Stage Left Theatre Presents IMPENETRABLE World Premiere, 9/7

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Stage Left Theatre Presents IMPENETRABLE World Premiere, 9/7

Stage Left Theatre announces the upcoming World Premiere of Impenetrable written by Mia McCullough and directed by ensemble member Greg Werstler. Impenetrable is the first production of Stage Left's 31st season. Press opening is Friday, September 7th at 8 PM at Theater Wit, 1229 W Belmont. The show runs through October 7th.

In an effort to increase his business, a spa-owner has a billboard put up advertising his services. The image of a gorgeous model is dissected like a side of beef, with arrows pointing at her "problems" and suggesting cosmetic "solutions" his spa can provide. The billboard sparks outrage in the women of the community, and after protests and a boycott of the salon, the billboard is taken down.

Inspired by actual events, Impenetrable originally came to Stage Left as a brief synopsis and a sample of about 15 pages. During one of our Downstage Left residencies in the winter/spring of 2010, playwright Mia McCullough and director Greg Werstler embarked on a 3 month development process to complete the script and bring a workshop production of Impenetrable (then titled The Face of a Ruined Woman) to Leapfest 7, Stage Left's annual festival of new work. During the festival, the play received three workshop performances, which were met with terrific responses from sold-out crowds. Impenetrable also earned McCullough an honorable mention in the Jane Chambers Playwriting Contest.

In line with our mission to raise social and political debate, Stage Left offers patrons a Symposium Series for every production. Immediately following each Sunday matinee, we will invite the audience to stay for a discussion centered on a particular question raised by the performance. Each Sunday will feature different community guests who offer distinct perspectives. Admission to the Symposium Series is free, but it is recommended that attendees have seen the production in order to fully appreciate and participate in the discussion. Impenetrable raises debate about responsibility of the advertising media, biases based on appearance, and the ramifications that a popular culture which glorifies youth and beauty has on our own self image.

Impenetrable runs Thursdays through Saturdays at 8:00 PM, Sundays at 3:00 PM from 9/7/12 through 10/7/12. Tickets are $25, and will be available through the Theater Wit box office either online at www.theaterwit.org or by calling 773-975-8150. Press Opening is Friday, September 7 at 8:00 PM. Previews are Saturday, September 1 at 8:00pm; Sunday, September 2 at 3:00pm; Wednesday, September 5 at 8pm; and Thursday, September 6 at 8:00 PM. Preview tickets are $20. Impenetrable will be performed at Theatre Wit at 1229 W. Belmont in Chicago. The theater is handicapped and CTA accessible via the Belmont El (Red & Brown).

Born and raised in New York, Mia McCullough has been writing plays for 20 years in Chicago. After migrating to Chicagoland to study theatre and creative writing, Mia opted to stay and make Chicago her artistic home. Her plays have been produced in Chicago at Steppenwolf Theatre Company (TAKING CARE and SPARE CHANGE), Chicago Dramatists (LUCINDA'S BED and SINCE AFRICA), and Stage Left Theatre (SPARE CHANGE, ECHOES OF ANOTHER MAN, CHAGRIN FALLS, CYBER SERENADE ) where she was an ensemble member for many years. Nationally, Mia's plays have been produced at theatres such as The Old Globe in San Diego, Actor's Express in Atlanta, The Victory Theatre in Los Angeles, InterAct in Philadelphia, and the Cincinnati Shakespeare Festival.

Greg Werstler's Stage Left directing credits include The Eight: Reindeer Monologues, After Ashley, Ruby Vector (LeapFest 6), The Face of a Ruined Woman (LeapFest 7) and Blessed Assurance (Leapfest 8). Greg has worked as a theater administrator and director in Chicago for more than 15 years. He is the Director of Creative Sales, CFO of The ComedySportz Theatre. Other directing credits include ComedySportz Crew Meets: Snow White, and ComedySportz Crew Meets: Winnie the Pooh, also Rumors and Loveliest Afternoon for Eclipse Theatre Company, Voice of the Prairie and The Eight for Dolphinback Theatre (of which he was a founding member), A Midsummer Night's Dream for Equity Library Theatre and Angels in America at Lake Forest College.

The cast includes SLT ensemble member Melanie Derleth (Thalya) and guest artists Emi Clark (Julie), Kamal Hans (Mourad), Jennifer Pompa (Andie), Kyle Johnson (Pete) and Kayla Rea (Cari)

The staff includes SLT ensemble members John Kohn III (lighting design) and Adam Smith (sound design) with guest artists Jason Crutchfield (stage management), Kristin Toerpe (production management), Roger Wykes (scenic design), Erica Griese (costume design), Anna Henson (projections design), Rick Julien (technical direction), Lindsay Bartlett (dialect coach), and Amy Szerlong (assistant direction).

Founded in 1982, Stage Left Theatre is committed to developing and producing plays that raise debate and challenge perspectives on political and social issues. Through a full subscription season and our new play development program Downstage Left, Stage Left strives to ask provocative social and political questions by producing a mix of new works, regional premieres and timeless classics.

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