Designed by Chicago architect Jeanne Gang and her Studio Gang Architects, the complex will be funded by money raised almost entirely from individuals rather than donations from corporations or foundations.
The On To A New Stage Campaign has raised $22 million to date, with early lead support from a wide range of philanthropists, including Alexandra C. and John D. Nichols, Alec and Jennifer Litowitz, Gillian and Ellis Goodman, Mary Winton Green and the Green family, Stephanie and Bill Sick and an anonymous donor who has contributed a gift of $2 million.
Contributors also include Julie and Lawrence Bernstein, Harrison and Lois Steans and Mary Pat and Andy Studdert.
A groundbreaking will occur in fall 2014, with the opening of the new theatre center planned for early 2016.
"Writers Theatre has been offering sophisticated productions and nurturing the finest dramatic artists in Chicago for over two decades. With the creation of our new theatre center we will have a home that matches the quality of our art and allows us to make an even more significant investment in the artists who have been so integral to our success," artistic director Michael Halberstam said in a statement. "I think it is vital to take this moment to acknowledge the passion and commitment of our foundational donors who have simply taken my breath away with the scope of their generosity and vision in bringing this project to such a confident and significant launch."
Writers Theatre currently performs in the 50-seat theatre in the back of Books on Vernon and a 108-seat theatre at the Woman’s Library Club.
The company's work includes Halberstam's world premiere in Glencoe and subsequent production of A Minister's Wife at Lincoln Center Theater, David Cromer's productions of A Streetcar Named Desire and Picnic and the commissioning, world premiere and New York premiere of Crime and Punishment.
Visit writerstheatre.org for more information.