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Naomi Wallace play about effects of war opens Feb. 27
From a Theatre Seven news release
2012-02-18

This article shared 1998 times since Sat Feb 18, 2012
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Chicago, IL — Theatre Seven of Chicago continues its 2011-12 season with a revival of In the Heart of America, Naomi Wallace's 1994 political dream play about the shattering effects of war and the search for hope amidst the ruins of violence. The production will run February 27 — April 1, 2011 at the Greenhouse Theater Center's Upstairs Studio, 2257 N Lincoln Avenue.

In the Heart of America will run Thursdays — Saturdays at 7:30 p.m and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. To purchase tickets, or for more information on dates and run times, call (773) 404-7336 or visit www.theatreseven.org . All press inquiries should be directed to 773-853-3158.

Wallace, a MacArthur Genius Grant recipient whose work has been compared to Sam Shepard and Tony Kushner, wrote In the Heart of America in 1994 as a response to America's involvement in the Gulf War. But the play is also concerned with Vietnam, and invokes the spirits of 1968's My Lai massacre to tie each conflict together in one unbroken cycle of American aggression.

According to Theatre Seven Artistic Director Brian Golden, the play's primary season opening is no accident.

"War is always newsworthy, but we find it particularly so as prospective leaders of our country debate the limits of American influence and the consequences of imperialist aggression," said Golden. "In the Heart of America is a protest play: the tender work of a fearless playwright demanding, with poetry and conviction, that we consider the impact of war and its connection to all interpersonal violence."

Wallace's play blends historical accounts of My Lai with the fictional story of a Palestinian-American woman on the hunt for her brother, who has gone missing while serving with US troops in the Gulf War. To find him, she enlists the help of a platoon-mate who, it soon becomes obvious, was more than just a fellow soldier. Many scenes in the play involve multiple, dream-like surrealities where Vietnam and the Gulf War exist simultaneously and characters from each era interact.

In the Heart of America is directed by Theatre Seven Artistic Director Brian Golden, and the cast includes Kaori Aoshima, Anthony DeNicola, Fawzia Mirza, Nick Vidal, and George Zerante. The design team includes Lizzie Bracken (set), Claire Chrzan (lights), Brenda Winstead (costumes), Jeff Kelley (sound), Kyle Hamman (video), Thea Wigglesworth (props).

In the Heart of America is the second production of Theatre Seven of Chicago's sixth season. The season began in August with the Jeff-Recommended We Live Here, wherein eight local writers penned their quintessential Chicago moments, and will continue in June with the Chicago Premiere of Exit, Pursued by a Bear by nationally-acclaimed playwright Lauren Gunderson, a modern revenge comedy about an abused wife's escape from her husband, which involves Shakespeare, pom-poms and the neighborhood bear.

All productions in Theatre Seven's 2011-12 season will occur at the Greenhouse Theater Center. Patrons seeking subscription information can call 773-853-3158.

In the Heart of America will run February 27 — April 1, 2012 at the Greenhouse Theater Center's Upstairs Studio, 2257 N Lincoln Avenue, Thursdays — Saturdays at 7:30 p.m, Sundays at 2:30 p.m. To purchase tickets or for more information on dates or run times, call (773) 404-7336 or visit www.theatreseven.org .

About Theatre Seven of Chicago

Theatre Seven of Chicago produces new and original work that speaks directly to the diverse Chicago community with imagination and clarity. Since 2007, the company has produced fourteen standout offerings, including eleven Chicago premieres. Theatre Seven's noted World Premieres include The Chicago Landmark Project, We Live Here, Diversey Harbor ("Hottest Ticket in Town" — Chicago Tribune), Yes, This Really Happened To Me (Critic's Choice — Chicago Reader), and Cooperstown, which earned the company nominations for one Jeff Award and two Black Theatre Alliance Awards. The company's 2009 remount of Marisa Wegrzyn's Diversey Harbor was seen by over 1,400 patrons and featured in NewCity's "Greatest Hits of the Decade." 2011's The Chicago Landmark Project capped Theatre Seven's fifth season by bringing together over 75 artists to create World Premiere short plays about twelve different Chicago neighborhoods, and was called "as good a portrait of the diversity of this city as you can currently find" by the Chicago Tribune. In both 2010 and 2011, Theatre Seven was named of one five finalists for the Emerging Theatre Award, presented by Broadway in Chicago and the League of Chicago Theatres.

Theatre Seven of Chicago is a Resident Company at the historic Greenhouse Theater Center in the heart of Lincoln Park. In each of its six seasons, Theatre Seven has produced at least one play set in Chicago, and since its inception, has paid over 150 artists for their contributions to Chicago theatre. The company is funded with the generous support of the Chicago Community Trust, Driehaus Foundation, Donnelley Foundation, The Saints and the Community Arts Assistance Program. Learn more about Theatre Seven of Chicago at www.theatreseven.org .


This article shared 1998 times since Sat Feb 18, 2012
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