Thursday, April 30, 2009

Meet the Cast! - Errol McLendon

Part four in a series of interviews with the cast of Enemy of the People at Red Tape Theatre.

Name: Errol McLendon

Role: Dan Horster

Where are you from?

Born in Starkville, MS - raised in Cleveland, MS - also lived in Atlanta and Dallas.

What is the first stage play you remember seeing?

Some Dallas Summer Musical - first play I chose - The Me Nobody Knows.

When/why did you start acting?

Found out in high school that there was an alternative to jock, brain or class leader. I had not really found my place in high school until I was cast as the lead in my junior year. I finally found out the beauty of not belonging to a specific group and that individuality was vital in the world of the theatre. My grandfather spent his entire life saying "I could have been in vaudeville", "I could have been in theatre". I vowed not to reach the end of my life saying "I could have . . ." I would rather say "I tried . . .".

Tell us about your character in Enemy of the People.

I represent the person who puts friendship above all else. Politics, public opinion and religion pale in comparison to loyalty to friends and family. I am a member of the town, but not of the town, because I have seen the world driving a truck across country. Because of this exposure, I have a broader world view than most of the people in town. Quick to anger, slow to forgive, Dan would risk everything for Tammy.

What's next for you?

Directing You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown for a teen group in Libertyville and spending the summer enjoying the weather, cooking out and working in the yard and around my house.

Enemy of the People runs May 4-30, 2009.
Tickets are available through our website.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Director's Note

Enemy of the People is a twisting journey that will provide the audience with a provocative story and many deep questions. Questions that will hopefully lead to circumstances we are all facing on a daily basis. From little things like how much paper do I burn through in my office each day when I know full well that we are decimating the rain forests to obtain it? Should I go on strike? If a shirt at Gap is made in Indonesia by the hands of small children, should I boycott? How much of my life and my creature comforts am I willing to give up for my beliefs? Should I stand complicit while our country profits off the wars in Africa? Should I hold accountable the politicians who failed to see levy’s breaking in New Orleans? Why did I only participate in two anti-war protests during the eight years of the Bush administration?

And at what point do I stop being a concerned citizen and become a dangerous fanatic? It’s fascinating that our protagonist and antagonist are brother and sister. That sibling rivalry which dates back to Cain and Abel has long been a dramatic motif. But in Enemy it illustrates how ideology can tear families apart. Can tear towns apart. Can tear countries apart. I think of the inflexibility of the those in favor and opposition to Proposition 8.

This is a play that I believe will captivate, resonate emotionally, enhance spiritual value, and ask a lot of really relevant questions. I am so excited to be going on this journey with you guys. It is a complex play but at the heart of it is this idea of beliefs. Of the irrationality of truth. Of the individual versus the mob. These are questions that lie at the very heart of what we as artists do. This is an important play to be doing right now and I am so proud that we are doing it.

Enemy of the People runs May 4-30.

Tickets are available through our website.

James Palmer

Artistic Director

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Gender Swapping the Stockmans

In Henrik Ibsen’s original An Enemy of the People there are two female roles: Dr. Stockman’s free-thinking daughter Petra and his long-suffering wife Katherine. They lack influence in Ibsen’s society and are relegated to the roles of cheerleader and confidante respectively. Both are punished for the Dr’s defiance of authority and remind him what he stands to lose. Red Tape Theatre’s contemporary adaptation flips the genders of five key characters including the protagonist, Dr. Stockman, placing her against women and men of influence in the town.

Two other productions recently experimented with the gender politics of the work.

In 2007 Strawberry Theatre Workshop in Seattle produced Arthur Miller’s adaptation of the script but swapped the roles of Katherine and Thomas making her the Doctor and him the loyal “househusband.”
"Women began to earn medical degrees in Europe in the early 1700s. And a female whistle-blower who can't get men to listen to her entreaties? That isn't much of a stretch." ~ Misha Berson, The Seattle Times.
"Amy Fleetwood brings something new and invigorating to this traditionally male role; with her piercing blue eyes and surging spiritual energy, her portrayal tips the familiar on its head, injecting Ibsen's portrait of moral outrage with a transformative dose of humanizing charm and understated feminist fury." ~ Richard Morin, Seattle Weekly.

