Thursday, January 11, 2018

Scenic Designer Needed for An Ideal Husband

Ghostlight Ensemble is seeking a designer to enhance the scenic dressing and practical lighting of our site-specific spring production of An Ideal Husband.

The designer may also be asked to aid in sourcing a small amount of hand props. If so, the stipend will be adjusted accordingly.

The performance space is The North Mansion/ Gunder House in Berger Park (6205 N. Sheridan Rd., Chicago, 60660), which provides the perfect backdrop for this production. As such, there will be minimal scenic elements and lighting fixtures for each setting.

Schedule Details
Load-in: April 2, during the day
Tech: Evenings April 2-5
Preview: April 6
Performances: April 7-28 Friday night and Saturday 2:30 p.m. & 7:30 p.m., with an additional performance on Monday, April 9

Small stipend to be negotiated with experience

To Apply
Please send resume and cover letter to Production Manager Janette Bauer at

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Celebrating 20 years of 'Spice World'

To celebrate 20 years of Girl Power, platform sneakers and Union Jack dresses, Ghostlight Ensemble presents Girl power!: Celebrating 20 Years of Spice World (A Live Reading). Join our girls as they read and sing all the Girl Power hits that you know and love from this modern cinematic classic.

Spice World, released in the U.S. 20 years ago on January 23, is a British musical comedy starring the 1990s pop sensation known as the Spice Girls (who all play over-the-top versions of themselves in the movie). The lighthearted comedy follows the girls on a series of events leading up to their first live concert to be held at London's Royal Albert Hall, with plenty of dream sequences, flashbacks, flashforwards and surreal moments scattered in between.

The Spice Girls are: Caitlin Jackson as Geri (Ginger), Song Marshall as Mel B (Scary), Jean E. Burr as Mel C (Sporty), Carrie Campana as Emma (Baby) and Maura Hogan as Victoria (Posh).
The full cast list is available on the show page.

The reading takes place at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, January 23, at the Celtic Crown, located at the corner of Western Avenue and Cullom Avenue. There is a suggested donation of $5 at the door, which will help Ghostlight fund its current season.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Cast announced for 'An Ideal Husband'

Ghostlight Ensemble announces casting for its spring show, Oscar Wilde's An Ideal Husband.

The cast is: Alex Ireys as Lord Goring, Aaron Wertheim as Robert Chiltern, Maddie Pell as Lady Chiltern, Sam Bianchini as Mrs. Cheveley, Halie Merrill as Mabel Chiltern, Richard Engling as Lord Caversham, Michael Wagman as Phipps/Mason, Song Marshall as Lady Basildon, Allison McCorkle as Mrs. Marchmont, Stephanie Monday as Lady Markby and Sebastian Summers as Nanjac.

The show is directed by Ghostlight Co-Artistic Director Holly Robison. Janette Bauer is the production manager.

An Ideal Husband is Oscar Wilde's comedic masterpiece of blackmail and political corruption. Sir Robert Chiltern, a government minister who built his fortune on a single dishonest act, is blackmailed by Mrs. Cheveley, who wants his assistance in another dishonest scheme. Chiltern asks Lord Goring, the ne'er-do-well son of the Earl of Caversham, for advice, and Lord Goring, familiar (in several ways) with Mrs. Cheveley, ultimately saves Chiltern's marriage and social position. By doing so, he ironically ends up married.

The show takes place Fridays and Saturdays, April 7-28, 2018, at The North Mansion in Berger Park/ Gunder House (6205 N. Sheridan Rd., Chicago, 60660).

Ghostlight welcomes two new associate ensemble members

Norman J. Burt (left) and Song Marshall (right) have joined The Ensemble.

Actors Song Marshall and Norman J. Burt have joined Ghostlight as associate ensemble members. Both have worked extensively with Ghostlight over the past year and a half.

Song was in our inaugural live reading, Girl Power! A Spice World Live Reading, and she will reprise her role as Mel B (aka, Scary Spice) in the January remount of that reading. She was also in our Thanksgiving-themed live reading, Must Eat TV, and in our short play series celebrating Pirandello at 150, Six Authors in Search of a Character. You can also catch her as Lady Basildon in our spring production of An Ideal Husband.

Norman was in our inaugural mainstage production of Six Characters in Search of an Author as the Father. He has been a staple in our live movie reading series, participating in Something Has Survived: A Jurassic Park Live Reading, You've Got READ On You: A Shaun of The Dead Live Reading and Must Eat TV: A Live Reading of Your Favorite Thanksgiving Episodes.

