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Daily Rehearsal: Steppenwolf brings 'The Motherf**ker with the Hat' and others for 2012-13

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1. Steppenwolf’s 2012-13 shows have been announced: David Lindsay-Abaire’s Good People, directed by ensemble member K. Todd Freeman; Stephen Adly Guirgis’ The Motherf**ker with the Hat directed by ensemble member Anna D. Shapiro; Harold Pinter’s The Birthday Party directed by ensemble member Austin Pendleton; ensemble member Tina Landau directs the world premiere of Head of Passes, commissioned by Steppenwolf and written by ensemble member Tarell Alvin McCraney (they worked on praised The Brother/Sister Plays in 2010 together; and Amy Herzog’s Belleville directed by Anne Kauffmann. The theme of this season is “The Reckoning”, Artistic Director Martha Lavey: “In each of these five plays, there is a moment when the past reveals itself, unbidden but ineluctable in its force,” and that moment is “The Reckoning.” Among the many returning ensemble members is John Mahoney, who was missed in Penelope but graciously replaced by Tracey Letts; Mahoney will be in the cast of The Birthday Party.

2. Auditions coming up: Porchlight is casting for their just-announced new season, and Collaboraction is looking ahead to SKETCHBOOK. Auditions are March 13/15 and March 10, respectively.

3. Debra Ehrhardt’s Jamaica Farewell is being produced by Meadowbrook Entertainment, opening May 4. It’s a pretty amazing story, one that follows Ehrhardt’s “escape from revolution-torn Jamaica in the 1970’s to fulfill her lifelong dream of going to America.” It’ll be at the Chopin, is being directed by Joel Zwick, who has an interesting resume: he directed My Big Fat Greek Wedding, and has worked with Hershey Felder on several of his recent productions, including Maestro.

4. A Red Orchid has added a second Agony and Ecstasy of Steve Jobs performance with Lance Baker; this one will be March 12 at 8 pm.

5. And The Houdini Box by Brian Selznick goes to the North Shore Center in Skokie the weekend of March 17. It was last at the Mercury Theatre.

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