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Lifeline Announces 2018-2019 Season Lineup

Lifeline Theatre Artistic Director Dorothy Milne and the artistic ensemble announce their 2018-19 season of Big Stories, Up Close. It's another year of unforgettable stories brought to life, from beloved classics to modern titles.

The 2018-19 MainStage season features a world premiere adaptation of the psychological thriller Frankenstein, followed by an adaptation of the absurdist satire The Man Who Was Thursday, and concludes with a world premiere adaptation of Jane Austen's romantic comedy Emma. The KidSeries season opens with the suspense and silliness of Bunnicula; followed by the heartwarming tale of friendship and sacrifice, We Found A Hat; and concludes with the action and adventure of The Time Warp Trio. Additionally, Lifeline Theatre will produce the 22nd annual Fillet of Solo Festival, a three-week, multi-venue solo performance and storytelling festival; and the 2018-19 Concert Reading Series will feature Cindy Hanson and Cheryl Norris's Cooking With Lard, Dylan Thomas' A Child's Christmas in Wales and Truman Capote's A Christmas Memory, and William Shakespeare's Love's Labours Lost.

Season subscriptions and single tickets for the 2018-2019 MainStage and KidSeries seasons go on sale March 16. To purchase season subscriptions, single tickets or for more information call the Lifeline Theatre Box Office at 773-761-4477, or visit

MainStage Season

Frankenstein, September 7-October 28, 2018 (opens 9/17/18, 7:30 p.m.)

The Man Who Was Thursday, February 15-April 7, 2019 (opens 2/25/19, 7:30 p.m.)

Emma, May 24-July 14, 2019 (opens 6/3/19, 7:30 p.m.)

KidSeries Season

Bunnicula, October 20-November 25, 2018 (opens 10/21/18, 1 p.m.)

We Found A Hat, January 12-February 17, 2019 (opens 1/13/19, 1 p.m.)

The Time Warp Trio, March 16-April 20, 2019 (opens 3/17/19, 1 p.m.)


The 2018-19 Lifeline Concert Reading Series, July 18, 2018; December 5, 2018; and March 20, 2019

The 22nd Annual Fillet of Solo Festival, January 18-February 2, 2019

Season subscriptions offer the three MainStage productions for $80 (a $120 value), or the three KidSeries plays for $30 (a $45 value). Passes to the Fillet of Solo Festival may be added to any subscription for only $25 (a $50 value; allows entry to all performances in the 2019 Festival). Being a Lifeline subscriber allows patrons to save 33% off regular ticket prices; offers discounts on additional tickets and reduced admission to the Concert Reading Series; offers discounts to drama camp registration; and gives first choice of seats with unlimited free ticket exchanges.

Lifeline continues its popular "Book Club Add-ons," which include copies of all three source books for the MainStage season for only $15 (paperback versions of Frankenstein, The Man Who Was Thursday, and Emma), or copies of all three source books for the KidSeries season for $30 (hardcover versions of Bunnicula and We Found A Hat, paperback version of Knights of the Kitchen Table: Time Warp Trio #1). Read the books beforehand and then experience Lifeline's adaptation. Copies of the source books for the MainStage and KidSeries seasons will be on sale in the lobby.

An additional add-on for KidSeries Subscriptions is admission to one "Stories Come Alive!" hour during each KidSeries production for only $10 (a $15 value). These hour-long sessions (running Saturdays and Sundays at 12 p.m., between regularly-scheduled KidSeries performances) feature readings, on-your-feet drama games, and fun to supplement the KidSeries productions.

Ticket prices for the 2018-2019 season are as follows: regular single MainStage tickets are $40; seniors, active and retired military personnel (with ID), and groups (12 or more) are $30; previews, rush tickets (half-hour before show, subject to availability) are $20; and students (with ID) are $15. Lifeline's KidSeries single tickets for adults and kids are $15 each; and groups of 15 or more are $10 each. "Name Your Price" KidSeries tickets are available a half-hour before show time (subject to availability).

Lifeline Theatre is located at 6912 N. Glenwood Ave. in Chicago's Rogers Park neighborhood. Lifeline is accessible by CTA (Red Line Morse stop/busses) and free parking is available at Sullivan High School (6631 N Bosworth Ave, lot located on Greenview Ave. just south of North Shore Ave.) with free shuttle service before and after the show. Street parking is also available. Lifeline is accessible to wheelchair users and visitors who need to avoid stairs.

Founded in 1982, Lifeline is known for staging innovative adaptations of great works of fiction as well as commissioning original work. In 1987, Lifeline added KidSeries plays for children and families, and has been producing full seasons of programming for both adults and children ever since. Over the course of thirty-five seasons and nearly two hundred productions, Lifeline Theatre has made not only an indelible mark on the Chicago theatre scene, but an invaluable contribution to the theatre world at large. Lifeline's dedicated artistic ensemble has developed one hundred and forty-three world premiere literary adaptations and original plays, nearly forty of which have had a life beyond their Lifeline premieres, with over three hundred subsequent productions spread across over forty U.S. states, six Canadian provinces, plus productions in England, Ireland, Australia, South Africa, and Guatemala. Additionally, three scripts developed at Lifeline Theatre have gone on to U.S. national tours, and over a dozen have been published. Lifeline Theatre has garnered a total of fifty-three Jeff Awards (Equity and Non-Equity), including sixteen for New Adaptation, New Musical, or New Work.

