Continuing our support of productions that embrace inclusion for artists and audiences, below are shows open or opening soon in Chicago that we feel are moving our community forward. As a staff, we have not necessarily seen all of these shows but are really glad they are happening.
We are excited to list shows that offer some or all of the following:
- Non-traditional casting
- Accessible storytelling
- Variety of perspectives on the design and production teams
- Playwrights/Directors from underrepresented communities
- Diversity in season programming
Buy tickets to shows that celebrate inclusion. Then write to producers and tell them you want more of it. Decision makers are led by numbers and this is one way you can make a difference.
The Light Fantastic
Written by Ike Holter
Directed by Gus Menary
May 8th - June 16th
In an unremarkable town on an uneventful evening, something truly terrible occurs, and a small family is thrust into a tit-for-tat game of survival against forces that are far from human. The writer and director of Jackalope's smash hit Exit Strategy and the Roustabouts' summer blockbuster Put Your House in Order team up again for a world-premiere play that is equal parts drama and comedy, and brings old school horror into the now and new.
The cast, artistic, and production team include: Paloma Nozicka, Brianna Buckley, Elena Maria Cohen, Diego Colón, Janice O'Neill, Tommy Malouf, and Andrew Burden Swanson. Sotirios Livaditis, Christine Pascual, Lacie Hexom, Steve LaBedz, Slick Jorgenson, William Allen, Corrbette Pasko, Almanya Narula, Eleanor Axt, Danielle Stack. Tickets are $20 - $30 and can be purchased here.
Written by Lucas Baisch
Directed by Hutch Pimentel
May 13th - June 9th
Eighty-two percent of the planet's people have dispensed with their physical bodies and uploaded their consciousnesses to IceBox in hopes of reaching a digital paradise. Some of the last employees of IceBox and Co. continue to provide transitional services for clients making the ascent. Benjamin has won the lottery, and as he spends his last day in the office, his coworkers battle with their own moral and socioeconomic inability to abandon their individual visions of reality - what it is and what it should be.
The cast, artistic, and production team include: Nathaniel Andrew, Andrew Cutler, Shariba Rivers, Avi Roque, Kevin Stangler, Elaine Bell, Jesse Massaro, Kyla Norton, William Boles, Jared Gooding, Thomas Dixon, Uriel Gomez, Amanda Cantlin, Sid Branca, Katrina Dion, Morgan McNaught, Charlie Baker, Aaryanna Gariss, Caitlin McCarthy, Bobby Huggins, Catherine Miller, AJ Schwartz, Anastarr Alvarez. Tickets are $15 - $20 and can be purchased here.
To Catch a Fish
Written by Brett Neveu
Directed by Ron OJ Parson
April 25th - July 1st
Inspired by true events, this compelling new play exposes a flawed law enforcement operation that walks the line between good intentions and deceit, testing the bonds of a family and community. In a low-income, residential neighborhood of Milwaukee, Terry Kilbourn has just begun a new job passing out flyers for a discount warehouse. When his bosses start asking more of him, the stakes rise quickly and his loved ones begin to question what is really going on. This play’s vibrant mix of family, romance, and danger swirls with mysteries about who to trust and what to believe. And its story confronts society’s fluid definition of justice—and the truth about who benefits from it.
The cast, artistic, and production team include: Linda Bright Clay, AnJi White, Jay Worthington,Tiffany Addison, Al’Jaleel McGhee, Geno Walker, Stephen Walker, Regina García, Christine Pascual, Mike Durst, David Kelepha Samba, Vivian Knouse, Matt Hawkins, Kristiana Rae Colón, Gabriella Welsh, Dina Spoerl, Regina Victor, Tanya Palmer, Amalie Vega. Eric Gerard, Regina W Mays, Katrina Richard, Stuart Ritter. Tickets are $40 and can be purchased here.
Written by Anu Bhatt
Directed by Barbara Zahora
May 17th - May 27th
Anu Bhatt combines the personal with the poetic in her new one-woman show about depression, body image, and confronting sexual abuse. Seeking to balance and embrace two identities, Bhatt explores her South Asian-American background with courage and insightful humor. A mix of raw memories, lyricism and tough truths, Hollow/Wave is a daring dance for empowerment through a sea of imperfection.
A Blue Island in The Red Sea
Written and Directed by Anthony Moseley
April 12th - May 20th
Collaboraction continues to explore the harsh reality of systemic racism in Chicago with A Blue Island in the Red Sea. A Blue Island in the Red Sea is a world premiere devised work that presents a diverse cast of Chicagoans in a meta-theatrical live experience intended to open eyes and further the conversation about racism and racial healing in our city. Written and directed by Collaboraction Artistic Director Anthony Moseley, A Blue Island in the Red Sea, was created through open workshops in collaboration with a team of community members, actors and designers.
The cast, artistic, and production team includes: Dana N. Anderson, Samuel Campbell III, Uday Joshi, Sean Patrick Leonard, Marcus D. Moore, P. Tyler Nielsen, Pearl Paramadilok, Esme Perez, Andrew Rios, Shannon Leigh Webber, Jose Manual Diaz-Soto, Liviu Passare, Parker Langvardt, Elsa Hiltner, Levert Wilkins, Jeremy Getz, John Nichols, Katy Vest, Giuliana Marchese, Elysia C. Banks, David Wooley, Noelle Hedges-Goettl, Caitlin Body, Manny Ortiz, Becs Bartle, Genevieve Fowler, Sunniva Holmlund, Chase Mathieu, Nate Ferguson, Joel Maisonet. Tickets are $15 - $30 and can be purchased here.