THEATER SEASON 2010-2011 IN CHICAGO: FIVE HIGHLY ANTICIPATED OPENINGS.

romeo and juliet.jpg

Although theater is year-round in Chicago, fall signals a busy flurry of renewed activity.  Once again Chicago theater-goers can expect to see a season of innovative premieres and inventive revivals.  With over 200 producing theater companies in our midst, the question is where to start?

FIVE SHOWS TO START THE SEASON.

1. ROMEO AND JULIET AT CHICAGO SHAKESPEARE THEATER.
September 15 through November 21, 2010.
You know the age-old scenario: Boy meets girl. Boy and girl fall in love.  Love is doomed as said boy and girl's families hate each other.  Somehow, Chicago Shakespeare Theater can take something old and make it new again.  Expect to be wowed with an exhilarating  production of the Bard's iconic Romeo and Juliet staged by world-renowned Australian Director Gale Edwards.  If you've never been to CST, the theater alone is worth the visit. The space offers Lake Michigan views from the lobby, an authentic British-style pub and a 525-seat theater based on the design of the original Swan Theatre.  

2. FROST/NIXON AT TIMELINE THEATRE.
August 21 through October 10, 2010.

Frostnixonposter.jpg

Frost/Nixon original poster.

If Timeline Theatre lives up to their past, theater-goers can look for a top-notch production of this rehash of the 1977 television interviews in the face-off between title characters David Frost and Richard M. Nixon.  Even though Frost/Nixon, has been around the block a few times since its London premiere in 2006, a movie in 2008, Broadway in 2007, and some regional theater action, audiences can expect to be treated to a fresh look at this story from one of Chicago's best theater ensembles. 

3.  DETROIT AT STEPPENWOLF DOWNSTAIRS THEATRE.
September to November 7, 2010.
Steppenwolf kicks off its 2010-2011 season by taking a fresh, off-beat look at what happens when we dare to open ourselves up to something new with Detroit.  In a "first ring" suburb outside a mid-sized American city, Ben and Mary fire up the grill to welcome new neighbors who've moved into the long-empty house next door, then the real fireworks begin.

4. AT HOME AT THE ZOO AT VICTORY GARDENS THEATER.
October 1 through October 31, 2010.
Victory Gardens starts their new season with the Chicago premiere of Edward Albee's "At Home at the Zoo' featuring film and TV star Peter Strauss.  Strauss, who you may remember from his starring role in the made-for-TV film "Rich Man, Poor Man," will lead the cast in the story that pairs Albee's classic one-act "A Zoo Story" with the recently written prequel "Homelife." 

5. JAILBAIT AT PROFILES THEATRE.
September 3 through October 17, 2010.
Profiles, one of Chicago's longest-running storefront theaters kicks off its 22nd season of new and challenging works beginning with the Midwest premiere of of "Jailbait," a new play by Deirdre O'Connor.  Through the course of one dizzying night at a club, "Jailbait" follows the parallel stories of two fifteen-year-old girls, desperate to grow up, and two thirty-something men who are looking to be twenty-one again.  Expect some laughs, smart dialogue and disturbing moments from the people that brought you the Jeff award-winning hit of the spring and summer, "Killer Joe."  

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    Carole Kuhrt Brewer

    Arts and Entertainment Reporter for media since 1997.

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