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Full Cast, Creative Teams for Jackalope's ROLLING and PROWESS Set

Jackalope's 8th season continues with the world premieres of Rolling, written by Calamity West, directed by Nate Silver, and Prowess, written by Ike Holter, directed by Marti Lyons, with the full casts and production teams announced below.

Rolling runs February 24 - April 2, 2016 at Broadway Armory Park, 5917 N Broadway. Tickets are available via

The press performance is Tuesday, March 1, 2016 at 8:00pm.

When Valerie's groundbreaking story about a sexual assault is revealed to be a possible fraud, this renowned journalist returns to her small-town childhood home to hide from the relentless spotlight of the media and threats against her own safety - only to find the scrutiny of home to be just as sinister. This dark comedy from Calamity West shatters the boundary between public and private misogyny and asks: where can you run when you're not welcome at home?

The cast for Rolling features Dana Black (Valerie), Ann James (Janet), Abby Pierce (Molly), and Pat Whalen (Danny).The production team for Rolling includes: Joanna Iwanicka (scenic design),Cat Wilson (lighting design), Hanna Wisner (costume design), Andrew Rovner (sound design), Corinne Bass (props design), and Polly Hubbard (dramaturg).

Prowess runs May 18 - June 25, 2016 at Broadway Armory Park, 5917 N Broadway.

The press performance is Tuesday, May 24, 2016 at 7:30pm.

Summer in Chicago: Temperatures flare, shootings spike and the city is stuck in status quo. Enter a mixed bag of underdogs ready to save whatever's left of the day. Completely powerless but sky-high on passion, they join forces. But as broken bones multiply and alliances splinter, the team is forced to draw the line between well-meaning heroism and vigilante justice.

The cast for Prowess features Sydney Charles (Zora), Donovan Diaz (Jax), Julian Parker (Mark), and Andrew Burden Swanson (Andy). The production team for Prowess includes: Courtney O'Neill (scenic design), Michael Stanfill (lighting design), Samantha Jones (costume design), Matthew Chapman (sound design), Corinne Bass (props design), Oliver Sawa (dramaturg), and Ryan Bourque (fight choreographer).

CALAMITY WEST (Playwright) is a Chicago-based, award-winning playwright, and a Jackalope Company Member. Her Kilroys-cited play, Give It All Back, was developed at Sideshow Theatre Company and Victory Gardens in 2015. She is currently a member of The Goodman's Playwrights Unit where she is developing her new play, Tony Kushner Decides to Write a Gay Fantasia Based on National Themes. Some of her full-length plays include: The Peacock (Jackalope/Kilroys Honorable Mention), The Gacy Play (Sideshow), Common Hatred (The Ruckus), and Ibsen is Dead! Calamity's short plays have been seen in Chicago at/with: Victory Gardens, The Inconvenience, Chicago Dramatists, Rhinofest, Abbie Fest, Chicago Home Theatre Festival, LiveWire, One-Minute Play Festival, Jackalope Theatre Company, The Anatomy Collective, Broken Nose Theatre, Fight Night, First Floor Theater, and The Good Night Ladies. She was born and raised in Missouri.

NATE SILVER (Director) is Jackalope's Managing Director and the Associate Director of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize-winning and Tony-nominated play Disgraced. Chicago directing credits include Four and Rich and Famous (Jackalope), Before Death, Dates from Hell (Redtwist), Far Away (winterfall chicago), and Run-of-the-Mill (CUT). With Kimberly Senior, Nate has assisted on Disgraced (Broadway, LCT3, The Goodman, Berkeley Rep, Seattle Rep), Rapture, Blister, Burn (The Goodman), Hedda Gabler (Writers Theater), and The North Plan (Theater Wit). Nate is also Director of Operations for the National Student Leadership Conference, where he wrote, developed and directed their summer Theater Program and Acting Intensive. Nate is a proud graduate of Vassar College.

DANA BLACK's (Valerie) recent credits include, Erasing the Distance's Tell Me What You Remember, Abraham Lincoln was a F@gg@t (About Face Theatre; 2015 Jeff Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress), Hank Williams: The Lost Highway (American Blues Theater; 2014 Equity Jeff for Best Musical), Miss Marx (Strawdog Theatre; 2014 Non Equity Jeff Award for Best New Work - Philip Dawkins), Rabbit (Stage Left), Brewed (Ruckus/ Tympanic Theatre), After the Revolution directed by Kimberly Senior (Next Theatre), and The Count of Monte Cristo (Lifeline Theatre)), among many others. Dana has understudied at Steppenwolf, Goodman Theatre and Victory Gardens and is a graduate of The School at Steppenwolf. She is also an Associate Artist with American Blues Theater and Chicago Dramatists. Dana proudly works during the day as the Assistant to the Executive Director of the Goodman Theatre.

ANN JAMES (Janet) is pleased to be working with Jackalope for the first time. She is an Artistic Associate at Sideshow Theatre, with whom she has performed in Idomeneus, Maria/Stuart, and Antigonick, and will be in Caught this May. Other companies she has worked with include the 16th Street, Goodman, Lifeline, Organic, Profiles, Provision, Shattered Globe, Side Project, Stage Left, and Collaboraction. She is the founding director of Chicspeare (, which has brought Shakespeare alive for more than 100,000 Chicagoland residents, age 3 to 93, in the past 20 years.

