CHICAGO, IL ( March 14th, 2016 ) - Teagan Walsh-Davis ( Co-Artistic Director ), Caitlin Aase ( Co-Artistic Director ), and Elizabeth Siedt ( Managing Director ) have announced the official launch of The Jades, a new woman-centric theatre company dedicated to establishing gender parity on Chicago stages. They will focus on producing what they call "Theatre for Dangerous Women", specifically contemporary works by female-identified playwrights, as well as employing women in all aspects of the theatrical process. Their inaugural production will mount in October 2016. Further information about that production and the remainder of the season are set to be announced soon.
The company has released both their official website ( www.thejades.org ) and an introductory video with details of their mission and fundraising efforts. The video can be viewed here: www.youtube.com/watch .
Notes Walsh-Davis, "We decided to create The Jades because we were sick of seeing an endless parade of plays by old white guys. All of us are performers by trade, and we've gotten disheartened by the scarcity of meaty opportunities in that realm. We've collectively worked and engaged with so many brilliant women ( performers, directors, designers, writers, technicians ) in the Chicago theatre community, and we decided that that was the group we really wanted to serve. Those were the people we wanted to empower.."
"It's so important to me as a feminist to make sure that I am doing all I can to help raise up other women. With The Jades, we're trying to create a community and support system for female-identified artists so that we can achieve parity in the Chicago arts community. There are so many stories out there that we just haven't heard yet because there hasn't been a space carved out for those voices. We're going to help create that space," said Siedt.
Aase adds, "Chicago theatre is in a very transitional place right now. With many emerging theatre companies focusing on issues relevant to our community, it seemed like the perfect time to strike. I've met so many incredibly talented women and we are all in the same place of feeling like the opportunities are not available to us. That's where the Jades come in. We want to see those meaty, complex, difficult roles for women, both onstage and behind the scenes."