TimeLine Theatre Announces Expansion of Core Artistic Team and More

TimeLine Theatre Announces Expansion of Core Artistic Team and More 1 TimeLine Theatre also is pleased to recognize three business and community leaders who have recently joined TimeLine Theatre’s Board of Directors:
TimeLine Theatre Company announces that Chicago artists Behzad Dabu and Ron OJ Parson have been named Company Members at the theater, effective immediately. Additionally, the theater is welcoming 11 Associate Artists and three new members to its Board of Directors, including Sondra Healy, co-chairman of Turtle Wax, Inc.

TimeLine Theatre’s Company Members are the artistic leaders of the company, working collaboratively together to shape the artistic vision and choose the programming for the organization. Dabu and Parson join current Company Members Nick Bowling, Janet Ulrich Brooks, Lara Goetsch, Juliet Hart, Mildred Marie Langford, Mechelle Moe, David Parkes, PJ Powers, Maren Robinson and Ben Thiem.
“Ron and Behzad have exemplified tremendous thought leadership at TimeLine, representing our mission, vision and values through their work on productions along with providing valuable input on company activities,” TimeLine Artistic Director PJ Powers said. “This expansion of our core team will not only further diversify the talents and viewpoints of our current group of Company Members, it will also play an important role in our ongoing artistic development.”
Powers continued: “As we prepare for TimeLine’s 20th Anniversary season, and as we continue to plan for a new home, we are furthering the vision of TimeLine’s founders—to build a collective of artists with varied skills, backgrounds, points of view and aesthetics who work to shape seasons that are unique, diverse, and mission-centric. We couldn’t be more proud to welcome Behzad and Ron as part of the team.”
TimeLine Theatre Company also announces the addition of 11 new Associate Artists — Tyla Abercrumbie, Wardell Julius Clark, Charles Gardner, Megan Geigner, Dennis William Grimes, Jerod Haynes, Kymberly Mellen, Mike Nussbaum, André Pluess, Chris Rickettand Demetrios Troy.
Working closely with TimeLine’s Company Members, Associate Artists contribute to TimeLine’s short-term and long-term artistic programming and growth. Associate Artists serve as non-voting advisers in artistic planning and are encouraged to propose and promote artistic programming ideas and to enhance the work culture and environment of TimeLine. With a collaborative spirit and active participation, Associate Artists demonstrate passionate commitment toward TimeLine’s mission, vision and values.
“Each of these new Associate Artists has made enormous contributions to TimeLine’s work, including through the productions on our stage and the Living History Education Program. They also have been leaders off stage, making TimeLine a better place to work and a more distinguished organization,” said TimeLine Artistic Director PJ Powers. “Now they will play an important role in shaping the next phase of TimeLine’s growth. We are excited to have these fine artists help us bring TimeLine’s mission to life and serve as ambassadors in the community.”
These individuals join an already remarkable group of Associate Artists that includes Will Allan, Brian Sidney Bembridge, Eva Breneman, William Brown, Aaron Carter, Andrew Carter, Louis Contey, Charles Cooper, John Culbert, Julie Eberhardt, Ana Espinosa, Mikhail Fiksel, Terry Hamilton, Andrew Hansen, Alex Wren Meadows, Danica Monroe, Keith Parham, Collette Pollard, Mark Richard, Kimberly Senior, Mike Tutaj, Ann Wakefield and Alex Weisman. For more details, including full biographies, visittimelinetheatre.com/company/associateartists.htm.

TimeLine Theatre also is pleased to recognize three business and community leaders who have recently joined TimeLine Theatre’s Board of Directors:

