Loyola University Chicago

Theatre

Department of Fine and Performing Arts

Main Stage Season

 2021-2022

 

By Naomi Iizuka
Directed by Lavina Jadhwani

September 30 - October 10
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A visceral blend of classical mythology and real life stories told by street kids, Naomi lizuka's Polaroid Stories journeys into a dangerous world where myth-making fulfills a fierce need for transcendence, where storytelling has the power to transform a reality in which characters' lives are continually threatened, devalued and effaced. Not all the stories these characters tell are true; some are lies, wild yams, clever deceits, baroque fabrications. But whether or not a homeless kid invents an incredible history for himself isn't the point, explains diarist-of-the-street Jim Grimsley. "All these stories and lies add up to something like the truth." Inspired in part by Ovid's Metamorphoses, Iizuka's Polaroid Stories takes place on an abandoned pier on the outermost edge of a city, a way stop for dreamers, dealers and desperadoes, a no man's land where runaways seek camaraderie, refuge and escape. Serpentine routes from the street to the heart characterize the interactions in this spellbinding tale of young people pushed to society's fringe. Informed, as well, by interviews with young prostitutes and street kids, Polaroid Stories conveys a whirlwind of psychic disturbance, confusion and longing. Like their mythic counterparts, these modem-day mortals are engulfed by needs that burn and consume. Their language mixes poetry and profanity, imbuing the play with lyricism and great theatrical force. 

 

By D.W. Gregory
Directed by Jonathan Wilson

October 28 - November 17
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In 1926, radium was a miracle cure, Madame Curie an international celebrity, and luminous watches the latest rage-until the girls who painted them began to fall ill with a mysterious disease. Inspired by a true story, Radium Girls traces the efforts of Grace Fryer, a dial painter, as she fights for her day in court. Her chief adversary is her former employer, Arthur Roeder, an idealistic man who cannot bring himself to believe that the same element that shrinks tumors could have anything to do with the terrifying rash of illnesses among his employees. As the case goes on, however, Grace finds herself battling not just with the U.S. Radium Corporation, but with her own family and friends, who fear that her campaign for justice will backfire. Written with warmth and humor, Radium Girls is a fast-moving, highly theatrical ensemble piece for 9 to 10 actors, who play more than 30 parts—friends, co-workers, lovers, relatives, attorneys, scientists, consumer advocates, and myriad interested bystanders. Called a "powerful" and "engrossing" drama by critics, Radium Girls offers a wry, unflinching look at the peculiarly American obsessions with health, wealth, and the commercialization of science.

 

Written by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins
Directed by Devon de Mayo

February 18 - February 27
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Just so you know: Everybody dies at the end of the show. Also, it’s a comedy. A groundbreaking adaptation of the medieval morality play The Summoning of Everyman, Branden Jacob-Jenkins’s Everybody considers what we bring with us into death and what we leave behind. Just as life is unpredictable, actors are randomly assigned a new role every night. With dozens of possible casting combinations, audiences will witness a performance unlike anything they have ever seen. A Pulitzer Prize finalist, this metatheatrical piece asks the existential questions without the heaviness, making death both witty and full of life.

 

Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Book by James Lapine
Directed by Mark E. Lococo
Music Direction by Michael McBride

March 31 - April 10
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Everyone has a wish, but at what cost? James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim’s Tony Award-winning musical features an enticing fusion of fairy tale characters who all desire what they cannot have. When a childless Baker and his wife embark on a quest to lift the Witch’s curse on their family, everyone realizes that happily-ever-after may not last forever. With whimsy, wisdom, and tart humor, Into the Woods daringly twists your favorite stories in this evocative classic about darkness and light. Who knows what is waiting on the journey, but all must face the lessons found only amongst the trees.