Beginning March 22

Critic's Pick! A sly and very likable comedy. A normcore comic variation on “Romeo and Juliet” which insists we regard its central relationship as worthy of high flights of poetic fancy.New York Times
 

Erica has never quite fit in. She was never popular in high school and—as the years have gone by—she's felt more and more disconnected from the people in her life. Even her sister seems more preoccupied with her political ambition for town counsel than their mother's recent passing. Normally, that would be just fine with Erica, but she's been asking herself if this was all she could expect: a job at the local grocery and evenings alone.

Suddenly, at 30, she's in love. Dee really understands her, and opens her eyes to true romance. He's everything she's ever wanted: warm, compassionate, a great listener and sexy AF. The fact that he's a Dairy Queen sign is just a plus.

Nick Robideau walks a beautiful line between humor and depth in the best (and only!) objectum-sexual romantic comedy of the year. Inanimate takes us through surprisingly familiar lanes of rushes and confused longings, all while unfolding the universal tale of embracing one's true desires.

After all, it's the oldest story in the world: a woman and her sign.

* denotes a member of Actors Equity, the union of professional actors and stage managers

Jodi Gage

Trish Grillo

As a Chicago-based actor, Jodi has worked with Raven Theatre, Steep Theatre, Blank Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Milwaukee Rep, Theater Wit, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Chicago Physical Theater Festival, among others. Before relocating to Chicago, she worked extensively in the Pittsburgh area with Pittsburgh CLO, PICT Classic Theatre, The REP Pittsburgh Playhouse, among others. She toured internationally with Theatre Lumina, where she is also a company member, in their production of Song of Home. TELEVISION: Chicago Med (NBC) EDUCATION: MFA in Theatre, Point Park University; BM in Opera Performance, Oberlin Conservatory. She is represented by Gray Talent. jodigage.com

Theater Wit Credits: Teenage Dick (U/S) by Mike Lew

Khloe Janel

Chorus

Khloe Janel is beyond grateful to be returning to Theater Wit! Their recent theatre credits include King James (Manhattan Theatre Club), Hatfield & McCoy (House Theatre of Chicago) and Haymarket (Underscore Theatre). Their Film Credits include I Used To Go Here, which is now streaming on HBO Max. Their Television credits include Easy, The Chi, Empire, Chicago Fire and Chicago P.D. "Gratitude and love for my mothers, brothers, chosen family and ancestors". Khloejanel.com

Building Credits: Haymarket by Alex Higgen-Houser and David Kornfeld, an associate production by Underscore Theater with Theater Wit

Aaron Latterell

Dee

Aaron is grateful to be a part of this wonderful show. Previous stage credits include Midsummer Night's Dream (OPTF), Queen of Sock Pairing (Red Tape Theatre), Hamlet (Backroom Shakespeare), Sex Tips for Straight Women from A Gay Man (Regional tour), Red Bowl at The Jeffs (The Sound), Deathtrap (Drury Lane), Tempest, Comedy of Errors (Commision Theatre), The Temperamentals (About Face), Hammer Trinity (House Theater). TV credits include Chicago Fire, Chicago P.D., The Girlfriend Experience, Zen Room. Film Credits: Deep Woods, Ashburn, Just Jo, Sin Eater. Aaron is represented by Big Mouth Talent.

Theater Wit Credits: U/S for Teenage Dick by Mike Lew

Erin Long

Chorus

CHICAGO: u/s Lucy & Charlie's Honeymoon (Lookingglass Theatre Co.); u/s Plantation! (Lookingglass Theatre Co.); u/s Gypsy (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre); Victor, Victoria (NightBlue), Drowsy Chaperone (Metropolis Performing Arts Center), Yippee Ki-Yay, Merry Christmas (Drury Lane Productions), Annie Get Your Gun (Light Opera Works), Pinkalicious, How I Became a Pirate (Northbrook TYA), Pippin (Circle Theatre). NEW YORK: Medea (Columbia University); Queen of the Hive (Columbia University) FILM/TV: Hot Date (PopTV/Netflix). COMMERCIAL: Valspar, Suiteness, SPAM (Onion Labs), Norovirus (National Restaurant Association). Represented by Paonessa Talent Agency. www.erinextended.com

