2013-14 SEASON: Stirring the Pot


Some things are just hard to talk about.

Topics like women in the military, racial tensions in the workplace, and negative body image are often buried or just plain ignored. So this season Rivendell chose three provocative, contemporary stories that “stir the proverbial pot” and unflinchingly expose these challenging issues, instigating vital dialogues. We’d love for you to join the conversation. stirred.



Directed by RTE ensemble member Megan Carney

In collaboration with Tara Mallen, Regina Garcia and Abby Schwartz
Featuring  Mary Cross, Rachel Combs, Susan Gaspar, Hannah Gomez, Ebony Joy, Chris Kriz, Erin Neal, Paula Ramirez, and Krenee Tolson
With production partner VetCAT,  A Veterans’ Creative Arts Therapy

PUBLIC WORKSHOP PERFORMANCE followed by a panel discussion: Thursday November 21, 2013 at 7:00 PM
at UIC School of Theatre & Music, 1040 W. Harrison, Room L060

As debate rages over whether women should serve in combat forces, more women are being sent into active combat zones than ever before. Rivendell is hard at work exploring the lives and challenges of female soldiers today—from military training, to deployment and combat, to eventual reentry into civilian life. Based on extensive research and first-person interviews, this new theatrical work is a unique collaboration between Rivendell Theatre Ensemble and VetCAT, A Veterans' Creative Arts Therapy Program.  After the performance, artists and community partners invite audiences to join in a vital conversation about how civilians can better understand and honor these women warriors. This project is supported by a grant from the Chicago Community Trust.


by Joel Drake Johnson

Directed by Sandy Shinner


Featuring RTE Artistic Director Tara Mallen and  Steppenwolf ensemble member Ora Jones; with RTE member Eric Slater and Lorraine Freund

Previews: 1/9 through 1/17/14
Openings: Saturday 1/18 at 7PM and Sunday 1/19 at 6PM
Runs: Thursdays through Saturdays at 8PM and Saturdays at 4PM through 2/15. With added Wednesday shows at 8pm on January 22, January 29 and February 12, and an added Sunday show at 2pm on February 16.

A white physician attempts to oust his black receptionist by enlisting a white female coworker as a spy. Tensions rise as relations between the two women quickly deteriorate, turning their once-cordial workplace into a battlefield of innuendo, paranoia, and passive aggression. With trademark wit and close observation, Joel Drake Johnson mines the subtleties of "post-racial" America to explore what we are really saying when we refuse to talk about race.   Production Sponsor: The Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation



Join us on Thursday, May 15th from 6 - 9 PM at the Swedish American Museum Gallery (5211 North Clark Street in Chicago) to raise a glass (and some funds!) toward the rest of our 2014 season and help us celebrate our recent successes. This year we whisk you back to the 1920s for an intimate Parisian salon atmosphere complete with music, live performances, a silent auction and raffle prizes, delicious food and drink, and a special trivia contest that pays homage to the intrepid women of the salon movement who dared to instigate, and who revolutionized the arts and society. In addition, we will present this year's WREN Award to Esther Grimm, the Executive Director of 3Arts. This is an event not to be missed---so come dressed in your most artistic fashion---either in 1920s style or creatively inspired in order to 'cause a stir!'



by Courtney Baron

Directed by Hallie Gordon, Artistic Director of Steppenwolf Young Adults Program


Featuring RTE member Mary Cross; with Andrew Goetten, Anne Joy, Katherine Keberlein, Charlie Strater, and Michael Szeles

EXTENDED BY POPULAR DEMAND THROUGH JULY 12! (No performances July 4 or 5.)

Previews: 5/23 through 5/30 /14
Openings: Saturday 5/31 at 7PM and Sunday 6/1 at 6PM
Runs: Runs Wednesdays through Saturdays at 8PM and Saturdays at 4PM through 7/12/14
There are NO PERFORMANCES on July 4 or July 5

Alice and Gabe are desperate to adopt a child.  Single mom Nance is desperate to connect with her obese teenage daughter Evie. And Evie is desperate for her best friend to fall for her despite the incredible odds. Alternately heartbreaking and hilarious, Courtney Baron's whip-smart comedy weaves these stories together to delve into the complexities of family, body image, and hearts and minds consumed by longing. This Midwest premiere was the hit of the 2012 Humana Festival of New Plays.