Steppenwolf's Erica Daniels to Receive 2011 Corona Award


Eclipse Theatre today announced the recipient of its Third Annual Corona Award: Erica Daniels, Associate Artistic Director of Steppenwolf Theatre Company.

Eclipse's Corona Award honors an individual who has played an important role in supporting and nurturing the growth of Eclipse Theatre Company, as well as the entire Chicago theatre community, widely acknowledged as among the of the most diverse and dynamic theatre communities in the nation, particularly in terms of small- to mid-sized theatres.

The presentation of the 2011 Corona Award for Daniels will begin at 6:00pm with a cocktail hour followed by the award ceremony on Sunday November 6th 2011 at the Victory Gardens Biograph Theatre, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave. in Chicago.

The presentation of the Corona Award will include guest speakers who have worked closely with Daniels as a casting director, agent and teacher. Confirmed presenters for the event include:

Martha Lavey, Artistic Director, Steppenwolf Theatre
• Adam Belcuor, Casting Director, Goodman Theatre
• Bob Mason, Casting Director, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre

Since joining Steppenwolf as casting director in 2001, Daniels has served in a number of critical positions, including as director of the School at Steppenwolf, a position she currently holds. In addition to her role as associate artistic director, Daniels also serves as an associate artistic director of the School at Steppenwolf Theatre Company. Recent career highlights, include casting of the original Chicago, Broadway, London and Australia productions of August: Osage County and the Broadway premiere of Superior Donuts.

In the selection of Daniels as the recipient of this year's Corona Award, Eclipse Theatre's Artistic Director, Nathaniel Swift, said Erica has been a strong supporter of Eclipse Theatre Company through the years and a continuous resource for the company's casting.

"Erica has not only been there for Eclipse, but for many other theatre companies, both large and small, around Chicago and the country," Swift said. "We're proud and excited to recognize her as an invaluable talent, asset and member of our community; who not only looks to the interests of the institution she represents, but also actively supports the growth of individual artists and artistic communities everywhere."

The inaugural Corona Award, established in 2009, was given to Chicago casting director Jane Alderman, while the 2010 Corona Award was given to Timeline Theatre Company's Managing Director Elizabeth K. Auman.

Prior to her tenure at Steppenwolf, Erica spent a year as the Theatre Department coordinator at William Morris in New York. Working under George Lane, she worked with such writers as John Patrick Shanley, Richard Greenberg, Warren Leight and Kenny Lonergan, as well as directors such as Michael Mayer, Mark Brokaw, James Lapine, Robert Falls and Daniel Sullivan.

Daniels' began her career as a casting assistant at Jane Brody casting. She has also worked as a contract casting director with various Chicago companies, including Lookingglass Theatre, Collaboraction, About Face and Profiles.

In addition to her positions at Jane Brody and her freelance endeavors, Daniels has also worked as a talent agent for Geddes, Arlene Wilson and Shirley Hamilton. She teaches scene study for adults and teens at The Acting Studio Chicago, Piven Theatre Workshop and Actors Training Center and has lectured about the "Business of Theatre" and "Audition Techniques" at Colleges and Universities around the Mid-West. She is an adjunct faculty member at Ball State University and earned a bachelor's degree in Performance Studies from Northwestern University.

In addition to the presentation of the award, an assortment of light appetizers and cash bar will be offered during the evening, long with a silent auction.

The Corona award derives its name from the outer atmosphere of the sun most easily seen during a total Eclipse. The Latin root of the word means crown.

Tickets are $20 and can be purchased at the door or online at


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