Lewis University’s Heritage Theatre Company (HTC) is proud to host their 4th Annual “24 Hour Theatre Festival, a.k.a. “Black Box Blowout” on Friday and Saturday, March 17 and 18. The Studio Theatre is a type of flexible performance space known as a Black Box.
As its name would suggest, this kind of theatre is designed as a simple box. The space which contains the theatre is square and painted black, because black is a neutral color which will not clash with costumes, sets, and lighting. The floor is flat and open, allowing designers to arrange seating however they desire. The great thing about a black box space is that it can be anything anyone wishes to imagine. A black box theatre is capable of endless new configurations, allowing artists to exercise their creativity, which can be especially valuable in the case of experimental performances, like the “24 Hour Theatre Festival.”
In January, HTC started seeking student and alumni playwrights, directors, actors, stage managers, technicians and front-of-house staff for a weekend long experience of creating original live theatre. They have 1 day – 1,440 minutes – 86,400 seconds – for total play creation. They are given a theme, a bag of theatrical supplies, and one chance at glory. The actors, playwrights, technicians, and directors of “The 24 Hour Theatre Festival” arrive at 7 pm on Friday, March 17, work through the night and following day and conclude with a free public performance on Saturday, March 18 at 7:30 pm.
HTC board members and Lewis alumni Jo Slowik ’88 and Andrew Nelsen ’04, both of Joliet, are the festival leaders. Lewis alumni participating in the event include: Jonathan Boehle ’16 of Cornell, Matthew Carlson ’15 of Lockport, Jake Dorencz ’16 of Romeoville, Lauren Finnegan ’16 of Wheaton, Rob Kornaus ’16 of Plainfield, Kate O’Neil ’15 of Oswego, Katy Papineau ’16 of Kankakee and Jordin Richards ’16 of Tinley Park.
Current Lewis students participating in the festival include: Zackary Abu-Shanab of Plainfield, Zeusan Balquin of New Lenox, Bradford Bingham, Taylore Cephas, Jacob Rodriguez, Conrad Sipiora and Jamie Voustros of Chicago, Kevin Bukauski of Tinley Park, Christy Carlson and Ashley Stajura of Lockport, Serena Clearwater of Arlington Heights, Michael Frale of Elk Grove Village, Sean Gallagher of Mokena, Jennifer Glynn of Mt. Greenwood, Luke Murphy of Darien, Chris Pupik of Naperville, Eric Redmon of Yorkville, Miguel Salazar of Crest Hill, Tyler Senjanin of Evergreen Park and Noah Slowik of Woodridge.The show is recommended for patrons 18 and above and will have a one-night only performance on Saturday, March 18 at 7:30 p.m. in the Lewis University Studio Theatre. This event is free and open to the public. Seating will be general admission, first-come-first-serve. For more information, patrons can check out the PLT Website at www.lewisu.edu/plt, or call the box office (815) 836-5500 Monday through Friday 1-430 p.m. Patrons can also email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Studio Theatre is located on the main campus, the Oremus Fine Arts Center on Route 53 in Romeoville.
by William Shakespeare
Directed by Jo Slowik, April 21-23 & April 27-30, 2017
The PLT brings to the stage one of Shakespeare's most popular plays, A Midsummer Night's Dream. It portrays the adventures of four young Athenian lovers, a group of amateur actors and their interactions with the Duke and Duchess of Athens, and the fairies that inhabit a moonlit forest. A Midsummer Night’s Dream was written in 1595 or 1596. Some experts believe it was written to have its first performance in the gardens of a great country estate for the celebrations for an aristocratic wedding. As the fictional newlyweds King Theseus and Queen Hippolyta, Lysander and Hermia, and Demetrius and Helena watched Bottom and his friends performing “Pyramus and Thisbe,” a real-life bride and groom were in turn watching them! Shakespeare’s beloved comedy contains a play within a play and a world within a world, inviting audiences to enter a world of magic and fantasy and leave the theatre pondering, "was it all a dream?"
“Festival of love” –Jennifer Kramer, Philadelphia Shakespeare
“Beautiful, powerful, magical, dangerous” – Roseanne Wells, Theatre for a New Audience