Full bios of both artists can be found on the About Us: The Ensemble page of our website.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Why Theatre Matters To Us: Maria Burnham

Maria Burnham, back row left, in Ghostlight's You've Got READ on You: A Shaun of The Dead Live Reading.
Ghostlight is sharing our personal stories of why theatre is so important to us and, in turn, to others. We hope you'll feel inspired to support the arts now and forever more.

Maria Burnham, Marketing Director, Ensemble Member

"'So THAT's where you get it from.'

"It was a warm summer night. We were at a restaurant on the beach with my aunt's family and some friends. My mom and her sister were reminiscing about a film my mom had been in that had been playing on TV all week and...'Wait. Dad, did Thea Anna just say mom was in a film?'

"'No,' answered my dad. 'Your mother was a folk dancer that traveled the world, but I don't think she ever acted.'

"But it turned out that, in fact, my mother had been a film actress in her native Greece and in neighboring Italy — an occurrence that began as an extension of her dancing. When we finally heard the whole story that night, my dad looked at me recognition dawning on him and said, ''So THAT's where you get it from.'

"Theatre and acting had been a part of my life in some way since elementary school, becoming more so once I went to a performing arts magnet school in high school and then studied theatre (and English AND journalism) in college. My attraction to the arts was always a sense of bafflement to my working-class family that excelled in technical skills and mathematics, but had never seen a play until I came along. And now, here was the answer. I had inherited this thing with the arts.

"The revelation that acting was a hereditary trait, that there was this entire history of myself that I didn't know was unsettling. What else didn't I know about the past that made me? But it was also comforting. Theatre connects me to my family history in a way that old photos do not. That I could literally be the same person that my mother had been by taking on a role, that we both understood what it meant to create new people and new worlds, that acting had led my mother to be in Athens when my father was in Athens resulting in my actual existence? Well, now, that's something that, say, engineering could never give me."

Friday, December 29, 2017

Why Theatre Matters To Us: Holly Robison

Holly Robison, second from left, at a production meeting for Ghostlight's 2016 festival of new works, "Six Authors in Search of a Character."

Ghostlight is sharing our personal stories of why theatre is so important to us and, in turn, to others. We hope you'll feel inspired to support the arts now and forever more.
Holly Robison, Co-Artistic Director, Ensemble Member

"When I was in the second grade, I played a bunny who choked on a cookie.  I remember that I prepared. We didn't have to memorize our lines, but I was the only kid who did. While it seemed all that was expected was to step forward and read our lines, I thought about how to create the moment, how to choke on the cookie — how to bite the cookie like a rabbit would, the timing of the bite, when to say my line, when to start coughing, etc. I was a painfully shy kid and usually went out of my way to avoid attention  — to avoid talking to people at all, really  — but, man, was I into creating that character. All that scary stuff went away because I had to be a bunny, and I had a cookie to choke on, darn it. I loved it. (OK, full disclosure: repeated teacher-sanctioned cookie consumption may have contributed to my 8-year old joy. But really, that is still part of the joy — those silly, fun, crazy things you get to do and learn as actor. ) 

"Even though it was many, many years before I fully realized and embraced that part of myself, I know now that this was probably the first sign that I was a 'theatre person' at my core. It's my first memory of a love for performance, for crating a character, for telling a story."

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Why Theatre Matters To Us: Jaclyn Jensen & Mike Wozniak

Jaclyn Jensen and Mike Wozniak at the Ghostlight Launch Party in 2016.

Ghostlight is sharing our personal stories of why theatre is so important to us and, in turn, to others. We hope you'll feel inspired to support the arts now and forever more.

Jaclyn Jensen, Audience Development Coordinator, Ensemble Member
Mike Wozniak,
Visual Design Specialist, Ensemble Member  

"Our first date started with Mike in the audience for one of Jackie's shows. Sure, sure, there was dinner and drinks and a romantic rooftop patio, too. But it started in a theatre. That 'theatre' may have been the upstairs of a punk rock bar, but for that show, it was the perfect theatre.

"Our relationship continued with Mike seeing Jackie's shows and being her biggest fan. But seeing shows together became something that really brought us closer together. Being able to connect after sharing these experiences, seeing how shows affect each other, seeing where our perspectives align or not... we learn more about each other.

"A few years ago we took a leap and actually wrote a play together  — neither of us are playwrights. But we created something together and it was a highlight in our relationship. And we are looking forward to future projects!

"Whether on stage, back stage, or in the audience, theatre gives you an opportunity to really connect."