Lookout Series Winter Line-Up Announced

Posted on November 2, 2016

Steppenwolf Theatre Company announces the 2016/17 winter lineup for LookOut, the company’s multi-genre performance series featuring a diverse array of work from both emerging and established artists. LookOut programming takes place in Steppenwolf’s 1700 Theatre, an 80-seat cabaret-style space connected to Steppenwolf’s own Front Bar: Coffee and Drinks at 1700 N Halsted St. Guests can take drinks into the theater. Every Friday a different DJ spins in Front Bar before the performance.

Since the LookOut Series kicked off in June 2015, the multi-genre performance series has welcomed more than 320 artists presenting 34 unique engagements attracting nearly 3,900 audience members to Steppenwolf’s 1700 Theatre.

Tickets to LookOut programming in November are currently on sale. Tickets to December, January and February programming go on sale this Friday, November 4 at 11am. To purchase tickets or for more info, visit steppenwolf.org or 312-335-1650. Steppenwolf Red and Black Card Members may use credits towards any LookOut programming. Prices vary for each show. LookOut is presented year-round and announced on an ongoing basis. For information, visit steppenwolf.org/lookout.

LookOut Winter Lineup in the 1700 Theatre
1700 N Halsted St
Listed in date order. All artists, dates and prices subject to change.
*Doors open 30 minutes before performance time

An Evening with Eighth Blackbird
Tuesday, November 29
Wednesday, November 30
The four-time Grammy-winning super group Eighth Blackbird has been described as “one of the smartest, most dynamic contemporary classical ensembles on the planet” (Chicago Tribune) and “a brand-name…defined by adventure, vibrancy and quality….known for performing from memory, employing choreography and collaborations with theater artists, lighting designers and even puppetry artists” (Detroit Free Press). In this intimate hometown show, the group turns to ambient sounds and a relaxed vibe as they present concerts featuring the work of Richard Reed Parry (Arcade Fire).

What’s Right Now: Pitchmafia Productions
Curated by Josephine Lee (Pitchmafia & Chicago Children’s Choir)
Featuring Phillip Armstrong, Brandon Lampkin & Yadda Yadda
Wednesday, December 7
6:30pm & 8:30pm
Pitchmafia is a collective of singers, songwriters and friends born and bred in Chicago. Join these breakout artists and special guests for a night of new songs, revived classics and fierce harmonies.

Stay Litby Ike Holter
Friday, December 9
Saturday, December 10
Stay Lit is a short play mash up of new work by Ike Holter focusing on a group of people who will do whatever they can to stay focused, driven, on the edge and slipping into spiral. Songs, monologues and scenes with a dynamite cast and music by John Cicora.

2nd Story
Sunday, December 18
2nd Story is a collective of story-makers and story-lovers working together to build and expand community through the power of storytelling. We host events in and around Chicago that elevate the storyteller’s words to deliver a unique, live, literary/theatrical experience unlike any other in the city. A typical show or events consists of several stories dispersed throughout the evening like courses of a meal. The stories range from the earnest and serious to the frivolous and humorous, and can simultaneously provoke and entertain.

Jaret Landon Presents: Celebrating the Holidays With Friends featuring The Christians Choir
Monday, December 19
Come celebrate the holidays with Jaret Landon, composer/arranger for various films, musicals, and recorded albums. This evening of music will feature cast members of The Christians by Lucas Hnath, currently running in the Downstairs Theatre.

You’re Being Ridiculous: Family
Saturday, January 7
Saturday, January 14
Saturday, January 21
At You’re Being Ridiculous, created and hosted by Jeremy Owens, real people tell true stories about their lives. Storytellers are linked by a theme, and by the desire to make you laugh—and, once in a while, cry. Our motto: Good stories are better than good times. We laugh at ourselves, and laugh with each other. Everyone has a story to tell. What’s yours?

Definition Theatre Company presents a staged reading of The River Jordan
By Mercedes White, directed by Steppenwolf ensemble member Alana Arenas
Monday, January 9
The River Jordan is a story about a man who, despite his best efforts, continues to disappoint the women in his family and ultimately becomes homeless. This new play investigates what it means to be homeless and sheds light on the fact that every single person on the street, or in a shelter, under a bridge, or in a box, whom we pass and deem as “less than”, comes from somewhere. They belong to someone. Steppenwolf ensemble member Alana Arenas directs this staged reading.

An Evening with The Walters
Friday, January 13
The Walters is a band from Chicago and a Minor League Baseball Team.

