2022-23 Season

SEASON 2022-23 Now On Sale

See yourself here, Chicago. In the Lookingglass.

A partnership with one of this city’s leading Black theatre companies. A homegrown holiday hearth-warmer. Two original CHI-made works each featuring unconventional central characters. A twirl around five extraordinary homespun districts (from Englewood to Edgewater to Avalon Park and more). And a transcendent summer sunset ritual that draws us all back waterside.

Distinct. Unique. Reflecting is our function.

Become a member and come see yourself at Lookingglass.

What to Send Up When It Goes Down

Produced by Congo Square Theatre In Residence at Lookingglass Theatre

Written by Aleshea Harris
Directed by Artistic Associate Ericka Ratcliff and Daniel Bryant

In residence at Lookingglass Theatre Company, produced by Congo Square, returning this Fall is Aleshea Harris’ What to Send Up When It Goes Down. Described as a play-pageant-ritual-homegoing celebration, What to Send Up When It Goes Down responds to the gratuitous loss of Black lives and interrupts discourses that enable the ubiquity of racialized violence in our society. 

This vibrant, necessary, soul-stirring event played to sold-out houses in the Spring and we are proud to host its return. In line with Congo Square and our commitment to community engagement, we are proud to announce that half of the tickets for each performance will be donated to local community groups. 

Running September 24 – October 16, 2022
Lookingglass Theatre in Water Tower Water Works

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50 Wards: A Civic Mosaic

Featuring Five Short Films

Chicago from above. Contiguous. Glittering. Bordered only by vast, shimmering Lake Michigan. A city connected.

Chicago at street level. Blocks sliced into 50 disparate districts. A city splintered.

50 Wards: A Civic Mosaic is an ambitious multi and mixed media attempt to weave together through storytelling savvy a dazzling tapestry of hometown experiences, bridge the distance between neighborhoods, and plot the line from our fascinating history to our complex present on through to tomorrow’s promise.

When last we met in the wards, we saw you in the woods (39th), at the jazz joint (49th), behind the fortress walls (25th), parading (3rd), and tapping through Time (30th). The next 5 in this series of 50 will see you before a mural (16th), at the shipping store (40th), in silent films (47th), and in two theatres – one abandoned (8th) and one a toy (5th).

See your city through the glimmer of the artist’s eye and discover how and where we fit…together.

PREMIERING FALL OF 2022 

Watch the first five short films here.

The Steadfast Tin Soldier

Chicago’s Beloved Holiday Tradition

From the Story by Hans Christian Andersen

Written and Directed by Ensemble Member Mary Zimmerman

Chicago’s beloved holiday tradition returns to the stage this holiday season, a classic the whole family will treasure! Based on Hans Christian Andersen’s story about a little tin soldier who never gives up, Ensemble Member Mary Zimmerman’s production is a gorgeous spectacle of music and movement that the Chicago Tribune calls:

“★★★★ A treat for all ages! It’s transformational, truly. Barely
more than an hour-long, this is one holiday experience you don’t want to
miss.”

November 13, 2022 – January 8, 2023
Lookingglass Theatre in Water Tower Water Works

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Villette

A World Premiere

Written by Artistic Associate Sara Gmitter
Adapted from the novel by Charlotte Brontë
Directed by Ensemble Member Tracy Walsh

You’ve never met a heroine like Lucy Snow. Suddenly bereft of family, friends, and funds, young Lucy journeys unaccompanied to France an unfamiliar land as a vain debutante, quarrelsome teacher, and mysterious ghost draw her into a complicated maze. Will tenacious Lucy, and her wry wit, emerge intact?

From the author of the reader-favorite Jane Eyre comes this undiscovered gem, Charlotte Brontë’s Villette, adapted by Artistic Associate Sara Gmitter (In the Garden) and directed by Ensemble Member Tracy Walsh (The Old Curiosity Shop).

February 8 – April 23, 2023
Lookingglass Theatre in Water Tower Water Works

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Lucy and Charlie‘s Honeymoon

A World Premiere Musical

Composed and Written by Artistic Associate Matthew C. Yee
Directed by Amanda Dehnert

Hooray! Lucy and Charlie just got hitched…and they’re embracing the worst of the American dream. They do what they want. Take what they want. They’re First Generation Asian American Renegades. In love. And on the run.

Featuring original country western and folk songs, directed by Amanda Dehnert (Peter Pan (A Play), Eastland), Lucy and Charlie’s Honeymoon tracks a young couple as they rev it down quintessentially American highways and across stereotypic borders, fleeing expectation and trawling up trouble along the way.

Fresh from his Broadway debut in Almost Famous The Musical, Artistic Associate Matthew C. Yee’s world premiere musical romp gives a nod to America’s past, takes tally of its present, and blows its future wide open.

May 24 – August 13, 2023
Lookingglass Theatre in Water Tower Water Works

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Upcoming Events

Sunset 1919

A Community Ritual

Curated & Coordinated by Artistic Producer: Culturalist and Strategy Designer Arkey Adams, Ensemble Member Kareem Bandealy, and Ensemble Member and Mellon Playwright in Residence J. Nicole Brooks

By establishing an artistic ritual featuring music, movement, and word, Lookingglass Theatre commemorates the start of the 1919 Chicago race riots, incited by the tragic murder of Eugene Williams, a Black teenager stoned to death after drifting into a “whites only” section of Lake Michigan. Sunset 1919 is meant to peacefully honor the lives of Black humans impacted by the deadly racial attacks that swept the nation that summer, the roots of which stretch back across centuries, and the fruits of which we continue to pluck – a moment in an unbroken line.

Thursday, July 27 2023 at 7PM
Eugene Williams Memorial Marker
125 Fort Dearborn Drive
Chicago, 60616

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