Hi friends! Hope that everyone’s surviving the hustle of the holiday time, and that each of us gets some rest and rejuvenation somewhere in its midst. I’m in Arizona, where the rocks are rainbows, and anemone-colored cactuses and rusty treasures spill across people’s front yards like shipwrecks. It is surreal and beautiful, and even this far away, I am filled with love for Chicago, and for the wonderful people there. Wherever you are, Chicago or farther afield, I hope you feel loved and included like I do in the community we all are making.
Even with all the work-hecticness and travel and events and endings and beginnings of December and January, I am looking forward to the next show! In case you’re looking forward to it too, here is a glimpse of the people we’ll be featuring at our show on January 6th. They are beautiful humans, each. And great artists as well.
Jamila Woods is a performing poet, playwright and teaching artist who sings in elevators and talks to birds in public. As a seasoned poetry slammer, Jamila has competed in several collegiate and national competitions, most recently repping Team Providence on finals stage at the 2011 National Poetry Slam in Boston, MA. Her first book of poetry, entitled The Truth About Dolls was recently released on New School Poetics Press. Jamila currently lives in Chicago where she works as a teaching artist in order to surround herself with aspiring writers who are younger and much smarter than she is. She is currently part of Young Chicago Author’s Teaching Artist Corps, and has led poetry writing workshops for youth at schools and youth centers across the country.
Amanda Rountree has been performing improvisational theatre professionally since 1992, teaching since 1998, and directing since 2002. She relocated to Chicago in 2007 from Seattle where she was a performer and instructor with Unexpected Productions and a performer and co-artistic director of Playback Theater Northwest. Amanda has entertained audiences in seven countries and countless North American cities utilizing a wide variety of styles, disciplines, and formats. Chicago audiences have seen her in Impress These Apes 2, Don’t Spit the Water, Soiree DADA: Shmukt die Hallen, The (Edward) Hopper Project, and her one-woman show, The Good, the Bad, and the Monkey. In addition to being a company member of WNEP Theatre, she is a resident teaching artist for Lifeline Theatre and the Second City Training Center. Her next one-woman show, 185 Buddhas Walk into a Bar is debuting at Lifeline Theatre’s Fillet of Solo Festival in January 2013 before its Chicago run at Studio Be in February and March.
Emanuel Vinson, aka +, is a writer and musician from the Southside of Chicago. He’s performed in poetry slams since 13, released rap albums since 17, and continues to produce ecstatic, expansive work in steady streams across multiple mediums, including regularly contributing music essays to the online publication The Tape. He recently released his twelfth album “serenity: ocarina of time” and is working on his third collection of poetry, entitled “wife.”
Darren Stephens is a voiceover actor, stage actor, writer and singer who is happy to be a successful full-time freelancer living in Chicago. Onstage he was Pastor Dave Shepherd in the critically acclaimed parody church service The Best Church of God at various venues around town and recently played Rod Blagojevich for a month at the Athenaeum Theater. He has performed long-form improv with Baby Wants Candy, Cast On A Hot Tin Roof, and the Free Associates. Sadly, his mystery novel, The Pick-up Murders, remains unpublished. He can be heard at local cabarets and clubs with his three-part bluegrass harmony comedy group, The Famous Brothers. Darren has voiced hundreds of regional and national radio and television commercials, currently as the voice of Ensure Complete – the red bottle on the right side of your TV screen. His MFA in Acting is from Ohio University.
Please join us on January 6th, 2013 at Theater Wit (just one door West of our regular space at Stage 773, at 1229 W. Belmont in Chicago). Doors open at 7:30, and the show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $8, or admission is FREE with a dish to share for the potluck.