News & Reviews


Thank you to the Chicago Reader's Arts & Culture section for including DRY LAND as one of their "stage shows to see now!"

We are thrilled to announce that our Midwest Premiere of Ruby Rae Spiegel's Dry Land has been Jeff Recommended! 

DRY LAND is featured in FW Magazine's Culture Watch section--read it right here!

We are thrilled that our Midwest premiere of DRY LAND is a Critic's Pick in Chicago Magazine for "The Best Things to Do in Chicago This Month!"

The Chicago Tribune features Danielle Pinnock in BODY/COURAGE as this week's Showcase video--enjoy!

Thanks, RedEye Chicago, for including Body/Courage on your "Eat. Drink. Do." list for Thursday, February 25th!


Thanks, Tracy Baim and Windy City Times, for the glowing mention of our first BODY/COURAGE Town Hall discussion on February 13th!

BODY/COURAGE is listed as one of the "14 shows to see this Valentine's Day" by the Chicago Tribune! We couldn't agree more! 

As part of Chicago Theatre Week, BODY/COURAGE was highlighted as one of the participating plays on WCIU "The U!" Watch for the 4:00 minute mark--and you will hear the word "extraordinary" used several times with regard to the show and Danielle Pinnock's performance!

BODY/COURAGE writer and performer Danielle Pinnock recently appeared on WBEZ radio's "The Morning Shift"--have a listen for yourself!


Thank you to TimeOut Chicago for including us in their piece "15 Chicago theatre shows to see in February!"

Recently the National Eating Disorder Association interviewed BODY/COURAGE writer and performer Danielle Pinnock for their campaign Proud2BmeUS. Here is the end result--enjoy! 

We are so pleased that our production of "How the World Began" is one of Newcity's "Top 5 Dramas for 2015!

We are so happy to be included on this list by Kerry Reid as an Honorable Mention for 2015 for our production of Look, we are breathing by Laura Jacqmin!

We are thrilled that Newcity has named Rivendell's production of HOW THE WORLD BEGAN by Catherine Trieschmann as one of "2015's Top 5 Dramas"!

Thank you to TimeOut Chicago for helping to get the word out about our thrilling Season 2016: The Body Politic!

Thank you to the Chicago Tribune for the announcement of our exciting Season 2016: The Body Politic!

We are thrilled to announce that two RTE artists are nominated for 2015 Broadway World Chicago Awards: Christopher Kriz (Sound Design, Resident Equity- LOOK WE ARE BREATHING), and Curtis Edward Jackson (Best Actor in a Play, Resident Equity- HOW THE WORLD BEGAN). 

Thank you to the Chicago Tribune and the College at Lake County for featuring our upcoming performance of WOMEN AT WAR ON TOUR!

Thanks, Buzz On Stage, for featuring HOW THE WORLD BEGAN in our final week!


We are thrilled to announce that our Chicago premiere of "How the World Began" by Catherine Trieschmann has been Jeff Recommended! 


We are thrilled to announce that "Look, we are breathing" by Laura Jacqmin is nominated for a Joseph Jefferson Award for Best New Work. 


Thank you to Chicago Artists Month for featuring our upcoming Chicago production of How the World Began. Read the feature piece here:


We are excited to announce that RTE has been honored with two nominations by the TimeOut Chicago Theater Awards for its critically acclaimed production of "Look, we are breathing": Artistic Director Tara Mallen for Best Actress and Brendan Meyer for Best Supporting Actor. You have until August 9th, 2015 to vote at this link:

Thank you to Scott C. Morgan for this wonderful feature piece about "Look we are breathing." 



We are thrilled to announce that our world premiere production of Look, we are breathing is Jeff Recommended! 

Thank you to Windy City Times and Tracy Baim for the wonderful article covering our 2015 Salon! Read it here, and also see photo highlights from the evening!


Thank you to "Miss A - Charity Meets Style" for the lovely mention of our 2015 Salon! Read the article here.


Rivendell is so proud to be included on Backstage's list of "11 Theaters for Female Empowerment!" Check out the entire list here.

Thank you to TimeOut Chicago for including our upcoming production of "Look, we are breathing" on their list of "Shows to See This Spring!" 


We are thrilled to see that Hedy Weiss has given WOMEN AT WAR an Honorable Mention in her "Best Theater Productions of 2014" piece for the Chicago Sun-Times. You can read the entire article here.


On Sunday, November 30th, some of the cast members of WOMEN AT WAR appeared on WGN Radio's "Pretty Late" show with Patti Vasquez. You can listen to it right here!



