ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar
Barrel of Monkeys Presents
THAT’S WEIRD, GRANDMA: Ghosts, Ghouls and Talking Potatoes
Directed by Artistic Director Brandon Cloyd
October 7 – November 4, 2018 at the Neo-Futurist Theater
An Original Sketch Show that is Written by Kids,
Performed by Grownups, and Enjoyed by Humans
Barrel of Monkeys company member Isabella Gerasole performs “Untitled (Lunch Lady Slob)”
TWGGhostsGhouls-1 (left to right) Barrel of Monkeys company members Lev Caruso and Jennifer Allman perform “The Pig Apocolipse” in THAT’S WEIRD, GRANDMA: Ghosts, Ghouls and Talking Potatoes, directed by Artistic Director Brandon Cloyd. All Photos by Beth Bullock Photography.
(left to right) Barrel of Monkeys company members Mary Tilden and Jennifer Allman perform “Old Man Potaters”
Gather ye ‘round for a line-up of scary (and silly) stories featuring talking potatoes getting lost in the woods, Malcolm X fighting zombies, creepy slideshows that haunt old houses, and other spooky scenarios imagined by Chicago elementary school students.
Barrel of Monkeys company members Lev Caruso, Jennifer Allman, Rawson Vint and Jasmine Jordan perform “Candy Man”
(left to right) Barrel of Monkeys company member Jennifer Allman (front) with (back, l to r) Jasmine Jordan, Mary Tilden, Rachel Wilson, Tom Malinowski, Lev Caruso and Isabella Gerasole perform “Nacho and Work”
The cast includes Jennifer Allman, Noah Appelbaum, Lev Caruso, Jean Carlos Claudio, Isabella Gerasole, Jasmine Jordan, Tom Malinowski, Kelan Smith, Mary Tilden, Rawson Vint and Rachel Wilson.
Now in its eighteenth year, THAT’S WEIRD, GRANDMA features adaptations of stories written during Barrel of Monkeys’ creative writing residencies in Chicago elementary schools. BOM teaching artists guide 3rd through 5th graders through a six-week curriculum that uses theater to bring out the storyteller in every child. Afterward, BOM’s ensemble of professional actors, comedians and musicians bring the young authors’ stories to life as raucous sketches, songs and movement pieces, performing first for students in their schools and then for the public.
The stories in THAT’S WEIRD, GRANDMA resonate with adults while celebrating the imaginations of young people. Rotating themes highlight the diversity of stories BOM students concoct, from hilarious dialogues between unlikely characters to poignant pleas for social change. Every week brings a new line-up of stories, and BOM invites audiences to vote on their favorites at each performance.
Barrel of Monkeys company members Rachel Wilson and Mary Tilden perform “Unicorn aka a Horse”
Location: Neo-Futurist Theater, 5153 N. Ashland Ave. in Chicago
Dates: Preview: Sunday, October 7 at 3 pm
Press performance: Sunday, October 14 at 3 pm
Regular run: Sunday, October 14 – Sunday, November 4, 2018
Curtain Times: Sundays at 3 pm
Tickets: Previews: $10 for adults, $5 children 12 and under, $8 groups of 10 or more. Regular run: $20 for adults; $5 for children 12 and under. Discounts: $12 for students with ID, seniors, veterans and groups of 10 or more people. Teen Arts Pass (TAP) members: $5 with ID. Tickets are currently available at www.barrelofmonkeys.org or by calling (773) 506-7140.
About the Director
Brandon Cloyd joined Barrel of Monkeys in 2007 and has been deeply involved in many facets of the company ever since. Prior to joining BOM, Brandon graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and a minor in Business Institutions. Within BOM, Brandon has served as an actor, teaching artist, lead teacher, a member of Teacher Corps, as well as directing shows for schools and public performances of That's Weird, Grandma. Before becoming the company’s Artistic Director in September 2017, Brandon served as BOM After-School Program Coordinator at Loyola Park from 2014-2016 and Program Director from 2016-2017. Outside of Barrel of Monkeys, he worked as the Associate Director of Camp Echo, where he has spent 13 summers managing campers and staff at a co-ed sleep away camp in Upstate New York. Brandon has worked with other theatre companies including Urban Theatre Company, American Theater Company, Filament Theatre, InGen Productions, ACLE's Teatrino in Italy and Purple Crayon Players at Northwestern University.
Barrel of Monkeys company members Kelan Smith and Tom Malinowski perform “The Unknown Granddaughter”
Barrel of Monkeys company members Kelan Smith, Rawson Vint and Lev Caruso perform “Ninja Lovers”
About Barrel of Monkeys
Since Barrel of Monkeys’ inception in 1997, its teaching artists have served more than 60 Chicago Public Schools. Over 15,000 elementary school students have participated in the Barrel of Monkeys programs, which aim to build students' writing skills, improve self-esteem, and instill confidence in their ideas and abilities.
Barrel of Monkeys is sponsored in part by Wintrust Financial, Allscripts, Inc., Ernst and Young and Punchkick Interactive. It receives generous support from the Illinois Arts Council Agency; the National Endowment for the Arts; a CityArts Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events; the Chicago Community Trust; Crown Family Philanthropies; Alphawood Foundation of Chicago; the Maurice R. and Meta G. Gross Foundation; Polk Bros Foundation; the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation; the Robert and Isabelle Bass Foundation, Inc.; The Saints; The Topfer Family Foundation, and many other generous individuals and foundations.
(left to right) Barrel of Monkeys company members Mary Tilden, Isabella Gerasole and Jennifer Allman perform “Untitled (My Family that Lives in Las Vegas)”