Erik and Jessie and Everyone You Know Variety Show
Monday, January 23
Monday, March 6
Local actor/musicians Erik Hellman and Jessie Fisher present an updated variant of the classic variety hour: Original music, special guests, comedy, magic, improv and ephemera along with the tightest country, soul band in the land. Fast-paced, fun, funky and fresh.

In the Round with Cloudstomper
Thursday, January 26
The eclectic multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter Cloudstomper hosts this iteration of In the Round, LookOut’s series which brings together four musicians from a variety of genres to present original songs and explain the stories, processes, emotions and inspirations behind them. Cloudstomper has collaborated with the likes of accomplished Blues pianist Johnny Iguana as well as Angel Moore of ska-punk legends Fishbone. His guests include singer/songwriter Mike Maimone of Mutts, the Chicago genre-bending trio; queer music singer/songwriter extraordinaire Scott Free; and JC Brooks of JC Brooks of the Uptown Sound, acclaimed as “one of the hottest US soul acts” by MOJO Magazine.

Muses by Jess Godwin
Saturday, January 28
Chicago songwriter/actress Jess Godwin performs selections from her Muses project, a video series of original music inspired by coffee shop conversations with friends. Vocal soundscapes, live looping, and storytelling come together in this hybrid of theatre and pop/soul music.

Thornton & Messing
Monday, January 30
Monday, February 6
Susan Messing and Michael Patrick Thornton are Thornton & Messing, a Chicago improv-duet who have been playing together for five years. With one suggestion from the audience, Thornton & Messing create a world from scratch, rich with characters who are as heartfelt and human as they are hilarious.

Chasing Blue by Bea Cordelia
Saturday, February 4 at 8pm
Sunday, February 5 at 4pm and 8pm
Set six months after Bea Cordelia came out as transgender during the most upheaving era of her life, Chasing Blue takes place in her bathroom in the hour she has to get ready for a fast-approaching date. Intimately autobiographical, tenderly and fiercely told through stories, poetry, music, and spectacle, Bea Cordelia’s “life-changing” solo show chronicles her perilous journey toward her transgender identity, all the while asking: When everyone else has left, how can we begin to live with ourselves?

Karen Finley: Written in Sand
A solo spoken word performance
Friday, February 10
Saturday, February 11
For Visual Aids 25th anniversary (2013), curated by Sur Rodney Sur in New York City, Karen Finley was invited to participate in the exhibit. While looking over and revisiting her art and writing on the subject and era Finley gathered her poetic responses and realized that it became its own narrative, its own body of work. Sections of performance texts, poetry, letters and fragments express the loss and magnitude of personal suffering and compassion within a larger world of homophobia, denial and injustice. Some of these writings are those that were censored and considered indecent, bringing her and three other artists (Fleck, Hughes, Miller) to the Supreme Court.

Karen Finley: Unicorn Gratitude Mystery
Friday, February 17
Saturday, February 18
Karen Finley brings her rave reviewed solo performance that explores the recent heightened U.S. political presidential landscape that takes on citizenship, gender disparity and abuse of power. The individual price of public relationships at the price of privacy becomes divisive with searing psychosexual dynamics of wit and seething revelation. The performance explores magical beings, aggressive thankfulness and collective intimacy through Shakespearean sudden trauma. This is an experimental nonlinear poetic text that creates a jolt of intuition, analysis and unnatural disaster of the human kind.

Tumbao: The Misadventures of la Familia Pilón
By Jo Cattell, Lorena Diaz and Wendy Mateo
Saturday, February 13
Saturday, February 27
Steppenwolf’s 1700 Theatre is transformed into Tumbao, the familia Pilon’s bar and the best place for a salsa night, baptism, séance or wedding reception. Unbeknownst to the familia Pilón, the community of stray cats has decided to make the family the stars of a radionovela, broadcast from the bar itself. By transmitting to the rest of the world what happens within Tumbao’s walls they hope to share the infectious energy of the family to keep the community thriving through its desperate fight against gentrification. Be warned, Tumbao is not myth or legend, but real, and therefore unscripted. Improvised live on Monday nights, a special show for you performed by an unsuspecting crew.

black as eye wanna be by Po’ Chop
Wednesday, February 24
black as eye wanna be is an evening length piece of burlesque/performance art that explores oppression and victory through the language of burlesque. Pulling sound from black musicians throughout American history, black as eye wanna be is both irreverent and playful.

LookOut programming is presented year-round and announced on an ongoing basis. John Zinn, Greta Honold and Patrick Zakem are the producers for LookOut. For more information, visit steppenwolf.org/lookout.

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