We were excited to appear on WCPT Radio's "Out Chicago" show and to be interviewed by Scott Duff about WOMEN AT WAR. Here is the audio link if you missed it.


We are proud to announce that RTE Artistic Director Tara Mallen and RTE Director of Community Engagement Megan Carney were selected as the recipients of the 2014 Individual Silver Star Award from the Volunteers of America Illinois for their work on Rivendell's WOMEN AT WAR project. The award is given to an individual who has distinguished themselves as a real advocate of veterans and/or members of the military through either significant philanthropic activities or other personal acts of notable service.


We are thrilled to announce that WOMEN AT WAR has been Jeff Recommended!



We were excited to appear on the Dean Richards show at WGN Radio to discuss WOMEN AT WAR! Director Tara Mallen was interviewed about the project and we also performed two excerpts from the play. Listen to the audio clip here.



We are excited to be nominated for 'Best Storefront Theater' by Time Out's 2014 Love Chicago Awards! You may vote for us at: through November 11, 2014. Winners will be announced the week of December 4, 2014. Thanks in advance for your vote!



We are thrilled to announce that Joel Drake Johnson's RASHEEDA SPEAKING has been nominated for an Equity Jeff Award for Best New Work!



EAT YOUR HEART OUT has been named #1 on Crain's "10 Things to Do" list! Read the article here.



We are thrilled to announce that EAT YOUR HEART OUT has been Jeff Recommended!





Thank you to the Chicago Sun-Times for a great preview for EAT YOUR HEART OUT in their Splash feature. Read all about it here!


We are excited to announce that Rivendell has been nominated for the second year in a row for Arts Organization of the Year by the Andersonville Honors Awards! Cast your votes for Rivendell and your other favorite Andersonville businesses here.



We are so pleased that RASHEEDA SPEAKING has been included in HowlRound's "Essays, Practice, Opinions" section. Read the article here.



Thank you to the Chicago Sun-Times SPLASH section for its interview of playwright Joel Drake Johnson. You can read Thomas Connors' piece here to learn about Johnson's inspiration for RASHEEDA SPEAKING.


We are thrilled to announce that RASHEDA SPEAKING has been Jeff Recommended!




Thank you to the Edgeville Buzz and Keely Jones for including Rivendell in their list of small businesses they love. We are so happy to have our home in Edgewater!


Rivendell is thrilled that Lisa Dillman's "American Wee-Pie" was named a "very close runner-up" in Hedy Weiss' list of "Best Chicago Plays of 2013"--read all about it!



Rivendell is thrilled to announce that friend, colleague, and acclaimed playwright of "WRENS" (among others) has written her first novel, "Dancing On Ashes." There will be a book signing event at the Women and Children First bookstore on Clark Street in Chicago on November 8th at 7:30 pm.





We are thrilled to announce that we have received two nominations for the 2013 Equity Jeff Awards: Best Ensemble--"WRENS," and Best New Work--Playwright Lisa Dillman, "American Wee-Pie."



"The Electric Baby" is one of Chicago Magazine's "35 Top Theatre Events" for June!





Wonderful feature piece by with a full breakdown of the cast and prooduction crew for "The Electric Baby." Read the full article here.








Chicago Magazine includes "The Electric Baby" as one of their theatre picks for the month of May! Read the full article here




The Chicago Tribune talks about "The Electric Baby" here!






Thanks to for the nice mention about our final show of the season, "The Electric Baby."

Read all about it!







In preparation of our Midwest Premiere production of The Electric Baby by Stefanie Zadravec, we are thrilled to share her first person essay, "In Sickness and in Health," written for American Theatre magazine (published March 2012). This piece describes in detail her inspiration for the play.







Rivendell is overjoyed to be nominated as one of just a handful of organizations for an Arts Organization of the Year Award by Andersonville Honors Awards! Voting begins March 1, 2013, and the gala awards ceremony is slated for April 18th.







Hedy Weiss praised "American Wee-Pie" in her piece "Act II: A Second Look at Area Stages--Variety, the Spice of Stage Life" in the Chicago Sun-Times.







Rivendell and "American Wee-Pie" were included in a fabulous piece by Jonathan Abarbanel in the Windy City Times. Read the article here







We are thrilled to announce that "American Wee-Pie" has been Jeff Recommended!




