Congo Square Kudos, Pivot Arts Festival, Lyric Returns + More — Chicago Theater Report for May 23, 2021

(Theater Report starts at around 38:01)

CONGO SQUARE THEATRE COMPANY WINS JOYCE FOUNDATION AWARD

Congratulations are in order for Sydney Chatman and Congo Square Theatre Company: They were announced this week as recipients of the Joyce Foundation’s 2021 Joyce Awards

The $75,000 grant will support Chatman’s creation and presentation of a new theatrical work as part of Congo Square’s August Wilson New Play Initiative, created in partnership with Chicago community members and exploring ways that art can foster healing and restoration. 

c. Kyle Flubacker

LYRIC OPERA RETURNS FOR 2021/2022 SEASON

The Lyric Opera announced that it will have a live 2021/2022 season this Fall! Maestro Enrique Mazzola takes the helm as Artistic Director, and the company will bring us many exciting shows this season, including  Macbeth, The Elixir of Love, The Magic Flute, Florencia en el Amazonas, Proving Up, Tosca, Fire Shut Up in My Bones, and Sir Andrew Davis directing a Beethoven 9th Concert

Extensive public health processes will be in place, including masking. Ticket subscriptions are now available. Lyric offers a “Choose Your Own” package that allows you to mix and match your seats and shows for three or more performances. Visit LyricOpera.org for more information.

LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS DEBUTS IN ARLINGTON HEIGHTS

The Metropolis Performing Arts Center in Arlington Heights will debut its production of Little Shop of Horrors on Friday, May 21st, running through June 19th. The show will be performed outdoors, under a tent,  at the center’s facilities in Arlington Heights. For those of you unfamiliar with the area, this is about a three-minute walk from the Arlington Heights Metra Station. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit metropolisarts.com or call 847-577-2121.

PRIDEARTS’ ALL-FEMALE SHAKESPEARE’S R&J

PrideArts has announced its all-female cast for its virtual reading of SHAKESPEARE’S R & J. Set in an exclusive Catholic boarding school for girls, students begin to read ROMEO AND JULIET to each other after school, becoming enmeshed with the plot. There will be one performance only, June 1st, at 7pm. A reminder that this is a virtual production: Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at pridearts.org or by phone at 773-857-0222.

Danielle Ross – Apparatus
July 14-16, 2017 at Disjecta,
Portland, Oregon,
Photo by Chelsea Petrakis

PIVOT ARTS FESTIVAL RETURNS

The Pivot Arts Festival is an annual event that showcases talent from a broad spectrum of disciplines. Last year, the festival went fully virtual, but this year it has pivoted back to in-person experiences. As with previous incarnations of the festival, a range of artists will exhibit or perform, and in different locations.

At this time the festival is offering the Utopian Performance Tour, in which small groups are led through a series of exhibits and performances over the span of about 90 minutes. These performances take place at The Edge Theater, The Edge Off Broadway, and Colorcircles Studio in Edgewater. Audiences are requested to be masked and to maintain social distancing as best as possible. 

I attended the Friday night tour and can confirm that it is a unique experience: Audiences should plan for an intimate experience that will require moving within and outside of spaces. If you have concerns about this, contact the Pivot Arts Festival to discuss your needs. The tours take place through June 5th, mostly on weekends though there will be a Thursday tour on June 3rd. Tickets are available at PivotArts.org.