Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2018-04-18
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



by Scott C. Morgan, Windy City Times

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

As a native Chicagoan, out actor Daniel Kyri grew up seeing shows at the city's major regional theaters. So now that Kyri is making his Goodman Theatre debut in the drama Objects in the Mirror, he's very humbled and excited.

"Every day when I walk in and see the towing Goodman sign, I have the realization that I'm here for work," Kyri said. "It feels a little bit like a dream."

Objects in the Mirror is a world-premiere refugee drama by Charles Smith, a former member of the Victory Gardens Theater Playwrights Ensemble. Known for plays like Knock Me a Kiss and Denmark, Smith was inspired to write Objects in the Mirror after traveling in 2009 to Adelaide, Australia, to see a production of his Jeff Award-winning drama A Free Man of Color.

That production's star was Liberian actor Shedrick Yarkpai, who ended up in Australia after escaping from being recruited as a child soldier in his civil war-torn homeland and enduring a number of West African refugee camps. Smith was so compelled by Yarkpai that he befriended him and got permission to dramatize his life story in Objects in the Mirror.

Smith had a chance to workshop Objects in the Mirror as part of the Goodman Theatre's 2015 New Stages festival. Though Kyri wasn't previously involved in that version, he is enjoying the whole process of working with so many determined artists to get Objects in the Mirror on its feet.

Kyri portrays Yarkpai, and he feels the weight of embodying another person's real-life story. Though Kyri hasn't had a chance to meet with Yarkpai yet, he is drawing from Smith's many stories about his relationship to develop his character.

"There is the pressure to tell the story correctly," Kyri said. "His story was entrusted to another artist, so there is the heightened experience of respect and I think that in our approach to him, a lot of that comes through."

Kyri likes the fact that Objects in the Mirror not only depicts the harrowing events that Yarkpai faced in Africa, but also about his difficulties of integrating into Australian society.

"The struggles of a refugee doesn't stop once they find asylum elsewhere," Kyri said. "That struggle continues because essentially you're feeling like a visitor in another country and space. The things that you leave behind in order to fit into this new home gets brought up a lot in terms of the sacrifices the characters have to make in their journey to find their idea of home or freedom or safety."

Part of Yarkpai's adjustment to Australia was encountering openly gay people like the character of Rob Mosher ( Ryan Kitley ), who tries to help him.

"This traditional West African man having this conversation with an Australian queer-identifying gay man—the scene between them is so dynamic," Yarkpai said. "They butt heads with their different belief systems—and watching them sort of navigate that conversation and dialogue is interesting because it's so real."

And given how in recent months how so much hateful rhetoric has been directed toward refugees and immigrants, the Goodman's programming of Objects in the Mirror has proven to be especially prescient.

"We see so much in the media, especially under the new administration, I feel like there is a distancing that is happening between us and them," Kyri said. "And there's a lot of division happening in the world and the only way to break down those divides and divisions is to see the humanity in each other."

Kyri especially likes works that push against separate categories and where issues like race, class and sexuality intersect and overlap. Kyri said some of his future works include planned collaborations with Samantha Bailey ( the web series Brown Girls which focuses on queer women of color ) and an online series about LGBTQ African-American life in Chicago called The T.

But for now, Kyri is relishing the chance to collaborate with director Chuck Smith and playwright Charles Smith in Objects in the Mirror. It's a project that is very dear to Kyri's heart, and he recognizes its significance.

"It's so appropriate that a story like this is also allowed to take up space on the mainstage of the Goodman Theatre. Representation matters," Kyri said. "As a Black queer man myself living in the city of Chicago who grew up on the South Side, these are the stories that I want to see and these are the stories that I want to have a hand in telling."

The world premiere of Charles Smith's Objects in the Mirror continues through Sunday, June 4, at the Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn St. Previews run through May 7 with an official press opening May 8. Tickets are $20-$75. Call 312-443-3800 or visit .

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

THEATER SPOTLIGHT 33 to Nothing 2018-04-25 - If you were ever obsessed ( mildly or otherwise ) with Hedwig and the Angry Inch, you'll want to check out 33 to ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW A Blue Island in the Red Sea 2018-04-25 - Playwright: Anthony Moseley At: Collaboraction Studios in the Flat Iron Arts Building, 1579 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: 312-226-9633;; $5-$30. Runs through: May ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW The Doppelganger (an international farce) 2018-04-25 - Playwright: Matthew-Lee Urlbach At: The Edge Theater, 5451 N. Broadway. Tickets: 312-335-1650.; $20-$114. Runs through: June 2 You'll ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Grand Hotel 2018-04-25 - Playwright: Robert Wright, George Forrest ( music and lyrics ); Maury Yeston ( additional music and lyrics ). At: Kokandy Productions at ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Disaster! 2018-04-25 - Playwrights: Seth Rudetsky and Jack Plotnick At: The Edge Theater, 5451 N. Broadway. Tickets: 773-999-9541;; $ 32.50-42.50. Runs through: May 6 Chicago ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Oklahoma 2018-04-25 - Written by: Rogers and Hammerstein At: Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Dr., Lincolnshire. Tickets: $55-60. Runs through: June 10 During intermission of ...

Gay News

Springfield drag show April 28 2018-04-25 - On Saturday, April 28, the Phoenix Center will present Springfield Pridefest Club LaCage Drag Show at the Hoogland Center for the Arts, Theatre ...

Gay News

Bridge Dance Festival through May 6 2018-04-25 - The Bridge Dance Festival—the culmination of four years of Japanese focused programming at Links Hall, 3111 N. Western Ave., including the National Performance ...

Gay News

'Catechism' marking 25th anniv. on June 3 2018-04-25 - A special 25th-anniversary performance of Late Night Catechism will be held Sunday, June 3, at 2 p.m. at the Royal George Theatre, 1641 ...

Gay News

'Cornerstone' at ArtSpace 8 in April 2018-04-25 - Chicago non-profit theater company Nothing Without a Company has announced the location and cast of its next show, Cornerstone. The production will ...


Copyright © 2018 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.