Lifeline Theatre is driven by a passion for story. Our ensemble process supports writers in the development of literary adaptations and new work, and our theatrical and educational programs foster a lifelong engagement with literature and the arts. A cultural anchor of Rogers Park, we are committed to deepening our connection to an ever-growing family of artists and audiences, both near and far.

Lifeline's artistic ensemble is led by Artistic Director Dorothy Milne and includes Aly Renee Amidei, Patrick Blashill, Jessica Wright Buha, Christina Calvit, Heather Currie, Bilal Dardai, Victoria Deiorio, Amanda Delheimer, Alan Donahue, Andrés Enriquez, Diane D. Farichild, Kevin D. Gawley, Peter Greenberg, James E. Grote, Chris Hainsworth, John Hildreth, Paul S. Holmquist, Elise Kauzlaric, Robert Kauzlaric, Anthony Kayer, Frances Limoncelli, Amanda Link, Martel Manning, Michael McKeogh, Katie McLean Hainsworth, Shole Milos, Sandy Snyder Pietz, Suzanne Plunkett, Maren Robinson, Phil Timberlake, Jenifer Tyler, and Christopher M. Walsh.

Lifeline Theatre's programs are partially supported by Alphawood Foundation; A.R.T League Inc.; Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation; Chicago CityArts, a grant from the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events; Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation; FGMK LLC; Lloyd A. Fry Foundation; The Grover Hermann Foundation; The Michael and Mona Heath Fund at The Chicago Community Foundation; Illinois Arts Council Agency; Illinois Humanities Council; Lagunitas Brewing Co. Community Grant Program; MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at Prince; The PAV Grant Fund; The Polk Bros. Foundation; Poubelle Fund, a Donor Advised Fund of Renaissance Charitable Foundation; Rogers Park Social; The Saints; S&C Electric Company Fund; The Shubert Foundation; and the annual support of businesses and individuals.

MainStage Productions


A world premiere based on the novel by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley

Adapted by Lifeline Theatre ensemble member Robert Kauzlaric

Directed by Lifeline Theatre ensemble member Paul S. Holmquist

September 7-October 28, 2018

Regular tickets $40; preview tickets $20

Previews: Fridays, 9/7 and 9/14 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays, 9/8 and 9/15 at 8 p.m.; Sundays, 9/9 and 9/16 at 4 p.m.

Press Opening: Monday, 9/17, 2018 at 7:30 p.m. (press also invited to final preview on 9/16 at 4 p.m.)

Regular Run: 9/20-10/28, 2018: Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.; Sundays at 4 p.m.

When aAn unexpected death shatters his worlda family and, Victor Frankenstein retreats into the darkest recesses of his the psyche in search of a way forward. To find meaning in this impossible loss, a terrible creation is brought to life - one Setting the needs of his family aside, he brings to life a terrible creation whose existence soon threatens all hopes for his the future. Haunted and hunted at every turn, Frankenstein Victor must survive endure a nightmare journey of the soul in his a quest for survival. Grapple with the demons of grief and denial in this world premiere adaptation of the 1818 thriller by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley.

In celebration of the 200th anniversary of the publication of Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus, ensemble members Robert Kauzlaric and Paul S. Holmquist, creators of 2007's The Island of Dr. Moreau (Non-Equity Jeff Award: Best Production-Play), return to the world of dark psychological suspense.

The Man Who Was Thursday

Based on the novel by G. K. Chesterton

Adapted by Lifeline Theatre ensemble member Bilal Dardai

Directed by Jess Hutchinson

February 15-April 7, 2019

Regular tickets $40; preview tickets $20

Previews: Fridays, 2/15 and 2/22 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays, 2/16 and 2/23 at 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2/17 and 2/24 at 4 p.m.

Press Opening: Monday, 2/25, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. (press also invited to final preview on 2/24 at 4 p.m.)

Regular Run: 2/28-4/7, 2019: Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.; Sundays at 4 p.m.

A cabal of anarchists has risen in London and Scotland Yard is determined to bring them down. When Gabriel Syme joins the undercover detail tasked with infiltrating the anarchists' operations, he soon finds himself sitting on their Supreme Council with the code name "Thursday." But as Gabriel unearths the Council's true nature, it becomes clear that no one in this battle between law and chaos is as they seem, and that Scotland Yard may have created the very problem they're trying to solve. Challenge all assumptions and uncover the truth in this absorbing adaptation of the 1908 satire by G. K. Chesterton.

Ensemble member Bilal Dardai and former New Leaf Theatre Artistic Director Jess Hutchinson return to a project they first mounted at New Leaf Theatre in 2009 (Non-Equity Jeff nomination: New Adaptation), re-exploring this absurdist tale of identity and intrigue for a new decade.


A world premiere based on the novel by Jane Austen

Adapted by Lifeline Theatre ensemble member Phil Timberlake

Directed by Lifeline Theatre ensemble member Elise Kauzlaric

May 24-July 14, 2019

Regular tickets $40; preview tickets $20

Previews: Fridays, 5/24 and 5/31 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays, 5/25 and 6/1 at 8 p.m.; Sundays, 5/26 and 6/2 at 4 p.m.

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