Strawdog Theatre to Stage First Living Graphic Novel KILL SHAKESPEARE, 3/4-26

Strawdog Theatre Company's Hugen Hall has announced the Midwest premiere of Anthony Del Col and Conor McCreery's Kill Shakespeare, directed by Anderson Lawfer, March 4 - March 26 at Strawdog Theatre Hugen Hall, 3829 North Broadway Street. The performance schedule is Sundays at 12 p.m., Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. Opening/Press Night is Monday, March 4 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15. Tickets may be ordered online at or by calling OvationTix toll-free: 866-811-4111.

In this dark tale, the Bard's most famous heroes embark upon a journey to discover a long-lost soul. Hamlet, Juliet, Othello, Falstaff, Romeo and Puck search for a reclusive wizard who may have the ability to assist them in their battle against the evil forces led by Shakespearean villains Richard III, Lady Macbeth and Iago. That reclusive wizard is, of course, the Bard himself, William Shakespeare.

A combination of Fables, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and The Lord of the Rings, Kill Shakespeare, Chicago's first "living graphic novel," offers a remixed envisioning of the greatest characters of all-time featuring action, romance, music, comedy, lust, drama and bloody violence. It is an adventure of Shakespearean proportions with an original score and soundscape by Access Contemporary Music's Seth Boustead and Strawdog's Gregor Mortis.

Kill Shakespeare: The Live Stage Reading, debuted in 2011 with Toronto's Soulpepper Theatre and was based on the graphic novel series Kill Shakespeare, created by Anthony Del Col and Conor McCreery with art by Andy Belanger. The series has been nominated for a Harvey Award for "Best New Series" and a Joe Shuster Award for "Outstanding Comic Book Writing." The New York Times, Washington Post, Publisher's Weekly, BBC and CBC have also profiled the acclaimed IDW Publishing comic book series.

Anderson Lawfer, director, says, "Kill Shakespeare is a great opportunity to pique teens' interest in Shakespeare, as well, as give a new dimension to long time Shakespeare fans. Not only is Kill Shakespeare one of the most badass graphic novels out right now, it also creates a fresh start for these characters that we know so well; old villains become our new friends and worlds intersect into a new realm of possibilities. Everything you know about these characters can't prepare you for this journey."

The cast features Bryan Bosque (Hamlet), Kate Harris (Lady Macbeth), Nikki Klix (Juliet), BF Helman (Richard III), Brian Amidei (Shakespeare), Conor Burke (Romeo), Caleb Probst (Iago), Steve Herson (Falstaff) and James Anthony Zocolli (Othello).

The production team features Michelle Underwood (projection design), Seth Boustead (original score), Gregor Mortis (sound design) as well as Beth Schmeski (assistant director and dramaturg) and Morgan Gire (production manager).

The co-creator and co-writer of Kill Shakespeare, Anthony Del Col has a wide range of experience in the comic, music, film and television industries. He has produced two independent feature films and served as a manager for international pop star Nelly Furtado, helping to supervise her 2007 "Loose World Tour".

Conor McCreery is the co-founder of Kill Shakespeare Entertainment. Prior to his fascination with Bardicide, Conor worked as an equities researcher for the pioneer of the "bought deal", served in a development and tax-credit analysis capacity in the Canadian film and television industry. He worked as a print and television journalist on three continents covering everything from the NBA to stock market apocalypses with a little dash of celebrity gossip for (questionable) taste.
His work has been featured in The Globe and Mail, The Grid, and McCreery has just contributed an essay on Shakespeare and Comics to a compendium edited by Susannah Carson and being published by Yale University Press. Kill Shakespeare is his first comic.

Andy Belanger works as a freelance cartoonist/illustrator out of the Montreal-based Studio Lounak. He does work in the mainstream comic market, plus a wide variety of work for the Canadian Film and Television industry. In the mainstream comic market, Belanger has worked for such comic publishers as D.C. comics, Wildstorm, Devil's Due, and Boom! He is currently the artist on IDW's title Kill Shakespeare. He has recently worked on "SWAMPTHING" with Scott Snyder and Jeff Lemire and is the creator of the DC digital comic series, Bottle of Awesome. Early in 2012 He launched his own self published work entitled Black Church. It's dark horror comedy mixing the world of Game of Thrones with the medieval history of Romania, all dipped in a Heavy Metal theme.

Anderson Lawfer is a Strawdog Company Member since 2002, appearing recently in Conquest of the South Pole and The Master & Margarita. He is the host of Theatre Wars! at Strawdog and the late night hit The Game Show Show...and Stuff! Lawfer is also the curator of the Chicago theatre insider blog "Eric and Andy's Reviews You Can Iews."

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.

The current Strawdog ensemble includes Jenny Avery, Hank Boland, Michael Dailey, Anita Deely, Paul Fagen, John Ferrick, Misha Fiskel, Kyle Gibson, Sarah Goeden, Aly Greaves Amidei, Carmine Grisolia, Kyle Hamman, Tom Hickey, Shannon Hoag, Jordan Kardasz, Anderson Lawfer, Sean Mallary, Kat McDonnell, Joanna Melville, Gregor Mortis, Mike Mroch, Michaela Petro, Mike Przygoda, John Henry Roberts, Justine C. Turner, and Jamie Vann. Strawdog's Interim Artistic Director is Hank Boland, Managing Director is Patrick Rybarczyk and General Manager is Mike Mroch. Notable Strawdog alums include Elizabeth Auman (TimeLine), Alexandra Billings (actress, cabaret star), Nancy Bishop (casting director), Chrisanne Blankenship (director), Becca Cardo (voice-over artist), Kristin Caskey (Fox Theatricals), Scott Cummins (actor, director) and James Denton (Desperate Housewives).

Strawdog Theatre Company Board of Directors include Seth Rickard, Gregory Altman, Stephen Bennett, Meaghan Clayton, Jim Hobart, Romain Ichbiah, Thomas V. Linguanti, Joyce McGreevy, Jennifer Nelson, Jack Rubin, Mark D. Warner, Pat Yuzawa-Rubin.

The neighborhood has limited paid parking and is easily accessible by public transportation (via the Red Line Sheridan stop, plus 36-Broadway, 80-Irving Park, and 151-Sheridan buses).

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