory with a pair of its acclaimed adaptations. $10 industry tickets are available for all performances from March 20 – March 24. Visit for schedule and use INDUSTRY code word or call 773.327.5252.

Underneath the Lintel - First Folio Theatre at Mayslake Hall, Mayslake Peabody Estate, 1717 W 31st St, Oak Brook. is offering $10 industry tickets on Wednesday evenings at 8 PM on March 27, April 3, 10, 17, 24. Tickets are on an "as available" basis and may be purchased no sooner than 48 hours in advance. Professionals must bring a union card, a headshot/resume, tech resume, or business card indicating employment in the theater business. Tickets may be purchased by calling 630-986-8067 and mentioning this industry offer.

Everything is Illuminated - Next Theatre Company, 927 Noyes Street in Evanston, is offering half-priced tickets to all Thursday, Friday, and Saturday performances, from 4/4 to 4/13, to this US Premiere by Simon Block, adapted from the best-selling novel by Jonathan Safran Foer. Use code “Ukraine” when purchasing tickets online or by phone at 847-475-1875.

There Is A Happiness That Morning Is - Theater Oobleck at Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 North Lincoln Ave., is offering free or pay-what-you-can industry tickets on Monday, April 1, 8pm. Call 773-871-3000 or go to

Concerning Strange Devices from the Distant West - TimeLine Theatre Company, 615 W. Wellington Ave. is offering $15 industry tickets for performances March 21 - 23. For reservations use code INDUSTRY online or over the phone at 773.281.8463 x6.

Core of the PUDEL - Links Hall, 3435 N. Sheffield Ave, is offering industry tickets to performances on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday from 3/23 to 3/25, to this highly physical devised performance based on the legend of Faust. Purchase "student admission" online and show proof of industry at the door.

Trumbo – Red, White and Blacklisted - Buffalo Theatre Ensemble, Building K Theatre, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn. is offering $10 industry tickets for all performances May 2-19. 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.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Inclusion or Exclusion

How do we define ourselves – by inclusion or exclusion? By what we have an affinity for or by what we have an aversion to. I have to admit that I am one of those people who can identify what I don’t like before I can identify what I do. As a result, I think I am overly enthusiastic about those things I do like because I’m trying to make up for being a hater most of the time. Good thing I like theatre.

Anyway, that got me thinking about how we define ourselves. The League is made up of so many theatres of different sizes and genres and ways of making theatre that it really does defy any coherent description except we all make some kind of theatre. I think its important that we all (including the League) move toward a more inclusive definition of who we are. I think many of us define ourselves as not a community theatre (not like WAITING FOR GUFFMAN) and not a commercial theatre (not like A CHORUS LINE). But lots of us are like community theatre in many ways and lots of us are like commercial theatre in many ways. Why don’t we embrace that?

The lines are falsely drawn, and like all lines they divide. But I think in the case of theatre these lines also prevent us from becoming fully ourselves by limiting us to what we are not, in both our artistic development and in our development as businesses.


Actor - Chorus - Text: Moon Fool Workshop

A 1-day intensive in CHICAGO with Moon Fool APRIL 14th ONLY

WHAT: ACT physical theatre training in Musicality, Movement and Text
WHO: Led by emerging UK director, Anna-Helena McLean assisted by leading ACT ensemble actor, Anirudh Nair
WHEN: Sunday, April 14th - 10am-4pm
WHERE: Links Hall 3435 N Sheffield Ave, Chicago, IL
FEE: The total cost of the workshop is $75, and must be paid in full prior to the workshop.
TO REGISTER: Please contact Kendra Miller at for more information and to reserve your spot and complete payment. SPOTS WILL GO FAST!

A unique theatre workshop with leading international physical theatre, voice & community practitioner Anna-Helena McLean, formerly of Poland's Gardzienice Centre for Theatre Practice and currently on tour in the US assisted by ACT ensemble actor, Anirudh Nair from Delhi. This workshop in Moon Fool's unique Actor - Chorus - Texrt (ACT) training uses breath and rhythm to awaken the ensemble. Partner and gesture exercises including some counterbalance and basic acrobatics help individuals to connect with one another and enter the physical drama. Participants are introduced to playful vocal exercises, brought to life in choral singing of gypsy and Balkan folk songs. Open to people from all backgrounds and nationalities.

For more info visit the 'Workshops' page at

Remy Bumppo Rehearsal Space Availability

Remy Bumppo's rehearsal space at 3717 N Ravenswood has availability from April 1 through May 19. Rates vary from $11 - $16 per hour, depending on hours scheduled per week. Approximately 800 sq ft, close to Addison Brown Line. Contact Amy Schultz at or 773-244-8119.

Looking for Rehearsal/Office Space?

