Spotlight: Steppenwolf takes on Sam Shepard classic for second time

  • Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble members Jon Michael Hill, left, and Namir Smallwood star in the company's revival of one of its signature works, Sam Shepard's "True West."

    Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble members Jon Michael Hill, left, and Namir Smallwood star in the company's revival of one of its signature works, Sam Shepard's "True West." Courtesy of Juli Del Prete

 
 
Posted7/3/2019 6:00 AM

Classic revived

Steppenwolf Theatre revives "True West," the darkly comic classic that placed the company in the national spotlight. The production stars ensemble members Jon Michael Hill (of TV's "Elementary") and Namir Smallwood as estranged brothers Austin and Lee in Sam Shepard's examination of toxic sibling rivalry between two men who are two sides of the same coin. Former Steppenwolf artistic director Randall Arney directs the production, which features Francis Guinan and Jacqueline Williams.

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Previews at 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 5; 3 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, July 6-7; and July 10-13 at 1650 N. Halsted St., Chicago. The show opens July 14. $20-$96. (312) 335-1650 or steppenwolf.org.

Civic duty

A group of women meet daily over breakfast, lunch and dinner to gossip, dream and contemplate their lives all while understanding that the meal might be their last in "Hitler's Tasters," a dark comedy by Michelle Kholos Brooks. Based on actual events, the play tells the story of young women forced to sample Adolf Hitler's food to ensure it was not poisoned. Following its Skokie run, the production moves to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

8 p.m. Friday, July 5; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, July 6; 2 p.m. Sunday, July 7, and through July 14 at North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie. $32-$46. (847) 673-6300 or northshorecenter.org.

Dan Lin plays the titular character in The Gift Theatre's Chicago-area premiere of "Wolf Play" by Hansol Jung.
Dan Lin plays the titular character in The Gift Theatre's Chicago-area premiere of "Wolf Play" by Hansol Jung. - Courtesy of Claire Demos
'Wolf Play'

An American couple decides to "re-home" their young, adopted Korean son, but the father has second thoughts after he learns the boy will be adopted by a lesbian couple in "Wolf Play" by South Korean playwright/director Hansol Jung. Jess McLeod, resident director of Chicago's "Hamilton," helms The Gift Theatre's Chicago-area premiere.

Previews at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, July 11-13, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, July 14, at 4802 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago. The show opens July 15. $20-$50. (773) 283-7071 or thegifttheatre.org.

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