Wednesday, February 6, 2019

OPENING: We Are Proud to Present a Presentation About the Herero of Namibia, Formerly Known as South West Africa, From the German Sudwestafrika, Between the Years 1884-1915 at Steppenwolf February 27 – March 23, 2019

ChiIL Live Shows on our radar
Steppenwolf for Young Adults Presents

We Are Proud to Present a Presentation 
About the Herero of Namibia, Formerly Known as 
South West Africa, From the German Sudwestafrika, 
Between the Years 1884-1915

Written by Jackie Sibblies Drury
Directed by Hallie Gordon and Gabrielle Randle

February 27 – March 23, 2019
 *Recommended for ages 14+*  

Following the Run, the Production Will Have a Public Tour to Six Chicago Neighborhoods 
in Partnership with BUILD, Inc, the Chicago Park District and Chicago Public Library

I'll be out for the press opening, March 2nd, so check back soon for my full review. As a parent of two CPS high school students, I can't rave enough about how wonderful the Steppenwolf for Young Adults (SYA) program truly is. We're eager to catch their latest, a hilarious and enlightening production with the longest show title I've ever seen.

Rehearsals are underway for Steppenwolf for Young Adults (SYA) second play of the 2018-19 season, which asks, “When you feel lost, how do you find your way?” Steppenwolf for Young Adults Artistic Director Hallie Gordon and Gabrielle Randle co-direct We Are Proud to Present A Presentation About the Herero of Namibia, Formerly Known as South West Africa, From the German Südwestafrika, Between the Years 1884 - 1915, which will include a tour to six Chicago neighborhoods in partnership with Steppenwolf Education City Connections partners, BUILD, Inc, the Chicago Park District and Chicago Public Library. Each stop on the tour is open to the public and will include a community workshop, a performance of the play and a post-show discussion.

Public performances at Steppenwolf for We Are Proud to Present a Presentation… will take place March 2 at 3pm & 7:30pm; March 8 at 7:30pm; March 9 at 3pm & 7:30pm; March 15 at 7:30pm; and March 16 at 3pm & 7:30pm in the Upstairs Theatre, 1650 N Halsted St. Single tickets to public performances ($15-20) are on sale now through Audience Services at 312-335-1650 or Weekday performances are reserved for school groups only; more than 15,000 Chicago Public School students will see SYA productions each year. More info at See show page for content advisory and details. 

We Are Proud to Present a Presentation…features Will Allan (Actor 3/Another White Man), Terry Bell (Actor 2/Black Man), Taylor Blim (Actor 5/Sarah), Jeffrey Owen Freelon Jr. (Actor 4/Another Black Man), Michael Holding (Actor 1/White Man) and Jennifer Latimore (Actor 6/Black Woman). Previously announced Daniel Kyri is no longer in the cast due to a scheduling conflict.

There’s more to history than what’s in the books. We Are Proud to Present a Presentation… tells the story of what happens when a group of actors explore the long forgotten––or possibly never remembered––history of German colonization of Namibia and its devastating effects. This gut-wrenching, intelligent, often funny—until it’s not— play asks us, what happens when we only have one side of the story?

“SYA is dedicated to creating work that is both provocative and drives us to think harder and deeper about who we are and the choices we make. We are so excited to be producing We Are Proud to Present a Presentation…a powerful story that explores themes of race, representation, storytelling and the power group-thinking can have on an individual. Our season theme is “When you feel lost, how do you find your way?” – a question that every character in this play must ask themselves. SYA hasn’t yet produced a play structured like this one, and we are thrilled that we have the opportunity to share it with our audiences,” shares co-director Hallie Gordon.

Tour Information
Working in collaboration with Steppenwolf Education’s City Connections partners, BUILD, Inc, the Chicago Park District and Chicago Public Library, We Are Proud to Present a Presentation…  will tour to six Chicago neighborhoods. At each stop on this week-long tour, the City Connections partner will host Steppenwolf Education teaching artists as they present a community workshop, a performance of the play and a post-show discussion. All workshops and performances are free and open to the public.