Theater Wit Credits: The New Sincerity by Alena Smith, 10 out of 12 by Anne Washburn

J.G. Smith

Erica Grillo

J.G. is thrilled to be here. Onstage: It's A Wonderful Life: Live in Chicago! and On Clover Road (American Blues); I and You (Peninsula Players); Mother of the Maid (Northlight); The Art of Sisters (Vision Productions); Plantation! (Lookingglass); Romeo and Juliet, Pericles, Love's Labour's Lost (The Shakespeare Project of Chicago); The Winter's Tale (Back Room Shakespeare Project); Peter and the Starcatcher (City Equity Theatre); Alice in Wonderland, As You Like It, A Christmas Carol, King Lear (Alabama Shakespeare); Censored on Final Approach (Judson Gym). Onscreen: Knives and Skin (IFCMidnight, Hulu); ARGUS(WarnerMedia); Short Comings (MTV); Dreaming Grand Avenue (Music Box Films); The Dancing Monkey (ATWA Productions); The World’s Astonishing News!(NTV). As a performance artist, J.G. has debuted work with Chicago Fringe, Undiscovered Countries, TransVisions, Salonathon, Williamsburg Circus, and NOLA’s Hell Yes Fest; highlights include the award-winning variety hour MARYSHELLEYSHOW (co-created with Bee Begley); the short film HIRE ME SPIELBERG; and the ongoing solo series COMPANIONABLE SILENCE. J.G. is proud to be an Ensemble Member with American Blues Theater, an Associate Artist with Undiscovered Countries, a peacock with Paonessa Talent Agency, and a paid-up member of Actors' Equity Association. All love to my family. JGSmithActor.com.

This is JG's first appearance at Theater Wit

Dustin Valenta

Chorus

Dustin is thrilled to be making his Theater Wit debut. He was born in Vermont and grew up in Minnesota. As a traveling yoga teacher, Dustin spent four years living all over the world from Australia to Italy, and he is the 2019 USA Yoga National Champion. Education: MFA DePaul University, The School at Steppenwolf and the Stella Adler Physical Theatre training program. Select professional credits: Mesmerized (Chicago Children's Theatre), The Secret Lives of Coats (Red Eye Theatre, Minneapolis) The History of Invulnerability (Six Points Theatre, St. Paul), The Cabinet (Redmoon Theatre, Chicago and Brazil), The Feast: An Intimate Tempest (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre). Dustin is represented by the great team at DDO Artists Agency. Love to Marbles.

This is Dustin's first appearance at Theater Wit

William Anthony Sebastian Rose II

Kevin Russell

William is returning to Theater Wit after most recently appearing in THE WHISTLEBLOWER. His most recent credits include; FENCES for American Blues Theatre, Arthur Brooks in Timeline Theater’s BOULEVARD OF BOLD DREAMS (u/s), David in The Rivendell Theaters A MILE IN THE DARK, giving new life to King Christophe in THE TRAGEDY OF KING CHRISTOPHE. (BTAA Winner Best Actor in a Play) John in Broken Nose Theaters production of LABYRINTH (BTAA Nominee Best Actor). Represented by Big Mouth Talent IG @HisWillness

Theater Wit Credits: The Whistleblower by Itamar Moses

Building Credits: Fences by August Wilson (American Blues Theatre)

Kevin Aoussou

Kevin Russell (U/S)

Kevin is an actor, producer, and activist based in Chicago, IL. Regional credits include: ADA AND THE ENGINE (Cardinal Stage Company), AKEELAH AND THE BEE (Children's Theatre of Charlotte), GAME OF LOVE AND CHANCE (The Hedgerow Theatre), MOBY DICK (The Hedgerow Theatre) Recent credits include: QueeQueg in MOBY DICK (The Repertory Theater of St. Louis), Genly Ai in THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS (The Rogue Theatre), Abiola U/S in ROUTES (Remy Bumppo). Training: Northwestern University’s MFA Acting 2022, NTI: Moscow Art Theatre 2016, Winthrop University 2018 and The Arvold Warner Studios- Inaugural Teacher Training Lab 2021. Kevin is represented by Gray Talent Group. Socials: Follow Kevin and his organization on instagram at @ayokev247 and @thelocallab_co

