The Second City invites you to celebrate Mother’s Day with Margaret Trudeau, the mother of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. In a world premiere engagement, Margaret Trudeau is coming to Chicago to bring her intimate staged performance Certain Woman of an Age exclusively to UP Comedy Club at The Second City, 230 W. North Ave. Co-written by Ms. Trudeau, herself, and directed by Kimberly Senior, this solo performance follows the compelling story of one of the world’s most fascinating figures, chronicling her courageous public and private journeys.
Through vividly told anecdotes recounting her experiences as the mother of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and former wife of Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, catapulting her to feminist icon status, and suffering tremendous personal loss, Ms. Trudeau bravely and humorously paints a surprisingly universal picture that will empower audiences with the perspective that mental illness affects all families, no matter who they are.
"I'm thrilled to be a part of sharing Margaret's story in this intimate setting. Through her courage, insight, and humor, we all stand a little taller and are better able to face the ever-challenging world around us," said director Kimberly Senior.
Co-written by award-winning playwright Alix Sobler, the stripped-down performance will be supported by simple lighting design, projections, and photographs from historic sources as well as Ms. Trudeau’s personal archives. Following 2018’s developmental run of Julia Sweeney: Older & Wider, Certain Woman of an Age is the latest development project from The Second City, and the new work shares a Canadian connection. Canadian Andrew Alexander started the Toronto Second City in 1974, and he and his partner Len Stuart acquired The Second City Chicago in 1985.
“I first met Margaret Trudeau 25 years ago. I was asked to meet her after writing a screenplay which featured her as one of the main characters. The film never happened, but a friendship was born. As the years went by, I realized her real-life story of grace, forgiveness, love, and determination in the face of unspeakable tragedy is a magnificent story of survival and more compelling than any fiction,” said executive producer Diane Alexander. “Margaret is also one of the most charming and funny people I have ever met."
Tickets start at $45 and are available by phone at 312-337-3992 or online at www.secondcity.com. The show schedule is as follows: Thursday, May 9 at 8pm; Friday, May 10 at 8pm; Saturday, May 11 at 8pm; and a special Mother’s Day performance on Sunday, May 12 at 4pm.
About The Artists
Canadians fell in love with Pierre Elliott Trudeau's beautiful bride when he brought her to the world stage as the youngest First Lady in the history of the country. Yet, as time went by, Margaret was unprepared for public life, and plagued by mood swings. After three sons with Pierre, the marriage ended. She then remarried and had two more children. But the tragic loss of her son, Michel, in a skiing accident and the passing of Pierre Trudeau a few years later were too much to bear, and she became severely ill.
Today, Margaret has rebuilt her life once again. Now, she brings her formidable life story to the stage in her quest to help others, sharing her message of resilience with the goal of helping to inspire others and to erase the stigma surrounding mental health issues.
Margaret is the author of four books, including her bestselling title, Changing My Mind, which charts her life’s ups and downs, and her latest title, The Time of Your Life, which offers women an inspirational and practical approach to creating a healthy, happy, secure and satisfying future.
Kimberly Senior is a freelance director and the director of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize-winning play Disgraced by Ayad Akhtar. Most recently, Kimberly made her HBO debut with Chris Gethard: Career Suicide, which premiered at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival. Kimberly was awarded the 2016 TCG Alan Schneider Award. She is also the recipient of the 2018 Primary Stages Einhorn Award and 2016 Special Non-Equity Jeff Award for her work as a trailblazer, champion, and role model for emerging artists.
New York Credits: Disgraced (Broadway); Chris Gethard: Career Suicide (Judd Apatow); The Niceties (Manhattan Theatre Club); Sakina's Restaurant (Audible); The Who and The What; Disgraced (LCT3); Discord (Primary Stages); Engagements (Second Stage Uptown). Regional Credits: Christmas at Pemberley (Milwaukee Rep); The Niceties (Huntington and McCarter); Sheltered (Alliance Theatre); Support Group for Men; Disgraced; Rapture, Blister, Burn (Goodman Theatre); Buried Child; The Scene; Marjorie Prime; Diary of Anne Frank; Hedda Gabler; The Letters (Writers Theatre); Other Than Honorable (Geva); Sex with Strangers (The Geffen Playhouse); Disgraced (Mark Taper Forum, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre); The Who and The What (La Jolla Playhouse); Little Gem (City Theatre); Want; and The North Plan (Steppenwolf), among others. She is the proud mother of Noah (12) and Delaney (10). Kimberly is a member of SDC. Find more at kimberlysenior.net.
Alix Sobler is a writer and performer who lives in New York City. Her play Sheltered won the 2018 Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition and received a world premiere at Alliance Theater in 2018. Other recent work includes The Great Divide, which won the Canadian Jewish Playwriting Competition, was named as a finalist in the Henley Rose Playwriting Competition, and was the runner-up for the 2017 Jane Chambers Award. It received its world premiere in September of 2016 at The Finborough Theatre in London. Her play The Secret Annex was most recently produced at the Segal Centre in Montreal in 2016. It was originally produced in 2014 at the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre. A two-time finalist for the Eugene O’Neill NPC, she has had work read or produced in theaters across North America and England, including Roundabout Theater Company (New York, NY), the Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.), The Print Room (London, UK), The Stratford Festival (Stratford, ON), South Coast Repertory (Costa Mesa, CA), Theater J (Washington, DC), Gulfshore Playhouse (Naples, FL), Theatre Seven (Chicago, IL), Mad & Merry Theater Company (New York, NY), Prairie Theatre Exchange (Winnipeg, MB), Brown/Trinity Playwrights Rep (Providence, RI), The Tank (New York, NY), Theatre Or (Minneapolis, MN), and others. BA: Brown University, MFA: Columbia University. Find more at alixsobler.com.
About UP Comedy Club
Since opening its doors as part of The Second City’s resident stages in 2012, UP Comedy Club has developed and produced a diverse array of sketch comedy shows, stand-up performances, festivals, and original works from voices of every kind. Programming has included the box office smash #DateMe: An OkCupid Experiment, critic and audience favorite She the People: Girlfriends’ Guide to Sisters Doing It for Themselves, The Second City’s Black History Month Show, and The Second City’s Nut-Cracking Holiday Revue. The theater is also home to the annual NBC Universal + The Second City’s Break-Out Comedy Fest, which showcases the hottest emerging and seasoned comedic acts in the worlds of stand-up, sketch, and improv
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