The tour schedule is as follows:
Mandrake Park Fieldhouse Chicago Park District: 3858 S. Cottage Grove 
Monday, March 18: 4:30pm workshop; 6pm performance

Tuley Cultural Center/Fieldhouse Chicago Park District: 501 E 90th Pl
Tuesday, March 19: 5pm workshop; 6:30pm performance

South Chicago Branch Chicago Public Library: 9055 S. Houston Ave
Wednesday, March 20: 4:30 workshop; 6:30pm performance

Albany Park Branch Chicago Public Library: 3401 W. Foster Ave
Thursday, March 21: 4: 30pm workshop; 6pm performance

Austin Town Hall Cultural Center/Fieldhouse Chicago Park District: 5610 W. Lake St Friday, March 22: 5pm workshop; 6:30pm performance

Hamilton Park Cultural Center/Fieldhouse Chicago Park District: 513 W. 72nd St
Saturday, March 23: 1pm workshop; 2:30pm performance

Relaxed/Sensory-Friendly Performances
Steppenwolf is pleased to present a Relaxed/Sensory-Friendly performance for We Are Proud to Present a Presentation…on Saturday, March 16 at 1pm for the Lobby and 3pm curtain. Relaxed/Sensory-Friendly performances feature a relaxed performance environment and minor adjustments to sensory effects such as lighting and sound cues. House lights will be left up at a low level  and it’s okay for audience members to make noise, move, and leave the theater. Social narratives and character guides will be shared in advance of guests’ visit, and a quiet area will be designated in a section of the lobby. For more information, please email

We Are Proud to Present a Presentation… production team includes Arnel Sancianco (Scenic Design); Izumi Inaba (Costume Design); Heather Sparling (Lighting Design); Cooper Forsman (Sound Design); Breon Arzell (Movement Consultant); Michelle Medvin (Stage Manager); and JC Clementz (Casting Director).

City Connections Partners
BUILD is a pioneering, respected gang intervention, violence prevention and youth development organization based on Chicago’s West Side. Since 1969, BUILD has helped thousands of youth escape gangs and violence to become positive leaders of their communities and is recognized as an Effective Program by the US Dept of Justice and an Innovative Program by the US Dept. of Education.  BUILD's enrichment programs, including its partnership with Steppenwolf Theatre, foster the creativity and voice of young people in Austin, Garfield Park, Humboldt Park, Hermosa, Belmont-Cragin and Fuller Park.   

The Chicago Park District is the 2014 Gold Medal Award winner, recognized for excellence in park and recreation management across the nation. For more information about the Chicago Park District’s more than 8,800 acres of parkland, more than 600 parks, 26 miles of lakefront, 12 museums, two world-class conservatories, 16 historic lagoons, nearly 50 nature areas, thousands of special events, sports and entertaining programs, please visit or contact the Chicago Park District at 312-742-PLAY or 312-747-2001 (TTY). Want to share your talent? Volunteer in the parks by calling, 312-742-PLAY.
Chicago Public Library since first opening its doors in 1873, has served all Chicagoans with free and open places to gather, learn, connect, read and be transformed. The 81 locations provide the innovative library services, technologies and tools Chicagoans need to reach their goals and to establish Chicago as a competitive force in the global marketplace. Chicago Public Libraries are that special third place—beyond home and work—where people come to improve their lives, nourish their intellect or savor entertainment. The rich collections, state-of-the-art technology and cultural and public partnerships make Chicago Public Library a thriving, engaged leader in Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods.

Major foundation support for Steppenwolf Education is provided by the Polk Bros. Foundation and Alphawood Foundation. Steppenwolf Education is also supported in part by contributions from The Crown Family, Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, Sage Foundation, Lloyd A. Fry Foundation, Northern Trust Company, Field Foundation of Illinois, Dr. Scholl Foundation, the Helen Brach Foundation, ITW Foundation, Siragusa Foundation, Robert and Isabelle Bass Foundation, Inc. and Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Foundation; as well as the Steppenwolf Associates, a community of dynamic young professionals.

