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Experience the New Season at Piven Theatre Workshop

From staged readings to fully-developed works, our new expanded season illustrates the full breadth of Piven Theatre Workshop. Read the letter to the community from Artistic Director Jennifer Green here

New this year is our Flex Pass - for $75, you'll receive 10 tickets which you can use in any combination to any production in our season (excluding the capstone production). To purchase a Flex Pass, call 847 866 8049 or email Carolyne at Carolyne@piventheatre.org. Purchase individual tickets using the button below:

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Upcoming Productions

Red, White, & Unblemished
An Iphigenia Workshop

by Kaitlin Gilgenbach, in collaboration with Antora DeLong & Molly Donahue
Part of the Lab @ Piven

What happens when women’s bodies are the battlegrounds for men’s ideology?

Red, White & Unblemished is a modern political adaptation of Euripides’ Iphigenia. When a young woman makes choices that endanger the efforts of her father’s political career, she is swept off on the campaign trail. In becoming a mouth piece for her family, does she lose who she is? Can she sacrifice her truth and newfound self for her family and a country she may, or may not believe in? And if she does, can she ever recover?

Using movement-based storytelling techniques to embody the near-constant personal and political pressure of the internet age, Red, White, & Unblemished explores both the intimate drama of a family in crisis and the epic scale of the story’s mythic origins.

This workshop production contains strong language and mature themes.

Monday, July 31st and Tuesday, August 1st

Past Shows

K of D

by Laura Schellhardt & directed by Rives Collins. Featuring Fiona Maxwell.
Part of the Lab @ Piven.

Charlotte, a twelve-year-old girl, is believed to possess the “k of d”—the “kiss of death”—after a series of tragic events unfold one summer.

Monday, October 17th and Tuesday, October 18th

Family Happiness

Staged Reading, directed & adapted by Alexis Macnab.
Part of the Lab @ Piven

Tolstoy’s classic novella comes to the Piven stage in a new adaptation with an entirely female cast. Can love, once lost, be found again?

Saturday, November 19th and Sunday, November 20th

Tell Me a Story, Sister

Directed by: Morven Higgins, Jen Green, Mikalina Rabinsky & Liz Bell

We kick off our 45th anniversary main stage season with the acclaimed Young People’s Company storytelling festival. Exploring the journey toward coming of age, our youth artists will devise, adapt, and share the moments girls find their strength as they transition out of childhood.

Wednesday, December 7th through Sunday, December 11th

To the Lighthouse

Staged Reading, directed & adapted by Stephen Fedo.
Part of the Lab @ Piven

A recollection of childhood and a contemplative story of the complexity of the human experience, Woolf’s To the Lighthouse is a thoughtful meditation on the passage of life through the eyes of a family at their summer home on the Isle of Skye.

Saturday, January 28th and Sunday, January 29th

The Princess Who Stood on her Own Two Feet and Other Stories

Directed by: Joanne Underwood, Gillian Hemme & Donna Osowski

Piven Theatre Workshop’s youth storytelling festival continues in February with Performance Project, Piven’s advanced youth artists from 7-9th grade. Join them as they celebrate girl power and problem-solving, tenacious girls who, against all odds, win the day!

Monday, February 6th through Saturday, February 11th

Anytime/Anywhere: The Third Annual Piven Improv Series

Our third year running! This year, our Piven Improv Series explores traditional improv and story theatre with an added feature of solo

Friday, March 24th through Saturday, April 15th

More information available here.

Far Away by Caryl Churchill

Directed by K. Hannah Friedman
Part of the Lab @ Piven

In Caryl Churchill's FAR AWAY, the whole world is at war. Children fight against Korea, the weather is allied with the Japanese, and rivers attack the people trying to cross them. Through this chaos, we see three moments in the life of a young woman trying to build her future. As the world burns down around her, she must decide for herself: is freedom worth the fight?

Tuesday, April 11 at 7:30pm

Dance for Beginners

A World Premiere by MT Cozzola
Directed by Heather Bodie

The centerpiece of our 2016-2017 season is the professional premiere of a new work by female Chicago playwright MT Cozzola, Dance for Beginners. Dance for Beginners is an intimate look at the beginnings of a relationship later in life. With oceans separating them, they realize that technology isn't always enough, and they turn to dance to bring them closer together. Dance for Beginners was developed at Chicago Dramatists and was read at Piven as part of the summer of 2016 Lab season, and exemplifies the way the Lab cultivates relationships with new artists and new works.

May 13-June 11
Previews May 11 and 12

More information available here.

At These Gates

A staged reading of the new play by Joan Sergay.
Directed by Devon DeMayo

"Land doesn't know borders. Borders are just a construct. Drawn by power-hungry men." In Joan Sergay's At These Gates, Samar and Amira, two young Syrian women, strangers until now, flee war and terror in their country and find themselves brought together in the long and perilous exodus of refugees, through Turkey and on to Europe. Samar hopes to join her family in France; Amira has separated from her husband and hopes for a better life for the unborn child she is carrying. From different backgrounds and with different views and expectations, they struggle together for survival and learn to forge community between themselves. Sergay renders the ongoing geopolitical catastrophe of the refugee crisis in deeply personal, intimate terms and invites us to see the victims of the crisis not as statistics but as individual human beings..

Wednesday, May 24, 7:30pm

The Darling

By Anton Chekhov
Adapted and Directed by Joyce Hiller Piven
Part of the Lab @ Piven

Piven Theatre Workshop Co-Founder and Artistic Director Emeritus Joyce Piven returns to the Workshop for a one-night-only production of Chekhov's The Darling.

We hope you will join us as we celebrate Joyce; admission is free and any donations made at the door will go towards supporting the Lab at Piven Theatre Workshop, which supports local artists by giving them free space and rehearsal time, purchasing performance rights, and providing marketing support so they can expand their own artistry under the mentorship of the Workshop.

Featuring (in alphabetical order):
Antora DeLong
Stephen Fedo
Greg Hirte
Joanne Underwood

Wednesday, June 14th at 7:30pm.
No reservations or tickets available, seats are on a general admission basis.

Wise Women and Witches

Adapted and Directed by Susan Applebaum
Part of the Lab @ Piven

Applebaum dives deep into Piven Theatre Workshop’s history of story theatre and ensemble storytelling traditions to weave together folk stories, fairy tale, and real-life narratives to uncover new ideas on how women age beautifully.

June 29 - July 2. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30, Sunday at 2:30