Barrel of Monkeys Hosts Annual CELEBRATION OF AUTHORS

Barrel of Monkeys Hosts Annual CELEBRATION OF AUTHORS

Barrel of Monkeys invites you to join student-authors, their classmates, families and educators for the annual CELEBRATION OF AUTHORS, featuring performances of student-written stories created at each of its partner schools and after-school program during the 2018-19 season. Performed by Barrel of Monkeys' ensemble of actors and musicians and directed by Artistic Director Brandon Cloyd, this FREE event takes place Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 6:30 pm (6 pm pre-show reception and activities, 6:30 pm curtain) at the University of Chicago's Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th St. in Chicago. For reservations, please visit or call (773) 506-7140. Tickets are limited and available on a first come, first served basis.

During the 2018-19 season, Barrel of Monkeys worked with 19 school partners in 50 classrooms, plus its after-school program. The Chicago-based arts education theater ensemble, now in its 22nd season, conducts creative writing residencies in Chicago elementary schools. The ensemble of actor-educators then turns the students' stories and words into professionally performed theater, presented both in-school and for the general public through its revues. Barrel of Monkeys annually performs more than 200 student-written stories for the students in their schools and 175 stories on the stage for the general public through its year-round variety show, THAT'S WEIRD, GRANDMA at the Neo-Futurist Theater, 5153 N. Ashland Ave. in Chicago. For additional information on Barrel of Monkeys' educational programs and public performances, please visit

Elementary schools served by Barrel of Monkeys during the 2018-19 season include South Loop Elementary, Columbia Explorers Academy, Peirce Elementary, Lake Forest Schools, Ravenswood Elementary, Erie Elementary Charter School, McPherson Elementary School, Dixon Elementary School, Morton School of Excellence, Carter School of Excellence, Poe Classical Elementary, North Lawndale Cluster, Dewey School of Excellence and Loyola Park After School Program.

About the Director:

Brandon Cloyd joined Barrel of Monkeys in 2007 and has been deeply involved in many facets of the company ever since. Prior to joining BOM, Brandon graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and a minor in Business Institutions. Within BOM, Brandon has served as an actor, teaching artist, lead teacher, a member of Teacher Corps, as well as directing shows for schools and public performances of That's Weird, Grandma. Before becoming the company's Artistic Director in September 2017, Brandon served as BOM After-School Program Coordinator at Loyola Park from 2014-2016 and Program Director from 2016-2017. Outside of Barrel of Monkeys, he worked as the Associate Director of Camp Echo, where he has spent 13 summers managing campers and staff at a co-ed sleep away camp in Upstate New York. Brandon currently serves on the board of the League of Chicago Theatres and has worked with other theatre companies including Urban Theatre Company, American Theater Company, Filament Theatre, InGen Productions, ACLE's Teatrino in Italy and Purple Crayon Players at Northwestern University.

About Barrel of Monkeys:

Since Barrel of Monkeys' inception in 1997, its teaching artists have served more than 60 Chicago Public Schools. Over 15,000 elementary school students have participated in the Barrel of Monkeys programs, which aim to build students' writing skills, improve self-esteem, and instill confidence in their ideas and abilities.

Barrel of Monkeys is sponsored in part by Wintrust Financial, Allscripts, Inc., Ernst and Young and Punchkick Interactive. It receives generous support from the Illinois Arts Council Agency; the National Endowment for the Arts; a CityArts Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events; the Chicago Community Trust; Crown Family Philanthropies; Alphawood Foundation of Chicago; the Maurice R. and Meta G. Gross Foundation; Polk Bros Foundation; the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation; the Robert and Isabelle Bass Foundation, Inc.; The Saints; The Topfer Family Foundation, and many other generous individuals and foundations.

Celebration of Authors is sponsored in part by the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts.

Photo: Kayla Pulley and Barrel of Monkeys company members perform "Ghost Story" at CELEBRATION OF AUTHORS 2018. Photo by Beth Bullock Photography.

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