Steppenwolf Education is a citywide partner of the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) School Partner Program.

Committed to making the Steppenwolf experience accessible to everyone, performances featuring American Sign Language Interpretation, Open Captioning and Audio Description are offered during the run of each play. Assistive listening devices and large-print programs are available for every performance and the Downstairs and 1700 Theatres are each equipped with an induction hearing loop. All theaters feature wheelchair accessible seating and restrooms, and Front Bar features a push-button entrance, all-gender restrooms and accessible counter and table spaces.

Sponsor Information
United Airlines is the Official and Exclusive Airline of Steppenwolf.

Front Bar: Coffee and Drinks
Connected to the main lobby is Steppenwolf’s own Front Bar: Coffee and Drinks, offering a warm, creative space to grab a drink, have a bite, or meet up with friends and collaborators, day or night. Open Tuesdays – Sundays from 8am to midnight, Front Bar serves artisanal coffee and espresso is provided by La Colombe and food prepared by Goddess and Grocer. The menu focuses on fresh, accessible fare, featuring grab-and-go salads and sandwiches for lunch and adding shareable small plates and desserts for evening and post show service. www.front

Steppenwolf Education’s unique approach combines play production with educational components to enhance arts education for young audiences, as well as their teachers and families, as well as a professional leadership program for early-career professionals. Every season Steppenwolf for Young Adults (SYA) creates two full-scale professional productions specifically for teens. Working closely with the Chicago Public and metropolitan area schools and other community partners, Steppenwolf Education annually ensures access to the theater for more than 15,000 participants from Chicago’s diverse communities. The initiative also includes post-show discussions with artists; classroom residencies led by Steppenwolf-trained teaching artists in almost 100 classrooms in public high schools; professional development workshops for educators; and the Young Adult Council, an innovative year-round after-school initiative that uniquely engages high school students in all areas of the theater’s operations, as well as other teen and community-based programs.

Year of Chicago Theatre 
Steppenwolf Theatre Company is proud to be part of the 2019 Year of Chicago Theatre, presented by the City of Chicago and the League of Chicago Theatres. To truly fall in love with Chicago, you must go to our theatres. This is where the city bares its fearless soul. Home to a community of creators, risk-takers, and big hearts, Chicago theatre is a hotbed for exciting new work and hundreds of world premieres every year. From Broadway musicals to storefront plays and improv, there’s always a seat waiting for you at one of our 200+ theatres. Book your next show today at

Steppenwolf Theatre Company is the nation’s premier ensemble theater. Formed by a collective of actors in 1976, the ensemble of 49 members represent a remarkable cross-section of actors, directors and playwrights. Thrilling and powerful productions from Balm in Gilead to August: Osage County and Pass Over—and accolades that include the National Medal of Arts and 12 Tony Awards—have made the theater legendary. Steppenwolf produces hundreds of performances and events annually in its three spaces: the 515-seat Downstairs Theatre, the 299-seat Upstairs Theatre and the 80-seat 1700 Theatre. Artistic programing includes a sevenplay season; a two-play Steppenwolf for Young Adults season; Visiting Company engagements; and LookOut, a multi-genre performances series. Education initiatives include the nationally recognized work of Steppenwolf for Young Adults, which engages 15,000 participants annually from Chicago’s diverse communities; the esteemed School at Steppenwolf; and Professional Leadership Programs for arts administration training. While firmly grounded in the Chicago community, nearly 40 original Steppenwolf productions have enjoyed success both nationally and internationally, including Broadway, Off-Broadway, London, Sydney, Galway and Dublin. Anna D. Shapiro is the Artistic Director and David Schmitz is the Executive Director. Eric Lefkofsky is Chair of Steppenwolf’s Board of Trustees. For additional information, visit,, and     

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