Caity-Shea Violette’s heartbreakingly funny new play is a riveting story about a family of women struggling to reconnect as they react to an unexpected end-of-life decision. This new dramedy was the winner of Artemisia’s 2017 Fall Festival of new plays, earning it this staged reading and finally, a fully staged production by Artemisia in 2020. Artemisia’s Founding Artistic Director Julie Proudfoot will direct the reading, to be performed at The Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee, on Friday, March 15 at 7:30 pm.
In REAP THE GROVE, Sandra and Nan have a loving marriage, estranged daughters and a very special problem. Sandra has decided to end her life on her own terms following a terminal diagnosis. She summons her two daughters, Judith and Beckah, home to spend her final days with them. REAP THE GROVE examines this family of women authentically, fearlessly and with a big dose of smart humor.
Proudfoot’s cast for the reading includes Denise Hoelfich (Compass Theatre’s WHAT WE’RE UP AGAINST) as Sandra; Justine Serino (of productions with The Gift, Silk Road Rising and many others) as Nan; Tina El Gamal (I CALL MY BROTHERS with Interrobang) as Beckah; and Elisabeth Del Toro (SHE KILLS MONSTERS with The Cuckoo’s Theater Project) as Judith.
Playwright Caity-Shea Violette is a Chicago native currently pursuing her MFA in playwriting at Boston University. She will return to Chicago for this one-night-only reading and participate in a post-reading discussion led by director Julie Proudfoot. Violette has been working closely on the script with Proudfoot, who is a story analyst for HBO Films and Fremantle Media in addition to her work as a stage director and actress. Violette says, “Artemisia will be a powerful home to nurture this story and further empower me to push my artistic bravery to new heights to discover and honor each layer of these four women."
REAP THE GROVE is another example of Artemisia’s mission to find and develop dynamic and empowering new plays with compelling female characters who have agency, independence, and are the focal point of their own narratives. The company’s development process includes its annual Fall Festival, in which new scripts each year are given public readings; a close collaboration between Artistic Director Proudfoot and the playwright on a developmental workshop of each festival’s winner with audience discussion the following year; earning this staged reading.. Artemisia will stage the Midwest Premiere of SWEET TEXAS RECKONING by Traci Godfrey, winner of Fall Festival 2016, from June 7-30, 2019 at The Den.
Tickets for REAP THE GROVE are $15 and are now on sale at www.artemisiatheatre.org.
CAITY-SHEA VIOLETTE (playwright) is a Chicago-based playwright and actress. Her national award-winning work has been seen in Washington D.C., New York City, Minneapolis, Las Vegas, Toronto, Denver, and Chicago. She holds a BFA in Theatre from the University of Minnesota, Duluth and is a graduate of the St. Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists. Caity-Shea is currently pursuing her MFA in playwriting at Boston University and is passionate about exploring trauma, invisible disabilities, and gender-based violence, by creating new work for women.
Caity-Shea’s awards and recognition include: National Award Winner of the 2019 Susan Glaspell Playwriting Festival, Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival New Play Competition (National Finalist), The Kennedy Center's National Partners of the American Theatre Playwriting Excellence Award (Winner), Shakespeare's Sister Playwriting Fellowship (National Semi-Finalist), InspiraTO Playwriting Contest (Winner), Kennedy Center’s Irene Ryan Acting Competition (National Finalist), Kennedy Center's David Mark Cohen National Playwriting Award (National Semi-Finalist), Kennedy Center's National Ten-Minute Play Competition (National Finalist, National Semi-Finalist), Kennedy Center's John Cauble for Outstanding Short Play (Regional Runner-Up). More information available at www.caitysheaviolette.com.
JULIE PROUDFOOT (Director) As Founder and Artistic Director, Julie is the vision behind Artemisia, selecting the plays that are featured each season in the annual fall festival and developing and directing the theatre’s premiere productions. An actor, director and producer, Julie is proud to be part of the amazing Chicago Theatre community and make the city home to Artemisia. Julie’s work as an actor was most recently seen on NBC’s popular series CHICAGO MED, and as a performing understudy in TimeLine’s outstanding production of A SHAYNA MAIDEL.
Julie has also acted with Shakespeare Project of Chicago, Equity Library Theatre, Nebraska Rep and Artemisia, among others, and has numerous Off-Broadway and regional theatre credits. Julie is a story analyst for HBO Films and Fremantle Media and has extensive experience developing, directing and producing new work.
REAP THE GROVE
By Caity-Shea Violette
One night only staged reading of an all-new feminist play
Directed by Julie Proudfoot
March 15, 2019 - 7:30 PM
The Den Theatre
1331 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago
All seats $15.00
More info & tickets at http://artemisiatheatre.org/plays/
ABOUT ARTEMISIA: A CHICAGO THEATRE
Founded in 2011, Artemisia, A Chicago Theatre is a professional, not-for-profit theatre that produces all-new, dynamic and empowering plays that center on women who have agency, independence, and are the focal point of their own narratives, to create gender parity both onstage and off. Each season, Artemisia produces its Fall Festival of new play readings as well as fully staged productions of new plays it has developed. Artemisia is a 501 c 3 organization and, as such, relies heavily on public support to fund theatre that promotes equality and social justice for all women and girls.
Artemisia Gentileschi was a Baroque artist whose paintings depicted violence with fierce honesty and elegance. For centuries after her death, her art was attributed to men. Feminist curators in the late 1970’s rediscovered Artemisia, who is now considered the greatest female painter prior to the modern period. A common theme in Gentileschi’s later work is women in moments of power, or triumph, which is why she is the perfect namesake for Artemisia.
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