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Cast Announced For Kristine Thatcher's Bio-Drama VOICE OF GOOD HOPE at City Lit Theater

Cast Announced For Kristine Thatcher's Bio-Drama VOICE OF GOOD HOPE at City Lit Theater

Cast and design team have been announced for City Lit Theater's second production of the 2019-2020 season, Kristine Thatcher's VOICE OF GOOD HOPE, a bio-drama of Barbara Jordan, the first African American congresswoman from the Deep South. Jordan earned national stature in the 1970's as a member of the House Judiciary Committee that considered articles of impeachment against Richard Nixon and as the keynote speaker of the 1976 Democratic National Convention. Kristine Thatcher, who is City Lit's playwright-in-residence, was nominated for Best New Work in the 2019 Jeff Awards for her play, THE SAFE HOUSE, which premiered at City Lit last fall. VOICE OF GOOD HOPE premiered at Victory Gardens Theater in 2000 and has been produced across the US since then. Press opening is Sunday, January 19, 2020.

City Lit Artistic Director and Producer Terry McCabe, who will direct the production, announced his cast today. The role of Barbara Jordan will be played by Andrea Conway-Diaz. Also in the cast are Susie Griffith (Nancy Earl), Sahara Glasener-Boles (Karen Woodruff), Jamie Black (John Ed Patten), Paul Chakrin (Robert Strauss), Noelle Klyce (Julie Dunn); and McKennzie Boyd and MiKayla Boyd, who will alternate as "Heart" - Barbara Jordan as a child. The design team includes Ray Toler (set design), Katy Vest (costume design) and Daniel Salazar (lighting design).

Tickets, priced at $28 for previews and $32 for regular performances, are on sale now at . Senior prices are $23 for previews and $27 for regular performances. Students and military are $12.00 for all performances.


By City Lit's resident playwright Kristine Thatcher
Directed by Terry McCabe
January 10 - February 23, 2020
Previews January 10 - 18, 2020
Preview ticket prices $28.00, seniors $23.00, students and military $12.00 (all plus applicable fees)
Regular run Sunday, January 19 - Sunday, February 23, 2020
Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 pm, Sundays at 3 pm. Mondays February 10 and 17 at 7:30 pm
Regular run ticket prices $32.00, seniors $27.00, students and military $12.00 (all plus applicable fees)
PRESS OPENING Sunday January 19, 2020 at 3:00 pm
Performances at City Lit Theater, 1020 W. Bryn Mawr Ave. Chicago 60660 (Inside Edgewater Presbyterian Church)

A dramatic portrait of Barbara Jordan, the first African American congresswoman to be elected from the Deep South. The play follows Jordan from her childhood in Houston's Fifth Ward through her receiving the Medal of Freedom from President Bill Clinton, and deals with her pivotal role on the House Judiciary Committee during its hearings concerning the possible impeachment of President Richard Nixon, her complex political relationship with Texas power broker Robert Strauss, her struggle with muscular dystrophy, and her twenty-year relationship with Nancy Earl, her companion and occasional speechwriter, and ultimately her caregiver. The play premiered at Victory Gardens Theater in 2000 and has been produced from New York to San Francisco in the years since then.

Kristine Thatcher (Playwright) is City Lit's resident playwright, where she most recently wrote THE SAFE HOUSE, a 2019 Jeff Award nominee for Best New Work. She was formerly a member of the Victory Gardens playwrights ensemble. She is an award-winning actress, director and playwright. She began acting at age 16 with the BoarsHead Theatre in Michigan. She has since appeared on stages in New York and Chicago, and in regional theaters across the country from Seattle to Sarasota. Her published plays include NIEDECKER, UNDER GLASS, EMMA'S CHILD (winner of the 1995 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize; a 1997 Illinois Arts Council Fellowship, the 1997 RESOLVE Award for Excellence in the Arts; the 1997 Cunningham Prize for Playwriting from DePaul University; and the 1997 After Dark Award for Outstanding New Work), APPARITIONS, VOICE OF GOOD HOPE (nominated for the 2000 Joseph Jefferson Award for New Work), and AMONG FRIENDS (winner of the 2000 Scott McPherson Memorial Award). She also wrote THE BLOODHOUND LAW, the concluding play of City Lit's Civil War Sesquicentennial Project.

Terry McCabe (Artistic Director, Director) has been City Lit's artistic director since February 2005 and its producer since July 2016. He has directed plays professionally in Chicago since 1981. He was artistic director of Stormfield Theatre for four years, resident director at Wisdom Bridge Theatre for five years, and worked at Body Politic Theatre Three separate times in three different capacities over a span of 14 years. His City Lit adaptations of HOLMES AND WATSON, GIDGET (co-adapted with Marissa McKown), THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES, SCOUNDREL TIME, and OPUS 1861 (co-adapted with Elizabeth Margolius) were Jeff-nominated. He won two Jeff Citations for directing at Stormfield and has been thrice nominated for the Jeff Award for Best Director, for shows at Court Theatre, Wisdom Bridge, and Victory Gardens. He has directed at many Chicago theatres either long-gone or still with us, as well as off-Broadway at the Cherry Lane Theatre and at Vienna's English Theatre. His book MIS-DIRECTING THE PLAY has been denounced at length in American Theatre magazine and from the podium at the national convention of The Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas but is used in directing courses on three continents and is now available in paperback and Kindle e-book.

For forty years, City Lit Theater has been dedicated to the vitality and accessibility of the literary imagination. City Lit produces theatrical adaptations of literary material, scripted plays by language-oriented playwrights, and original material. City Lit Theater was founded with $210 pooled by Arnold Aprill (at the time the Body Politic Theatre's box office manager), David Dillon, and Lorell Wyatt on October 9, 1979 and was incorporated on March 25, 1980. There were still so few theatres in Chicago that at City Lit's launch event, they were able to read a congratulatory letter they had received from Tennessee Williams.

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