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PRESENTED BY WildClaw Theatre
September 11, 2018
October 13, 2018
2B

A world premiere by Kristin Idaszak and directed by Jess Hutchinson. When Quinn discovers her estranged mother is dying, she returns to a home she fled long ago. As she cares for her mother, Quinn wrestles with disturbing childhood memories. What is her mother’s secret? What do the bedtime stories of Selkies her mother once told her really mean? Told in three interconnected monologues, SECOND SKIN (winner of the Kennedy Center’s Paula Vogel and Jean Kennedy Smith awards) investigates the fraught relationship between mothers and daughters, and how one mistake can reverberate across generations.


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PRESENTED BY Firebrand Theatre
September 22, 2018
October 28, 2018
Heath

CAROLINE, OR CHANGE is set in Lake Charles, Louisiana: the end of 1963. America is changing. Caroline Thibodeaux is a black mother of four and a maid, working for the southern Jewish Gellman family. Caroline struggles with changes monumental and mundane, and her relationship with the young, grieving boy who lives in the house she cleans. Riveting, moving and awe-inspiring, CAROLINE, OR CHANGE features a virtuosic score by Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home, Violet) and a breathtaking book and lyrics by Pulitzer Prize winner Tony Kushner (Angels in America), the music ranges from Motown to Klezmer, the storytelling from political to magical. Direction by: Lili-Anne Brown, Music Direction by: Andra Velis Simon, Choreography: Brigitte Ditmars


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PRESENTED BY The Plagiarists
October 3, 2018
October 27, 2018
3A

In this world premiere by Kim Z. Dale and directed by Jen Poulin, Claudine is a brilliant academic who sometimes wonders if she has settled for family and a boring job instead of pursuing her full potential. So when a new brain-enhancing technology is developed, she jumps at the chance to be part of the Endeavor Mind program and pursue the dreams she had set aside. But this experiment may have unintended consequences, for Claudine and for those around her. Inspired by Faust, The Twilight Zone, and Black Mirror, Endeavor Mind is where corporate science, human biology, and intellectual aspiration converge. Please note that there is some sexual content, flashing lights, and loud sounds in Endeavor Mind.


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PRESENTED BY New Colony Theatre Company
October 3, 2018
November 4, 2018
Upstairs Mainstage

By day, Tom works a dead end job for the man and can’t get a date. But by night, he’s top of the leader board, a master gamer. Othered and lonely, Tom is sucked into the Order of the Sword, an online community that seems to promise him his digital personal in real life. Developed through The New Colony’s Writers’ Room and inspired by Gamergate and online hate movements, FUN HARMLESS WARMACHINE is a cautionary tale of the power of fear and the seductive pull of the alt right. Written by Co-Artistic Director Fin Coe and directed by James Fleming. Ages 12+.


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PRESENTED BY Haven Theatre Company
October 15, 2018
October 31, 2018
2A

The DIRECTOR’S HAVEN is back for the 4th consecutive year, with three more early career directors eager to share their visions! Charlotte Drover, Anna Sung-En Medill and Dani Wieder will headline the next chapter of Haven’s initiative to showcase rising directors as they share their artistic point of view with the Chicago community. Each director will helm a fully produced 30-45 minute play of their choosing that will run back-to-back at each performance. See what the next generation can do when provided with that all-too-rare commodity: a room to share their vision. Contains mature themes, parental advisory suggested. This is a Pay-What-You-Can performance.


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PRESENTED BY First Floor Theatre
October 20, 2018
November 18, 2018
2B

A timely, irreverent examination of growing up black in America by rising-star playwright Tearrance Arvelle Chisholm. Marquis, a book smart prep-schooler from suburban Maryland, meets Tru, a street savvy Baltimorean, in a holding cell. Tru thinks Marquis has lost his “blackness” and pens a manual entitled Being Black for Dummies, as they navigate a world of cheerleaders, Black Lives Matter, 2Pac, Nietzsche, Apollo, and Dionysus—each vying for Marquis’ future.


