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Find the Fresh in the Familiar with Court’s 2023/24 Season

We’re thrilled to announce the 2023/24 season! This next season marks a thrilling inflection point in our history, catalyzed by the 2022 Regional Theatre Tony Award. Centering timeless themes in strikingly rich interpretations, the 2023/24 season finds the fresh in the familiar with a carefully curated blend of beloved texts and new voices. We can’t wait to celebrate the transformational power of possibility with you.

Marilyn F. Vitale Artistic Director Charles Newell shares: “This season, we’re staging a number of well-known works in innovative and creative ways, inviting audiences to reconsider their potential, their cultural and theatrical significance, and their essential message. We commissioned a new work that complicates historical narratives and reinvigorates the form of the memory play. And we remain ever curious about what makes a classic and why. This season will be wonderfully satisfying, without question.”

Executive Director Angel Ysaguirre comments: “We received the 2022 Regional Theatre Tony Award for our history of excellent productions and for building participation among residents in our surrounding communities on the South Side. This season continues that work as we artistically invest in telling important stories, reimagine stories we think we know, and continue to deepen relationships and be a place of artistic and civic engagement for our neighbors on the South Side of Chicago. These plays all examine issues of who we are and how we act responsibly toward one another.”

Explore the 2023/24 season

It is Christmas in the 12th century, and Henry II’s family is in tatters. His once-loving wife and now sworn enemy, Eleanor of Aquitaine, has been released from prison and is seeking vengeance at any cost; his three sons – Richard, Geoffrey, and John – are profoundly incompetent, consumed by petty sibling squabbles and gridlocked in duplicitous scheming; and his mistress (who just happens to be betrothed to his son) is running out of patience, demanding either a wedding or the return of her much-needed dowry. And you thought your holidays were complicated!

The Lion in Winter depicts – with acerbic wit – a family’s attempt to persevere in the face of staggering egos, ruthless ambition, and deceit at every turn as the fate of their country hangs in the balance. Resident Artist Ron OJ Parson (Two Trains Running, Arsenic and Old Lace) directs the Tony Award-winning play that inspired the Oscar-winning film, staging this thrillingly clever epic with humor, heart, and renewed relevance.

A photo of scales with text that reads, "Antigone, by Sophocles, Directed by Gabrielle Randle-Bent, Feb 2 - 25, 2024"

As Antigone mourns her brothers who have murdered each other in a civil war, she must decide if she will sacrifice her life to balance the scales of justice. Her victorious brother is posthumously exalted; her treasonous brother is left unburied by order of King Creon, Antigone’s uncle and adversary. Antigone deliberately defies the king’s edict and buries her traitorous brother, igniting a devastating chain of events and thrusting urgent questions of justice to the fore.

With Antigone, Sophocles’ timely masterwork, Associate Artistic Director Gabrielle Randle-Bent (The Island) brings Court’s Oedipus Trilogy – Oedipus Rex, The Gospel at Colonus, and Antigone – to an exhilarating conclusion. Randle-Bent’s striking interpretation – featuring Aeriel Williams in the titular role and Timothy Edward Kane as King Creon – not only completes this theatrical odyssey, but renders Sophocles’ classic tale electrifyingly alive, inviting audiences to hear his poetry anew. As a result, Randle-Bent frees Antigone from the trap of martyrdom, situates her in our modern conversation about the price of democracy, and asks – crucially – if it’s a price we’re willing to pay.

A photograph of an exploding skull with text that reads, "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, by Tom Stoppard, Directed by Charles Newell, March 29 - April 21, 2024"

Everyone dies, but not everyone’s death is pre-ordained by Shakespeare. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead puts the spotlight on two of Shakespeare’s minor characters as they wrestle with fundamental, pressing questions of identity, loss, fate, friendship, and the absurdity of existence. As they hurtle towards their imminent demise, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern unlock what it means to be truly alive. 

After directing The Hard ProblemArcadiaTravesties, and The Invention of Love at Court and Rock ‘n’ Roll at Goodman Theatre, Director Charles Newell turns his expert eye to Tom Stoppard once more. His deconstructed interpretation of one of Stoppard’s earliest and best-known works propels the story forward with newfound immediacy. And, in so doing, Newell unveils the emotional in the existential, and urges us to reconsider what we know about Rosencrantz and GuildensternHamlet, and perhaps even Tom Stoppard himself.

A close-up photograph of a tape recorder with text that reads "World Premiere, Stokely: The Unfinished Revolution, by Nambi E. Kelley, Directed by Tasia A. Jones, May 24 - June 16, 2024"

Civil rights activist Kwame Ture, born Stokely Carmichael, was a towering icon; a man of immense domestic and international importance; a man who refused to back down, step aside, or remain silent. But he was also just that: a man. Blending the historical and the personal with astonishing grace, Stokely: The Unfinished Revolution depicts one man’s rise to prominence and the many people who made it possible, begging the question: what does it mean to trust someone with a movement when you can’t trust them with your heart?

Tasia A. Jones makes her Court directorial debut with playwright and Prince Prize winner Nambi E. Kelley’s (Native Son) evocative world premiere. Tracing the journey from Stokely Carmichael, the man, to Kwame Ture, the legend, Kelley illuminates the power of imperfection to humanize, and the power of that humanity to change the world.

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Posted on April 4, 2023 in Productions, Theatre News

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