Profiles Theatre continues 26th Season with the 20th Anniversary Production of The Cryptogram by David Mamet Directed by Artistic Director Joe Jahraus

Profiles Theatre continues 26th Season with the 20th Anniversary Production of The Cryptogram by David Mamet Directed by Artistic Director Joe Jahraus 1 Profiles Theatre announces the next show of its 26th Season with the 20th Anniversary production ofThe Cryptogram by David Mamet, directed by Artistic Director Joe Jahraus. The production runs September 26 – November 16, 2014 at Profiles Theatre’s The Alley Stage, 4147 N. Broadway. 

slide_cryptogramProfiles Theatre announces the next show of its 26th Season with the 20th Anniversary production ofThe Cryptogram by David Mamet, directed by Artistic Director Joe Jahraus. The production runs September 26 – November 16, 2014 at Profiles Theatre’s The Alley Stage, 4147 N. Broadway

Pulitzer Prize-winning author David Mamet’s rarely produced masterpiece, The Cryptogram, celebrates its 20thAnniversary at Profiles Theatre. Mamet combines mercurial intelligence with genuinely Hitchcockian menace as this gripping play journeys back into childhood and the moment of its vanishing – when the sheltering world suddenly reveals itself as a place full of dangers. One late evening in 1959, a young boy sits waiting up for his father in anticipation of their camping trip. While his mother urges him to go to sleep, a family friend tries to entertain them or perhaps distract them. Mamet re-creates a child’s terrifying discovery that the grownups speak in code – a code that may never be breakable.

The Cryptogram received its world premiere in July 1994 at the Ambassadors Theatre in London, followed by US productions at the American Repertory Theater in February 1995 and Off-Broadway at the Westside Theater Upstairs in April 1995. Directed by Mamet, the play won the Obie Award for Best Play and Best Actress for Felicity Huffman. Arguably one of the most prolific and influential playwrights of the latter-20th century, David Mamet amassed an acclaimed, award-winning body of work including American Buffalo, Glengarry Glen Ross, Speed-the-Plow and Oleanna for the stage alongside his screenplays for The Untouchables, The Verdict and House of Gamesamong many others.

“I’m thrilled that Profiles is presenting the 20th anniversary production of The Cryptogram,” says Artistic DirectorJoe Jahraus. “It’s a play that has haunted and fascinated me for so long with its tough look at a broken family told through Mamet’s distinctive speech, complex emotions and hidden meanings. It’s a honor to stage this overlooked classic.”

The cast of The Cryptogram features ensemble member Darrell W. Cox as Del along with guest artists Abigail Boucher as Donny and Aaron Lamm as John. The designers are Thad Hallstein (set), Michael T. May (lights),Jeffrey Levin (sound and original music), and Raquel Adorno (costumes). Danica Jenelle Horton is the assistant director and Patrick Murphy serves as stage manager.

Profiles’ next production will be the seasonal return of their long-running hit Hellcab by Will Kern, beginning previews on November 7, 2014 at The Main Stage, 4139 N. Broadway. The 2014-15 season also includes the Midwest premiere of the award-winning play The Other Place by Sharr White, the World premiere of Genius by Kate Walbert, and the Midwest premiere of Our New Girl by Nancy Harris.

Tickets for The Cryptogram are $35 for Thursdays, $40 for Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are available by phone, (773) 549-1815, or online, Performances are Thursdays and Fridays at 8:00 p.m., Saturdays at 5:00 and 8:00 pm, Sundays at 7:00 p.m.


DAVID MAMET (Playwright) is a playwright and filmmaker, born in Chicago in 1947. He studied at Goddard College in Vermont and at the Neighborhood Playhouse School of Theater in New York. He has taught at Goddard College, the Yale Drama School, New York University and lectures at New York’s Atlantic Theater Company, of which he is a founding member. His early works include Sexual Perversity in Chicago (1973) and American Buffalo (1975), both of which became Off-Broadway successes. He is also the author of the plays Olenanna, Speed-the-Plow, The Water Engine, Race and Boston Marriage. Mamet became a successful screenwriter in the 1980s, first writing the script for the 1981 remake of The Postman Always Rings Twice, then earning an Oscar nomination for his next script, The Verdict in 1982. His 1984 play Glengarry Glen Ross won a Pulitzer Prize that year and was made into a star-studded 1992 movie. Mamet made his filmmaking directing debut with 1987’s House of Games and wrote the scripts for The Untouchables (1987), The Edge (1997) and Wag the Dog (1997 Oscar nomination). Other films he has directed include Homicide (1991), Heist (2001) and Redbelt (2008). He also created the TV series The Unit (2006-09).

