Theatre Building Chicago changes hands

theatre-building-chicago

LUKABA PRODUCTIONS FINDS A HOME

Lukaba Productions announced today that it will be the primary tenant of the Theatre Building Chicago, at 1225 W. Belmont Ave.  Lukaba has committed to a long-term lease with 1225 West Belmont Avenue LLC, who this week signed a contract to purchase the building from Theatre Building Chicago.

Under the contract announced this week, Theatre Building Chicago will sell its property in Lakeview, containing three 148-seat theaters, to 1225 West Belmont Avenue LLC, according to Charles H. Jesser, manager of record for the entity. Jesser also stated that the purchaser intends to make substantial upgrades to the building. (Yeah!) The transaction is expected to close in May.

Lukaba executive producer Brian Posen stated, “We are excited about the opportunity to have our own space where we can collaborate with other artists and offer audiences accessible, affordable and exceptional entertainment.”

sketchfest-logo Lukaba Productions, under Posen’s leadership, has a long history of theatrical production in Chicago.  Lukaba’s flagship product is the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival, the world’s largest such festival that has taken place at TBC each January since 2002.  In addition, Lukaba is the parent company of the Cupid Players, the musical sketch comedy troupe that lays claim to the title of longest-running sketch revue in iO Theater’s history.  Posen has also produced a number of theatrical productions.  Those presented at TBC include the Chicago premiere of Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap, Noises Off! and How the Other Half Loves.

“We have spent the last several years searching for a permanent home that can serve as a base for our own productions, as well as helping us fulfill our mission of serving and nurturing Chicago’s theatrical artists.  We will continue TBC’s tradition of offering Chicago’s off-Loop companies affordable performance space so that the building will continue to serve as an incubator for Chicago theatre,” said Lukaba board chair Laura Michaud.

See more updates on this story at Chris Jones’ blog.

If what you really wanna do is produce… Here’s a chance to pick the brains of the industry’s elite

goodmanSo you wanna be a producer? Mark the weekend of March 19 – 21 and plan on attending the Chicago Producing Intensive Conference   at the Goodman Theatre’s Owen Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn. A $350 ticket ($275 for members of the League of Chicago Theatres) includes access to presentations and networking opportunities with a who’s who of heavy-hitter producers and  general managers from blockbuster shows in Chicago and on Broadway as well as national tours.

Presenters scheduled for the conference include  Tom Viertel, partner with Scorpio Entertainment  (A Little Night Music);   Allied Live Managing Partner Laura Matalon (Broadway’s Hair, Billy Elliot, Mama Mia and Legally Blonde,  among others);  Broadway in Chicago Vice President Eileen LaCarioJujamcyn Theatres Creative Director Jack Viertel;  Steppenwolf Theatre Executive Director David Hawkanson;  David Richards of Richards/Climan (general managers for Broadway’s  Blithe Spirit and All My Sons, among others) and Goodman Theatre Executive Director Roche Schulfer.

Presenters are slated to address audience development, script and story development and promotional strategies and marketing techniques, among others topics.

The conference is open to anyone interested in producing, co-producing or investing in the theater, be it in Chicago, New York or for national tours. Aspiring general managers and investors are also invited.  Program planners say the weekend will be of special interest to anyone exploring relationships between the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors in the development of a theater project.

The Commercial Theater Institute, now in its 29th year, is a project of Theatre Development Fund (TDF) and The Broadway League, Inc. Dedicated to training the next generation of commercial theatre producers, CTI strives to provide resources and guidance to people interested in creating commercial productions for the stage.

symposium

Join in a creative arts conversation with Emerging Leaders Network Chicago at Lookingglass

creative-conversations-40-40When: Tuesday, October 27, 2009 | 5:30 pm

Where: Lookingglass Theatre | 821 N.  Michigan

With four distinctly different generations now in the workforce and leadership coming from top to bottom and bottom to top, the need to bridge the generation gap among members of the arts community is essential. The rise of social media, lack of programming aimed towards young adults, increase in number of arts administration BA and MA programs, and discrepancy in the school of thought between generations all provide fodder for discussion.