Strawberry’s production left the text virtually unchanged. A more radical rewrite occurred in 2006 at the Rinkogun Theatre Company in Japan.

"Set in modern Japan, the classic play from 1882 was fully recognisable, save for a few modifications. Among Tokyo’s neon lights and skyscrapers, the originally masculine main character Dr. Stockman had become a woman… Nora [from Ibsen’s A Doll’s House] wanted to help her sick husband, just as Dr. Sudo wishes to help her painter husband suffering from mental problems. When Dr. Sudo wants to open an “onsen,” the townspeople and Dr. Sudo’s sister, the town mayor, thoroughly support her. Tests reveal however that the spring water is bacteria-infested." ~ Ibsen in Japan
"Nowadays, in Japan, many of the leaders of citizens' campaigns are women, and also the leader of the Social Democratic Party has been a woman for a while. So it was necessary to change it to a heroine to be in tune with the modern day." ~ Director/Adaptor Yoji Sakate, The Japan Times

Sakate found the work more than relevant in the contemporary setting.

“Well, if you look at current society in Japan, for example the scandal over forged documents regarding the earthquake resistance of new buildings, or the scandals over financial corruption that happen every day and everywhere, these lies routinely pass by with hardly any fuss…”

In other words, political corruption never goes out of style.

Red Tape’s production of Enemy of the People runs May 4-30, 2009.
Tickets are available through our website!

Paul G. Miller
Season Dramaturge

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Ibsen ain't afraid of no Ghosts!

The title of Henrik Ibsen’s play, Ghosts, refers to the outdated social rules and superstitions that hinder the lives of the main characters. Should a wife stay with an abusive husband because she was told to “love, honor and obey?” Should a daughter care for her ailing father even after he’s expressed sexual interest in her? Should a pastor forgo insuring an orphanage and trust in a “higher power” to protect it? Ibsen answered with a loud NO! Ghosts declared that rape, adultery, incest, and venereal disease among the middle classes were issues that existed and must be addressed. Not everyone agreed with him.

“The play is one of the filthiest things ever written in Scandinavia.” ~ Ludvig
Josephson, Theatre Owner

At first no theater in Europe would produce the work. It premiered at the Aurora Turner Hall in Chicago with Danish Actress Helga von Bluhme as Mrs. Alving. The published script was seen as something not fit for decent homes, but gathered a loyal following among a younger generation of theatre artists.

[I like Ghosts] less for its own sake than for the insight it gives me into this
elegant, cautious, decorated, slightly snobbish person who… has always had a
secret desire to say; “Damn and blast!” in the midst of all his elegance – and
has now acquired the courage.” ~ Alexander Kielland, Book Seller

The personal attacks that the work provoked from the “so-called liberal press” infuriated Ibsen. He resumed work on a piece he had set aside, making corrupt newsmen into central figures. On June 21 1882 Ibsen wrote: “Yesterday I completed my new dramatic work. It is entitled An Enemy of the People, and is in five acts. I am still a little uncertain whether to call it a comedy or simply a play; it has much of the character of a comedy, but there is also a serious basic theme.’
Ibsen had never finished a work faster. He was again ready to speak the “unpleasant truths” that must be heard.

Quotes taken from Ibsen by Michael Meyer.

Shaw Chicago presents Ghosts from April 18 - May 11, 2009.

Robert Scogin, the Artistic Director of Shaw Chicago, will speak on Red Tape's panel, Ibsen's Women, on Sunday, May 10, 2009.

Red Tape Theatre presents An Enemy of the People from May 4-30, 2009.

