Winter Sketchbook 2000

The CollaborAction Theatre Company presents a festival showcasing 16 short plays (culled from more than 600 submissions)–works of ten minutes or less, including several world, American, or local premieres. The sketches–which will be performed in an abstract environment created for the occasion by Chicago artist Wesley Kimler–will be judged by a panel of local theater directors and teachers, with awards being given in the categories of best writer, best actor, best director, and best work. The festival will also feature DJs, refreshments, and an exhibit of Kimler’s artwork.

“Winter Sketchbook 2000” opens Thursday, February 24, with different programs at 7 and 9 PM; each consists of eight plays. Admission is $15 for both programs; a festival pass costs $25. The festival runs through March 5 on the main stage of the Chopin Theatre, 1543 W. Division, 312-409-2741. More information will be in next week’s Reader.

Following is the schedule for the festival’s opening night.


Dead Dwarf Intermezzo

John Weagly’s play about “the vaudevillian discovery of a dead midget” is directed by Jen Ellison.

Products in the Last Refuge

Kristin Goodman directs Guy Jackson’s study of a pair of teen terrorists.

Birds of Prey

Shade Murray directs the world premiere of Elizabeth Scales Rheinfrank’s play about a mysterious ex-con in a dive bar.

Road From Euclid

Rebecca Gilman’s drama, directed by Rich Taylor in its world premiere, examines the gulf between small-town nostalgia and small-town reality.

Enter . . . the Poet

Brenda Krantz’s comedy, directed by Ian Armstrong in its midwest premiere, concerns an unemployed typist ensnared in “the mating rituals of the artistic elite.”

I’ve Decided It Was Raining the Last Time I Saw You

Amanda Delheimer directs the U.S. premiere of L.C. Carson’s study of a failed relationship.

Dirty Laundry

William Borden’s new play, directed by Ian Vogt, finds a young writer discovering his first great work in a small-town laundromat.

Tuning in El Paso

An 11-year-old girl considers her past and her future possibilities in her new Texas home in Ellen Fairey’s play. Matt Miller directs a world premiere.


The Pratts

W. Shaunessy Ashdown directs the world premiere of Tim Nordwind’s comedy.

I Miss Life

Jesse Weaver’s new comedy, directed by Jimmy McDermott, concerns a woman “in denial of her infertility.”


Adam Theisen directs the world premiere of G. Riley Mills’s sketch about a woman who receives bad news from the mailman.


Sandra Perlman’s play, about two pregnant teenagers sharing secrets, is staged by Marta Suarez.

Rough Cut

Marjie Rynearson’s drama, directed by Jeffrey Dudek in its world premiere, concerns a woman’s fight against disease.

Two Women on the Train Talking About Depression

Ann Filmer directs Brett Neveu’s new play.


Lusia Strus directs Jonathan Mastro’s comedy about two women searching for a sense of peace in church.


Beth Henley penned this portrait of “the gut-wrenching pathos of American sexual relations.” Jay Paul Skelton directs a midwest premiere.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Dirty Laundry still by Sean Maloney.