The evening will include food and drinks, networking, and a facilitated discussion between emerging and veteran leaders—all for a suggested donation of $10.

Please join the Emerging Leaders Network Chicago (ELN Chicago) for a Creative Conversation in honor of National Arts and Humanities Month.

(And don’t forget to join us on Facebook at "ELN Chicago")

RSVP by Monday, October 26 by clicking HERE.   Space is limited!

Think Fast: “High Fidelity”, Jude Law in “Hamlet”, oyster-eating at the theatre, “Spiderman” schadenfreude, etc.

 
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  • Another big Hollywood name has (once again) caught the Broadway bug: Jude Law is set to star in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet on September 12th, running through December 6th.  Jude Law previously received a Tony Award nomination for the 1995 play Indiscretions. More info here.
  • Archaeologists have unearthed the remains of Dublin’s Smock Alley Theatre, which dates back to 1662.  The excavations are part of an 8-million-euro project to reinstate the theatre on its original site. The school’s director, Patrick Sutton, said the excavations had uncovered part of the theatre’s original walls as well as stage timbers. Among the artifacts found were an actress’s ceramic wig curler, clay pipes, a broken wine bottle and oyster shells. “Oysters were obviously the popcorn of the day,” he suggested. More here.
  • Rumors started among the Broadway fanatics (okay, I guess you can count me in as a member) last week that the musical-in-the-works, Spiderman, the Musical, must be in trouble when it was announced that the multi-million dollar renovation of the Hilton Theater had been halted.  It was called a "cash-flow problem", which is corporate for, "we’re not putting up another cent." Accordingly, Broadway producer Kevin Davenport’s theatre blog “The Producer’s Perspective” has a snarky well-deserved post titled “Schadenfreude for Spider-Man?”. 

Think Fast: Cleveland Playhouse, All State Arena, Harlem Summer Shakespeare, Lincoln Park Arts Festival

 

  • midsummer_harlem New York City’s critically acclaimed Pulse Ensemble Theatre, now celebrating its 20th season, will present its 5th season of Harlem Summer Shakespeare with free performances of William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, beginning on August 6th. The company will perform in various venues all over Harlem during the month of August. More here.
  • cleveland-playhouse In a win-win arts management deal, the highly-regarded Cleveland Play House and the Cleveland Clinic have signed a purchase agreement, swapping the sale of the complex to the Clinic with a 2-year leaseback, allowing The Play House to continue to produce a full array of theatre and arts education programming at its current location until May 2011.  The Play House will then be joining Cleveland State University and PlayhouseSquare Foundation in reconfiguring the Allen Theatre as a multi-stage venue to serve as the primary home for The Play House and CSU’s Program of Dramatic Arts. The grand opening is scheduled for September 2011.  More here and here.

Lincoln Park Arts & Music Festival

  • Chicago’s outdoor event season will heat up a few degrees this summer with the debut of the inaugural Lincoln Park Arts & Music Festival on Saturday and Sunday, August 8-9. Food, arts & crafts and an eclectic music lineup on two stages will be highlights of this Lincoln Park/DePaul neighborhood fest.
    Among the nearly 20 acts set to perform on the festival’s two music stages are: legendary pop rockers 10,000 Maniacs; critically acclaimed British rocker Graham Parker; singer/songwriter/guitarist John West (former lead singer for Danish prog-rockers Royal Hunt); lauded singer/songwriter Alexa Wilkinson; and the Paris Delane Trio (headed by Delane, a member of Chicago’s eclectic Sonia Dada). On Racine between Fullerton & Webster. (map)

SONIA DADA LIVE IN SANTA MONICA,CA…………..