Paul G. Miller
Season Dramaturge

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Meet the Cast! - Nick Combs

Part two in a series of interviews with the cast of An Enemy of the People at Red Tape Theatre.

Name: Nicholas Combs

Role: Greg Hovstad, editor of The Sun.

Where are you from?
Plymouth, MA about twenty min. from Plymouth Rock/The Mayflower. Right now I live in Rodgers Park

What is the first stage play you remember seeing?
Donny Osmond in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Second Row, Boston. 5th Grade.

When/why did you start acting?
Fifth Grade after playing Oberon in Midsummer.

Tell us about your character in Enemy of the People.
Greg is the editor for the local newspaper. College educated, loves to be indepedent and to raise issues that others might avoid. He struggles with his past life, didn't really find himself until college and now he finds himself living in the town we he grew up, a constant reminder of who he used to be before college.

What's next for you?
Not sure as far as acting. lots of auditioning. This will be my first Chicago summer so i'm looking forward to enjoying that. A trip home to Plymouth is a must.

An Enemy of the People runs May 4-30, 2009.
Tickets are available through our website!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Life Imitates Art in Crestwood, IL

Life imitates art as the Crestwood pollution scandal continues to mirror that of An Enemy of the People.

Chicago Tribune: Crestwood's well water: Mayor tells residents, 'Your drinking water is safe'

In response to a Tribune investigation that revealed Crestwood's secret use of a well polluted with cancer-causing chemicals, Mayor Robert Stranczek has hired a public relations firm and prepared to send letters to every village resident and business.

Meanwhile actor Robert A. Lynch drew my attention to the following stories.

Associated Press: Tons of released drugs taint US water

To date, drugmakers have dismissed the suggestion that their manufacturing contributes significantly to what's being found in water. Federal drug and water regulators agree. But some researchers say the lack of required testing amounts to a 'don't ask, don't tell' policy about whether drugmakers are contributing to water pollution.

PBS Frontline : Posioned Waters

More than three decades after the Clean Water Act, iconic American waterways like the Chesapeake Bay and Puget Sound are in perilous condition and facing new sources of contamination.

An Enemy of the People runs May 4-30, 2009.
Tickets are available through our website.

Paul G. Miller
Season Dramaturge

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Meet the Cast! - Robert A. Lynch

Part one in a series of interviews with the cast of An Enemy of the People at Red Tape Theatre.

Name: Robert A. Lynch

Role: Peter Stockman, Mayor of Cherokee

Where are you from?
Born and raised in Chicago, IL.

When/why did you start acting?
I started "acting" in church related plays when I was 9 or 10 years old. I vaguely remember playing one of the wise men in a Christmas play and delivering my lines with vigor. I also had a stint in our school's production of the HMS Pinafore. I didn't actively pursue acting, however, until six years ago when I enrolled in my first Second City class. After completing level E, I took a Meissner-based acting class to prepare for Second City's Conservatory program and was hooked.

On a side note, I told my father I wanted to be an actor when I was in high school. He steered me away from it, saying that I wouldn't make any money. Years later, after he passed, my mother gave me an old edition of Viola Spolin's Improvisational Theater Games with my father's notes penciled in the margins. I think deep down, he wanted to be an actor, and would have been great at it, but wasn't willing to take the risk.

Tell us about your character in An Enemy of the People.
Peter Stockman is a lifelong resident of Cherokee and its current mayor. He also is Tammy's brother. It's easy to view Peter as another "corrupt" gloryhound politician, but I've come to realize that he understands that every choice has consequences. While I think he would like to operate in a black and white world, he knows that's impossible. As a result, he makes policy decisions that are intended to maximize economic opportunities for the townspeople, balancing them against huge and uncontrollable risks - time and nature.