JOE JAHRAUS (Director) is an Artistic Director and founder of Profiles Theatre and most recently directed Profiles’ Midwest Premieres of Gidion’s Knot by Johnna Adams, In God’s Hat by Rhett Rossi, The Dream of the Burning Boyby David West Read and Sweet and Sad by Richard Nelson. His other recent directing credits with Profiles include the American Premiere of In a Forest, Dark and Deep by Neil LaBute, the World premiere of Assisted Living by Deirdre O’Connor and the Midwest premieres of Fifty Words by Michael Weller, Jailbait by Deirdre O’Connor, The Mercy Seat by Neil LaBute, Great Falls by Lee Blessing, The Thugs by Adam Bock and the World Premiere of Kid Sister by Will Kern. Joe directed the American premiere of Apple by Vern Thiessen and the long-running hit Fat Pig by Neil LaBute for which he received a Jeff Award Nomination for Outstanding Director. He directed the Jeff Award-winning Blackbird, Babylon Gardens, the Jeff Award-nominated Carnal Knowledge and Sexual Perversity in Chicago. Joe was the co-director of Profiles’ productions of The Water Engine, The Twilight Zone: The Series and How the Other Half Loves.

ABIGAIL BOUCHER (Donny) is making her Profiles Theatre debut. Recent Chicago credits include In The Garden,directed by Jessica Thebus at Lookingglass (understudy), Mary in The Language Archive, directed by Polly Noonan at Piven Theatre Workshop, and Kate in Strawdog Theatre’s hit production of Old Times, directed by Kimberly Senior. Abigail has also worked with The House (The Crownless King, The Sparrow, The Boy Detective Fails), 20% Theatre Company Chicago which she co-founded (Snapshots,night, mother, David’s Redhaired Death) and Strawdog Theatre where she was a company member for a decade (Three Sisters, Puntila and his man Matti). Film credits include Recessive by Logan Kibens and The Family by Luc Besson. Abigail is a graduate of Smith College, MA.

DARRELL W. COX (Del) is an ensemble member of Profiles Theatre and was most recently seen in their Midwest premiere of Annapurna by Sharr White. Darrell received his fourth Joseph Jefferson Award for Actor in a Principal Role for his performance as Joe Cooper in Profiles’ production of Killer Joe by Tracy Letts. He has appeared at Steppenwolf in the World Premiere of Men of Tortuga (where he originated the role of Taggart), the Midwest Premiere of Orange Flower Water (which traveled to the Galway Arts Festival), and the World Premiere of Wendall Greene. He has also been seen at the Goodman in The Shawl and Home as part of the David Mamet Festival, American Theatre Company’s Speed the Plow and Oleanna as part of the Mamet Repertory, as well as Jim Jones in the Midwest Premiere of The People’s Temple and the World Premiere of Martin Furey’s Shot at TimeLine, among others. In addition to Killer Joe, Darrell won Joseph Jefferson Awards for Principal Actor for his work in Profiles’ productions of Blackbird, Some Voices and Eye of God. He also received two After Dark Awards for Outstanding Performance for Profiles’ productions of Popcorn and Carnal Knowledge. Darrell was seen last season in a recurring role as Uncle Ray on “Chicago Fire” on NBC and appeared in the film “AB-“ which premiered at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival and then appeared at Cannes, the Palm Springs International Film Festival and the Chicago International Film Festival, among others.

AARON LAMM (John) is performing for the first time with Profiles Theatre. He is a seventh grader at Wilmette Junior High School was was most recently seen in Theatre Y’s production of Medea. Aaron’s other recent productions include Peter Pan with the Wilmette Children’s Theatre, Don’t Give Up with the Glenview Children’s Theatre and Action News with Highcrest Drama. He has trained the Actors Training Center in Wilmette where he appeared in the films Who Needs Trust and Those Darn Canadians. Aaron also enjoys playing the tuba in his school band.


Profiles Theatre, founded in 1988 by Artistic Director Joe Jahraus, joined shortly thereafter by Artistic Director Darrell W. Cox, was formed as an actor-driven theatre ensemble dedicated to creating provocative and emotionally truthful productions. Passionate about shaping an original vision for new works, they focused on performing World, American and Midwest premieres as well as rarely performed plays. Critically acclaimed hits, such as BLACKBIRD, FAT PIG, GRACELAND and the multiple Jeff Award-winning KILLER JOE, established Profiles as a destination for challenging and edgy theatre. Their unique collaboration with playwright Neil LaBute led the ensemble to perform an entire season of his plays in 2007-2008. Now a Resident Artist at Profiles, LaBute remains an unequivocal artistic influence on the ensemble.
After performing at 4147 North Broadway for more than two decades, Profiles acquired an adjacent theatre at 4139 North Broadway in 2012. Profiles’ new theatre, The Main Stage, with its larger seating capacity, increased performance space and higher ceilings, accommodates more ambitious and technically demanding productions. Their long-time venue, renamed The Alley Stage, continues as the home for plays strengthened by a more intimate staging. Driven by an undiminished appetite for creating honest and resonant theatre, Profiles still seeks to present work that illuminates the determination and resiliency of the human spirit.

For more information about Profiles Theatre and its historic 25th Season, visit