Eclipse Theatre Company is immediately seeking an arts organization to share their rehearsal/office space in Ravenswood/North Center. 1600 sq. ft. Office/Rehearsal space, storage and large common area in loft setting. Eclipse primarily uses the space for evening and weekends. Large freight elevator and loading dock in building. Shared expenses for heat, power and wifi or DSL. Credit check and certificate of insurance required. A great opportunity to build a relationship and share resources with an award-winning and established theatre company. All interested parties should contact Kevin Scott (Managing Director) at for pricing and further details.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Chicago Forward: The Future of Arts in Chicago

March 13 at 6 p.m.
Chase Auditorium, 10 S. Dearborn St.
What does it mean to be a creative professional in Chicago? And what should the city be doing to leverage its creative resources? Rick Bayless, cultural commissioner Michelle Boone, artist Tony Fitzpatrick and architect Jeanne Gang join Bruce Dold and Chris Jones March 13 in a panel discussion on the state of arts in Chicago for the next Chicago Forward: The Future of Arts in Chicago. $20.  More information and tickets can be found at:

Industry Ticket Offers

25 Saints - Pine Box Theater Company at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave. is offering $15 industry tickets for performances Monday, March 11th @ 8pm, Saturday, March 16th @ 10pm, Saturday, March 23rd @ 10pm, and Saturday, March 30th @ 10pm. Tickets can be purchased by calling the box office (773) 404-7336 or visiting or

Analog - The Neo-Futurists at the Neo-Futurarium, 5153 N. Ashland Ave. is offering $5 tickets for performances March 14-16.  Tickets are available online via:

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater - Auditorium Theatre at Roosevelt University, 50 E. Congress Pkwy, is offering 50% off tickets in price levels 2- 4 for all remaining shows through March 17 with code INDUSTRY. Limit of 2 tickets per person. Click here to reserve tickets.

Manhattan Concert Productions - Manhattan Concert Productions at Orchestra Hall, Symphony Center (220 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60604) is offering a select amount of comp tickets to hear The National Festival Chorus and Manhattan Concert Chorale on Sunday, March 17th at 7:30pm. Tickets can be reserved by emailing Christine Papania, no later than Saturday, March 16th by 12pm. For more information visit Your requested tickets will be available for pickup from the Symphony Center box office from 4pm on March 17th.

Speaking in Tongues - Interrobang Theatre Project at Theater Wit, 1229 W Belmont Ave, is offering $10 tickets for theatre industry professionals for the final 8 performances. Thursday-Saturday 8pm, Sunday 3pm through March 24. In person at the Wit box office or by phone 773-975-8150.

Proof - Court Theatre, 5535 S Ellis Ave, is offering $10 rush tickets starting one hour before performances to industry professionals to all performances through April 7. Offer is subject to rush ticket availability and is limited to one per industry member with proof of industry. Best availability for Sunday, March 17 at 2:30.

Head of Passes - Steppenwolf Theatre Company, 1650 N. Halsted, is offering $15 tickets for preview performances Thursday, April 4 through Sunday, April 21 in the Steppenwolf Downstairs Theatre. Excludes Saturday nights, April 6, April 13 and April 20. Use code “12880” online at or call Audience Services at 312-335-1650. Tickets must be reserved at least one hour before performance. Subject to availability.

Completeness - Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. is offering  $15 industry tickets on Thursdays and Sundays through May 4. For more information visit

Thursday, March 7, 2013

An Absolute Joy

One of the highlights of my year is coming up on Monday, the August Wilson Monologue Competition Chicago Finals. More than 250 kids auditioned this year for the finals and on Monday 22 finalists will compete for cash prizes and the top three will go to New York to compete in the national finals. Watching them do their monologues is an absolute joy to me. They have clearly worked so hard to figure out these characters and the monologues mean so much to them. And, a new generation learning the works of this great American playwright – doesn’t get any better than that.

It really is a fun event, lots of students and parents cheering on their friends and families. I hope to see you there.


Monday, March 4, 2013

Promotional Opportunity at Auditorium Theatre

The Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University has just acquired a new lobby brochure display and would love to showcase other venues and performances around Chicago.

If you would like your materials to be displayed, please mail them to:
Kerri Martin
Auditorium Theatre
50 E. Congress Parkway
Chicago, IL 60605

Friday, March 1, 2013

Industry Ticket Offers

Smokey Joe's Cafe: The Songs of Leiber and Stoller - Royal George Theater, 1641 N. Halsted, is offering complimentary tickets for Thursday, March 7 and 14 at 7:30 p.m., Friday, March 8 and 15 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, March 9 and 15 at 5 p.m. and Sunday, March 10 at 2 and 6 p.m. Reserve up to four tickets for the following performances by email with INDUSTRY in the subject field. Tickets based on availability.

IVP 2013: The International Voices Project at Victory Gardens Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave. presents eight FREE readings of contemporary international plays in English from March 7-17. Each reading is followed by a talk back and complimentary reception. All performances are at 7:30PM. Make your reservation at, or check in nightly at the box office.

Stones in His Pockets - Northlight Theatre, 9501 Skokie Blvd. is offering $10 tickets for theatre industry professionals for all preview performances March 8 -14. Offer available by phone or walk-up, must mention the code INDUSTRY to reserve. Proof of industry (headshot, business card, etc.) requested upon ticket pickup. Box Office 847.673.6300.