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FIRST LADY SUITE, VENUS IN FUR and More Slated for Circle Theatre's 31st Season


CIRCLE THEATRE kicks into high gear as the veteran company forges into its 31st season, History Makers. Risk Takers. Rule Breakers., with a historical chamber musical, a tantalizing play and a fan-favorite that put them back on the map last fall.

The first of the bunch is Michael John LaChiusa's chamber musical, First Lady Suite, which explores the fascinating lives of the women behind some of the most powerful men in history. Through the eyes of Eleanor Roosevelt, Mamie Eisenhower, and Jackie Kennedy, the audience gets a close look into their lifestyles, perspectives and relationships. The production will be appropriately produced during election month, opening Saturday, November 5th and running throughSunday, November 27th with performances Thursdays - Saturdays at 8:00pm, Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30pm and special performances on Tuesdays, November 8th (Election Day), 15th and 22nd. It will be housed at the HEARTLAND STUDIO in Rogers Park and the production team includes Circle Theatre Artistic Director, Nicholas Reinhart* (Director), Nick Graffagna (Music Director), Jimmy Jagos* (Set Designer), Erin Daly* (Casting Director), and Bobby Arnold* (Production Manager). Casting and final production team to be announced at a later date.

In February 2017, Circle will bring to life David Ives' dark comedy, Venus in Fur. With this two-person play, we meet an ambitious actress, who may be more than she seems, and the director for whom she's auditioning. Ideas of power are exchanged, particularly within the confines of society's expectations for gender and sexuality. Circle has committed to building a completely female production team led by the energetic director, Charlotte Drover, known recently for her work with The Hypocrites, Collaboraction and the Goodman.

Finally, after much anticipation, Circle is returning to the land of dinosaurs with the critically and commercially successful production of Triassic Parq by Marshall Pailet, Bryce Norbitz and Steve Wargo. The 2017 remount will go up in the spring and feature most of the original team: co-directors, Nicholas Reinhart* and Tommy Bullington*; music director, Justin Harner; set designer, Jimmy Jagos* (who garnered a Broadway World Award nomination for his work on the show); and the entire original cast, including Jacob Richard Axelson, Neala Barron, Caitlin Boho, Erin Daly*, Marissa Druzbanski*, Parker Guidry* and Patrick Stengle.

This year also marks the return of Circle Theatre eligibility for the Joseph Jefferson Awards after taking an 18 month hiatus from producing about 3 years ago to restructure internally. "We're proud to be part of sharing stories that need to be shared, especially in today's political climate," says Producing Director, Bobby Arnold. "We find it imperative that all voices are heard and we're elated to have an opportunity to share them, particularly in Chicago."

For more information on the season and how to get more involved, visit

*Denotes Circle Theatre company member

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