Bailiwick Presents 2005 Pride Series

Sun. May 1, 2005 12:00 AM

Pride Series Explores New Ground with the World Premiere of Four Innovative Shows

Chicago, IL - Artistic Director David Zak announces that the 18th Annual Pride Series will feature four world premiere shows from April through July at Bailiwick Arts Center, 1229 West Belmont. TWO GROOMS AND A MOHEL runs from April 26 through Sunday May 22, PLANET OF THE BISEXUALS runs from May 23 through June 19, MARLOWE runs from June 12 through July 26 and A KISS FROM ALEXANDER runs from July 11 through August 14.


TWO GROOMS AND A MOHEL is a zany, politically incorrect comedy about two friends – one straight, one gay – who ponder both the benefits and challenges of tying the knot. After a night of revelry finds them in an unexpected bind, all manner of chaos ensues, climaxing with the hilarious arrival of The Mohel, another word for a Jewish person who is ordained to do religious circumcisions.

TWO GROOMS AND A MOHEL is directed by Lee Peters, winner of The College/University GLBT Playwriting Contest for Meaningless (2004) and In One Room (2003), and written by Jay Paul Deratany. Mark Larson and Alex Balestrieri make their Bailiwick debuts as Mitch and Ryan, with Kyle Hustedt and Sarah Goeden starring as their respective lovers. Puppet Designer is Kate Stranski, Set Designer is Kurt Boetcher, and Sound Designer is Kat Lanphear.

TWO GROOMS AND MOHEL previews Saturday, April 23 at 6 p.m. and Sunday, April 24 at 5 p.m. Opening night is Tuesday, April 26 at 8 p.m. ($25 includes reception). Regular performances are Thursdays at 8 p.m., Fridays at 9:15 p.m., Saturdays at 6 p.m. and Sundays at 5 p.m. through May 22. An additional performance will be held Sunday May 22 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $15 for previews, $22 for Thursdays and $25 on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.


PLANET OF THE BISEXUALS.features a hilarious portrayal of the Solar System as a sexual identity obstacle course. Was Mercury that hot soccer player at summer camp? Wasn't Venus the sultry vegetarian you dated in high school? Who cares about gender, when you are being bombarded by asteroids? Voyaging from the core of the sun to the outermost TNOs (Trans-Neptunian Objects, or perhaps Terrifying Naked Orgies), David attempts to discover what it means to be not one, not the other, and not both. Space helmets are not provided.

Playwright and star David Chapman has performed in London as well as fringe festivals in Edinburgh and Montreal. Chicago credits include assistant directing for Romeo and Juliet (Chicago Shakespeare), Symmetry (Victory Gardens), St. Peter’s Umbrella (Theatre Building) and Quintessential at Bailiwick Repertory Theatre’s Director’s Fest.

Director Michael Fosberg performed the self-penned critically acclaimed one-man show Incognito first produced at Bailiwick Repertory Theatre. He has performed at Steppenwolf, Remains, Wisdom Bridge, Apple Tree Theatre, The Missouri Repertory Theatre, and Goodman Theatre, where he recently understudied for the world premiere of the last Arthur Miller’s final play Finishing the Picture. He is a founding member of the Huron Ensemble in Old Town.

PLANET OF THE BISEXUALS previews May 17 and 18 at 8 p.m. Opening night is May 23 at 8 p.m. ($15 includes post-show reception). Regular performance times are Thursdays at 8 p.m., Fridays at 9:15 p.m., Saturday at 6 p.m. and Sunday at 5 p.m. through June 19. Tickets are $10 for previews and $15 for all shows.


MARLOWE, an innovative new drama directed by David Zak, is a new work based on the tempestuous life of Elizabethan playwright Christopher Marlowe. During his brilliant 29 years, Christopher Marlowe was a controversial and successful artist and activist, as his 1590 play Edward II is called the first gay play by many sources. Marlowe is the powerful story of Christopher Marlowe and his Cambridge pals Thomas Kyd and Thomas Watson, his involvement with his patron, Sir Francis Walsingham, and his relationship to The Virgin Queen Elizabeth I. Illustrated with excerpts from his poetry and plays (Edward II, Faustus, Tamburlaine the Great), MARLOWE is a contemporary play with a classical core.

Set Designer is Brian Sidney Bembridge, Costume Designer is Maggie Atkins, and Lighting Designer is Jared Moore.

Playwright Harlan Didrickson was an instructor on the Creative Writing faculty at Columbia College for thirteen years. His other produced plays include Four of a Kind, which was staged in Pittsburgh, at Chicago Dramatist Workshop and at the Theatre Bohemien in Germany; The Occupation of Nicky Wolf; and two one-act plays: Fences and Relics. He holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Playwriting from Carnegie Mellon University.

