Posted inArts & Culture

The strength of community

At the end of September 2020, I wrote a piece for the Reader titled “Black artistic leaders take charge at several Chicago theaters,” which framed the influx of new (and preexisting) Black leadership in Chicago theater against the backdrop of a historic disruption in the industry. That disruption was powered in part by COVID-19 leading […]

Posted inTheater Review

Apartheid and Antigone

Exquisitely paced and intellectually explosive, The Island at Court Theatre is a profoundly moving work of art. From the first moment, this production (directed by Gabrielle Randle-Bent, Court’s associate artistic director) seizes the audience and thrusts them into the world of two political prisoners of apartheid and doesn’t let go, even long after the play […]

Posted inTheater Review

Family recipes

If you’re looking for a play to prepare you for the Thanksgiving season, you might want to check out STEW, staged by Shattered Globe and now playing at Theater Wit. Written by Zora Howard and directed by Malkia Stampley, STEW tells the tale of the Tucker women, all gathering (and bickering) at the family home […]

Posted inFilm

Ms. Marvel

Marvel does a great job of spotlighting facets of American culture that often go underrepresented, and Ms. Marvel’s spotlight of Islam is incredibly well done.

Posted inTheater Review

New generation, old family stories

Change is afoot at Black Ensemble Theater as it prepares to embark on a new era, leveraging a $5 million grant to implement founder and CEO Jackie Taylor’s longtime vision of a Free To Be corridor, which would expand the footprint of the theater campus and provide housing and support opportunities for artists and community. […]

Posted inTheater Review

The price of exposure

In Viola Spolin’s seminal work Improvisation for the Theater, the very first exercise listed is named “exposure.” During this exercise, a group of actors are divided into halves and instructed to simply look at others and allow others to look at them. This deceptively difficult task often challenges new performers greatly; not only do they […]