This is Kevin's first production at Theater Wit

Jeremy Wechsler

Director

Jeremy is the founding Artistic Director of Theater Wit where he has directed the Chicago premieres of THE WHISTLEBLOWER, HURRICANE DIANE, ADMISSIONS, THE REALISTIC JONESES, THE ANTELOPE PARTY, 10 OUT OF 12, NAPERVILLE (Jeff Award), THIS WAY OUT OF SANTALAND, THE NEW SINCERITY, THE (CURIOUS CASE OF THE) WATSON INTELLIGENCE (Best of 2015 - Sun Times), BAD JEWS (Best of 2015 - New City), MR BURNS: A POST-ELECTRIC PLAY (Time Out Peoples’ Choice Award for Direction, Best of 2015), SEVEN HOMELESS MAMMOTHS WANDER NEW ENGLAND (Sun Times Best of Year 2014), COMPLETENESS, TIGERS BE STILL, THIS, THE FOUR OF US, FEYDEAU-SI-DEAU, MEN OF STEEL, THOM PAIN (BASED ON NOTHING) (Jeff Award - Best Solo Peformance), TWO FOR THE SHOW and many many productions of THE SANTALAND DIARIES. Under Jeremy’s leadership over the last fifteen years, Theater Wit has emerged as the go to destination for cutting edge contemporary work, gaining national recognition for excellence. He has directed over sixty shows in the last twenty years at various theaters, including TRAGEDY A TRAGEDY, THE FLU SEASON, A TASTE OF HONEY (“US Best of 2008” in The Wall Street Journal), NOW THEN AGAIN (Jeff Award - Best New Work), THE PLAY ABOUT THE SQUIRREL, THE WHITE DEVIL, THIS IS NOT A PLAY ABOUT CANCER, PEER GYNT, THE REAL THING, SZINHAZ, THE DUCHESS OF MALFI, TRAGEDY A TRAGEDY, TITUS ANDRONICUS, THE ROARING GIRL, FLIGHT, THE MOST FABULOUS STORY EVERY TOLD, THIS IS THE RILL SPEAKING, HAY FEVER, A MONTH IN THE COUNTRY, EUROPE, HENRY VI: BLOOD OF A NATION, THE PROMISE, SPIN, UN ROBOT, HORROR ACADEMY, KIND LADY, PLAYING BY THE RULES, THE MARRIAGE OF BETTE AND BOO, SOLITAIRE, THE COARSE ACTING SHOW, LIFE IS A DREAM, THE PRISONER'S DILEMMA, CABARET and THE THREEPENNY OPERA. His productions have been nominated for and won multiple awards for design, performance, adaptation and best new work.

Under Jeremy’s leadership, Theater Wit has grown from a small theater to a leader in the Chicago landscape with national presence. In 2007, he supervised and designed a new home for Theater Wit, a 3-theater facility that hosts both our own award-winning work and gives a home to a number of Chicago's best neighborhood theaters with over 500 performances/year from 20+ companies in a typical season. Theater Wit is a cultural hub of the Chicago Theater landscape, specializing in contemporary works of comedy, intellect and heart. Under a unique, playwright-centric second production process, Theater Wit has become a nationally-recognized producer of new work by writers like Anne Washburn, Will Eno, Itamar Moses, Joshua Harmon and Madeleine George.

Nick Robideau

Playwright

Nick Robideau's work has been developed or performed with The Lark, Stillwrights, The Lanford Wilson New American Play Festival, HB Studio, The American Musical and Dramatic Academy, The Silent Barn, Title: Point, The Brick Theater, Pipeline Theater Company, The Flea Theater, Transformation Theater Company, and at fringe festivals both in the U.S. and internationally. Nick has been the recipient of The Rita Goldberg Playwriting Prize, The A.R. Gurney Prize for Playwriting, and a New York Times Critics Pick. His plays INANIMATE and THE DARK ARTS FOR BEGINNERS are published with Broadway Play Publishing. Nick holds an M.F.A. in playwriting from Hunter College and is a member of the Dramatists Guild.

