Playwright Chuck O’Connor Dies

Playwright Chuck O’Connor Dies

Photo courtesy of Polarity Ensemble Theatre.

Playwright and Evanston resident Charles Gerard O’Connor lost a life-long battle with depression and anxiety on Friday.

O’Connor was a Network Playwright with Chicago Dramatists and a genial fixture at Chicago-area play readings and developmental workshops. His work was selected as a Heideman Award Finalist with Actor’s Theater of Louisville and as winner of the 2013 Dionysos Cup at Polarity Ensemble Theatre. He worked with the United Nations “Stop Rape Now” program to develop pieces that empower woman in Ukraine and Turkey.

Polarity Artistic Director Richard Engling says “Chuck was a kind, talented, good man. He loved his children, his wife, his family–and so many people. If you were his friend, you felt the warmth of his love. We will miss him. I had the pleasure of producing his play, MIRACLES IN THE FALL, in 2014 after we’d worked on it in the 2013 Dionysos Cup Festival. He was both talented and modest as an artist. A wonderful collaborator. A good friend. And he will be missed.”

O’Connor held a Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Arts from Michigan State University and a Master’s Degree from Loyola University-Chicago. Survivors include his wife Jackie Brenner, children Griffin O’Connor (6), Addie O’Connor (3), mother Eleanor O’Connor, siblings Karen Mullins, Robert O’Connor and Kelli Bischoff, nieces and nephews, aunts and uncles, in-laws, and an extended family, friends, and co-workers.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to “assist Griffin and Addie as they enter into an uncertain future without their dad.”

There will be a memorial for O’Connor this Sunday, August 14th at 4:30pm at the First Free Chuch in Andersonville, 5255 N. Ashland, Chicago.


About author

Jason Epperson

Jason is a producer, manager, and designer with 17 years of experience in Chicago, New York, and in the touring market. In 2015, he founded Lotus Theatricals - the publisher of Performink, and an independent commercial producing company - with Abigail Trabue.

  • Marinia DeFrisco#1

    August 11, 2016

    In spite of his personal struggles, Chuck was a brilliant, talented, and loving human being. We were lucky to know him.

  • Michael#2

    August 12, 2016

    That he was. I worked with Chuck and we instantly connected. He was a wonderful guy. Caring and thoughtful. Clever and witty. Kind and understanding. Bless his children.

  • Nan Shorey#3

    August 19, 2016

    Absolutely a wonderful talented man and good friend.
    Celebrating his life, his gifts to the world, the intersecting of our paths, and mourning his passing.
    I feel so lucky to have known him.


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