What's next for you?
I'm enrolled in iO's level 5B, which means I'll hopefully end up on a Harold team soon. I may tryout for Second City's TourCo and/or a Playground incubator team, etc. I'll shoot for another play in the fall and more commercials. Of course, if the producers for LOST call and need me on the island, my bags are packed.

An Enemy of the People runs May 4-30, 2009.
Tickets are available through our website!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pastor Manders: The Tears of Righteous Men

"We haven't the right to be happy" claims Pastor Manders. The antagonist of Ibsen's Ghosts has denied sanctuary to a woman who loves him, shaming her into returning to an abusive husband for the sake of propriety. Last night I attended Shaw Chicago's production of Ghosts at the DCA Theater. Ibsen's original audience was scandalized by the immoral characters that the Pastor faced. A contemporary audience greets his harsh words with laughter. Ibsen seems to be saying that we, like the characters in Ghosts, should know better than to listen to moralists.

Pastor Manders presents an intriguing contrast to Mayor Peter Stockman, the antagonist of An Enemy of the People. Both men cling to their reputations and suck the oxygen out of any room they attend. They think nothing of entering a friends house and saying "You can't afford that food" or "how dare you read these scandalous books!" But while the Mayor cynically manipulates all those around him, the Pastor will naively believe any man who flatters him. This leads him into one business blunder after another.

These men sacrifice all who love them to protect their incomes but it has been said that Ibsen writes no true "villains." They are allowed a sliver of pity, for their investments are doomed to fail and they will left completely alone.

Shaw Chicago presents Ghosts from April 18 - May 11, 2009.

Robert Scogin, the Artistic Director of Shaw Chicago, will speak on Red Tape's panel, Ibsen's Women, on Sunday, May 10, 2009.

Red Tape Theatre presents An Enemy of the People from May 4-30, 2009.

Paul G. Miller
Season Dramaturge

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Poisoned Well Cover-Up makes Headlines

My jaw dropped this morning as I read the Chicago Tribune's expose of the polluted drinking water in Crestwood, Illinois. The parallels to Ibsen's Enemy of the People are mind-boggling.

A "tightfisted" Mayor, praised for his business sense, decides to keep drawing from a polluted well to reduce costs. A local citizen refuses to stop investigating a suspicious illness. State officials release a dishonest press release to keep the truth from getting out after the well is shut down.

Poison in the well
Chicago Tribune

April 19, 2009

For more than two decades, the 11,000 or so residents in this working-class community unknowingly drank tap water contaminated with toxic chemicals linked to cancer and other health problems, a Tribune investigation found...

Officials kept using the well even though state environmental officials told them at least 22 years ago that dangerous chemicals related to a dry-cleaning solvent had oozed into the water, records show...

In 1986, village officials announced they would buy treated water exclusively from Alsip. That same year, the state EPA tested Crestwood's well and found that a PCE-related chemical had leached into the water. Crestwood placed the well on "emergency-backup status," records show, and state officials stopped requiring routine testing for chemical pollutants.

Enemy of the People previews April 30-May 2 and runs May 4-30, 2009.
Purchase Tickets through our website.

Paul G. Miller
Season Dramaturge

Friday, April 17, 2009

Dr. Stockman: Hero or Villain?

Today I'm sharing two contrasting viewpoints of Dr. Stockman, the protagonist of Ibsen's An Enemy of the People who uncovers a scandal his hometown would prefer stayed covered.

VILLAIN says Hermann J. Weigand in The Modern Ibsen

“The fact is, once the conflict had become acute, we didn’t give a tinker’s dam about the Baths or the Town. We had forgotten all about technical and economic considerations. All we saw was a moral issue, in which from moment to moment the contrast… became more intense. It served them [the town] right, we felt… to reap the fruits of their lying hypocricy... We see the Doctor as uprightness personified, as the defender of the truth for truth’s sake; we are tricked into forgetting that it is personal jealousy, an extremely good opinion of himself, a thirst for power and the love of stirring up a tempest, which are at the bottom of his conduct.

