2016 - 2017 Season
For our 2016-17 inaugural season, The Greenhouse produced the much-lauded Solo Celebration! series, a nine month, fourteen event series celebrating the diversity of the solo form.
Chicago Premiere of the Off-Broadway Hit
Written and Performed by Staceyann Chin
Originally Co-Produced in New York by Rosie O’Donnell, Robert Dragotta and Culture Project
June 11 – July 17, 2016
Audaciously funny and powerful, “MotherStruck!” is Staceyann Chin’s Off-Broadway hit exploring her deeply personal journey to motherhood, as a single woman, lesbian and activist who does not have health insurance or a ‘serious, stable financial set up. Told through Chin’s uniquely poetic lens, her magnetic performance takes audiences on a bullet train adventure as she reflects on how the process changed her life, making peace with what she learned along the way.
Squeeze My Cans
Written and performed by Cathy Schenkelberg
Directed by Shirley Anderson
July 14-July 24, 2016
Remount: Feb 16-Mar 19, 2017
Have you ever wondered if Bozo was a suppressive person? Have you ever considered what it might be like to audition to be Tom Cruise’s girlfriend? What do you do if the carrot of spiritual freedom was dangled in front of you, waiting to be seized? Writer performer Cathy Schenkelberg decided to chase it and what she found was Scientology, America’s foremost intergalactic theology. After years of studying and searching she soon found herself blowing alien life forms off her body, farther from than ever from who she had hoped to be. Now she is sharing the story in this no holds barred cautionary tale of how she survived the pseudoscience.
Written and Directed by Susan Padveen
Co-Production with The Neopolitans
July 15 – August 14, 2016
Gustav Klimt, the famous Viennese painter of The Kiss, crafted a multitude of beloved and enigmatic works while struggling to support his family in a world that did not yet recognize his genius. This provocative new play renders a portrait of the artist as he tries to win an attractive young woman’s interest and a sizable commission; as he wrestles with a decision that could alter the trajectory of his life. Torn between duty and defiance how will Klimt navigate the tumultuous decisions ahead?
U.S. Premiere of the London Hit
Written by Douglas Post
Directed by Patrick Sandford
Starring Simon Slater
August 10 – September 10, 2016
Taut and suspenseful, “Bloodshot” is a one-man murder mystery following photographer Derek Eveleigh, as he is hired by an anonymous benefactor to pursue a showgirl through the streets of 1957 London. After witnessing the young woman’s murder by an unknown assailant, he embarks on an investigation, taking him through the bowels and backstreets of London, to find the young woman’s killer. Along the way he meets hustlers, musicians, and magicians and finds himself falling in love with a dead woman who he’s never met.
I Do Today
Co-Production with The Other Theater Company
Written by Sarah Myers
Directed by Jacob Harvey
Starring Carin Silkaitis
September 2-October 9, 2016
Failed relationships, former lovers, and half eaten wedding cake clutter the mind of one Jewish woman determined to track the trajectory of love and loss in her life. “I Do Today” builds a constantly confounding and quickly changing family tree of many marriages (and even more divorces), posing questions about how modern marriage fits into old ideals. Bisexuality, kabbalah and baby teeth dangle from the branches of this thoughtful play exploring how we might use our inheritances to re-imagine what’s possible.
You Can Only Take the ACT 12 Times
Written and Performed by Tracy Egan
Directed by Rengin Altay
November 3 - 6, 2016
From critically acclaimed actor/playwright Tracy Egan comes this new work about the joyful agony of parenting kids on the verge of fleeing the nest. This one-woman show hilariously nails the fraught, frightening and exhilarating beast that is the college application process. WGN radio called her previous work, Who’s Driving The Bus?!? “Hilarious!” The Chicago Reader called it, “Poignant….Funny.” Directed by Rengin Altay, this Solo Celebration Special Event runs for four shows only!
by Brett Nevue
Directed by Linda Gillum
Starring Kate Buddeke
Jan 7-Feb 12, 2017
Lori hides in a Midwest basement as the world upstairs spins out of her control. Below the fray, she searches through the artifacts of her own history. She finds an imposing steamer trunk, a wedding dress, and a host of other relics that force her to confront where it all went astray. Was it the day she married Dan? The morning a stranger from her past reappeared? Or the night she put a secret in the trunk, changing her family forever? A deeply American mystery told entrancingly by award-winning actress Kate Buddeke, Her America will leave you breathless as each piece of her story comes out of the cellar, and into the light.
