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Content (c) 2018 Sideshow Theatre Company    |    (773)  809-4782

"Jive ass planet. The pale blue dot is becoming lesser."

1951: A mother of five visits the “colored” gynecology ward of Johns Hopkins, knowing something unusual is happening in her body. 1981: A child watches Carl Sagan’s Cosmos on a basement television in Chicago as her auntie plays bid whist upstairs with the neighbors. The Distant Future: A gold-plated flying saucer hovers over the Earth, its pilot watching and waiting patiently as stars gently twinkle in her hair. All three stories connect, collide and expand, blending Afrofuturism with the true story of Henrietta Lacks and one little girl’s love of science. This winter, journey from East Baltimore to Chicago’s West Side to outer space, as J. Nicole Brooks’ new play explores who has the power over the stuff we are made of.

 

A co-production with Greenhouse Productions

 

Approximate run time: 2 hours and 20 minutes, with one intermission

 

November 18 - December 23, 2018

Greenhouse Theater Center

2257 N Lincoln Avenue

 

Premiere Season Sponsors

Melinda McMullen and Duncan Kime

 

Production Sponsor

Linda Karn

 

This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

 

ACCESSIBLE PERFORMANCES

Sideshow is happy to provide the following accessible services for the performances listed:

 

Audio Description and Touch Tour:

Sunday, December 2: 1pm Touch Tour, 2:30pm performance

Open Captioning:

Saturday, December 15: 7:30pm performance

Sunday, December 16: 2:30pm performance

Friday, December 21: 7:30pm performance

Saturday, December 22: 7:30pm performance

 

CAST

PRODUCTION TEAM

PHOTOS

PRESS

★★★1/2!

"Rich and emotionally satisfying... a complex meditation on what makes our lives matter — even after we’ve ceased to be."

Kerry Reid, Chicago Tribune

 

Reader Recommended!

"A transcendent play... [a] heartfelt examination of race, medicine, and basic humanity in America... that will undoubtedly be performed countless times in the future. I felt fortunate to witness it so soon after its inception. If you don't feel something after seeing it, check your pulse."

Dmitry Samarov, Chicago Reader

 

"Mind-blowing... Nicole Michelle Haskins is a force to be reckoned with. A profound work of theater that connects us all to the stuff we are made of."

Kelsey McGrath, New City

 

"Recommended! Brooks’s ear for canny, raucous dialogue comes vividly through in both the Sun Ra-drenched space scenes and the rapid-fire, referential jokes about black Chicago life in the ’80s. It’s delivered by the cast with verve, too—particularly rising star Haskins."

Kris Vire, Storefront Rebellion

 

"Highly recommended! The performances across the board are excellent... both the experience of watching the show and the time I’ve spent mulling over its images and themes have been by turns haunting and lovely."

Kevin Curran, Chicago Theatre Review

 

"Cunningly detailed... Throughout HeLa, Henrietta [Lacks]’s unrequited legacy of miracle cures pulsates with promise. A five-star labor of love!"

Lawrence Bommer, Stage and Cinema

 

"Vibrant, thought-provoking, and action-packed... Fascinating entertainment."

Ruth Smerling, Theatre World

 

"Sideshow Theatre accomplishes a lot on a small stage in its world premiere production... Jonathan L. Green directs HeLa with style."

Nancy Bishop, Third Coast Review

by J. Nicole Brooks

directed by Jonathan L. Green

 

November 18 - December 23, 2018

Greenhouse Theater Center

2257 N Lincoln Avenue

 

Run time: 2 hours and 20 minutes, with one intermission

1951: A mother of five visits the “colored” gynecology ward of Johns Hopkins, knowing something unusual is happening in her body. 1981: A child watches Carl Sagan’s Cosmos on a basement television in Chicago as her auntie plays bid whist upstairs with the neighbors. The Distant Future: A gold-plated flying saucer hovers over the Earth, its pilot watching and waiting patiently as stars gently twinkle in her hair. All three stories connect, collide and expand, blending Afrofuturism with the true story of Henrietta Lacks and one little girl’s love of science. This winter, journey from East Baltimore to Chicago’s West Side to outer space, as J. Nicole Brooks’ new play explores who has the power over the stuff we are made of.

 

 

Premiere Season Sponsors

Melinda McMullen and Duncan Kime

 

Production Sponsor

Linda Karn

 

This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

 

 

ACCESSIBLE PERFORMANCES

Sideshow is happy to provide the following accessible services for the performances listed:

 

Audio Description and Touch Tour:

Saturday, December 2: 1pm Touch Tour, 2:30pm performance

Open Captioning:

Saturday, December 15: 7:30pm performance

Sunday, December 16: 2:30pm performance

Friday, December 21: 7:30pm performance

Saturday, December 22: 7:30pm performance