Grease Co-Creator Donates Generous Gift to Chicago's American Theater Company

News   Grease Co-Creator Donates Generous Gift to Chicago's American Theater Company The Chicago Tribune reports that Grease co-creator Jim Jacobs will offer a $50,000 gift to the American Theater Company to support its productions of new works. The theatre has presented the world premieres of Disgraced, which went on to win the Pulitzer Prize and have a successful Broadway run, as well as Stephen Karam's Broadway-bound The Humans.

Chicago-based ATC lost its artistic director P.J. Paparelli earlier this year after he died in a car accident, prompting his friend Bonnie Metzgar to take on the role in the interim. During Paparelli's seven-year tenure, the theatre took increasing risks with new works, such as Columbinus (about the Columbine High School shootings) and Ayad Akhtar's controversial Disgraced, which moved to Broadway, where it garnered critical acclaim and was nominated for a Tony Award. 

ATC also presented the world premiere of The Humans in November 2014, which recently began performances Off-Broadway. The Roundabout Theatre production officially opened Oct. 25 to strong critical reviews. Read reviews for The Humans here

Jacobs is reportedly helping ATC with the generous gift as a "commitment to Paparelli's legacy," and hopes others will match his gesture. "It's really about, 'Let's keep the theater going,'" Jacobs told the Tribune.

He and Paparelli had reportedly been planning a revival of the Jacobs and Warren Casey musical Island of Lost Coeds.

The ATC board announced in June that it would conduct a national search for new permanent leadership for the theatre. For more information visit ATCweb.org.

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