Thursday, December 7, 2017

Jacobson gives life to children's nightmares in horror-inspired 'Nutcracker'

In Victoria Jacobson's book, things that slither along the ground are scary. Dolls are not. And yet in her latest role as Zipakna, a worry doll that comes to life and terrorizes the Stahlbaum family in "Nutcracker Nightmare," she is tasked with making an audience think just that.

"The biggest challenge was trying to find the balance between doll and creepy in a movement sense, Jacobson said. "What I consider to be bump-in-the-night scary are things that slither or move lower to the floor, while a doll would not necessarily be the type of creature to do so. Exploring a spectrum of movements in that sense is something that I worked on the hardest."

Read more about Victoria and her work in The Chicago Tribune or the Lakeview Patch

Monday, December 4, 2017

Nielsen takes on the (red) mantle for iconic Nutcracker role

Words may be the weapon most closely associated with an actor's trade, but for P. Tyler Nielsen taking on the iconic role of The Nutcracker in "Nutcracker Nightmare" meant acting with his body…and with actual weapons.

"I love the physical challenge of portraying such an iconic character who has so few lines," Nielsen said. "There is much to convey without the chance to verbalize the Nutcracker's internal journey.

"In addition, the chance to discover how a nutcracker might move, fight and express love is a joy," he added.

Read more about Tyler and his work in the Chicago Tribune or the Crystal Lake Patch.

Gingerbread Grindhouse presents: Babes With Blades!

Grindhouse wouldn't be Grindhouse without the trailers that come before the main feature -- often for movies that were never made.

At Gingerbread Grindhouse, we have trailers for plays yet-to-be. Will they ever become features? That remains to be seen. In the meantime, we present: Babes With Blades in Snow Day Bloody Snow Day.

A young schoolteacher finds herself at odds with a group of women devoted to their frosty master. Will she be able to claw her way out of their icy grip or be forced to join their depravity?

Snow Day Bloody Snow Day,written by Elyse Dawson, is directed by Hayley Rice and stars: Chloe Baldwin, Morgan Manasa, Izis Mollinedo, Hayley Rice and Kathrynne Wolf.

Find out more about Gingerbread Grindhouse.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Meet the cast of your Nightmare

Ghostlight Ensemble has announced the cast of Nutcracker Nightmare, the main feature of Gingerbread Grindhouse, which takes over the Greenhouse Theater Center's downstairs studio after-hours in December.

In a nod to the lurid, violent films popular in the 1930s through 1970s, Gingerbread Grindhouse will feature a series of live “trailers” for grindhouse-style plays yet to be, before continuing on to the feature production, Nutcracker Nightmare – a holiday tale of children, the toys they love and the toys that try to kill everyone they love. It’s the perfect holiday entertainment.

Written by Ensemble Member Maria Burnham and directed by Ghostlight Managing Director Chad Wise, Nutcracker Nightmare stars Ensemble Member Jean E. Burr as Clara and Guest Artists Alexandra Alontaga as Balam, Sean Harklerode as Drosselmeier, Annie Hogan as Mother, Maura Hogan as Itzamna, Tatum Hunter as Marie, Kirk Jackson as Truncheon, Victoria Jacobson as Zipakna, Serina Johnston as Rose, Allison McCorkle as Dora and the Evil Doll Queen, P. Tyler Nielsen as the Nutcracker and Mark Pracht as Father.

Full bios of the actors and production team are available online.

Gingerbread Grindhouse will also feature grindhouse-style trailers by Babes With Blades, New Millennium Theatre Co., Improvised Twilight Zone, Improvised Jane Austen, The Stuntmen and Ghostlight Ensemble.

Gingerbread Grindhouse takes place at 10:30 p.m. on December 8, 9, 15 and 16, at the Greenhouse Theater Center (2257 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, 60614) in Lincoln Park. Tickets are $15 and are available now through the Greenhouse website at, via email at or over the phone at 773-404-7336.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Thanks to all who attended Must Eat TV

Thanks to everyone who attended Must Eat TV, the latest installment of our live movie reading series, on Tuesday night. We enjoyed sharing our traditional English trifle with you all, as we watched faces get slapped and turkeys get dropped from the sky.

We also want to thank our audience for their generosity in donating to Common Pantry. Thanks to you, a lot of people's lives will be made a little better during this season of thanks. You are truly amazing.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Must Eat TV featured in Chicago Magazine

Chicago Magazine calls our live movie reading series "always entertaining," so don't miss the latest installment in which we trade the big screen for the small one to celebrate Turkey Day.

Must Eat TV: A Live Reading of Your Favorite Thanksgiving Episodes is coming up on Tuesday, November 14, 2017, at the Celtic Crown. The lineup features selections from How I Met Your Mother, Friends and WKRP in Cincinnati.

Click on the link above for all the details! We'll see you turkeys there!

VIDEO: Meet the director of our Season 1 Holiday show

Reading is nice, but sometimes it's better to hear things directly from the directors mouth.

So we've put together a little teaser of Nutcracker Nightmare — part of Gingerbread Grindhouse that goes up this December at the Greenhouse Theater Center — and what your support means to this show.