Strawdog Theatre Company Announces 30th Season

Strawdog Theatre Company Announces 30th Season

Strawdog Theatre Company and Artistic Directors Michael Dailey, Heath Hays and Anderson Lawfer are proud to announce the company's 30th Anniversary Season: the Chicago premiere of Barbecue, August 17 - September 30, at Steppenwolf Theatre's 1700 Theater, 1700 N. Halsted Street as a LookOut Visiting Company; the Chicago premiere of Pillars of the Community, January 19 - March 30, 2018 and the world premiere of Damascus, May 11 - June 24, 2018 at Strawdog Theatre, 1802 W. Berenice Ave. Subscriptions start at $55 per package, a 25% discount, and are on sale now at Subscribers also receive invitations to workshop presentations of Take Me, a new musical by Jon Langford and Mark Guarino, in development with Strawdog throughout Season 30.

"Celebrating a 30th anniversary is in itself a milestone," said Co-Artistic Director Anderson Lawfer. "Having produced more than 115 plays over the last three decades including Chicago and world premieres, Strawdog looks forward to this next chapter in our long history. We begin the 2017-18 season with a new home, an active ensemble of over 25 members and a great roster of productions. Strawdog is proud of our past achievements and we move into this season with great promise and excitement for what the future holds for the next 30 years."

Performances in Strawdog Theatre Company's 30th Anniversary Season include:



and a LookOut Visiting Company at Steppenwolf's 1700 Theater

Written by Robert O'Hara

Directed by Damon Kiely

August 17 - September 30

Steppenwolf Theatre's 1700 Theater, 1700 N. Halsted Street

Previews: August 17 - August 27?

Press Opening: Monday, Aug. 28 at 8 p.m.

Accessible Performance: Sunday, Sept. 10 at 3:30 p.m.

Industry Performance: Monday, Sept. 11 at 8 p.m.

Regular Run: Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 3:30 and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3:30 p.m.?

Tickets: Previews: $35, Regular Run: $45

To purchase single tickets to Barbecue, please visit or call 312-335-1650.

A modern American family uses a summer barbecue as a pretext to ambush sister Barbara with an intervention. If you think "all families are crazy" is just a cliché, you've not spent time under the influence of the O'Mallerys. An afternoon in the park with these raucous siblings and you'll be challenging your own assumptions about family, race, and reality. The Chicago premiere of Barbecue by Obie and Helen Hayes Award winner Robert O'Hara will have you laughing out loud and questioning how it's true that in America, you sometimes taze the ones you love.

Since its world premiere, Barbecue has received critical acclaim. The Los Angeles Times said, "Ferociously funny! Barbecue raucously sends up the sociological pantomime - life as an award-seeking existential burlesque," and "Wickedly delightful!" by Variety's review included, "Barbecue, shrewdly turns the formula for the American domestic comedy on its head."

The Barbecue cast includes Strawdog Ensemble Members John Henry Roberts and Kamille Dawkins with guest artists Kristin Collins, Celeste Cooper, Anita Deely, Barbara Figgins, Deanna Reed Foster, Abby Pierce, Terence Simms and Ginneh Thomas.

The Barbecue design team includes Strawdog Ensemble Members Costume Designer Aly Greaves Amidei and Sound Designer Heath Hayes with guest artists: Director Damon Kiely, Assistant Director Michael Burke, Set Designer Joanna Iwanicka, Lighting Designer Jared Gooding, Props Designer Leah Hummel and Dramaturg Taylor Barfield.

Pillars of the Community

Adapted from Henrik Ibsen's The Pillars of Society

Written by Samuel Adamson

Directed by Elly Green

January 19 - March 3, 2018

Strawdog Theatre, 1802 W. Berenice Ave.

Previews: January 19 - 28, 2018

Press Opening: Monday, Jan. 29 at 8 p.m.

Accessible Performance: Sunday, Feb. 4 at 4 p.m.

Industry Performance: Monday, Feb. 5 at 8 p.m.

Regular Run: Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 3:30 and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3:30 p.m.?

Tickets: Previews: $35, Regular Run: $45

Single tickets for Pillars of the Community go on sale November 17.

The return of a fugitive brother puts the future of wealthy businessman Karsten Bernick in peril. Details of a long-buried sex scandal and embezzlement come to the surface and force Bernick to face his family, his community and his demons. Adamson's version of Ibsen's 1877 moral drama was first produced at the National Theatre in 2005 to critical acclaim. Ensemble member Elly Green (After Miss Julie and The Night Season at Strawdog) directs the first production in the new Strawdog Theatre on Berenice.



Written by Bennett Fisher

Directed by Cody Estle

May 11 - June 24, 2018

Strawdog Theatre, 1802 W. Berenice Ave.

Previews: May 11 - May 20, 2018

Press Opening: Monday, May 21 at 8 p.m.

Accessible Performance: Sunday, June 3 at 4 p.m.

Industry Performance: Monday, June 4 at 8 p.m.

Regular Run: Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 3:30 and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3:30 p.m.?

Tickets: Previews: $35, Regular Run: $45

Single tickets for Damascus go on sale March 16, 2018.

Hassan is a Somali-American Super Shuttle driver in Minneapolis, struggling to make ends meet as more and more of his customers switch to Uber and Lyft. So when a stranded teenager at the airport pays Hassan to take him to Chicago, it seems like it's worth the risk. Until it isn't. A claustrophobic thriller about privilege, paranoia and the assumptions we make about one another.

Take Me

Ongoing development of a world premiere musical at Strawdog Theatre

Written by Mark Guarino

Music by Jon Langford

Dates TBA

Take Me is a world premiere musical and based on a true story by Mark Guarino and Jon Langford (The Mekons) about searching into the vast universe for answers when they might be found inside. When her husband lapses into a coma, Georgia feels hopeless and turns to the sky for a reason to go on. She finds direction from voices she believes are aliens who instruct her to move to Roswell, N.M. and build a theme park in their honor before awaiting further instruction. She follows their orders and what follows is a comic fantasia involving government conspiracy theories, deadly insect bites and idol worship.


Since its founding in 1988, Strawdog Theatre Company has offered Chicagoland the premiere storefront theatre experience and garnered numerous Non-Equity Jeff Awards with its commitment to ensemble acting and an immersive design approach. The celebrated Company develops new work, re-imagines the classics, melds music with theatre, asks provocative questions and delivers their audience the unexpected.

Strawdog Theatre Company is supported in part by The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Alphawood Foundation, Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, and the annual support of businesses and individuals.


LookOut is Steppenwolf's performance series that presents the work of artists and companies across genre and form, emerging artists and performance legends, quintessential Chicago companies and young aspiring ensembles, familiar Steppenwolf faces and new friends. Tickets to all LookOut programming are available through Audience Services (1650 N Halsted), or 312-335-1650. Prices vary for each show. Steppenwolf Red Card and Black Card Members may use credits towards any LookOut programming. The LookOut Series is presented year-round and announced on an ongoing basis. John Zinn, Greta Honold and Patrick Zakem are the producers for LookOut. For more information, visit

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