The season will kick off with Steven Strafford's Methtacular!, an autobiographical play about struggling with addiction. The new year will begin with A Kid Like Jake, which follows a family as their son explores his gender identity, followed by Bixby Elliot's Abraham Lincoln Was A F*Gg*T, a time-traveling historical comedy. About Face Youth Theatre Ensemble will present the world premiere of a new work in July 2015.
"We're excited to bring audiences a season of provocative, engaging and entertaining works that illuminate the world in which we live," artistic director Andrew Volkoff said in a statement. "In fact, all our mainstage work is united by the theme of 'authenticity.' As Shakespeare said, 'To thy own self be true.' In the LGBTQIA community, I feel that question is constantly at the heart of who we are – no matter where we fall on the spectrum. These plays celebrate the value of embracing our own truths and highlight the many different paths through that question."
The season-at-a-glance follows.
Written and performed by Steven Strafford
Directed by Adam Fitzgerald
Music supervision and arrangements by John McDaniel
Original music and arrangements by William TN Hall
Original music by Wade Elkins
Aug. 21–Sept. 28
Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago.
"Methtacular! is Steven Strafford's hilarious and harrowing autobiographical account of his three years as a crystal meth addict in Chicago. Through comedy, songs, and plenty of honest storytelling, Strafford brings audiences on a journey through the chemical highs, devastating lows, and ultimate redemption from his drug addled, sex crazed life. Presented in association with Justin Brill."
A Kid Like Jake
By Daniel Pearle
Directed by Keira Fromm
"Alex and Greg's intelligent and precocious four year-old son is a leading candidate for enrollment in one of Manhattan's top kindergarten programs. But when attention turns to his passion for Cinderella and dress-up, his imagination and behavior becomes a lightning rod for all involved. Winner of the Laurents/Hatcher playwriting prize, A Kid Like Jake takes a contemporary look at gender, family, expectations and acceptance through the lens of 21st century parenting." Chicago Premiere
Abraham Lincoln Was A F*Gg*T
By Bixby Elliot
Directed by Andrew Volkoff
"In this time travelling riff on history, young Cal embarks on a journey to prove to his family that Abraham Lincoln, one of our country's most revered presidents, might be gay. Cal's story is juxtaposed with scenes from Abraham Lincoln's life in the 1800s — along the way there is sex in a stovepipe hat, a road trip to the nation's capital, budding high-school romance and a quadrille or two. From the writer of the hit comedy, Girl You Know It's True, Abraham Lincoln was a F*gg*t is a clever take on truth, family and the importance of role models for LGBTQ youth."
A World Premiere by The About Face Youth Theatre Ensemble
"Each year, About Face's acclaimed Youth Theatre devises a play through workshops, in depth interviews, theatre training and improvisation. Working with a professional writer and director, they produce plays that tackle challenging topics ranging from being undocumented and queer to anti-gay violence to safe spaces for youth in the LGBTQIA community."
Visit aboutfacetheatre.com for more information.