Monday, November 4, 2013

ACT OUT HOLIDAY: Barrel of Monkeys Celebrates the Season with THAT’S WEIRD, GRANDMA: THE HOLIDAY SPECIAL

Written by Chicago Public School Students
Adapted for the Stage & Performed by
Barrel of Monkeys Company Members
Directed by Artistic Director Molly Brennan
December 9, 2013 - January 13, 2014

Barrel of Monkeys invites you to join them by the imaginary hearth and celebrate the warmth of the holiday season with THAT’S WEIRD, GRANDMA: THE HOLIDAY SPECIAL, featuring a festive array of holiday-themed favorites like Santa and Taco BellThe Crazy ReindeerSnowmen From PlutoSanta’s Mean Day and many more – all conceived and written by Chicago Public School students and adapted for the stage and performed by Barrel of Monkeys Company Members.

Directed by Artistic Director Molly BrennanTHAT’S WEIRD GRANDMA: THE HOLIDAY SPECIAL plays Mondays at 8 pm from December 9, 2013 – January 13, 2014 at the Neo-Futurist Theater, 5153 N. Ashland Ave. in Chicago.  Clever and funny – touching and poignant – the weekly collection of short sketches are equally entertaining for both adults and children. The line-up changes each week by audience vote – so no two shows are ever the same.  For tickets, reservations and information visit or call (312) 409-1954.

Barrel of Monkeys, a Chicago-based arts education theater ensemble now in its 16th season, conducts creative writing workshops with 3rd through 5th grade students in underserved Chicago Public Schools. The ensemble of actor-educators then turns their stories and words into professionally-performed theater, presented both in-school and for the general public through its revues. Barrel of Monkeys annually performs more than 300 student-written stories for the students in their schools and 175 stories on the stage for the general public.

Barrel of Monkeys’ regular edition of THAT’S WEIRD, GRANDMA plays September 9 – October 2013, followed by a CHICAGO’S WEIRDO, GRANDMA featuring weekly guest artists and companies from October 28 – December 2, 2013.

Written by:  Chicago Public School Students
Adapted for the stage by:  Barrel of Monkeys Company Members
Director:  Artistic Director Molly Brennan
Featuring:  Barrel of Monkeys Company Members
Location:  Neo-Futurist Theater, 5153 N. Ashland Ave. in Chicago
Dates:  December 9, 2013 – January 13, 2014
Curtain Times:  Mondays at 8 pm
Tickets:  $12 for adults; $6 for children under 12. Tickets are available at or by calling (312) 409-1954.

About the Director
Molly Brennan, a Barrel of Monkeys company member since 1999, has held a variety of positions in the company, including actor, teacher, lead teacher, director and artistic associate. She was named Artistic Director in 2011. Brennan is also a Company Member of 500 Clown, and has performed in Chicagoland toured all over the country. Her acting credits include: Lookingglass Theatre's Peter Pan, A Play and Lookingglass Alice; and Harpo Marx in Goodman Theatre's Animal Crackers. She has also performed with About Face Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, The Second City, The House Theatre of Chicago, Lifeline Theatre and Factory Theater.

About Barrel of Monkeys
Since Barrel of Monkeys’ inception in 1997 it has worked in 57 Chicago Public Schools. More than 7,000 lower-income elementary school students have participated in the Barrel of Monkeys programs that provide a rare opportunity for creative expression and build literacy skills, self-esteem and confidence in student ideas and abilities.

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