$18.5 million later, “Mary Poppins” flies out of Chicago

Step In Time 1

MARY POPPINS

Flies high in Chicago

with 300,000 Audience members

and 18-weeks of performances

 

Well, this is quite an accomplishment – Chicago’s “favorite nanny” has opened her umbrella and followed the winds eastward after an extremely successful 18 week engagement at the Cadillac Palace Theatre.  Ending its Chicago stay on Sunday, July 12, 2009, MARY POPPINS performed for an amazing 300,000 theater patrons and grossed over $18.5 million at the box office. Mary Poppins opened on March 11th to rave reviews from both fans and critics.

From Lou Raizin, President of Broadway in Chicago:

“We are thrilled to have had MARY POPPINS choose to launch their national tour in Chicago with nothing less than an extraordinary production.  The popularity of this show further established Chicago’s reputation as a national tourist destination for theatre this summer. Clearly theater continues to be a welcome stimulus in these economic times as evidenced by this successful 18 week run and the consistent activity in the Theatre District that it created.” 

Mary Poppins A co-production by Disney and Cameron Mackintosh, this stage production is based on P.L. Traverscherished stories and the classic 1964 Walt Disney film. The show includes the Academy Award®-winning music and lyrics of Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman. The stage production has been created, in collaboration with Cameron Mackintosh, by Academy Award-winning screenwriter Julian Fellowes, who has written the book, and the Olivier Award-winning team of George Stiles and Anthony Drewe, who have composed new songs and additional music and lyrics.

2009 Creative Chicago Expo – Saturday at the Cultural Center!

2009 Creative Chicago Expo

 

Info for artists on

Space HousingBusinessCommunity

 

CCE09_postcard_f.jpgSaturday, April 4 10 AM – 4 PM
Chicago Cultural Center

Admission free ~ bring a friend!

20+ Workshops | 100+ Vendors | 40+ Consultants
Services for all Artists, Arts Businesses and Organizations

Dance | Fashion | Media | Music | Theater | Visual Art | Words
Once a year, the Creative Chicago Expo presents Chicago’s top resources, services and expertise specifically for people in the arts. Featuring workshops and vendors for individuals and arts organizations, the Expo is also an important opportunity to network and build community. Join over 3,500 artists who will make their way through the Cultural Center on Saturday April 4. The Expo is brings Chicago’s cultural community together under one roof!

CONSULT-A-THON!

Pick an expert on something you need — career coaching, legal or accounting issues, portfolio or grant review, casting agents, even organizational development and business issues for non-profits.

Schedule a 25 minute appointment for one-on-one consulting for only $10. Over 40 consultants will be available for appointments. Click here for the complete consultant list and to make an appointment. Limited to 3 appointments per person.

WORKSHOPS
Presented by top local and national service providers all day:

• Affordable Housing in Chicago
• Art Festival How-tos
• Benchmarking 101: Outcomes & Measurements
• Building a Board of Directors
• Business Licensing Basics
• Cultivating Individual Donors
• Finding Live/Work Space
• Fiscal Sponsorship
• Forming a Non-Profit
• Health Insurance Advice for Artists
• Marketing For the Cash Strapped and Time Poor
• Meet your Arts Service Agencies
• Obtaining Capital for your Creative Industry
• Reaching New Audiences
• Space Development Starter Kit for Non-profits
• Starting an Arts-Based Business
• Strategic Planning for Non-Profits
• Time Management for Artists
• Tips for “Successful Grant Applications
• Winning Public Art Commissions
• Your Credit Score: Re-Building Your Financial Health
Workshop Presenters include: Arts and Business Council of Chicago, Amdur Productions, Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center, The Center for What Works, Columbia College Chicago Arts Entrepreneurship Center, Community Media Workshop, Communication Society, Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, Executive Service Corps, Fractured Atlas, Future of Music Coalition, Illinois Arts Alliance, Illinois Association of Mortgage Professionals, Illinois Facility Fund, International Academy of Design and Technology, Lawyers for the Creative Arts, Inc., League of Chicago Theatres, Mission Paradox, and others.


Read complete workshop descriptions and schedule here

All 2009 Vendors after the fold.

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