Chicago— The International Centre for Women Playwrights has announced the 2017 recipients of the 50/50 Applause Awards, including three theatres from Chicago. Northlight Theatre, Victory Gardens Theater and Windy City Playhouse were among 58 international recipients honored for producing 50% or more plays by women playwrights during the 2016/17 season.
The 2017 International Centre for Women Playwrights (ICWP) 50/50 Applause Awards celebrates gender parity for women playwrights at 58 theatres throughout The United States, Canada, Australia, Germany, United Kingdom, Singapore, and Tasmania. The major criteria for the awards in 2017 were that a theatre had to have three or more productions, both male and female playwrights in their season, and at least 50% of the full-length plays and performances must be the work of female playwrights.
“These three theatres represent the incredibly rich and diverse stories being told on Chicago stages every night. We are proud that they have been honored in such a way and look forward to many more works by women from all of our theatres this season,” says League of Chicago Theatres Executive Director Deb Clapp.
“The economic, development and career outcomes for female dramatists are severe when there is no equal opportunities policy being pursued,” said 50/50 Awards Co-chair Patricia L. Morin. “The current situation is economic discrimination. Until there is positive action, the world’s theatre stages will continue to promote the male imagination and female voices will remain unheard, to the detriment of the wider society.”
During the 2016/2017 Season Northlight Theatre produced the world premieres of Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley by Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon and Faceless by Selina Fillinger, as well as the Midwest premiere of By the Water by Sharyn Rothstein. In 2016/2017 Victory Gardens Theater presented Karen Hartman’s Roz and Ray in a co-world premiere with Seattle Repertory Theatre, the world premiere of Queen by Madhuri Shekar, and the Chicago premiere of Native Gardens by Karen Zacarias. In the past year Windy City Playhouse presented the Chicago premiere of The Explorers Club by Nell Benjamin, This by Melissa James Gibson and the Chicago premiere of King Liz by Fernanda Coppel.
The complete list of 50/50 Applause Award recipients for 2017 is as follows: Alberta Theatre Projects, Arena Stage, Arts Club Theatre, Aurora Theatre Company, Borderland Theatre, Book It Rep Theatre, Cadence Theatre Company (in partnership with Virginia Rep), Carousel Theatre for Young People, Center Stage, Central Works, Checkpoint Theatre, City Theatre Company, Company One Theatre, Curious Theatre Company, Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre, Entity Theatre, Globe Theatre, Great Canadian Theatre Company, Guthrie Theater, HERE Arts Center, History Theatre, Imago Theatre, Key City Public Theatre, Know Theatre of Cincinnati, Latino Theater Company, Manhattan Theatre Club, Marin Theatre Company, Mildred’s Umbrella Theater Company, Northlight Theatre, Off the Wall Productions, Open Stage of Harrisburg, Pacific Theatre, Plan-B Theatre Company, PlayMakers Repertory Company, Playwrights Horizons, Prairie Theatre Exchange, Public Theatre, Rep Stage (Howard Community College), Round House Theatre, Royal Court Theatre, Royal Manitoba Theatre Company, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Signature Theatre, South Coast Rep, State Theatre Company of South Australia, Storycrafter Studio, Tasmanian Theatre, Teatro Paraguas, The Belfry Theatre, The Bread & Roses Theatre, The Kingfisher Theater, Theater Alliance, Theatre Passe Muraille, University of Nebraska Omaha Theatre, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Theatre Co., Victory Gardens Theater, Windy City Playhouse, and Yale Repertory Theatre.
About International Centre for Women Playwrights (ICWP)
ICWP started in 1988 with a mission to support women playwrights worldwide and bring attention to their work. The ICWP 50/50 Applause Awards were founded in 2012 to increase awareness and applaud theatres that produced a season with an equal or greater number of plays written by female playwrights. For more information visit http://www.womenplaywrights.org.
About Chicago theater
Chicago theater is the leader in the U.S. with more than 250 theaters throughout Chicagoland, comprising a rich and varied community ranging from storefront, non-union theaters to the most renowned resident theaters in the country, including 5 which have been honored with Regional Tony Awards, and the largest touring Broadway organization in the nation. Chicago’s theaters serve 5 million audience members annually and have a combined budget of more than $250 million. Chicago produces and/or presents more world premieres annually than any other city in the nation. Last year alone Chicago theater companies produced more than 100 world premiere productions and adaptations. Each year Chicago theaters send new work to resident theaters across the country, to Broadway, and around the world.
The League of Chicago Theatres’ Mission Statement
The League of Chicago Theatres is an alliance of theaters which leverages its collective strength to promote, support and advocate for Chicago’s theater industry locally, nationally and internationally. The League of Chicago Theatres Foundation is dedicated to enhancing the art of theater in the Chicago area through audience development and support services for theaters and theater professionals.
For a comprehensive list of Chicago productions, visit the League of Chicago Theatres website, ChicagoPlays.com. Half-price tickets to the current week’s performances as well as future performances are available at HotTix.org and at the two Hot Tix half-price ticket locations: across from the Chicago Cultural Center at Expo72 (72 E. Randolph) and Block Thirty Seven (108 N. State).