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In a small house on a big hill in County Galway, Ireland, the Folan women live out an uneasy truce. Forty-year-old Maureen and her elderly but iron-willed mother, Mag, spend their days in endless rounds of petty insults and physical threats as each maneuvers for control of their isolated existence. But when an old family friend reappears and offers Maureen a chance at love and a new life, this once benign terrain grows treacherous, and the two women, bound by blood but driven by desperation, will do anything to survive. The Tony Award-winning The Beauty Queen of Leenane contains the brash humor, rich language, and inventive storytelling for which Martin McDonagh has been widely praised.
Shakespeare's Cymbeline has all the vicious insults, bloody blades, cross-dressed ladies, and compromised bedchambers that have made the Bard famous. It is also a no-holds-barred epic, a dark fairy tale set off by a king's rash verdict and a princess who won't stand for her man's wrongful banishment. The acclaimed director of Lifeline Theatre's Hunger and Irish Theatre of Chicago's The White Road, recently seen onstage in Strawdog Theatre Company's production of The Arsonists, now makes his directing debut with Strawdog.
As global destruction approaches, the lives of a climate scientist and his three estranged daughters come crashing unexpectedly back together. The wildly epic Earthquakes in London embodies the chaos of today's society, and asks us what matters most when everything's falling apart.
It takes a village — and then some. For Tami Martin, raising her severely autistic 17-year-old son, Josh, is not only a full-time job; it's a labor of love. But Josh's increasingly violent outbursts and pressure from her family threaten to drive Tami's efforts and her sanity to the brink.
Note: Due to the nature and content of this production, post-show talkbacks take place after every Sunday performance (except on April 2 and 9) and are moderated by dramaturg Margaret Knapp. Following the 7:30pm performance on April 1, playwright Deanna Jent will join Knapp for a special talkback. That evening's show is an ASL-signed performance.
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.
Forging From Fire tells of the various journeys that individual ensemble members have taken to build lasting relationships and how circumstances, behaviors, and choices can create compromising situations. Through diligent deconstruction and self-discovery, each member worked through a heated process to understand ways to develop meaningful and healthy relationships, leading them to mold and refine a new space of love — for oneself and for others.
Among the life-topics addressed in Forging From Fire are physical, verbal, and sexual violence; the foster home system; incarceration within the transgender and gender nonconforming community, domestic violence, self-harm, mental health, and suicide.
Note: This show is recommended for ages 13 and up, due to references to adult situations.
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.
An unruly bunch of bright, funny sixth-form (senior) boys in a British boarding school are, as such boys will be, in pursuit of sex, sport, and a place at a good university — generally in that order. In all their efforts, they are helped and hindered, enlightened and bemused by a maverick English teacher who seeks to broaden their horizons in sometimes undefined ways, and by a young history teacher who questions the methods, as well as the aim, of their schooling.
A homeless man is unjustly slain by city police. Enraged, the homeless community attempts to govern one another in order to protect themselves from the existing government. This play is inspired by an actual event.
Note: This show contains strong language and is not for all ages.
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.
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.
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.
Quest, loosely based on the Leo Tolstoy story "The Three Questions," has the protagonist ask three simple but huge questions, setting in motion a whirlwind journey to find the answers. The hero ventures with her sidekicks through obstacles, misinformation, slapstick fun, unexpected detours, songs, near crises, and amazing feats of partnership in search of answers.
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.
On the hunt for the biggest story of their careers, two journalists are summoned to travel across the world to meet with The Source: an unidentified leaker of hacked documents and information about the United States government. As these strangers probe one another for the truth and information, they find themselves in a thrilling psychological drama that leads them to examine their motives, their country, and themselves…all while waiting for The Source.
As Ed, a widower, prepares to celebrate Christmas, he calls his three grown sons back to the family home. Games are played, Chinese food is ordered, and brotherly pranks and trash talk distract them from the ongoing issue that threatens to ruin the festivities: When personal identity is essential and privilege is a problem, what is a straight white man to do? Playwright and director Young Jean Lee takes an outside look at the traditional father-son play narrative, shedding new light and hilarity on a story we think we know.
The Neo-Futurists' signature show, performed since 1988, is the longest-running production in Chicago history. Too Much Light... is an ever-changing attempt to perform 30 plays in 60 minutes. Each week the ensemble adds between two and twelve new plays to the menu. Every performance creates an inimitable, living-newspaper collage of the comic and tragic, the political and personal, the visceral and experimental.