the american vicarious Presents DOUGLASS – July 21 – August 14, 2016 at Theater Wit – World Premiere!

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the american vicarious is proud to return to Chicago with DOUGLASS, a world premiere drama from Thomas Klingenstein, directed by Jeff Award nominee Christopher McElroen (Invisible Man). DOUGLASS will play July 21 – August 14, 2016 at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. in Chicago. Tickets go on sale Monday, June 20 at www.theaterwit.org or by calling (773) 975-8150

The multimedia work explores race in America through the lens of the abolitionist movement and the founding documents of a nation. The play strives to have a conversation inspired by the historical underpinnings of a movement, while simultaneously drawing parallels with today’s ongoing discourse about race and politics in America. The story is of an ex-slave’s struggle to become a man. His adversaries are not only those who strive to hinder him, but also those who purport to help him. His struggle is America’s struggle: its ongoing, ever present battle against the sin of the slavery.

The cast of DOUGLASS includes: De’Lon Grant, John Lister, Mark Ulrich, Carrie Lee Patterson, Saren Nofs-Snyder, Jess Berry and Kristin E. Ellis. Additional casting to be announced.

The production team for DOUGLASS includes: William Boles (scenic design), Mieka van der Ploeg (costume design), Becca Jeffords (lighting design), Liviu Pasare (projection design), Jamie Abelson (casting director), Cara Parrish (stage manager) and Will Bishop (production manager).

About the Creative Team

Thomas Klingenstein (Playwright) is a New York-based playwright whose work has been developed at The Lark, Theatre Lab NYC, and the Atlantic Theatre Studios. His play LINCOLN was produced at The New York Historical Society.

Christopher McElroen (Director) is the Artistic Director of the american vicarious. Christopher received a 2012 Jeff Award nomination and a 2013 Helen Hayes Award for his direction of the world premiere stage adaptation of Ralph Ellison’s iconic novel Invisible Man. Alongside visual artist Paul Chan and Creative Time, Christopher co-produced and directed Waiting for Godot in New Orleans, a community development through the arts initiative that staged Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot outdoors in the Lower Ninth Ward and Gentilly communities of post-Katrina New Orleans. The New York Times listed the project as one of the top ten national art events of 2007. The archives from the production have been acquired into the permanent collection of The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) and were on exhibit at MOMA May 2010 through September 2011. Christopher had the honor of directing the world-premiere of 51st (dream) State, the final work of poet, musician, and activist Sekou Sundiata. a multimedia exploration of American empire that premiered in New York at The Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Next Wave Festival before touring internationally. Christopher co- founded the acclaimed Classical Theatre of Harlem (CTH) where from 1999-2009 he produced 41 productions yielding 18 AUDELCO Awards, six OBIE Awards, two Lucille Lortel Awards, a Drama Desk Award and CTH being named “1 of 8 Theatres in America to Watch” by the Drama League. His work has been recognized with the American Theatre Wing Award (Outstanding Artistic Achievement), Drama Desk Award (Artistic Achievement), Edwin Booth Award (Outstanding Contribution to NYC Theater), Lucille Lortel Award (Outstanding Body of Work), two Obie Awards (Sustained Achievement and Excellence in Theatre), and a Helen Hayes Award (Outstanding Direction).