Jeff Trainor, The Chicago Inclusion Project program coordinator, offers his favorite moments in theater this past year and his wishes for the next...
In No Particular Order:
1) 100 Hauntings / Free Street Theater
An incredible play about Ghosts, Mental illness, Chicago's City Structure, and the effect we have on each other.
2) Octagon / Jackalope Theater Company
Damn, this show was incredible. The rhythm and intensity alone was enough to draw an audience member but then the performances, writing, and direction were so strong, you couldn't help leaving the theater feeling charged.
3) You On The Moors Now / The Hypocrites
The Hypocrites brought together an incredible group of actor's and designers led by director Devon de Mayo. The show was funny, strong, and moving. Nice one everybody!
4) The Secretaries / About Face Theatre
My cheeks hurt from laughing during this play. The soundtrack was spot on, the performances and direction were dynamite, and everyone was costumed by Mieka van der Ploeg, so you know they looked great even when they were covered in blood.
5) The Arrow Series / The Neo Futurist
There were four parts to The Arrow Series this past year. A bunch of different artists, writers, performers, dancers, and people were brought together for each Section. For the most part, there was only 1 performance of each Arrow. Do your best to catch one of The Arrows in 2017.
The Fly Honeys: Moving, Sexy, Strong, and Confident. The show reflected the performers.
Not In Our House: This wasn't a show, but it needs to be known that what Not In Our House did this year was remarkable. They are a force in the theater community. This group looks for monsters, drags them into the light, and gives support to anyone who needs or wants it.
I want to quote The Jungle Book:
Now this is the law of the jungle , as old and as true as the sky,
And the wolf that shall keep it may prosper, but the wolf that shall break it must die.
As the creeper that girdles the tree trunk, the law runneth forward and back;
For the strength of the pack is the wolf, and the strength of the wolf is the pack.
In 2017: Together, we can make change, we can make art, and we can strengthen each other.