HERO says Brian Johnston in Text and Supertext in Ibsen's Drama

“The joy-of-life and the sunrise… seems to have set the stage for An Enemy of the People, which is notably “sunny” and buoyant in atmosphere. The spirit of this play is not that of painfully uncovering the guilty reality beneath the consciousness of a hard-earned good but, instead, of a zestful, na├»ve, combative individual taking it upon himself to be the champion of truth and freedom. This has so dismayed some Ibsenists that they actually have gone against the whole spirit of the play (and of comedy) to discover sinister and devious motives behind Stockmann’s championship of the truth… This … shows to what lengths the critic, anxious to load a clear and coherent artistic structure with a subtle and confusing “ambiguity,” will go."

Come and decide for yourself.

Meanwhile check out our friends at The New Colony who are currently discussing the subject of theatrical adaptations on their blog.

An Enemy of the People runs May 4-30.
Tickets are available through our website.

Paul G. Miller
Season Dramaturge

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Meet our Panelists!

Red Tape Theatre is pleased to announce our upcoming panel series. These will follow our 2:00 p.m. matinee performances of Enemy of the People.

Ibsen’s Women

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Hedda Gabler, Nora Helmer, Helene Alving. As Red Tape reimagines Ibsen’s Dr. Stockman as a woman, we invite a panel of guests to discuss Ibsen’s groundbreaking heroines.

Panelists include:

Jacob Juntunen, Professor of Theatre, University of Illinois in Chicago

After dropping out of high school, Jacob’s first play was produced by Edward Albee at Stages Repertory Theatre in Houston. Since then, his plays were produced around the country, and his script Under America was one of five selected by the Driehaus Foundation for submission to the Sundance Institute Chicago Roundtable. Under America was also a finalist for the Christopher Brian Wolk Award. Jacob attended Clackamas Community College (A.A. 1996), Reed College (B.A. 1999) and Northwestern University (Ph.D. 2007). Recipient of multiple academic and playwriting honors including a Diedrich & Johnson Scholarship, an Agnes Nixon New Plays Award (both at Northwestern University), a Lee Blessing Scholarship to attend the Timberlake Writers’ Colony, and a Tennessee Williams Scholarship to attend the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Jacob teaches theatre history and an honors seminar at the University of Illinois, Chicago (UIC) and writing at the School of the Art Institute. For more information, go to

Robert Scogin, Artistic Director, Shaw Chicago

Winner of The Chicago Drama League’s 2008 Crystal Award, appeared on Broadway in Shakespeare’s Henry V and Off-Broadway in A Road Where the Wolves Run and Children of the Ladybug. Regional credits include: the American Shakespeare Theater, California Shakespeare Theater, Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival, Notre Dame Summer Shakespeare, Indiana Repertory, Missouri Repertory and the Guthrie Theater. Chicago credits include: Wisdom Bridge, Northlight, Next, Famous Door, Writers’ Theater, Goodman, Remy Bumppo, and Chicago Shakespeare Theater where he has appeared in more than thirty productions, most recently in Henry IV Parts One & Two, both on Navy Pier and at the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-Upon-Avon. Celebrating his thirteenth season as Artistic Director of ShawChicago, he has directed more than forty of Shaw’s plays. Other directing credits include: The Comedy of Errors and King Lear (Shakespeare’s Motley Crew), Last Summer at Blue Fish Cove and The Two Gentleman of Verona (Footsteps Theater), Pinter’s The Lover and The Dumb Waiter (Writers’), A Doll’s House and The Millionairess (Next), and The Lion in Winter (Rising Moon). He taught and directed Shakespeare at the Turkish State Theater Conservatory in Ankara and Konya, Turkey. He returned to Turkey in March of 2007 to direct Shaw’s Arms and the Man in Turkish for the Konya State Theater Conservatory’s Second International Theater Festival. He was most recently seen in A Bench in the Sun at Apple Tree and as Father Murphy in Writers’ Theater’s world premiere of The Savannah Disputation.