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PRESENTED BY Broken Nose Theatre
November 9, 2018
December 15, 2018
2A

When a violent encounter with a shoplifter leaves half of their team fired or in the hospital, the security guards of a downtown Chicago retail store find themselves under corporate investigation. Short-staffed, ill prepared and faced with accusations of racial profiling that threaten to dismantle the crew, they must decide: do we admit to something we’re not guilty of to save our jobs, or do we give the higher-ups a taste of what it’s like in the trenches? In the style of their breakout hit last year “At The Table,” Broken Nose Theatre and playwright Spenser Davis tailor-fit each role to fit the ensemble.


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PRESENTED BY Yippee Productions LLC
December 6, 2018
January 12, 2019
Heath Mainstage

Returning to the stage with a vengeance, “Yippee Ki-Yay, Merry Christmas: a Die Hard Musical Parody” is about grizzled NYPD cop Bruce McClane, and his quest to win back his estranged wife, Holly Generic, at her Christmas Eve office party at the Nakatomi Plaza in sunny LA, 1987. German terrorist Hans Olo and his henchmen take the cast and audience hostage, and it is up to Bruce – with some help from the LAPD, FBI and Arnold Schwartzen-Schnitzel – to save everyone before time runs out. Book and score conceived by Michael Shepherd Jordan, Alex Garday and Stephanie McCullough, with choreography from Sheena Laird and directed by Tiffani Moore Swalley.


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PRESENTED BY Broken Nose Theatre
February 3, 2019
March 2, 2019
2A

GIRL IN THE RED CORNER by Stephen Spotswood Directed by: Elizabeth Laidlaw Midwest Premiere Unemployed and fresh from an abusive marriage, Halo steps into a gym one day and signs up for mixed martial arts lessons. Her family thinks it’s ridiculous. Her trainer thinks she’s soft. But none of them know the anger that fuels her ambition. As she preps for her debut match, she finds herself going toe-to-toe with people in every aspect of her life…But when it’s rage that brought you to the cage, are you really ready to see what winning looks like? GIRL IN THE RED CORNER is a visceral, fast-moving tale of self-discovery, one that allows women to take centerstage in a sport and story so often dominated by men.


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PRESENTED BY First Floor Theatre
February 16, 2019
March 16, 2019
2B

Gary has not been the same since the 2016 election. He has to not only care for his activist husband and write copy for a bacon company with an animal abuse problem, but every night he has sex dreams about the Vice President. From the recent past to our imminent dystopia, Mike Pence Sex Dreams asks us what our roles are as citizens under a government where some animals are more equal than others.


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PRESENTED BY Broken Nose Theatre
April 19, 2019
May 18, 2019
2A

LANGUAGE ROOMS by Yussef El-Guindi Directed by: Kaiser Zaki Ahmed Midwest Premiere Ahmed loves America, and he’s proud to prove his patriotism whenever possible. He pays his taxes on time, he’s comes to the office dressed for success, and he’s made a point to be the best translator working at this particular Homeland Security detainment facility. So when a rumor swirls around the watercooler calling his loyalty into question, he jumps into action, hoping to do whatever’s necessary to maintain his reputation as one of “the good ones.” An episode of The Office that slowly transforms into 1984, LANGUAGE ROOMS examines the paranoia polluting our current political climate. When you’re an immigrant, can you ever truly be at home in a country that may always see you as an outsider?


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PRESENTED BY First Floor Theatre
April 20, 2019
May 18, 2019
2B

Ella is a precocious and fiercely competitive actress with a desperate need to make her father David, a famous playwright, proud. making her famous playwright father David proud. Over the course of a boozy, drug-fueled evening, Ella and David spend the evening digging into family history, artistic passion, and unspoken fears as they wait for the reviews, but what is unearthed can’t simply be reburied. This daring play pulls the audience into the middle of a deeply complicated relationship, exploring how we build and break idealized versions of our loved ones.


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