About Face Youth Theatre’s AD HOC [HOME] runs through July 31, 2016 at Chicago Cultural Center

About Face Theatre is pleased to present the world premiere of AD HOC [HOME], a devised play exploring “family” written by and featuring members of the the About Face Youth Theatre Ensemble and directed by AFT Education and Outreach Director Ali Hoefnagel and Education Associate Kieran Kredell. AD HOC [HOME] will play July 21 – 31, 2016 at the Claudia Cassidy Theater at the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington St. in Chicago. Tickets are pay-what-you-can at the door. Advance reservations can be made at www.aboutfacetheatre.org or by calling (773) 784-8565.

AD HOC [HOME] explores queer experiences of given family, chosen family and the family members we collect and lose along the way. Through storytelling, video and movement, the critically acclaimed About Face Youth Theatre Ensemble investigates the questions of who we are at our core and how families shape our identities.

“About Face Youth Theatre is excited to focus on the impact our families have in the shaping of our queer identities,” comments Education and Outreach Director Ali Hoefnagel. “We are exploring what family means to us today, in the past and in the future. Who we choose to surround ourselves with is paramount to our continued investigation of our lives and AFYT could not be more eager to share our chosen family with you.”

The production team for AD HOC [HOME] includes Arnel Sanciano (scenic design), Jos N. Banks (costume design), Kaili Story (lighting design), Brandon Reed (sound design), Paul Deziel (projection design), Nikki Veit (assistant director) and John Carlin (stage manager).

About The Directors

Ali Hoefnagel is a performer, arts administrator and teaching artist living in Chicago. As an artist and educator, they are committed to embracing the complexity of the queer identity to create new and engaging ways to address LGBTQIA issues within Chicago communities. Ali currently serve as the Education and Outreach Director at About Face Theatre Company where they recently directed Checking Boxes and 15 Breaths for About Face Youth Theatre. Ali was a 2014 Chicago Artist Month Featured Artist and has worked as a teaching artist with Steppenwolf For Young Adults for several years. They have taught classes and workshops with numerous organizations and universities in Illinois, including Illinois State University, Columbia College, University of Illinois at Chicago and Lake Forest College, where they hold a B.A in Theater and Women’s & Gender Studies.

Kieran Kredell is an educator, theatremaker and comedian. As an educator, he uses storytelling tools to foster self-identity and community. As an actor, he has worked with local companies Dog & Pony, Adventure Stage Chicago, Redmoon, Red Tape, Collaboraction, the Inconvenience, the Dilettantes, as well as About Face (Oklahomo, The Flowers). Kieran can be seen performing regularly at Salonathon and he and writing partner Tien Tran (Second City) are currently developing a comedy web series in partnership with OpenTV.

The About Face Youth Theatre (AFYT) was created in 1999 as a safe space for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning, and allied young people to become activists and theatre-makers. Youth participants engage in an annual process of sharing stories, conducting interviews, writing a script, and developing performances to create a full-length production that is produced in About Face Theatre’s mainstage season. AFYT seeks to empower and enrich the lives of LGBTQIA young people through art and social justice. LGBTQIA youth and their allies ages 14-23 explore and expand the boxes we use to define our intricate intersections of race, nationality, gender, and sexuality. AFYT is free and participants are provided with rigorous artistic training, critical dialogue about social justice frameworks, leadership training access and professional mentorship from LGBTQ and artists and activists, and intergenerational and cross-cultural dialogue on the most pressing issues facing queer youth and their allies.

About Face Theatre creates exceptional, innovative, and adventurous plays to advance the national dialogue on sexual and gender identity, and to challenge and entertain audiences in Chicago, across the country, and around the world.

Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events

The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) is dedicated to enriching Chicago’s artistic vitality and cultural vibrancy. This includes fostering the development of Chicago’s non-profit arts sector, independent working artists and for-profit arts businesses; providing a framework to guide the City’s future cultural and economic growth, via the 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan; marketing the City’s cultural assets to a worldwide audience; and presenting high-quality, free and affordable cultural programs for residents and visitors. For more information about DCASE Theater & Dance programming, visit www.cityofchicago.org/dcase.

Photo: (left to right) Isis Mendoza, Elliot Horbaugh, Jimbo Pestano and Melody Derogatis Credit: Emily Schwartz.