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Babes With Blades Announces Cast and Creative Team For RICHARD III

Performances run August 25 – October 15.

Babes With Blades Announces Cast and Creative Team For RICHARD III

Babes With Blades Theatre Company (BWBTC) returns to live performances with its 2022 season and its presentation of William Shakespeare's Richard III, in partnership with the University of Illinois Chicago's Disability Cultural Center and directed by Richard Costes, August 25 - October 15, at The Edge Theater, 5451 N. Broadway Ave, with select performances being live streamed. Previews are Thursday, Aug. 25 - Saturday, Aug. 27 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, Aug. 28 at 3 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 1 and Friday, Sept. 2 at 8 p.m. Press Opening is Saturday, Sept. 3 at 8 p.m. The regular performance schedule is Thursdays - Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. All performances are presented with open captioning and select performances will be live streamed. Tickets are $20-35 and will go on sale this summer.

Babes With Blades Theatre Company brings the tale of Shakespeare's most complex, cruel and fascinating protagonist to life this summer in a new version that accounts for previously disregarded perspectives. BWBTC Shakespeare's Richard III tells the story of Richard of Gloucester, who uses intelligence, deception and political manipulation towards his ultimate goal: England's crown. Babes With Blades' production is a partnership with a project called "Making Inclusive Theatre: Richard III as Disability Art," a collaboration with the University of Illinois Chicago's Disability Cultural Center, the UIC Department of Theatre and Bodies of Work, a network of disability arts and culture. BWBTC Shakespeare's production of Richard III adds a new layer to the complex tale by making it more inclusive in order to further explore othering and disability culture.

"This production represents so many aspects that are priorities for BWBTC: focusing on marginalized stories, telling complicated tales of flawed humans and our signature of stage combat as a storytelling tool," states Artistic Director Hayley Rice. "This team is ready to tell Richard III's story in the manner it should be told, with the artists who should be telling it, but are so often left out of the conversation completely."

The ensemble cast of 13 artists features Kristen Alesia, (she/her/hers/they/them/theirs; Lady Anne/Lord Hastings), Aszkara Gilchrist, (she/her/hers; Richard III); Madison Hill, (they/them/theirs; Ratcliffe/Duke of York); Leah Huskey, (she/her/hers; Lord Grey/Duchess of York); Kayla Marie Klammer, (she/her/hers; Lord Lovell/Archbishop of Canterbury); Lauren Paige, (she/her/hers; Queen Elizabeth); Pat Roache, (they/them/theirs; Queen Margaret/Brackenbury); Genesis Sanchez, (she/her/hers/they/them/theirs; Earl of Richmond); Symmone Sill, (she/her/hers; Marquis of Dorset/Prince Edward); Marianna Gallegos, (she/her/hers; understudy for Margaret/Brackenbury, Ratcliffe/York, Catesby); Jo Hoch, (she/her/hers, understudy Richard III); Alison Kertz, (she/her/hers, understudy Queen Elizabeth/Richmond, Grey/Duchess of York); Emma Norville, (she/her/hers, understudy Clarence/Stanley/Lord Mayor, Anne/Hastings); Elizabeth Quilter, (she/her/hers, understudy Lovell/Archbishop, Buckingham) and Xela Rosas, (she/her/hers, understudy Rivers/Bishop of Ely/Messenger, Dorset/Prince Edward, King Edward IV) along with BWBTC ensemble members Kim Fukawa, (she/her/hers, Catesby/King Edward IV); Jillian Leff, (she/her/hers; Duke of Buckingham); Jennifer L. Mickleson, (she/her/hers; Duke of Clarence/Lord Stanley/Lord Mayor); Izis Mollinedo, (they/them/theirs/she/her/hers; Rivers/Bishop of Ely/Messenger).

The production team includes Richard Costes, (he/him/his; director); Claire Alston, (she/her/hers; dramaturg); Esau Andaleon, (he/him/his; assistant stage manager); Dr. Margaret Fink, (she/her/hers; director of Disability Cultural Center, UIC); Bianca C. Frazer, PhD (she/her/hers; UIC Disability Culture Advisory Team) Rose Hamill, (she/her/hers; production manager); Carrie Hardin, (she/her/hers; text coach); Jesse D. Irwin, (he/him/his; sound design); Matt Lauterbach, (he/him/his; accessibility coordinator); Sydney Lynne, (she/her/hers; scenic design); kClare McKellaston (she/her/hers; costume design), Tab Mocherman (they/them/theirs; COVID compliance officer); AJ Morley (he/him/his; props design); Gabrielle Owens, (she/her/hers/they/them/theirs; stage manager); Kat Pleviak, (she/her/hers; puppet design); Keyana Robinson, (she/her/hers); UIC videographer); Carrie Sandahl, (she/her/hers, PhD, professor of Department of Disability and Human Development; UIC Disability Culture Advisory Team), Rachelle Tsachor, (she/her/hers; UIC Disability Culture Advisory Team), Becca Veneable, (she/her/hers; lighting design) and BWBTC Ensemble Members Maureen Yasko, (she/her/hers; fight/intimacy design) and Jillian Leff, (she/her/hers; assistant fight/intimacy design).

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