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Court’s Spotlight Reading series hopes to redefine—and ultimately expand—the canon of classic Theatre by presenting readings of rarely produced plays by authors of color. The series aims to introduce more Chicagoans to the authors and their work, and to expand Court’s artistic values into more communities in the city, with a focus on the south side.

The inaugural year of the program attracted more than 400 attendees, and we hope to expand upon that success as we establish new relationships. A list of past readings is available here.

Check out this year’s line-up and reserve your seat; space is extremely limited at each venue. As always, all Spotlight Readings are free and open to the public.

The Spotlight Reading series is made possible in part by a grant from

The Joyce Foundation

Photo by Crystal Wiley-Brown.

Upcoming Spotlight Reading Series Events:

Spotlight Reading: The Electronic Nigger

Sep 16

by Ed Bullins
directed by Cedric Mays
at ESO Theater

Actor and writer Cedric Mays directs The Electronic Nigger by Ed Bullins. The play introduces us to  A.T. Carpentier, a college student in his late thirties, who signs up for a creative writing course and continually interrupts the class with his pretentious anecdotes and speeches. Written in 1968, this provocative comedy deals with the danger of rhetoric of any kind.

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Spotlight Reading: Trouble in Mind

Nov 11

by Alice Childress
directed by Sydney Chatman
at the South Shore Cultural Center

Trouble in Mind is the story of Wiletta Mayer, a talented but struggling black actress, who gets her breakthrough role and is cast in a “progressive” Broadway play about race; however, it turns out to be anything but progressive, both in terms of its script and rehearsal environment. The play is a satirical look at racism in American commercial theatre.