Julie K. Ward, Professor of Philosophy, Loyola University

Julie Ward (Ph.D., Univ. California, San Diego) is Professor of philosophy at Loyola University, where she specializes in Greek philosophy, and topics in feminist philosophy. Her publications include: Feminism and Ancient Philosophy (Routledge, 1996); Philosophers on Race (Blackwell, 2002, co-ed. T. Lott); and Aristotle on Homonymy Dialectic and Science (Cambridge, 2008). She has published papers in Aristotle's psychology and metaphysics, ancient skepticism, and also on Simone de Beauvoir and critical race theory. She is currently working on a book devoted to the development of the concept of physis, or nature, in the thought of Plato and Aristotle.Dr. Ward arrived at Loyola in 1990, after teaching at University of Oregon, Mt. Holyoke, and Stanford University. She offers graduate courses primarily in Greek philosophy, especially Aristotle's psychology, ethics, and metaphysics. In addition to ancient philosophy, her undergraduate teaching covers ethics and social philosophy, with a focus on race and gender, and philosophy and film.

Green Night of Theatre

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Ibsen’s play examines the fallout from an environmental disaster. Join our guests from Chicago Open Lands and the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum as they show us how to be greener in our homes and our community.

Panelists include:

Courtney Bennett, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

The Chicago Academy of Sciences and its Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum inspire people to learn about and care for nature and the environment. The Academy improves quality of life in Chicago and the region by delivering superior environmental and science education programs to students and teachers, by offering Museum exhibitions and conducting public programs that foster green living, and by restoring local ecosystems and advancing scientific knowledge through collections and research.

Stacy Meyers-Glen, Policy Coordinator, Chicago Open Lands

Stacy Meyers-Glen joined Openlands in 2006, before which she practiced for ten years as an environmental attorney, prosecuting environmental cases with the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office. Stacy also had the privilege of working with Samuel T. Lawton, Jr. at the Illinois Pollution Control Board (IPCB), where she drafted regulations and opinions on issues ranging from air pollution to deregulating the electrical industry. Prior to her tenure at IPCB, Stacy developed the Illinois Environmental Crimes Investigators Network and prosecuted environmental cases with the Office of the Illinois Attorney General.

An Enemy of the People runs May 4-30, 2009

Get your tickets here!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Meet the Cast of "Enemy"

Meet the cast of Red Tape Theatre's adaptation of
An Enemy of the People
Directed by James Palmer
Adapted by Robert Oakes from the play by Henrik Ibsen

Courtney Bennett (Tammy Stockman) is delighted to be a part of the adventure that is Enemy of the People. Her training includes a BA in theatre from UCA, 500 Clown, Actors Gymnasium, and the Ward Acting Studio NY, NY. Her favorite roles include Sissy from Sordid Lives, Lois in Wonder of the World, and Callie in Stop Kiss.

Nicholas Combs (Greg Hovstad) holds a BA in theatre from Westfield State College. Originally from Plymouth MA. He was also apart of Actors Theatre of Louisville acting apprenticeship of 07-08. Recent credits include Rhino Fest 2009 Recent Events; Boston's Huntington Theatre Company World premiere of Richard Nelson's How Shakespeare Won the West.

Kieran Kredell (Patrick Stockman) is thrilled to be making his first appearance with Red Tape Theatre. Recent credits include: Moving Objects Festival (Building Stage), Dramaturge —The Further Adventures of Hedda Gabler (Dog & Pony). Teaching artist credits: About Face Youth Outreach Tour, Northlight Theatre, National High School Institute for Theatre Arts. Training: Wesleyan University, American Conservatory Theatre Summer Congress.

