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Photo: First Floor Theater’s 2019-20 season playwrights (top, l to r) Donja R. Love, Will Arbery and Noah Diaz and directors (bottom, l to r) Mikael Burke, Audrey Francis and Hutch Pimentel.
First Floor Theater has announced their eighth season, featuring one world premiere and two Chicago debuts.
“After a record-breaking seventh season, we are thrilled to continue producing some of the most cutting edge theater that this city has to offer,” said Artistic Director Hutch Pimentel. “These playwrights have crafted three extraordinary plays that tackle love and fear, hope and dread across time, gender and race. All three pieces explore what it means to craft a family in times of great trouble – and follow individuals in the midst of radical revolutions.”
First Floor Theater’s 2019-20 season:
(descriptions from a press release)
October 19, 2019 – November 23, 2019
SUGAR IN OUR WOUNDS – Chicago Premiere
By Donja R. Love, Directed by FFT Company Member Mikael Burke
On a plantation during the Civil War, a mystical tree stretches toward heaven. It protects James, a young slave, while he reads newspapers about the imminent possibility of freedom, as war rages on. When a brooding stranger arrives, James and his makeshift family take him in. Soon, an unexpected bond leads to a striking romance, and everyone is in uncharted territory. The award-winning SUGAR IN OUR WOUNDS is part of playwright Donja R. Love’s trilogy of black love at pivotal moments in history, helmed by Mikael Burke, director of last season’s acclaimed production of Hooded, or Being Black for Dummies.
February 15, 2020 – March 27, 2020
PLANO – Chicago Premiere!
By Will Arbery, Directed by Audrey Francis
Presented as a part of Steppenwolf’s LookOut Series at the 1700 Theatre
Tonight, and later, and earlier, three sisters (no, not those ones) are stricken with a series of strange plagues: Isabel’s got pains. Anne’s got slugs. And Genevieve doesn’t want to talk about hers. She just wants you to eat the damn hummus (she made it!). Fresh from its wildly successful Off-Broadway debut and remount, PLANO is “as funny as it is powerfully disturbing” (VULTURE) that TimeOut NY called “experimental theater perfection.” Steppenwolf ensemble member Audrey Francis returns to direct at First Floor Theater, where she previously co-directed FFT’s first production in 2012.
April 18, 2020 – May 30, 2020
THE JUNIORS – World Premiere!
By Noah Diaz, Directed by FFT Artistic Director Hutch Pimentel
A class of high school juniors are tasked with a simple Home Ec assignment: parent a sack of flour for a week or fail. When the flour babies begin dying one by one, the students stop at nothing to ensure that they, and the pretend children they bore, are the last ones standing. A play with war, carnage and genocide, THE JUNIORS is a pitch black comedy about the ambitious and cut-throat world of high school Home Economics and the lengths we’ll go to in order to protect what we think is ours.
SUGAR IN OUR WOUNDS and THE JUNIORS will be staged at The Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago, where First Floor is a resident company. PLANO will take place at Steppenwolf’s 1700 Theatre, 1700 N. Halsted St. in Chicago, as a part of the LookOut Series.