We received a lovely mention in the Chicago Tribune (by Kerry Reid) about our upcoming production of American Wee-Pie written by Lisa Dillman and directed by Megan Carney. Read the piece here





The Chicago Community Trust and AffiliatesRivendell has recently developed a unique partnership with Veterans' Creative Arts Therapy at Albany Park Community Center and is delighted to announce that both organizations are the recipients of a 2012-13 Arts and Diversity Grant from the Chicago Community Trust. This grant will be used to further develop our ground-breaking project, Voices from the Front: Women at War, a new work focused on examining the contributions of women veterans and the important and often ignored role of women soldiers in today's military. Stay tuned for further details and announcements.

9/26/12 iconGreat article about WRENS and our extension through October 20th in!






We are on this week's "Reader Recommends" list in the Chicago Reader e-blast!

THEATER: "Wrens at Rivendell Theatre Ensemble revives the semiautobiographical play by Anne McGravie, with which the company debuted 16 years ago," writes Justin Hayford. "Wrens dawdles through a first act of telling but undramatic character studies. Yet once McGravie introduces an ingeniously constructed moral crisis late in act one-crisis that turns loyalty into criminality-it remains harrowing until its final moments."

Reserve your tickets fast, as some shows are already sold out!


We received a lovely communication from The Association of Wrens in Portsmouth, UK. The group met Anne McGravie at the Edinburgh Festival in 2011, and wish to extend an invitation to any ex-Wrens to visit their website and keep in touch. Here is the website address and other information needed to do so:

Celia Saywell, Public Relations Officer, Association of Wrens

Semaphore Tower, HM Naval Base

Portsmouth, UK PO1 3LT



Rivendell would like to thank Spencer's Jolly Posh Foods for their generous donation of sweets and treats for our opening night gala of WRENS. Visit Spencer's today!




Nice mention about our remount of WRENS on WBEZ by Kelly Kleiman and Jonathan Abarbanel! Read it here.




Our 2012 revival of WRENS is Jeff Recommended!




WRENS gets one of Hedy Weiss' votes in her "Fall Theater Preview" article in the Chicago Sun-Times. Look for us under the "War Stories" heading, and read it here.


An insightful article about our restaging of WRENS was written by Mary Houlihan (Chicago Sun-Times, Sept. 5, 2012) and can be read here.


Apart Pizza Company Logo Rivendell is pleased to announce that Apart Pizza Company has committed to being a neighborhood partner for the revival production of WRENS. We thank them for their support! Please visit them at and please support our neighborhood businesses!




Rivendell is proud to announce that two artists have been nominated for 2012 Joseph Jefferson Equity Awards. Please join us in congratulating Victoria (Toy) DeIorio (Sound Design - "Falling: A Wake") and Hannah Gomez (Supporting Actor - "Crooked"). Well deserved! See all the nominees listed here.


Hedy Weiss wrote a lovely piece for the Chicago Sun-Times discussing our 2012 revival of WRENS. Read it here!


It's the biggest news EVER! Itinerant no longer -- 0ur 16th season will be our first in a brand new theatre space. Read more and see video and photos of the construction here.




Please join us in congratulating RTE founding ensemble member Keith Kupferer and his talented colleagues on a fantastic run of God of Carnage at the Goodman Theatre! Pictured at right are Keith with fellow castmates Beth Lacke and David Pasquesi under the theater marquee at closing.

The show had Chicago critics raving about the phenomenal cast:

  • "Kupferer brings a delicious comic sense to the proceedings"
  • "Snyder (director) and his crack quartet of actors masterfully maneuver among the play’s shifting loyalties and increasingly over-the-top recriminations"
  • "the self-made man of the world Michael – played with a masterful blend of sensitivity and gruffness by Keith Kupferer – hides an ugly inner life for the sake of harmony in his marriage"


Precious Little is now Jeff Recommended!

Check out our world-premiere this weekend with discounted $10 industry tickets. To receive this special discount, just call the DCA box office at 312-742-8497 and use the code word "Industry." Please help us spread the word!


On January 25, 2011, the cast and production staff of Precious Little took a trip to the Lincoln Park Zoo as part of rehearsal. Visit our Facebook page for all the pictures of this language-exploring event!


Happy New Year! Kelly Kleiman at WBEZ91.5 has named Rivendell's Mark Ulrich as one of her Top 5 Directors of 2010, citing his "expert handling" of Mary's Wedding!

Please join us in congratulating him! Read more here.


Noted improv actor (and "Monty Python" diarist) Kim "Howard" Johnson has submitted a letter to the editor of The Ottawa Times praising Rivendell's recent Ottawa production of These Shining Lives! Check it out here!


Our groundbreaking remount of These Shining Lives is being acclaimed as a rare opportunity — a production about a heartbreaking, historical event in Ottawa, IL, played to residents of the same town.

Check out our front-page feature in today's Ottawa Times!