Previously at Theater Wit: The Four of Us, Completeness

Kira Nutter

Intimacy Design

Kira Nutter (she/they) is a Chicago-based fight/intimacy director, actor, playwright, as well as a proud member of Northwestern University’s 2021 graduating class (B.S. in Theatre, Concentration in Playwriting). Their work often revolves around self-created sentiment – “The universe was created by collisions; together we can create worlds” – and what better way to honor that power of collision and creation than through pen to page, actor to stage, blade to blade, and love broken or made? Recently, Kira made their Broadway-debut leading signature workshop, ENEMIES TO LOVERS: THE TANGO BETWEEN FIGHT AND INTIMACY CHOREOGRAPHY, alongside developing a new live-action comic-book form that marries traditional hand drawn storytelling with cinematic adaptation, as premiered in their independent project, NIGHT OF FIGHTS: COMIC BOOK EDITION. Other credits include: BIG LOVE (Producing Body), SEAGULLS (Oak Park Festival Theatre), DRYLAND (Snails on a Bike), A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM (Oak Park Festival Theatre), LUNGS (Wirtz Center), SPRING AWAKENING (Jewish Theatre Ensemble) and TURN OF THE SCREW (Wirtz Center). Outside the rehearsal room, you can usually catch Kira hanging from a lyra as they learn to fly…and fall…and probably fall again…on this circus staple and more. Follow along @point.and.pommel!

Previously at Theater Wit: The Four of Us, Completeness

Sarah Luse

Stage Manager

Sarah is excited to be back working with Theater Wit on INANIMATE. She is a Chicago based AEA stage manager and was the production manager at The Gift Theatre for the past seven years. Some favorite Theater Wit credits include COMPLETENESS, BAD JEWS, THOM PAIN (BASED ON NOTHING), and ANTELOPE PARTY. Other selected credits include BONHOEFFER’S COST and REDEEMED: THE FALL AND RISE OF CHUCK COLSON (Provision Theatre), THE TEMPERAMENTALS (About Face Theatre), THE LONESOME WEST, THINNER THAN WATER, W;T, TEN, RICHARD III, DOUBT, THE LOCUSTS, and MOTHERS (The Gift Theatre). Regionally she has been part of the stage management team with the Michigan Shakespeare Festival for their 2014, 2018, and 2019 seasons. Sarah is an ensemble member with The Gift Theatre.

Previously at Theater Wit: Completeness, Bad Jews, Thom Pain (based on nothing), Antelope Party

Joe Johnson

Scenic Design

Joe is a set designer based in Chicago, Illinois, having received his MFA from Northwestern University. Recent Chicago credits include SELLING KABUL (Northlight Theatre) MARYS SEACOLE (Griffin Theatre) EXTRA YARN (Lifeline Theatre) CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF (Madkap Productions) BENGAL TIGER AT THE BAGHDAD ZOO and LEGALLY BLONDE (Northwestern University). Other credits include SUOR ANGELICA / SCHICCHI and BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (Bay View Music Festival) and Disney’s DESCENDANTS (Stages Theatre Co.) Joe’s scenography for Karel Čapek’s THE WHITE PLAGUE was one of 8 internationally selected works to exhibit in the Prague Quadrennial Design Project for an online gallery in 2020. You can see more of Joe’s work on his website www.joethomasjohnson.com or on Instagram @joethomasjohnson

This is Joe's first production at Theater Wit

Mara Blumenfeld

Costume Design

Mara is happy to be back at Theater Wit where she has previously designed HURRICANE DIANE (co-design with Maddy Low), MR. BURNS: A POST-ELECTRIC PLAY (co-design with Mieka van der Ploeg), and THE SANTALAND DIARIES. Chicago design credits include numerous productions at The Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Court Theatre, and Lookingglass Theatre Company, where she is an ensemble member. Her work has been seen extensively at regional theaters around the country and internationally. She is the recipient of four Jeff Awards and the Michael Merritt Award.