The Way She Spoke: A Docu-mythologia
Written by Isaac Gomez
Directed by Laura Baker
Starring Karen Rodriguez
June 10 – July 10, 2016
When an actress enters an empty warehouse to read a new play about the missing and murdered women of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, she embarks on an expedition through the broken roads of a city offering far more questions than answers. With thousands of women disappearing every year, who is responsible for these crimes? “The Way She Spoke: A Docu-mythologia” is an daring solo-performance piece pulling from hundreds of interviews collected down a rabbit hole of drug cartels, ex-convicts, unsavory reporters and resilient women; asking audiences what lies in the shadows of telling a story that isn't yours?
The Voice Bank
Written and performed by Andrea Caban
Directed by Amanda McRaven
Co-produced with terraNova Collective
August 9 & 10, 2016
As the Head of Voice and Speech at California State University, Long Beach, dialect expert on Howcast and an acclaimed solo artist, Andrea Caban thought she had seen (and heard!) it all when it came to vocal pedagogy….until she met her new client Terry, a passionate performer ready to defy her ALS diagnosis. The Voice Bank is a true story based on 40+ hours of transcriptions from voice and accent sessions between Caban and Terry as they race to save a voice, despite progressing symptoms and a skeptical medical community.
Mother (and me)
Chicago Premiere of FringeNYC Award-Winner
Written and performed by Melinda Buckley
As originally directed by Kimberly Senior
August 4 – 14, 2016
A larger-than-life Hungarian “Mama Rose” is slowing slipping into dementia as her Broadway baby, Melinda slips into “de’middle age.” A brilliantly funny and touching story of two women who are losing everything they’ve ever been—in very different ways—as they lose each other. Who is it harder for? The one who can’t remember? …Or the one who can’t forget? This one-woman tour-de-force by Broadway performer and comedian Melinda Buckley was an award-winner at the 2014 New York International Fringe Festival.
Chicago Premiere of the Off-Broadway Hit
Written by best-selling author Laurence Leamer
Directed by Steve Scott
Starring Linda Reiter
August 19 – September 25, 2016
In this intimate portrait of Camelot’s queen-mother, we meet a stalwart 79-year old Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy just after the tragedy at Chappaquiddick, which led to the accidental death of Mary Jo Kopechne at the hands Senator Edward M. Kennedy. Alone with her invalid husband in the house in Hyannis Port, Rose attempts to retrace the rise and fall of this great family as they traversed continents, shaped history, and inspired a people. The Kennedy’s story is the story of our nation, as it implores audiences to access the costs of creating a political dynasty.
The Happiest Place on Earth
World Premiere Co-Production with Sideshow Theatre Co.
Written and Performed by Philip Dawkins
Directed by Jonathan L. Green
September 17-October 23, 2016
Once upon a time in Anaheim, California in an orange grove, a magical kingdom was built and dedicated to America's history, dreams, and wildest hopes. Eight years later, an American prince died on live television while delivering the Albuquerque sports scores, leaving four daughters and their mother behind. Left reeling from the loss of their patriarch, the family underwent a quest to reach the magical kingdom, and seek solace and recovery. Now, more than fifty years after their journey, acclaimed playwright Philip Dawkins retraces and illustrates the true story of the women in his family, exploring their history and asking if there really is a place where the dream that we wish can come true.
Uncle Philip’s Coat
Written by Matty Selman
Directed by Elizabeth Margolius
Starring Gene Weygandt
November 27 – December 31, 2016
When Matty, an unemployed actor, inherits an old, decrepit coat from his recently deceased great-uncle Philip, he is unsure whether he has been given an heirloom or a heap of rags. Through his attempts to find the answer he travels across time, territories, and tragedies in an effort to uncover the history of an unfaltering dreamer. “Uncle Philip’s Coat” takes Matty on a journey of self-discovery that poses larger questions of family, mythology, and the inheritance of a Jewish son. How did a man who made it to the land of opportunity become a homeless wanderer, and what can he teach us about the stories that we tell to surround ourselves and keep away the cold?
Circumference of a Squirrel
by John Walch
Directed by Jacob Harvey
Starring Will Allen
Jan 13-Feb 12, 2017
An inner tube, a bagel, a donut, a lifesaver, a holiday wreath, a tire-swing, a cycle of abuse: circles, and at the center of them all sits an enigmatic squirrel. Orbiting that squirrel is Chester, a self-described "rodentophobe" who spins the outlandish, funny and bruising tale of growing up with a father who developed a rabid hatred for squirrels that eventually infected every aspect of his life. Pursued by memories of his father's intolerant legacy, Chester is pulled into the black hole at the center of his own life, unsure of how he will break free from the darkness that encircles him.