WBEZ | Meghan Beals McCarthy http://www.wbez.org/tags/meghan-beals-mccarthy Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en New artistic model for Theater on the Lake http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-12-20/new-artistic-model-theater-lake-95056 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-December/2011-12-20/26493842.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-December/2011-12-20/26493842.jpg" style="margin-right: 10px; margin-top: 10px; margin-bottom: 10px; float: left; width: 300px; height: 225px; " title="(Photo via Google Maps)">An almost-end-of-the-year press release from the Chicago Park District—the kind that often is lost or buried—has announced a most interesting change in the artistic structure of <a href="http://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/parks.detail/object_id/312df49f-8fbf-4e35-8da1-443a4a50e3e8.cfm">Theater on the Lake</a>, the annual Lincoln Park summer theater program which will be 60 years old in 2012.</p><p>For quite a few years now, what officially is called the Chicago Summer Theater Festival has presented one-week revivals of eight Off-Loop theater productions from the regular season, running late-summer through mid-spring. Those shows have been selected by the Festival artistic director, who has been Hallie Gordon for the last six years (Gordon also is director of the Steppenwolf for Young Adults program).</p><p>This year, however, the Park District is adopting a new model for the Festival, replacing the artistic director with two “co-artistic curators” brought on for one season only, and who will be chosen annually through an application process with the Chicago Park District. The pair will select the season, presumably assist in producing the remounts and also will be involved in support and outreach programs, such as proposed post-show talks with the audience.</p><p>The first two co-artistic curators are actor/director Michael Patrick Thornton and director/dramaturge Meghan Beals McCarthy. Thornton is co-founder/artistic director of the storefront Gift Theatre in Jefferson Park, and also an actor well-known for his recurring role on ABC’s <em>Private Practice</em> TV series. McCarthy is the associate artistic director of Chicago Dramatists, with previous literary management experience at the Northlight and Steppenwolf theater companies locally (and with several New York companies before that).</p><p>The 2012 60<sup>th</sup> anniversary season will be announced in the spring. As always, performances are in the little pavilion at the eastern foot of Fullerton Avenue at the lakefront. Now called Theater on the Lake, the historic structure was built in 1910 as a recuperation ward for tubercular babies (there’s nothing like some dry lake air, eh?) and later was used as a USO facility and for barn dances. It’s been used as a summer theater since 1952. The acoustics are terrible and the lighting isn’t very good, but the lake breeze on a hot night <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-07-13/critics-theater-picks-715-717-89111">can be a delight</a> and ticket prices always are modest. A proposal floated several years ago to remodel the pavilion into a truly serviceable theater was shelved without ever becoming an actual plan when the economy tanked.</p></p> Tue, 20 Dec 2011 16:51:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-12-20/new-artistic-model-theater-lake-95056 Daily Rehearsal: Trib redesigns their theater section http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-07-07/daily-rehearsal-trib-redesigns-their-theater-section-88824 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-July/2011-07-07/theaterloop.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><span style="font-size: 14px;"><span style="font-family: georgia,serif;"><strong>1. The <a href="http://www.neofuturists.org/">Neo-Futurists</a> have announced their 23rd season</strong></span></span>. They'll be running&nbsp;<i>Chalk and Saltwater: The Ladder Project</i>&nbsp;by&nbsp;John Pierson,&nbsp;<i>Burning Bluebeard</i>&nbsp;by&nbsp;Jay Torrence, and&nbsp;<i>The Strange and Terrible True Story of Pinocchio (the wooden boy) as Told by Frankenstein's Monster (the wretched creature)</i>&nbsp;by&nbsp;Greg Allen. The most promising looks to be <em>Chalk and Saltwater</em>, which "dissects the failure of Edgar Davis’ 1926 Broadway production of <em>The Ladder</em>, the longest running flop in American theatre history."&nbsp; It all starts in September, and of course, <em>Too Much Light</em> is still running, forever and a day.</p><p><img alt="" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-July/2011-07-07/Hamlet.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 201px; margin: 10px; float: left;" title=""><span style="font-size: 14px;"><span style="font-family: georgia,serif;"><strong>2. <a href="http://www.oracletheatre.org/Hamlet_free.htm"><em>Hamlet </em></a>opened at the Oracle last night</strong></span></span>, and features a motley crew of actors, some of whom have performed at Shakespeare in the Park, and others of whom have just graduated college. Can YOU tell who's who? (Well maybe, but only by age.)</p><p><span style="font-size: 14px;"><span style="font-family: georgia,serif;"><strong>3. <em>Here's the Story</em>,<a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-06-29/daily-rehearsal-start-planning-your-4th-july-88498"> The Moth</a>-with-food show</strong></span></span> where people tell stories, <a href="http://heresthestory.org/2011/06/july-6ths-show-featuring/">was last night</a>, and is every first Wednesday of the month at Theater Wit. This months performance included Susan Messing, who remarked on how rare it was for her to be telling a <em>true </em>story (<a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-06-22/daily-rehearsal-chicago-theater-622-88196"><em>Messing With a Friend</em></a> is not so autobiographical), and she jokingly passed out non-disclosure agreements to those present.</p><p><span style="font-size: 14px;"><strong><span style="font-family: georgia,serif;">4. Meghan Beals McCarthy was chosen out of a nationwide search</span></strong></span> as the Chicago Dramatists new Associate Artistic Director. Her position was originally created via a grant, and because that money is ending, McCarthy will also be part-time Director of Youth and Community Programming.&nbsp;</p><p>5.&nbsp;<span style="font-size: 14px;"><span style="font-family: georgia,serif;"><strong>The Trib has redesigned their Theater section</strong></span></span>, dubbed "<a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/theater/theaterloop/" style="color: rgb(2, 122, 198); text-decoration: none;">The Theater Loop</a>." You'll get: "News. Criticism. Commentary. The shows not to be missed — and the showso avoid at all costs." It looks like its all part of the Trib's new redesign&nbsp;that&nbsp;<a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-06-16/news/chi-reaction-to-the-chicago-tribune-redesign-20110616_1_gerould-w-kern-readers-special-report" style="color: rgb(2, 122, 198); text-decoration: none;">launched a few weeks ago</a>.</p><p><span style="font-family: 'Arial','sans-serif';"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-July/2011-07-07/theaterloop.jpg" style="border-style: none; width: 500px; height: 267px; margin: 10px;" title=""></p><p>Questions? Tips? Email <a href="http://kdries@wbez.org">kdries@wbez.org</a>.</p></p> Thu, 07 Jul 2011 14:09:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-07-07/daily-rehearsal-trib-redesigns-their-theater-section-88824