League of Chicago Theatres Launches Storefront Playwright Project
In the inaugural Storefront Playwright Project, the League of Chicago Theatres will provide window space at Expo 72 for emerging and established playwrights to work on a current writing project in view of the public in collaboration with the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. From a large screen in a window facing the sidewalk, the public will be able to read what the playwright is writing and watch the creation of the next great Chicago play in real time. The Storefront Playwright Project will take place at Expo72 located at 72 E. Randolph St. in downtown Chicago, December 4 – 22, 2012, Tuesdays through Saturdays, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Storefront Playwright Project aims to support the playwriting community, increase awareness of emerging and established playwrights, and encourage audiences to engage more deeply with Chicago theatre and the creative process of writing a new play for the theatre. The League of Chicago Theatres will collect contact information from interested visitors who want updates on future developments of the playwrights' work.
"We were invigorated by the success of Write Out Front: A Playwright Happening in New York and decided to sponsor a similar program in Chicago," says Deb Clapp, Executive Director of The League of Chicago Theatres. "Chicago is the home to more world premiere plays than any other city. The Storefront Theatre Project gives us the opportunity to support our playwrights while giving visibility to playwrights, the art of playwriting and the active new play scene in Chicago."
Playwrights selected for the project will receive a stipend of $50 per day for a four hour time slot (10 a.m. – 2 p.m. or 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.) and will be promoted through on-site signage and social media, as well as on http://chicagoplays.com/component/content/article/34-chicago/182-storefront-playwright-project.html
The League of Chicago Theatres' Storefront Playwright Project is based upon Write Out Front: A Playwright Happening, created by playwright Micheline Auger. Write Out Front was held at New York's Drama Bookshop, from August 13 to September 1, 2012, and hosted 71 playwrights, over the three-week/142-hour period.
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. In 2009-10 alone Chicago theater companies produced more than 130 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 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.
About The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events
The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) is dedicated to supporting Chicago's arts and culture community. This includes fostering the development of Chicago's nonprofit arts sector, independent working artists and for-profit arts organizations demonstrating the City of Chicago's commitment to celebrating the arts.