This press release courtesy of publicist Brenna O’Leary…
Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave., known for producing innovative and award-winning work, is proud to announce a thrilling line-up of world premieres in 2010-11…
The season will kick off with the world premiere of The Invasion of Skokie, a warmhearted drama by network playwright Steven Peterson in fall 2010, followed by the February 2011 presentation of resident playwright Aline Lathrop’s provocative production of Bordello. Chicago Dramatists will bring the 2009 Wendy Wasserstein Prize-winning resident playwright Marisa Wegrzyn’s Hickorydickory to its stage to culminate the new season in spring 2011.
Chicago Dramatists is the only theatre in the country that is both a playwrights’ development center and a full producing theatre which continues to push the envelope with the newest plays and most promising playwrights. Through its long-standing residency program, Chicago Dramatists seeks to nurture accomplished, Chicago-based dramatists who will make significant contributions to the American theatre repertory. Every year, Chicago Dramatists’ playwrights earn literally hundreds of accomplishments from productions and awards to other honors at large and small theatres in Chicago and around the world; enriching the lives of hundreds of thousands of theatre patrons, exporting Chicago voices across the globe, and significantly boosting Chicago Dramatists’ reputation as one of the nation’s foremost new play development theatres. Developed in part through readings and workshops at Chicago Dramatists, the following productions were chosen from hundreds of plays-in-progress to be a part of the 2010-11 season.
The world premiere of The Invasion of Skokie, by Steven Peterson, will preview Sept. 2, open Sept. 10 and 11, and run through Oct. 10, 2010. The play will be directed by Associate Artistic Director Richard Perez. It’s 1978 and neo-Nazis are about to march on Skokie, Illinois. What better time for a nice gentile boy to go to Skokie to ask a Jewish family for their daughter’s hand in marriage — or maybe not…
The thought-provoking yet sexy production of Bordello by resident playwright Aline Lathrop will preview Jan. 27, open Feb. 4 and 5, and close March 6, 2011. Bordello will be directed by Northlight Theatre Literary Manager and Chicago Dramatists Associate Artist Meghan Beals McCarthy. Sixty miles outside Las Vegas today, sex is for sale in state licensed bordellos, where almost any fantasy can be accommodated for the right price. Set on “Customer Appreciation Night”, Bordello shines a light on the working girls, their dreams and ambitions, and everything that gets in the way.
Lathrop is the recipient of numerous awards, including an Illinois Arts Council fellowship and a Dr. Donahue Tremaine grant. Lathrop’s critically acclaimed world premiere production of Feast at Chicago Dramatists was cited as one of the Top 5 Best New Plays of 2007 by New City Magazine and A Piece of Bone received its Jeff-recommended world premiere at Circle Theatre of Forest Park. Lathrop has developed plays at Abingdon Theatre Company, American Theater Company, Boarshead Theatre, Chicago Dramatists, Famous Door Theatre Company, and Stage Left Theatre, among others. She is a graduate of the Northwestern University Theatre Department.
Hickorydickory, by 2009 Wendy Wasserstein Prize winning resident playwright Marisa Wegrzyn, will preview May 5, open May 13 and run through June 12, 2011. Chicago Dramatists’ Artistic Director Russ Tutterow will direct. Hickorydickory explores what would happen if we all had an internal clock telling us the time of our death. Someone has tinkered with Cari Lee’s mortal clock, so she’s stuck at 17 for eternity. Now she’s the same age as her daughter Dale. But Dale’s worried about her own mortal clock ¬≠ the one that tells her the day and time she’ll die. Dad’s an expert clock-smith, but some timepieces are not meant to be tampered with.
Marisa Wegrzyn’s play Ten Cent Night was produced at Chicago Dramatists in 2008. Her play The Butcher of Baraboo was produced by Steppenwolf and Off Broadway at Second Stage, and published in the Smith & Kraus anthology New Playwrights: The Best Plays of 2008. Other theatres that have presented her work include Theatre Seven, Moxie Theatre in San Diego, Victory Theatre Center in Burbank, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Chicago’s Rivendell Theatre, Geva Theatre Center of Rochester, NY, Lucid by Proxy in LA, Washington University and HotCity Theatre in St. Louis, Nice People Theatre Company in Philadelphia, The Hourglass Group in NYC, Baltimore Centerstage, and The Magic Theatre in San Francisco. She is currently working on commissions from Steppenwolf and Yale Rep, in addition to a screenplay adaptation of her play Diversey Harbor for the film production company Briar Street Productions. Her writing was cited in The Chicago Reader’s list, “Best of Chicago 2008.” Wegryzn is a founding member of Theatre Seven of Chicago.
About Chicago Dramatists
In the fall of 1979, four playwrights came together to hear their work read aloud and to hone their craft. Today, Chicago Dramatists’ amazing record of achievement has landed them an invaluable place in the artistic community as a vital source of inspiration to 40 Resident Playwrights, 160 Associate Playwrights, 60 Associate Artists, and thousands of audience members. Over the past three decades, Chicago Dramatists has worked with over a thousand playwrights, produced and developed thousands of plays and stayed true to its mission to nurture compelling, challenging and diverse plays that move on to productions, earn awards, and define the American theatre. Chicago Dramatists has helped launch the career of hundreds of award-winning writers, including Tina Fey (30 Rock), Rick Cleveland (Mad Men), Rebecca Gilman (Spinning Into Butter), Sarah Ruhl (The Clean House), Lydia R. Diamond (Stick Fly) and Keith Huff (A Steady Rain). Each season Chicago Dramatists presents three world premiere productions and the signature Saturday Series, weekly staged readings of plays-in-progress. The theatre also conducts educational outreach to at-risk students at Chicago Public Schools, awakening the possibility of self-expression by writing for the theatre. Through passionate dedication, personal nurture and careful exposure, Chicago Dramatists carries on its thirty-one-year-old mission of developing new plays and playwrights for the next generation of theatre.