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2017/18 Season

MADAGASCAR – A MUSICAL ADVENTURE
based on the DreamWorks Animation Motion Picture
book by Kevin Del Aguila • original music and lyrics by George Noriega & Joel Someillan 
directed & choreographed by Matt Raftery
July 13-August 27, 2017 • CST’s Courtyard Theater

A wild and wacky adventure awaits Alex the Lion, Marty the Zebra, Gloria the Hippo, Melman the Giraffe and those pesky, plotting Penguins as they stage a jailbreak from New York’s Central Park Zoo. After busting out of their home and landing on the faraway island of Madagascar, these furry friends encounter the madcap antics of the outrageous lemur King Julian and his animal subjects in a musical celebration of friendship.

 

CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARKS
ROMEO AND JULIET
written by William Shakespeare
adapted & directed by Marti Lyons
Summer 2017

This tale of true love found—and tragically lost—comes alive in this 75-minute abridged production touring to 18 neighborhood parks across Chicago this summer. The production combines Shakespeare’s original verse with dynamic staging to connect audiences of all ages with Shakespeare’s best beloved story.

 

THE TAMING OF THE SHREW
by William Shakespeare • adapted & directed by Barbara Gaines
additional dialogue by Ron West
September 16–November 12, 2017 • CST’s Courtyard Theater

Artistic Director Barbara Gaines re-examines Shakespeare’s notorious “battle of the sexes” with an all-woman company. She partners with playwright Ron West (CST’s The Comedy of Errors, 2008) to frame Shakespeare’s story as a performance by a group of Suffragettes on the eve of the passing of the 19th Amendment.

 

LA COMPAGNIE DU HANNETON’S
THE TOAD KNEW
A World’s Stage production from France • by James Thierrée
September 19–23, 2017 • The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare

Blending together the artistry of dancers, contortionists, high-wire artists, and French cirque nouveau superstar James Thierrée’s extraordinary physical prowess, this spectacle premiered at the Edinburgh International Festival, where it was called “flamboyant, hallucinatory and ravishingly beautiful” by The Guardian. Thierrée returns to CST after his magnificent Farewell Umbrella (2007) and Bright Abyss (2005). Tickets for The Toad Knew will go on sale later this summer.

 

INTERNATIONAL LATINO THEATER FESTIVAL 
Fall 2017 • Upstairs at Chicago Shakespeare

Chicago Shakespeare partners with the Chicago Latino Theater Alliance (CLATA) for its inaugural festival with a Latin American production to be announced. Founded by an alliance between the National Museum of Mexican Art, Puerto Rican Arts Alliance, and the International Cultural Center, CLATA aims to celebrate and amplify the voices of Latino playwrights and actors in Chicago.

 

RED VELVET
by Lolita Chakrabarti • directed by Gary Griffin
December 1, 2017–January 21, 2018 • CST’s Courtyard Theater

Staged by leading Broadway and Chicago director Gary Griffin, this award-winning play chronicles the seldom-told, true story of Ira Aldridge, an African-American actor who challenged convention by taking the London stage as the first black Othello in 1833—sending shockwaves through the city at a time when anti-abolition protesters rioted in the streets.

 

SHORT SHAKESPEARE! A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM
by William Shakespeare
Winter 2018 • The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare

One evening, four young lovers find themselves lost in the forest. When the Fairy Court finds them, hijinks and hilarity ensue until the dawn. This abridged version introduces Shakespeare’s magical comedy to family and student audiences in a new production in The Yard, where its extended run will serve thousands of additional students and teachers next year.

 

SCHILLER’S MARY STUART
in a new version by Peter Oswald • directed by Jenn Thompson
February 21–April 15, 2018 • CST’s Courtyard Theater

One will rule. One will fall. Two women of power—Queen Elizabeth I of England and Mary, Queen of Scots—face off in a struggle for the faith of the nation in a new electric adaptation by Peter Oswald. The production is staged by acclaimed director Jenn Thompson, former artistic director of The Actors Company Theater (TACT), which was named “Company of the Year” by The Wall Street Journal during her tenure.

 

MACBETH
by William Shakespeare • adapted & directed by Aaron Posner and Teller
April 25–June 24, 2018 • The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare

Celebrated director and playwright Aaron Posner and famed magician Teller (of duo Penn & Teller) join forces for an innovative take on “the Scottish Play,” returning after their Jeff Award-winning production of The Tempest at Chicago Shakespeare in 2015. With astounding sorcery, this supernatural thriller dives into the psyches of the power-hungry Macbeth and Lady Macbeth with astounding magic to immerse audiences in the storytelling.

 

DRUID THEATRE’S
WAITING FOR GODOT

A World’s Stage production from Ireland
by Samuel Beckett • directed by Garry Hynes
May 23–June 3, 2018  •  CST’s Courtyard Theater

Ireland's most prestigious theater ensemble is back with a contemporary interpretation of Beckett’s seminal work. Staged by Tony Award-winning director Garry Hynes, The Irish Times called it, “the freshest, funniest and most affecting production of the play in at least a quarter of a century.” This production marks the legendary company's third return to Chicago Shakespeare following The Cripple of Inishmaan (2011) and The Walworth Farce (2009).

 

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