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Since its premiere in 1953, Arthur Miller's The Crucible, a masterful and chilling portrayal of the historic Salem witch trials and an allegory for the rise of McCarthyism in the late 1940s, has rightfully become an American classic. It serves as both a cautionary tale and a provocation that compels each generation to reflect upon the harrowing world the play portrays.
The people of Salem are whipped into a bloodthirsty frenzy by a series of escalating misinterpretations after a group of teenage girls are accused of dancing devilishly in the woods. Rather than face consequences for their actions, the girls begin a chain of finger-pointing until neighbor turns against neighbor, whispers become testimony, fabrications become facts, and a once powerless teenage girl suddenly has the ability to decide the fate of all those around her. As the hearts of the townsfolk become poisoned, even virtuous farmer and family man John Proctor is falsely accused of witchcraft and must fight a corrupt court to protect his good name.
Note: This show is a Steppenwolf for Young Adults production.
Henrik Ibsen's masterwork finds renewed immediacy in a daring new production from Goodman artistic director Robert Falls. The contamination of a resort town's water supply sets the stage for a battle involving the town's respected mayor, Peter Stockmann, and his brother Thomas, a respected doctor. As the brothers become locked in a combative struggle between political wisdom and personal ethics, the economic fate of the community — and the unity of the town's residents — hangs in the balance.
The 2017 Kia Corthron season begins with the timely Force Continuum. An African-American police officer struggles with the contradictions of his race and profession while confronting the black community he is bound to protect and being haunted by his cop father's violent death. This play is a jagged, precarious journey whereby all gradually grasp that understanding comes not just through seeing others but hearing.
Over the course of a parent-teacher conference, a grieving mother and an emotionally overwhelmed primary school teacher have a fraught conversation about the tragic suicide of the mother's son, Gidion. Gidion may have been bullied severely — or he may have been an abuser. As his story is slowly uncovered, the women try to reconstruct a satisfying explanation for Gidion's act and come to terms with excruciating feelings of culpability.
Note: This show is recommended for ages 13 and up, due to strong language.
In to America is a world-premiere drama that traces the American immigrant experience from Jamestown to the present day through the stories of ordinary men, women, and children who left their homelands in the hope of creating a new life. Four hundred years in the making, In to America transcends time, space, and race to reflect the diversity and commonalities of the American experience. Dorothy Milne directs this journey through history; Bill Massolia (Letters Home) scripted it.
A father and daughter fish for silence in both the Euphrates and Poudre Rivers after serving in Iraq — a Marine Corp enlistment separated by 16 years. Johnny 10 Beers' Daughter shares the personal and public struggles created by war. This dialogue-driven drama showcases the battle with postwar life and inner-self, capturing the silence and the explosions of anger created by PTSD.
Celebrated director and playwright Aaron Posner and famed magician Teller (of duo Penn & Teller) join forces for an innovative take on "the Scottish play," returning after their Jeff Award-winning production of The Tempest at Chicago Shakespeare Theater in 2015. With astounding sorcery, this supernatural thriller dives into the psyches of the power-hungry Macbeth and Lady Macbeth.
Nineteen-year-old Tray loves his grandfather and loves caring for his infant daughter, hoping one day to marry the baby's mother. But in the war on drugs, a joint at a party becomes a major military provocation, and Tray unwittingly falls into a black hole of bewilderment, rearranging his plans and his life. Workshopped through New Works Brooklyn at Brooklyn College and the New York Theatre Workshop, Megastasis is directed by Aaron Todd Douglas.
Come to what is sure to be a thrilling and unique night of theatre, and you create it!
Every Saturday night we open our doors at 10PM and accept the first 15 original acts that walk through the door. Scenes, Poems, Dances, Magic Tricks, Stand-Up, Sketch, Improv, Puppets, Songs, Juggling, Mime, Acrobatics and/or General Shenanigans - whatever floats your proverbial boat.
