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  WINDY CITY TIMES

His Greatness on stage with Pride Films and Plays
From a press release
2017-10-09

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Three men - a great American playwright, his trusted and loyal assistant, and a young Canadian street hustler - find themselves together for two days in a hotel room in Vancouver. The ensuing battle for power, love and loyalty is frequently funny, engagingly dark and ultimately moving. HIS GREATNESS, inspired by a 'potentially true story' during the declining days of Tennessee Williams, is an intimate insight into the mind of a familiar public figure, grappling with the loss of former glory and desperate for a return to form and success. Pride Films and Plays will stage the play from October 14 — November 12, 2017 in The Buena, the 50-seat venue of the Pride Arts Center. The Buena is located at 4147 N. Broadway, Chicago.

HIS GREATNESS had its world premiere in Vancouver in 2007 and its U.S. Premiere at the New York Fringe Festival in 2009. Since then, it has enjoyed major productions in Toronto in 2011 and in London in 2012.

The TORONTO STAR called it "a beautiful play, made up of equal amounts of laughter and tears." Toronto's THE GLOBE AND MAIL said HIS GREATNESS is "a dark rumination on the burden of fame and the pain of failure" and that MacIvor's writing includes "lines that could have been lifted from Williams's writings."

David Zak will direct the three-character play. His cast will include Danne W. Taylor as "The Playwright," A.K. Miller as "The Assistant," and Whitman Johnson as "The Young Man."

BIOS

David Zak ( director ) has won seven Jeff Awards in Chicago, including four for Directing ( ANIMAL FARM, DR. SEX, PARADE, POPE JOAN ), two for writing ( THE HIROSHIMA PROJECT, THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO ) and a special Jeff for "Fostering Diversity in Chicago Theater." In his 27-year stint as Artistic Director of Bailiwick Repertory, he directed the world premiere production of THE CHRISTMAS SCHOONER, the US premieres of Sir Peter Hall's ANIMAL FARM and JERRY SPRINGER — THE OPERA, and many original works including the political dramas THE HIROSHIMA PROJECT and SIN: A CARDINAL DEPOSED. He has directed in London ( THE IRISH CURSE ), Seoul ( DOLLHOUSE, FANTA STICK, THE GHOST'S COOKBOOK ), Dublin ( OH, HOLY ALLEN GINSBERG, AT THE FLASH ), Boston ( SIN: A CARDINAL DEPOSED ), Los Angeles ( DR. SEX, AT THE FLASH ) and New York ( MARLOWE and POSEIDON: AN UPSIDE-DOWN MUSICAL ). His productions of the American Premieres of JERRY SPRINGER — THE OPERA and Sir Peter Hall's ANIMAL FARM won Jeff Awards for Best Musical, as did his productions of PARADE, POPE JOAN, and Dennis DeYoung's HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME. His most recent Chicago productions have included: THE BOY FROM OZ, Terrence McNally's SOME MEN and PRISCILLA: QUEEN OF THE DESERT ( both with Derek Van Barham ), Leo Schwartz's THE BOOK OF MERMAN and UNDER THE RAINBOW FLAG. For the last year he has worked almost exclusively to bring the Pride Arts Center to life. He was inducted into the City of Chicago's Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame in 2013.

Daniel MacIvor ( Playwright ) is a playwright/actor/director/screenwriter originally from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia and currently dividing his time between Toronto and Halifax. For twenty years Daniel ran da da kamera an international touring company that brought his work extensively through Canada and the US and to Israel, Norway, Holland, Australia and throughout the UK. Daniel has written numerous award-winning theatre productions including SEE BOB RUN, A BEAUTIFUL VIEW, HIS GREATNESS, THE BEST BROTHERS and his work has been translated into French, Portuguese, Spanish, Czech, German and Japanese. With Daniel Brooks he created the solo shows HOUSE, HERE LIES HENRY, MONSTER, CUL-DE-SAC, THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS NEXT and WHO KILLED SPALDING GRAY?. Daniel received the Governor General's Literary Award for Drama for his collection of plays I STILL LOVE YOU and in 2008 he was awarded the Siminovitch Prize for Theatre. He is also the recipient of an Obie Award and a GLAAD Award for his play IN ON IT. Daniel is currently writing the libretto for Rufus Wainwright's HADRIAN ,commissioned by the Canadian Opera Company, and recently he was in residence at Banff Centre working on a new solo show IT COULD HAVE BEEN WORSE and he is in the early stages of a new play in development at Tarragon Theatre in Toronto called NEW MAGIC VALLEY FUN TOWN.