  • Philip Cable is President, John A. Cable Foundation
  • Sondra Healy is Co-Chairman, Turtle Wax, Inc.
  • William A. Obenshain is Executive Director, Center for Financial Services, DePaul University
“As TimeLine works to realize the vision of our next decade as an organization, we are thrilled to have this impressive group join the Board,” Managing Director Elizabeth K. Auman said. “The depth of their collective experience and demonstrated commitment to the Chicago arts community ensures that we are positioned for even greater success.”
TimeLine’s 2015-16 Board of Directors is led by John M. Sirek (President), Eileen LaCario(Vice President), Matthew R. Reilein (Treasurer) and Susan A. Payne (Secretary), and also includes Elizabeth K. Auman, J. Robert Barr, Karen B. Case, Alvin Katz, Michael J. Kennedy, Thaddeus J. Malik, Mechelle Moe, Jessica Graham Nielsen, PJ Powers, Elizabeth Richter, Debra Siegel, Anne Stockton and Nicole Thomas.
Behzad Dabu has appeared on stage at TimeLine in INANA, BLOOD AND GIFTS, and as an original cast member of the theater’s 2009 Jeff Award-winning hit THE HISTORY BOYS. He grew up in Syracuse, N.Y., made Chicago his home in 2005, attended Columbia College Chicago, and has since performed all over town. Recent credits include DISGRACED (Goodman Theatre, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre and American Theater Company), SAMSARA (Jeff Award nomination – Supporting Actor, Play) and DISCONNECT (Victory Gardens), TWELFTH NIGHT (First Folio), A CHRISTMAS CAROL (Goodman), HOLES (Adventure Stage Chicago) and WE LIVE HERE (Theatre Seven). Film and television credits include CHICAGO PD, YOU’RE SO TALENTED, KING RAT and IMPERFECTIONS. He is a member of The Chicago Inclusion Project and will next appear in THE MATCHMAKER at the Goodman.

Ron OJ Parson is the director of TimeLine’s current Chicago premiere production of Dominique Morisseau’s SUNSET BABY (now playing through April 10, 2016) and previously directed A RAISIN IN THE SUN. He is a native of Buffalo, N.Y., and a graduate of the University of Michigan’s professional theatre program. He is the co-founder and former Artistic Director of The Onyx Theatre Ensemble of Chicago, a Resident Artist at Court Theatre and an Associate Artist with Teatro Vista and Writers Theatre. Since moving to Chicago from New York in 1994, he has worked as both an actor and director. His Chicago credits include work with Victory Gardens, Goodman, Steppenwolf, Chicago Dramatists, Northlight, Court, Black Ensemble, Congo Square, Urban Theatre Co., ETA Creative Arts Foundation, Chicago Theatre Company, and Writers. Regionally, Parson has directed shows at Studio Arena Theatre, Alliance Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, South Coast Repertory, Pasadena Playhouse, Geva Theatre, Virginia Stage and Portland Stage (Maine), among others. Ron also has directed at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Canada. Acting credits on television and film include ER, EARLY EDITION, TURKS, AMERICAN PLAYHOUSE, VAMPING, BARBERSHOP 2, PRIMAL FEAR, ALI, DROP SQUAD, BOSS and most recently Fox’s EMPIRE.

TimeLine Theatre Company, named one of the nation’s top 10 emerging professional theatres (American Theatre Wing, founder of the Tony Awards®, 2011), Best Theatre in Chicago (Chicago magazine, 2011) and the nation’s theater “Company of the Year” (The Wall Street Journal, 2010), was founded in April 1997 with a mission to present stories inspired by history that connect with today’s social and political issues. To date over 19 seasons, TimeLine has presented 66 productions, including nine world premieres and 26 Chicago premieres, and launched the Living History Education Program, now in its ninth year of bringing the company’s mission to life for students in Chicago Public Schools. Recipient of the Alford-Axelson Award for Nonprofit Managerial Excellence and the Richard Goodman Strategic Planning Award from the Association for Strategic Planning, TimeLine has received 52 Jeff Awards, including an award for Outstanding Production 11 times.

TimeLine Theatre’s 2015-16 season includes:

  • NOW PLAYING THROUGH APRIL 10, 2016: The Chicago premiere of SUNSET BABY by Dominique Morisseau, directed by Ron OJ Parson, at TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington Ave., Chicago. SUNSET BABY is “the first great production of 2016” (Newcity) and “one of the more breathtaking performances you will see all season.” (Chicago Sun-Times).
  • COMING SOON: Chicago premiere of the widely acclaimed 2014 Laurence Olivier Award winner for Best New Play, CHIMERICA by Lucy Kirkwood, directed by Associate Artistic Director Nick Bowling, presented May 3 – July 31, 2016 at TimeLine Theatre.
TimeLine is led by Artistic Director PJ Powers, Managing Director Elizabeth K. Auman and Board President John M. Sirek.
Major corporate, government and foundation supporters of TimeLine Theatre include Alphawood Foundation, Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Crown Family, Forum Fund, Lloyd A. Fry Foundation, Illinois Arts Council, Laughing Acres Family Foundation, MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at Prince, The Pauls Foundation, Polk Bros. Foundation and The Shubert Foundation.
TimeLine is a member of the League of Chicago Theatres, Theatre Communications Group, Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce and Chicago’s Belmont Theater District.