Previous work at Theater Wit: Hurricane Diane, Mr. Burns: a post-electric play, The Santaland Diaries

Annamae Durham

Properties Design

Annamae is a Chicago-based props artisan and technician. Recent credits include: Properties Design of THE WHISTLEBLOWER and HURRICANE DIANE at Theater Wit. AnnaMae is the Assistant Properties Supervisor at Chicago Shakespeare Theater and a proud member of IASTE Local 2.

Previous work at Theater Wit: The Whistleblower and Hurricane Diane

Levi J. Wilkins

Lighting Design

Born and raised on the southwest side of Chicago, Levi has been a member of the Chicago Theater community since age 6. Studied Theatre and Production at Lincoln College in Lincoln, Illinois. Currently the lighting director at The Faith Community of St. Sabina. other past theater credits include EXIT STRATEGY and LYLE, THE CROCODILE with Northwestern University Theater, A DAY OF ABSENCE, WHAT TO SEND UP WHEN IT GOES DOWN and HOW BLOOD GO with Congo Square Theater, WHITE with Definition Theater, RUINED and WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF with Invictus Theater, THE MOUNTAINTOP at Constellation Stage & Screen, MARIE ANTOINETTE AND THE MAGICAL NEGROES with The Story Theater, INTO THE SIDE OF A HILL with Flint Rep, IS GOD IS with A Red Orchid Theater and STEW, LONDON ROAD and coming up JUMP with Shattered Globe Theater For more info about Levi visit www.fresherlight.com

Previous work at Theater Wit: The Whistleblower

Joe Court

Lighting Design

Joe has spent the last 22 years working professionally as a sound designer, engineer, and educator. His work has been heard in Chicago: TUTA, A Red Orchid, Mary-Arrchie, Emerald City, and many, many more; New York: 59E59, Off-Broadway, NYC; Los Angeles: REDCAT at the Disney Concert Hall; McCarter Theatre Center (Princeton, NJ), The Clarence Brown Theatre (Knoxville, TN.), Great Lakes Theatre (Cleveland, OH), Virginia Stage Company (Norfolk, VA), Actors Theatre of Indiana, and the Idaho, Lake Tahoe, and Illinois Shakespeare Festivals. As an educator he has taught at Virginia Tech, the University of Chicago, and Ball State University. Joe is an artistic associate with TUTA theatre, Chicago. From 2008 until 2016, Joe served as sound engineer for the Chicago production of the Tony Award-winning musical MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET. He has received 3 Joseph Jefferson Award nominations for his design work. Member, USA 829

Previous work at Theater Wit: 10 out of 12

Matthew R. Chase

Production Manager

Matthew is Theater Wit's resident Facilities and Production Manager.

Previous work at Theater Wit: Teenage Dick, Who's Holiday, Mr. Burns: a post-electric play, Hurricane Diane, The Whistleblower

Lucy Elkin

Wardrobe Supervisor

Lucy is a costume designer and technician living and working in Chicago. She is currently in her second season working as the costume supervisor with Timeline Theatre Company. Recent design credits include THE ADDAMS FAMILY (Uptown Music Theatre) and PIPPIN (ATC). Examples of her work can be seen at lucycelkin.com

This is Lucy's first production at Theater Wit

Nicholas Chamernick

Master Electrican

Nicholas is a Chicago-based freelance lighting technician. Theater Wit credits include WHO’S HOLIDAY and HOUSEHOLD SPIRITS (Master Electrician). Other credits include Goodman Theatre’s THE WHO’S TOMMY (Projections Operator), Remy Bumppo Theatre Company’s BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY, GALILEO’S DAUGHTER, ANNA IN THE TROPICS, and PASSAGE (Master Electrician), and Shattered Globe Theatre’s RADIAL GRADIENT and THIS WIDE NIGHT (Master Electrician).

