Chicago–Lookingglass Theatre Company announces its complete 2017–2018 season lineup. The season begins with the return of the award-winning, circus-infused Hard Times, adapted and directed by Artistic Director and Ensemble Member Heidi Stillman from the book by Charles Dickens and in association with The Actors Gymnasium. Hard Times features Ensemble Members David Catlin returning to the role of Stephen Blackpool, Raymond Fox returning to the role of Mr. Gradgrind and Artistic Associate Troy West returning to the role of Mr. Bounderby. Following Hard Times is the World Premiere of Plantation!, written by Ensemble Member Kevin Douglas and directed by Ensemble Member David Schwimmer. This new comedy features Ensemble Member Louise Lamson and Tamberla Perry. Concluding the 2017-2018 season is the World Premiere of 20,000 Leagues Under the Seas, adapted by Ensemble Member David Kersnar and Althos Low from the books by Jules Verne. Kersnar also directs this new work, featuring Ensemble Member Kareem Bandealy as Captain Nemo and Artistic Associate Kasey Foster as Professor Aronnax. Subscriptions to Lookingglass’ 2017-2018 season are on sale now and may be purchased through the box office at (312) 337-0665 or lookingglasstheatre.org.
“It’s hard to believe we are on the precipice of our 30th year as Lookingglass Theatre Company. From a dream shared by a scrappy group of college students to becoming a Tony Award-winning theatrical institution, what a raucous journey through the looking-glass it has been, and continues to be,” comments Artistic Director Heidi Stillman. “I am elated to announce our 30th Anniversary season with three stories that will, in turn, showcase the power of the imagination, hilariously upend preconceived notions of race and family, and return us to the seas for an epic adventure that dives deep into our own truths.”
The Lookingglass 2017–2018 Season up close:
Adapted and Directed by Ensemble Member Heidi Stillman
From the Book by Charles Dickens
In Association with The Actors Gymnasium
October 4, 2017 – January 14, 2018
Featuring Ensemble Members David Catlin returning to the role of Stephen Blackpool, Raymond Fox returning to the role of Mr. Gradgrind and Artistic Associate Troy West returning to the role of Mr. Bounderby
Lookingglass launches its 30th Season with the return of the award-winning, circus-infused Hard Times.
A Dickensian carnival of characters inhabits the streets of smoke-choked Coketown: grim Mr. Gradgrind’s school churns out joyless students; poor Stephen Blackpool toils in the nearby mines; and mill-owner Mr. Bounderby, full of bluster and bombast, presides over it all. Only when a traveling circus alights nearby, and young orphan Sissy Jupe enters their world, does a ray of hope shine through.
Artistic Director Heidi Stillman adapts and directs this timeless love-letter to the power of beauty, hope, and imagination.
Written by Ensemble Member Kevin Douglas
Directed by Ensemble Member David Schwimmer
February 21 – April 22, 2018
Featuring Ensemble Member Louise Lamson as Kimberly and Tamberla Perry as Madison
Look who’s coming to tea…
A Texas matriarch, bless her heart, discovers that the history of the ancestral home is, well…complicated. When she reveals the news to her Southern Belle daughters, tempers rage hotter than the devil’s armpit and pandemonium runs amok on the pristine plantation…and that’s before the other set of sisters arrive.
Ensemble Member and playwright Kevin Douglas (Thaddeus and Slocum: A Vaudeville Adventure) returns with a sharp pen and sharper wit to slash into America’s thorniest underbrush and most enduring conundrum. Ensemble Member David Schwimmer directs this World Premiere black (and white) comedy.
20,000 Leagues Under the Seas
Adapted by David Kersnar and Althos Low
From the Books by Jules Verne
Directed by Ensemble Member David Kersnar
May 23 – August 19, 2018
Featuring Ensemble Member Kareem Bandealy as Captain Nemo and Artistic Associate Kasey Foster as Professor Aronnax
When a terrifying sea monster is spotted off the coast, renowned scientist Professor Aronnax and fellow explorers set out to investigate. They soon find themselves kidnapped and held under the command, and spell, of the mysterious Captain Nemo. As they circle the globe aboard the most advanced submarine the world has never seen, they confront giant squids, bizarre sea creatures, and the monsters that lurk below…and within.
Adapted from Jules Verne’s epic adventure exploring the murky perils of the seas, Ensemble Member David Kersnar invites you to board the Nautilus and “Dive! Dive! Dive!” into this Lookingglass World Premiere.
Subscriptions are on sale for the 2017–2018 Season. Performances will be held at Lookingglass Theatre Company, located inside Chicago’s historic Water Tower Water Works, 821 N. Michigan Ave. at Pearson.
Subscribers can choose between a 3-play subscription, the Gglasspass program, or for those under 35, the Madhatter’s Club. For the 2017–2018 season, 3-play subscriptions range from $116–$170.
The Gglasspass is a flex pass available to all ages. For $150, Gglasspass holders receive 3 tickets that can be used in any combination and denomination for any Lookingglass production in the 2017–2018 season.
The Madhatter’s Club flex pass is available to those 35 or younger. The Madhatter’s Club flex pass is $75 and includes 3 tickets that members can use in any combination and denomination for any Lookingglass production in the 2017-2018 season.
Subscription benefits include access to the best seats in the house, pre-sale opportunities and savings before single tickets go on sale to the general public, special perks at restaurant partners, unlimited ticket exchanges, discounted parking at the nearby John Hancock Center, Water Tower Place and Olympia Centre Garage, reduced tuition for Lookingglass’ renowned classes and summer camps, and access to exclusive subscriber-only events. For season subscription and ticket information, call the Lookingglass Theatre box office at (312) 337-0665 or visit lookingglasstheatre.org.
About Lookingglass Theatre Company
Inventive. Collaborative. Transformative. Lookingglass Theatre Company, recipient of the 2011 Regional Theatre Tony Award, was founded in 1988 by eight Northwestern University students. Now in its 29th season, Lookingglass is home to a multi-disciplined ensemble of artists who create story-centered theatrical work that is physical, aurally rich and visually metaphoric. The Company has staged 64 world premieres, received 143 Joseph Jefferson Awards and nominations, and work premiered at Lookingglass has been produced in New York City, Los Angeles, Seattle, Berkeley, Philadelphia, Princeton, Hartford, Kansas City, Washington D.C., Atlanta, Louisville and St. Louis. Lookingglass original scripts have been produced across the United States. In 2016, Lookingglass received the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions.
The Lookingglass Theatre in Chicago’s landmark Water Tower Water Works opened in June 2003. In addition to developing and presenting ensemble work, Lookingglass Education and Community programs encourage creativity, teamwork and confidence with thousands of community members each year.
Lookingglass Theatre Company continues to expand its artistic, financial and institutional boundaries under the guidance of Artistic Director Heidi Stillman, Executive Director Rachel Kraft, Producing Director Philip R. Smith, Connectivity and Engagement Director Andrew White, General Manager Michele Anderson, a 24 member artistic ensemble, 23 artistic associates, an administrative staff and a dedicated board of directors led by Chairman John McGowan of CTC| myCFO (a part of BMO Financial Group) and President Nancy Timmers, civic leader and philanthropist. For more information, visit lookingglasstheatre.org.