Up, the tale of a man who attaches balloons to a lawn chair and flies, was written by Princess Grace Awards winner Bridget Carpenter (Playwriting, 1997) and directed by Princess Grace Awards winner Anna D. Shapiro (Directing, 1996).
Shapiro won the 2008 Tony Award for Best Direction for Steppenwolf's hit Broadway play August: Osage County. Carpenter is an award-winning playwright whose work has been seen at theatres across the country including Arena Stage, Lincoln Center, and Humana Festival at Actors Theater of Louisville.
The benefit performance of Up — a play billed as a "quirky, bittersweet tale about escaping the boundaries of everyday life and how we dream ourselves into a future" — will be preceded by a dinner and followed by a post-performance discussion with the actors.
PGF-USA, in partnership with Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago, identified a past Princess Grace Awards winner, Alex Torra (Directing, 2007), and has given him the opportunity to travel to Chicago and be the assistant director on the production, a rare opportunity for any aspiring director.
Proceeds from the benefit will support programs of the Princess Grace Foundation-USA (www.pgfusa.org), a public charity formed after the death of Princess Grace in 1982. It awards scholarships, apprenticeships and fellowships to assist emerging theatre, dance and film artists in America. Steppenwolf Theatre is located at 1650 N. Halsted Street, Chicago, IL. A 5:30 PM reception and dinner at Vinci (1732 N. Halsted Street) will be followed by a 7:30 PM performance followed by a discussion.
Tickets for the benefit performance and a dinner at Vinci on North Halsted Street preceding are $125 and can be purchased by contacting PGF-USA at firstname.lastname@example.org or (212) 317-1470.
Show-only tickets are available for $50.
Committed to the principle of ensemble performance through the collaboration of a company of actors, directors and playwrights, Steppenwolf Theatre Company's mission is "to advance the vitality and diversity of American theater by nurturing artists, encouraging repeatable creative relationships and contributing new works to the national canon.
"The company, formed in 1976 by a collective of actors, is dedicated to perpetuating an ethic of mutual respect and the development of artists through on-going group work. Steppenwolf has grown into an internationally renowned company of 42 artists whose talents include acting, directing, playwriting, filmmaking and textual adaptation."
For additional information, visit www.steppenwolf.org. Notable Princess Grace Award recipients include Stephen Hillenburg, creator of Nickelodeon's "SpongeBob SquarePants"; Tony Kushner, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright; Gillian Murphy, principal dancer of American Ballet Theatre; Eric Darnell, director of "Madagascar 1 & 2"; Greg Mottola, director of "Superbad" and Eric Simonson, Academy Award winning filmmaker.