Lona Livingston (Sandy) is delighted to collaborate with Red Tape Theatre on this terrific production. Recent credits include Picnic, Isn't it Romantic?, Cabaret, True West, Dark at the Top of the Stairs, and Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean in Tennessee and Florida. Lona thanks James, Paige and Robert for providing wonderful opportunities to artists to work together.

Robert A. Lynch (Peter Stockman) is thrilled to work with Red Tape Theater's cast and crew in breathing life into Mr. Oakes' adaptation of Enemy of the People and is extremely thankful for the opportunity to play Peter Stockmann. Most recently, he performed as ANDROID in Sean Graney’s Autophagy as part of side project theatre company’s Cut to the Quick: Splinters and Shrapnel one act plays. Other favorites include Lenny Willis in Walt McGough's Fugitive Motel for Sideshow Theatre Company and Palmer in Robert Caisley's Santa Fe for Appetite Theater's Bruchetta Festival.

Vic May (Cliff) is excited for his Red Tape performance debut. His Chicago credits include John Harker in Theatre Hikes' Dracula, Phillip in Key Exchange also with Theatre Hikes and Mr. Smith in Lifeline Theatre's Half Magic. Regional credits include two tours with the Wichita Children's Theatre and a season with Horsefeathers and Applesauce dinner theatre.

Errol McLendon (Dan Horster) is excited to be in yet another Red Tape Theatre production. Errol was last seen at Red Tape inhabiting a garbage can in Endgame. Errol has most recently appeared in Betrayal at New World Rep, as the Marquis de Sade in Quills and in Thunder and Lightning Ensemble’s Trestle and Pope Lick Creek. Errol has spent most of his time in Chicago directing, but is very happy to finally only have to worry about acting.

April Pletcher Taylor (Connie) is so pleased to be working with such a talented group at Red Tape. A mid-westerner to the core, she is originally from Michigan and got her B.A. in Acting from Indiana University before moving to Illinois. Most recently she was seen in Wicked Quarter Mile (Rubicon Theater Project). Favorite Chicago credits include Scripted (Oil Lamp) and Kissing (Bailiwick). She would like to thank her “have train ticket, will travel” family and Jeff for making the 3 block trek to see the show.

An Enemy of the People performs May 4-30.
Tickets are available through our website.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Ibsen on the Aristocracy

Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People polarized audiences in 1882 with its praise of aristocracy. However Ibsen’s definition of aristocracy was very specific. The following is taken from a speech for the Trondhjem Workers Association on June 14, 1885, as quoted in Michael Meyer’s biography Ibsen.

“There is still much to be done in this country before we can be said to have achieved full freedom. But our present democracy scarcely has the strength to accomplish that task. An element of aristocracy must enter into our political life, or government, our members of parliament and our press.

I am of course not thinking of aristocracy of wealth, of leanring, or even of ability or talent. I am thinking of aristocracy of character, of mind and of will. That alone can make us free. …

And this aristocracy… will come to us from two sources, the only two sections of society which have not yet been corrupted by party pressure. It will come from our women and from our working men. The reshaping of social conditions which is now being undertaken in Europe is principally concerned with the future status of the workers and of women. That is what I am hoping and waiting for, and what I shall work for with all my might.”

An Enemy of the People runs May 4-30.
Tickets are available through our website.

Paul G. Miller
Season Dramaturge

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Governor's Reading List

The Daily Beast reports an interesting bit of trivia.

Rod Blagojevich recently shared his reading list with reporters.

"What's Rod Blagojevich doing now? He tells us he’s reading books about Roosevelt and Churchill, and Ibsen’s classic An Enemy of the People, about a man unfairly ostracized amid a scandal."

Send us your thoughts on Blago or ENEMY by April 24 and we'll forward your thoughts on to The Publicity Group, Blago's PR people, along with an invite to the show. If Rod comes to the show, we'll send all of you bloggers a special invite and a comp ticket so you may relay your thoughts in person.

Red Tape's Production of
An Enemy of the People runs May 4-30, 2009.