Irish Theatre of Chicago’s Founding Artistic Director Steps Down, Interim AD Announced

Irish Theatre of Chicago’s Founding Artistic Director Steps Down, Interim AD Announced

Pictured: J.R. Sullivan

As Irish Theatre Of Chicago enters into its 23rd season, the company has announced J.R. Sullivan will step into the role of Interim Artistic Director replacing founding Artistic Director Michael Grant, who will remain on as an ensemble member.

“J.R. is deeply passionate both about Irish theater and the ITC ensemble, and believes strongly in our place in Chicago’s theater scene,” comments Grant. “After two decades at the helm, I’m pleased to be able to hand over the reins to someone who loves our company and community so much, and has a great vision for what we can accomplish going forward.”

Sullivan, who began his professional career with the founding of Rockford Illinois’ New American Theater, where he served as Producing Director for 22 seasons, has worked as a freelance director for Writers Theatre, Northlight, American Theatre Company, A Red Orchid, Milwaukee Rep., American Players Theatre, Live Bait, Prop, The Onyx, Touchstone, and Turnaround Theater, where his production of FAITH HEALER was selected as the inaugural production of the 1995-96 Steppenwolf Studio series. He has served as the Associate Artistic Director for the Utah Shakespeare Festival, and Artistic Director of New York City’s Off-Broadway Pearl Theatre.

“I’ve been a great admirer of Irish Theatre of Chicago going back to 1995’s AND NEITHER HAVE I WINGS TO FLY,” states Sullivan. “I am in deep admiration for their craft and their devotion to the luminous and the bruising, the political and the transcendent. I envision a future where the company has a permanent home and ongoing relationships with writers who will craft plays specifically for the distinctive Chicago style of the ITC ensemble. New plays and productions that are Chicago and Irish both, in the lyrical and the compelling, the connected and the essential. Count me as excited to be a part of all this, in the traditional and the new, as this vital company moves onwards and upwards.”

Irish Theatre Of Chicago invites the public to meet the new Interim Artistic Director at an official announcement party on the patio at Chief O’Neil’s (3471 North Elston Avenue in Chicago) on Thursday, June 28th, from 6:30-10:30. Admission is free. Cash bar. Appetizers will be provided. No reservations required. For more information on Irish Theatre of Chicago visit

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