Building Credits: Blues for an Alabama Sky, Galileo's Duather, Anna in the Tropics, Passage, Radial Gradient and This Wide Night

Nick Peebles

Technical Director

Nick graduated Goshen College in 2017, and spent the following year working first as the Technical Director at Thunder Bay Theater in Alpena, MI credits include: THE ODD COUPLE, MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS, and SONGS FOR A NEW WORLD, then as a carpenter and the Technical Director at Timber Lake Playhouse in Mt. Carroll, IL credits include: BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, THE FULL MONTY, BEEHIVE, and BASKERVILLE. He returned to Chicago as a Technical Director and carpenter in 2018, working at a number of local theaters, including Citadel Theater:THE ROOMMATE, YOU’RE A GOOD MAN CHARLIE BROWN, and OUTSIDE MULLINGAR, Music Theater Works: CAMELOT, WHITE CHRISTMAS, and AVENUE Q, and Oakton College: DIARY OF ANNE FRANK, MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, SMOKEFALL. In addition to working in theater, Nick also has worked at the Historic Pullman Foundation as an exhibit installer and Living Works in Rogers Park as a carpenter. He has taught Tae Kwon Do for Connelly’s Academy of Martial Arts at several Chicagoland public and private schools for over fifteen years. Nick would like to thank his wife and his parents for their consistent love and support over the years- he is lucky and grateful to have them in his life.

This is Nick's first production at Theater Wit

Catherine Miller

Casting Director

Catherine excited to be back at Theater Wit, having cast HOUSEHOLD SPIRITS last fall. Recent credits include BROTHER SISTER CYBORG SPACE, NIGHT WATCH (Raven Theatre) and THE BRIGHTEST THING IN THE WORLD (About Face Theatre). They have cast shows for About Face Theatre, Raven Theatre, American Musical Theatre Project, Northwestern University, BoHo Theatre, Haven Chicago, Jackalope Theatre, Red Tape Theatre, and First Floor Theater among many others. Additionally, Catherine has done dramaturgy and gender consulting work for Paramount Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville and About Face Theatre. Catherine was a 2021 3Arts Make A Wave recipient and was recently featured in American Theatre Magazine's Role Call. They also were on NewCity Magazine’s 2020 + 2019 Players: The Fifty People Who Really Perform for Chicago and the Windy City Times’ 30 Under 30 list. Catherine has a BFA in Dramaturgy/Criticism from The Theatre School at DePaul.

Previous work at Theater Wit: Household Spirits

Livian Kennedy

Scenic Charge

Livian is a scenic artist from North Carolina exploring theatrical charge connections in the Windy City. During her time in town, she’s worked with Lookingglass, Steppenwolf, Chicago Children’s Theater, Porchlight, and Peninsula Players (amongst others). She charged Theater Wit's THE WHISTLEBLOWER, WHO'S HOLIDAY (2023), and now INANIMATE. Livian is also an artist and muralist, currently enjoying the rich artistic culture of Chicago.

This is Livian's first production at Theater Wit

Jacqueline Pytlik

Assistant Stage Manager

Jacqueline Previous work includes: ANYTHING GOES (Porchlight), THE WHISTLEBLOWER, and HOUSEHOLD SPIRITS (Theater Wit) RUST (Goodman Theatre), THIRST (Dorset Theatre Festival), WAIT UNTIL DARK (Dorset Theatre Festival), THIS IS ONLY A TEST (Broken Nose Theatre), EURYDICE (The Artistic Home), and SOMETHING CLEAN (Rivendell Theatre Ensemble).

Previous work at Theater Wit: The Whistleblower and Household Spirits

n

n

Be a Member. Explore. Unlimited Theater.

Explore dozens of productions with hundreds of performances every year

  • Mr. Burns: a post-electric play
  • Naperville
  • Seven Homeless Mammoths Wander New England
  • Hurricane Diane
  • Women Laughing Alone with Salad

n

Theater Wit is partially supported and funded by generous grants from Actors Equity Foundation, Bayless Family Foundation, a CityArts Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events, The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, Illinois Arts Council Agency, League Of Chicago Theaters, The MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at Prince, Paul M. Angell Foundation, The Morgan-Senior Foundation, The Shubert Foundation, and the Saints Volunteers for the Performing Arts.

Theater Wit | 1229 W Belmont, Chicago IL 60657 | 773-975-8150 | Facebook |  Email Us!
Theater Wit is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization | Privacy Policy