NEW YORK’S 59E59 THEATERS continue to provide welcoming off-Broadway accommodations for shows that originated in Chicago. Bruce Graham’s The Outgoing Tide, which had its world premiere in 2011 with Northlight Theatre and won its author a Jeff Award for best new play, will open in November at the busy theaterplex in a non-Northlight production, featuring a new cast.
However, the original cast — Steppenwolf vets John Mahoney and Rondi Reed and Lookingglass (Lookingglasstheatre.org/content/) ensemble member Thomas J. Cox — just returned from a triumphant remount at Ireland’s Galway Arts Festival. Northlight’s relationship with Graham continues next season. Artistic director BJ Jones mounts the world premiere of Graham’s Stella & Lou in spring 2013.
Other 59E59 shows this coming fall with Chicago roots include a newly retooled version of the musical Working, based on the seminal book by Studs Terkel, which had its out-of-town tryout in March 2011 at Water Tower Place’s Broadway Playhouse.
And erstwhile Chicago playwright Caitlin Montanye Parrish’s A Twist of Water, also opens at 59E59 in November with its original cast. The show premiered in winter 2011 with Route 66 Theatre under Erica Weiss’s direction and had an extended run at Theater Wit and the Mercury.
Parrish, who received a 2012 MFA from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, has also won the David and Lynn Angell Fellowship in dramatic writing from the Humanitas Prize for her original pilot, “Painkiller.”
BAILIWICK CHICAGO has named Kate Garassino, a founding collective member, as their new executive director. Garassino, who studied musical theater at Roosevelt University, has previously co-founded two companies – Gilead Theatre and Landscape Theatre Ensemble – and has also worked as the marketing manager for BoHo Theater Ensemble, which, like Bailiwick, has developed a reputation for staging chamber-scaled productions of musicals.
Garassino also has her own business development and consulting firm, Garassino Partners. Departing executive director Brian LaDuca takes the helm at ArtStreet, a learning and living arts complex at the University of Dayton in Ohio.
And while Bailiwick artistic director Lili-Anne Brown reprises her role in A Twist of Water at 59E59 this fall, her company scores an election-season coup by nabbing the Chicago premiere of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. This sardonic emo-rock portrait of “Old Hickory,” created by Michael Friedman and Alex Timbers, had a Broadway run in 2010. Its heady evisceration and pastiche of frontier “culture wars” of the 19th century contains plenty of relevance as politics heat up this year.
JOFFREY BALLET’S Jeraldine Mendoza recently received a $50,000 grant from the Leonore Annenberg Fellowship Fund in the Performing and Visual Arts, geared toward supporting young artists who are just beginning their careers.
Mendoza, a San Francisco native, joined Joffrey as a dancer in 2011 after training at the City Ballet School of San Francisco and as the first American female to graduate in the Russian course at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy.
Mendoza is the first Chicago artist to receive the Leonore Annenberg Fellowship since its inception in 2008.
THEATRE COMMUNICATIONS GROUP launches its inaugural Leadership U[niversity]Program, which provides six early-career theater leaders with grants for one-on-one professional development and eight mid-career professionals with continuing educational opportunities. Amanda Delheimer Dimond, a founder and artistic director of 2nd Story, receives one of the former and will be mentored by Lookingglass executive director, Rachel Kraft, in “exploring the ethos and ecology of an ensemble-based theater that creates new work.”
Meghan Beals McCarthy, associate artistic director of Chicago Dramatists, receives a continuing ed grant to interview and observe the leadership and artists of other new-plays venues around the country.
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