1. All material must be original
2. Performances should be no more than five minutes in length
3. You can't break anything--not yourself, not the theatre--and you can't break any laws
No Shame Theatre focuses on immediacy, originality and brevity. So, whether you're coming to perform, watch or both, together we'll create a show that has never been seen before and will never be seen again.
After surviving a tumultuous upbringing in war-torn Liberia, Shedrick Yarpai has found a new home in a sunny, coastal Australian city. Safe from the horrific perils of guerrilla soldiers and refugee camps, Shedrick now faces a different type of danger: the haunting memories stirring inside him. Inspired by writer Charles Smith's friendship with a Liberian refugee-turned-acclaimed-actor, the playwright crafts a harrowing story of personal honor vs. familial obligation and the responsibility that comes with being a survivor.
Ten years after their critically acclaimed collaboration on King Lear, Robert Falls and stage and screen star Stacy Keach — both 2015 Theater Hall of Fame inductees — reunite for the world premiere of Pamplona by Jim McGrath. Keach stars as Ernest Hemingway, one of the most celebrated novelists and short story writers of the 20th century in this explosive tour-de-force drama, set during the author's haunted years following his Pulitzer and Nobel Prize honors.
In this play, after the prize comes the pressure. Basking in the glory of career-defining awards — the 1953 Pulitzer Prize and the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954 — legendary writer Ernest Hemingway insists his best work is yet to come. Five years later, holed up in a Spanish hotel with a looming deadline, he struggles to knock out a story about the rivalrous matadors of Pamplona. But his real battles lie outside the bullfighting arena; in declining health, consumed by his troubled fourth marriage, and tormented by the specter of past glories, he must now conquer the deepening despair that threatens to engulf him.
Pamplona marks Keach's second exploration of the literary legend: He earned a Golden Globe Award and an Emmy nomination for his portrayal of Hemingway in the eponymous 1988 television miniseries.
This powerful and poignant play portrays the tempestuous life of scientist Marie Curie struggling for acceptance in turn of the century Europe.
Staged by leading Broadway and Chicago director Gary Griffin, this award-winning play chronicles the seldom-told, true story of Ira Aldridge, an African-American actor who challenged convention by taking the London stage as the first black Othello in 1833 — sending shockwaves through the city at a time when anti-abolition protesters rioted in the streets.
Against the backdrop of the explosive Watergate scandal, Chuck Colson grasped for meaning during the tumultuous investigations that led to the collapse of the Nixon administration. A convicted former special counsel to the president, Colson paradoxically found new life — not with success and power but through national disgrace and imprisonment.
Visionary Belgian director Ivo van Hove injects a raw, pulsating energy into Arthur Miller's 1955 classic, which won the 2016 Tony Awards for best revival of a play and best director. Straight from sold-out runs on Broadway and the West End comes the Chicago debut of van Hove's production. Brooklyn longshoreman Eddie Carbone welcomes his immigrant cousins to America. But when one of them falls for Eddie's young niece, his jealous mistrust exposes an unspeakable secret — one that drives him to commit the ultimate betrayal.
Ireland's most prestigious theater ensemble is back with a contemporary interpretation of Samuel Beckett's seminal work. Staged by Tony Award-winning director Garry Hynes, this production marks the legendary company's third return to Chicago Shakespeare Theater, following The Cripple of Inishmaan (2011) and The Walworth Farce (2009).
Chicago's premiere horror theater company begins its 2017 season with the award-winning stage play based on Susan Hill's 1983 novel. In this gothic spine-tingler, a solicitor hires an actor to tutor him in recounting to family and friends a story that has long troubled him. It concerns events that transpired when he attended the funeral of an elderly recluse 20 years ago. There he caught sight of a woman in black, the mere mention of whom terrifies the locals, for she is a specter who haunts the neighborhood. Together the two men re-create the events of that dark and stormy night.
Note: This show is for viewers age 13 and up.