Photo Flash: First Look at Theatre Seven's BLACKTOP SKY in Steppenwolf's Garage Rep 2013
BlackTop Sky by Christina Anderson, will be directed by Cassy Sanders and features Kristin E. Ellis, Eric Lynch and Julian Parker.
BlackTop Sky examines the intersection of love, violence and community inside an institution with a haunting Chicago legacy: the public housing project. After witnessing police rough up a fellow resident of the projects, 18-year-old Ida befriends a young homeless man who sleeps on a nearby bench. As their unlikely friendship grows, will it strengthen her connection to home or drive her away in search of a new life?
The creative team for BlackTop Sky includes Lizzie Bracken (scenic design), Brenda Winstead (costume design), Lee Keenan (lighting design) and Chris LaPorte (sound design). Additional credits include Paige Collins (assistant director), Stephen Wisegarver (fight choreographer), Jennifer McClendon (production manager), Toni Kendrick (properties master) and Taylor Fenderbosch (stage manager).
Theatre Seven of Chicago (Brian Golden, Managing Artistic Director; Cassy Sanders, Associate Artistic Director) produces work that explores the diverse Chicago experience. Since 2007, the company has produced 17 standout offerings, greeted 13,000 audience members, paid 200+ artists for their contributions, earned nominations for three Jeff Awards and two Black Theatre Alliance Awards and won the 2012 Emerging Theatre Award. The company's noted world premieres include The Chicago Landmark Project, We Live Here, Diversey Harbor, Yes, This Really Happened To Me and Cooperstown. Theatre Seven also hosts a robust menu of auxiliary programming, including a monthly reading series, Shikaakwa. theatreseven.org.
Since the inaugural repertory in 2010, Garage Rep has brought the work of nine storefront theater companies in Chicago to the Steppenwolf stage, including: Hit the Wall by The Inconvenience, Oohrah! by LiveWire Chicago and He Who by Theatre Zarko in 2012; Heddatron by Sideshow Theatre Company, The Three Faces of Doctor Crippen by The Strange Tree Group and Sonnets for an Old Century by UrbanTheater Company in 2011; and The Twins Would Like To Say by Dog & Pony Theatre Company, punkplay by Pavement Group and Adore by XIII Pocket in 2010. Garage Rep 2013 marks the fourth annual series, adding Bailiwick Chicago, Buzz22 Chicago and Theatre Seven of Chicago to the distinguished list of Garage Rep participants.
Garage Rep 2013 also features The After Party, a line-up of late-night, cross-genre performances, every Thursday nights starting March 7. Curated by Steppenwolf Associate Producer Jacob Padrón, The After Party includes performances by Salonathon; experimental rock trio, Paper Mice; genre-bending classical musicians, Spektral Quartet; solo performer and spoken word artist Shannon Matesky; Route 66 Theatre Company; comedy-variety show, The City Life Supplement; and soul dance party, Windy City Soul Club.Steppenwolf Theatre Company is America's longest standing, most distinguished ensemble theater, producing nearly 700 performances and events annually in its three Chicago theater spaces-the 515-seat Downstairs Theatre, the 299-seat Upstairs Theatre and the 80-seat Garage Theatre. Formed in 1976 by a collective of actors, Steppenwolf has grown into an ensemble of 43 actors, writers and directors. Artistic programming at Steppenwolf includes a five-play Subscription Season, a two-play Steppenwolf for Young Adults season and three repertory series: First Look Repertory of New Work, Garage Rep and Next Up. While firmly grounded in the Chicago community, nearly 40 original Steppenwolf productions have enjoyed success both nationally and internationally, including Off-Broadway, Broadway, London, Sydney and Dublin. Steppenwolf has the distinction of being the only theater to receive the National Medal of Arts, in addition to numerous other prestigious honors including an Illinois Arts Legend Award and nine Tony Awards. Martha Lavey is the Artistic Director and David Hawkanson is the Executive Director. Nora Daley is Chair of Steppenwolf's Board of Trustees. For additional information, visitsteppenwolf.org, facebook.com/steppenwolftheatre and twitter.com/steppenwolfthtr.
Photo Credit: Michael Brosilow
Kristin E. Ellis
Kristin E. Ellis, Julian Parker and Eric Lynch
Kristin E. Ellis and Julian Parker
Julian Parker and Kristin E. Ellis
Kristin E. Ellis