Jackalope Theatre Company, a collective founded and led by Columbia College Chicago Theatre Department alumni, is celebrating its continued success with “The Spirit of Expansion,” a benefit gala set for Saturday, May 30, at Broadway Armory Park, 5917 N. Broadway in Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood. The event begins at 6:30 PM. Jackalope is celebrating its recent selection as the winner of the 2015 Broadway In Chicago Emerging Theatre Award, established to encourage, support, and promote young theatres in Chicago that have demonstrated great ability and promise, artistic excellence, and fiscal responsibility in business practices. The award marks Jackalope as an ambitious, high-quality, and success-focused ensemble with steadily rising recognition as a leader in Chicago’s cultural scene.
Tickets to “The Spirit of Expansion” range from $100 for regular admission to $200 for “VIP Tickets,” which include a pre-gala cocktail reception at Jackalope’s other space, The Frontier, located at 1106 W. Thorndale, a block away from Broadway Armory Park. VIP Tickets also include two tickets to an upcoming performance of the company’s current production, the world premiere of Andrew Burden Swanson‘s new play Lunacy! (A Cryptohistorical Comedy). The program for the gala includes scenes from Lunacy! and other Jackalope productions and a cocktail reception hosted by 48th Ward Alderman Harry Osterman, followed by dancing and an open bar. For tickets to “The Spirit of Expansion,” click here.
Lunacy! (A Cryptohistorical Comedy), directed by Gus Menary, is a political satire inspired by conspiracy theories that the 1969 moon landing was a hoax. The show runs through June 20. Both Swanson and Menary studied at the Columbia College Chicago Theatre Department. Other Columbia alumni involved in the show include cast members Pat Whalen and Kaiser Ahmed; lighting designer Claire Sangster; dramaturg J. Cody Spellman; and technical director Alex Hand, a graduate of Columbia College’s film program. For tickets, click here or call 773-340-2543.
Jackalope also got something else this week: free air conditioning for its space in Broadway Armory Park, where Jackalope is a professional company in residence. The San Antonio-based Friedrich company, which manufactures air conditioners, has donated two ductless split systems to the group.
Jackalope was founded in 2008 by a group of Columbia College Chicago Theatre Department students as an outgrowth of a class assignment to create a fictional theatre company. The project went so well the students decided to make their project a reality, and the company is now in its seventh season.