ABBY PIERCE (Molly) was most recently seen in With Love and a Major Organ (Strawdog Theatre Company). Chicago theater credits include: Heat Wave (Steppenwolf Garage) and Rapture, Blister, Burn (u/s Goodman Theatre). Other regional credits include: Richard III, Cymbeline (Ricardo Montalban Theatre); Proof, Sideman (Del Rey Theatre); Romeo and Juliet (Geffen Playhouse, OP). Directing credits include: The Pillowman, Rabbit Hole, Coyote and the Origin of Death, Only You, and Man Vs.Suit. Film and TV credits include: Chicago PD, TBS's Rooftop Stand Up Comedy Hour, Game Day, Blur, The Way To Go, and Silo. Abby is a graduate of The School at Steppenwolf, and is currently a teacher at Piven Theatre and Beacon Academy.

PAT WHALEN (Danny) hails from Buffalo, New York. A Jackalope Company member, Pat hosts a late-night talk-show Good Evening with Pat Whalen in JTC's The Frontier. Past productions include Jackalope's Exit Strategy, Lunacy!, and The Last Duck, Clybourne Park at Redtwist, and Steep Theatre's The Life and Sort of Death of Eric Argyle. Pat is proud to be represented by Stewart Talent.

IKE HOLTER's (Playwright) work has been produced at The Steppenwolf Garage, A Red Orchid, The New Colony and The Inconvenience, where he is a founding member and resident writer. He's received fellowships and commissions from The Goodman Theater, The Kennedy Center and The Playwrights Center. His show Hit the Wall played at Steppenwolf Garage, Off-Broadway at The Barrow Street Theater in New York, and is entering its 5th month of shows at the Lily Tomlin Center in L.A. Jackalope premiered his new play Exit Strategy which played to sold-out houses and transferred to Michigan's 3 Oaks Theater Festival. It is being produced at Philadelphia Stages and will transfer Off Broadway to Primary Stages this spring. He was named the "Chicagoan of the Year in Theater 2014" by The Chicago Tribune, and his monologues have been published in The New Yorker and several editions of Applause Books. Holter was recently named one of Victory Gardens' newest ensemble playwrights.

MARTI LYONS (Director) most recently directed Will Eno's Title and Deed for Lookingglass Theatre, a workshop of David Robinson's The Imaginary Music Critic Who Doesn't Exist for Steppenwolf's First Look festival, and a reading of Martín Zimmerman's On The Exhale at the Goodman Theatre, where she received the 2015 Maggio directing fellowship. She also recently directed Laura Marks' Bethany and Mine for The Gift Theatre; Catherine Trieschmann's Hot Georgia Sunday and Theresa Rebeck's Seminar for Haven Theatre; 9 Circles by Bill Cain, Maria/Stuart by Jason Grote, and co-directed The Golden Dragon with Jonathan L. Green for Sideshow Theatre (where she is an artistic associate); and The Peacock by Calamity West and The Last Duck by Lucas Neff for Jackalope Theatre. Upcoming projects include Wondrous Strange by Jiehae Park, Meg Miroshnik, Martyna Majok and Jen Silverman, featuring the Apprentice Company for the 2016 Humana Festival at Actors Theatre of Louisville, and Mai Dang Lao by David Jacobi for Sideshow Theatre Company.

SYDNEY CHARLES (Zora) is a Jeff-Nominated and Actress, and was most recently seen in The Citizens Anthology (The Inconvenience). She also lives in the world of musical theater, where she was featured in Bells are Ringing (Porchlight Musical Theater) and Myths and Hymns (BoHo Ensemble Theater). It was a great honor for her to portray Sarah in Ragtime (Big Noise Theater) and Dessa Rose in the critically acclaimed Dessa Rose (Bailiwick Chicago). She has also been fortunate to successfully perform a one-woman show entitled Black Girl Interrupted to sold out crowds in

Chicago. Other credits include: The Color Purple (Mercury Theater), Smokey Joe's Cafe(Theo-Ubique), Cats (Theo-Ubique), The Wiz, Hairspray, and Nunsense.

DONOVAN DIAZ (Jax) makes his Jackalope debut in Prowess. After graduating from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's BFA Acting program last May, Donovan spent five months working as an Acting Apprentice with American Players Theatre. APT Credits include: Pride and Prejudice, Othello, and The Merry Wives of Windsor. Donovan makes his Chicago debut in Chicago Shakespeare Theater's production of SS! Twelfth Night this March. He is represented by Stewart Talent.

JULIAN PARKER (Mark) makes his Jackalope debut in Prowess. He is a founding member and Casting Director of Definition Theatre Company. Julian received his BFA from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Professional credits include: Genesis, Dutchman, The Brothers' Size (Definition Theatre Company); Hairy Ape (Oracle Productions), Charm (Northlight Theatre), The Royale (American Theatre Company), Hamlet (Writers' Theatre); BlackTop Sky (Theatre Seven of Chicago) in the Steppenwolf Garage Repertory, and understudy in the world premiere of Head of Passes (Steppenwolf Theatre Company). Julian also originated the role of William in Gospel of Franklin, in Steppenwolf's First Look Series. Television credits include Chicago PD.

ANDREW BURDEN SWANSON (Andy) is proud to be the Director of Community Engagement for Jackalope Theatre, where his acting credits include The Last Duck, Rich And Famous, and The Peacock. He is the recipient of Steppenwolf Theatre's inaugural Acting Fellowship and completed The School at Steppenwolf in 2012. Chicago acting credits include A Streetcar Named Desire (Writers' Theatre), Port and Balm in Gilead (Griffin Theatre), and Waiting for Lefty (American Blues). Chicago writing credits include The Last Exodus of American Men, Moonshiner, Under Construction, The Casuals (co-written w/ Chance Bone) and Lunacy!

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