David Zak has been Artistic Director of Bailiwick Repertory since it’s founding in 1982. He is most proud of the many new works that have premiered at Bailiwick, including the recent hits Dr. Sex (recipient of 7 Jeff Citations, including Best New Work, Best Musical, and Best Direction of a Musical) and Sin: A Cardinal Deposed (Jeff Citation Outstanding Adaptation.) Recent projects have included Breathe for the ASCAP/Disney Musical Theater Workshop in Chicago, The Golem for Chicago Jewish Theater, Misery for Pyewacket, Poseidon: An Updside Down Musical for Hell in a Handbag Productions, which was featured in the 2003 New York Fringe Festival, and the 10th Anniversary Production of The Christmas Schooner. He has received After Dark Awards for Direction of Southern Baptist Sissies, In The Deep Heart’s Core, and Equus. He has received Jeff Recommendations, Citations, or Awards for Direction of Dr. Sex, Animal Farm, The Hiroshima Project, Incorruptible, The Count Of Monte Cristo, Light In The Heart Of The Dragon, Pope Joan, and Son Fire. He has received Jeff Citations for Best New Work for The Hiroshima Project (with Anne V. McGravie, Dwight Okita, and Nicholas A Patricca) and The Count Of Monte Cristo (with Jeff Casazza), and he received a special Jeff Citation in 2003 for Bailiwick’s range of diverse programming. He has received MacMurray College’s Distinguished Career Alumni Award, the Community Service Award from the Chicago Hearing Society, the Torch Award from the Human Rights Campaign, and been inducted with Bailiwick’s Pride Series into the City of Chicago’s Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame.

MARLOWE previews June 9 and 11 at 7:30 p.m. Opening night is Sunday, June 12 at 5 p.m. ($25 includes post-show reception). Regular performances are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday at 3 p.m. through July 17. Tickets are $15 for previews, $22 on Thursdays and $25 on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. There is no performance of MARLOWE on Sunday, June 26.


A KISS FROM ALEXANDER, is an enchanting comedy about an off-Broadway director’s doomed effort to create a musical about Alexander The Great, bringing another gay icon to the stage – Alexander The Great. Rehearsals are not going well for the new Off-Broadway musical that celebrates the life of this hero from history. Will it be the smash hit that author/director Nikos Matthews needs to save his career? Will leading man Brad Berenson and the six chorus boys trample on or do justice to his legend? Or will a mysterious stranger arrive to play the leading man? David Zak directs.

Writer and Lyricist Stephan deGhelder has acquired significant credits on Broadway, Off-Broadway, national tours, summer stock, in regional theatres, in commercials, and TV both at home and abroad. He has worked with Joseph Papp, Michael Bennett, Agnes de Mille, Gower Champion, Joe Mantegna, John Goodman, Kevin Kline, Nathan Lane, Christopher Lloyd, Teri Garr, Chris Sarandon, Tommy Tune, Anna Maria Alberghetti, Mimi Hines and a long list of aging movie stars. As a writer, he wrote the book and special lyrics to Troubador featuring the songs of Chicago native Tony Zito; book and special lyrics for Noel And Cole: Men About Town which was produced by the Asolo Theatre in Florida; Albeit, a ten minute satire of Edward Albee, and the award-winning musical satirical cabaret License To Bash.

Brad Simmons, composer, has had the fortune of working with Stephan deGhelder as an actor, musical director, and now a writing partner. Composition credits: In Full Bloom, Reel to Reel, Summer Wind, V: Back at Home, Vegas. Acting credits: Kiss Me Kate (National Tour), Hello Dolly! with Carole Cook, Into the Woods, Mame, Crazy for You, Will Rogers Follies, Guys & Dolls, Peter & the Wolf, Putting It Together, Closer Than Ever, And the World Goes Round, Back to Bacharach & David, Howard Crabtree's Whoop-dee-doo!, and Godspell. Simmons can be seen as The Pianist in the IFC feature Camp.

A KISS FROM ALEXANDER previews July 7 at 8 p.m. and July 9 at 6 p.m., and July 10 at 4 p.m. Opening night is July 11 at 8 p.m. ($30 includes post-show reception). Regular performance times are Wednesdays and Thursdays at 8pm, Saturdays at 6 p.m. and Sundays at 4 p.m. through August 14. Tickets are $15 for previews, $25 on Wednesday and Thursday and $30 on Saturday and Sunday.

Bailiwick Repertory Theatre produces diverse works, ranging from classics to cutting edge. Since it's founding in 1982, Bailiwick Repertory Theatre has consistently endeavored to achieve the vision of gifted directors in productions that have been as diverse as its audiences. With the director as fulcrum of its artistic process, Bailiwick Repertory Theatre has been recognized with more than 150 Citations, Nominations, and Recommendations from the Jeff Committee for all aspects of production, and more than three-dozen After Dark Awards, several Black Theater Alliance Awards. Bailiwick’s Pride Series has been inducted into the City of Chicago's Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame and been the recipient of the Torch Award from the Human Rights Campaign, the only theatre in the nation to be so honored. Since 1995, Bailiwick Repertory Theatre has made its home in the Bailiwick Arts Center, 1229 W. Belmont. The 150-seat Mainstage, 90-seat studio, and 40-seat loft contained in the Bailiwick building have allowed Bailiwick to further explore its art with staged readings, performance pieces, and workshops of new work.

Bailiwick Repertory Theatre continues to offer one of Chicago’s most affordable and flexible subscription packages, and a special Pride 2005 Pass will cost only $100 for five admissions. Bailiwick’s Bronze Pass allows for 8 admissions for $165, a Silver Pass is 12 admissions for $225, and a gold pass for 16 admissions for $275. Tickets can be used for any night of the week, in any combination, for any show in the building. Individual tickets and subscriptions can be purchased by calling the Box Office at 773-883-1090 or online at