CAST BIOS

Danne W. Taylor ( "The Playwright" ) Chicago credits include: TERRE HAUTE, GROSS INDECENCY ( Black Elephant Theatre ); OH HOLY ALLEN GINSBERG; EARL, OLLIE, AUSTIN AND RALPH ( Bailiwick Repertory ); SAILING TO BYZANTIUM, DONA ROSITA( Caffeine Theatre ); INSIGNIFICANCE ( Mary-Arrchie Theatre ); DEGENERATE ART ( Cloud 42 ), THE EVILLER TWIN ( Curious Theatre Branch ); OUR LEADING LADY ( Project 891 Theatre ).

Andrew Kain Miller ( "The Assistant" ) is originally from Indiana, and moved to Chicago in 1995. He has had the privilege of being a company member of MidTangent Productions, Urban Theater Company and The People's Theater of Chicago, working as an actor, director and producer. AK has a love for theater that tells gay stories and preserves gay history. He is grateful to include this show to his list of productions that includes A NORMAL HEART, A PERFECT RELATIONSHIP and TORCH SONG TRILOGY.

Whitman Johnson ( "The Young Man" ) A Mississippi native, Whitman moved to Chicago and began pursuing acting after an unfulfilling stint in the traditional 9 to 5. Outside of acting, Whitman enjoys lifting weights and playing Dungeons and Dragons. He would like to thank his mom, dad, and sisters for all of their love and support.

Ticket prices for regular performances are $25.00.

Tickets available soon at www.pridefilmsandplays.com or 1 800 737 0984

All performances in The Buena, Pride Arts Center, 4147 N. Broadway, Chicago

ABOUT PRIDE FILMS AND PLAYS

Pride Films and Plays creates diverse new work ( or work that is new to Chicago ) with LGBTQ+ characters or themes that is essential viewing for all audiences. We accomplish this mission through fully-staged productions, writing contests and staged readings, and filming one short film each season.

PFP is the primary tenant in the Pride Arts Center ( PAC ), which connects and promotes other artists who share our values, creating a safe environment for all. PAC books one-night events or limited runs, cabaret, film, dance, comedy, and other events. PAC opened in 2016 and consists of two performance spaces: The Buena at 4147 N. Broadway which has 50 seats and The Broadway at 4139 N. Broadway which has 85 seats.

Pride Films and Plays is supported by The MacArthur Fund for Arts & Culture at The Richard Driehaus Foundation, The Illinois Arts Council, City of Chicago's City Arts Fund, the Elliott Fredland Charitable Trust, Proud to Run, the AmazonSmile Foundation, Arts and Business Foundation, Tap Root Foundation and Alphawood Foundation.

PFP is a member of the Smart Growth Program of the Chicago Community Trust. Pride Films and Plays is a member of the LGBT Chamber of Commerce of Illinois and The League of Chicago Theatres.

For more information, visit www.pridefilmsandplays.com or call 1.800.737.0984 .

ABOUT PRIDE ARTS CENTER

PRIDE ARTS CENTER has become an important part of the arts environment in the Buena Park neighborhood and beyond. In addition to performances by PFP, ( www.pridefilmsandplays.com ), PAC hosts monthly events including play readings, film screenings, cabaret nights, and variety shows ( PAC The House ).

pridefilmsandplays.com/calendar/ .


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