‘Manic: A Festival’ Showcases New Work by Columbia College Chicago Theatre Students May 6-7


The Columbia College Chicago Theatre Department hosts Manic, a two-night festival of experimental new work by students, on Friday, May 6, from 6 to 9:30 PM and Saturday, May 7, from 7 to 10 PM. Presented by Manic, a student performance art collective, the performances take place in Room 602 of the Columbia College Chicago Theatre Center, 72 E. 11th St. in Chicago’s South Loop. Admission is free, and donations are welcome.

The festival consists of four original works:

  • Between Now and Forever, by Sebastián Jiménez-Galindo, directed by David Stobbe;
  • Exercises in Guided Meditation, by Leah Kinney;
  • Fire, Water, Dirt, Dust, by Ross Krakow; and
  • Fame, by Kyle Hamlin, directed by Evan Louis Szewc and Kyle Hamlin.

Manic is an outgrowth of a Playwright/Actor Lab, which developed from a series of discussions between theatre students Kyle Hamlin, David Stobbe, and Ross Krakow on their interest in seeing more actor-playwright interaction in the rehearsal room. This led to the creation of an ensemble of playwrights and actors who would meet and work on new material on a weekly basis, learning about each other’s interests and passions and allowing that to seep into the plays as they are being written. It was from this process that Manic: A Collective was born. The performances on May 6 and 7 are the result of this work.

The ensemble of writers and performers includes Alexis Allotta, Dylan Barlowe, Rory Beckett, Kyle Hamlin, Sebastián Jiménez-Galindo, Leslie Keller, Leah Kinney, Ross Krakow, Mary Elizabeth Lumley, Brenna Schwank, Alec Silver, David Stobbe, Evan Louis Szewc, and Henry Weisel.