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Michael Mellini

A Conversation with Playwright Rebecca Gilman

In Soups, Stews, and Casseroles: 1976, playwright Rebecca Gilman depicts a family in a small Wisconsin town who, along with their surrounding community, are forever altered when a food conglomerate buys their local cheese factory. A few weeks before rehearsals began for Soups, Stews, and Casseroles: 1976, Gilman spoke with the production’s dramaturg, Neena Arndt,…

Parental Guidance: Soups, Stews, and Casseroles: 1976 Actor Cliff Chamberlain Takes on Fatherly Duties On Stage and Off

Family is certainly on actor Cliff Chamberlain’s mind at the moment. At the first day of rehearsals for Rebecca Gilman’s newest play, Soups, Stews, and Casseroles: 1976, Chamberlain and his co-stars gathered for their first read-through of the script, which focuses on the economic woes of a tight-knit Wisconsin household. But earlier that week in…

Who Made My Cheese?: A Brief History of Dairy in Wisconsin

When the world’s glaciers receded after the last glacial period, they left in their wake the fertile farmland that would someday become known as Wisconsin. Millennia later, settlers from Switzerland and Germany congregated in the area, attracted by its agricultural similarities to their homelands. Most grew wheat at first, but within a few decades, insects,…

Entering a New Era: Welcome to Goodman Theatre’s New Alice Rapoport Center for Education and Engagement

Opening in May, “the Alice” is the next phase in the Goodman’s 30-year commitment to educating Chicago youth and promoting lifelong learning for audiences of all ages. Named for the late Goodman Trustee Alice Rapoport and accessible via the Goodman’s second floor lobby, the Alice becomes our welcoming new home for public programs, readings, seminars,…

A Costume Designer’s Perspective

For The Matchmaker, costume designer Jenny Mannis performed significant research on the fashion styles of Yonkers and New York City leading up to the turn of the 20th century, the time period when the play is set. Mannis also found inspiration from the many stage and screen adaptations The Matchmaker has taken over the years.…

A Conversation with Carlyle Playwright Thomas Bradshaw

Known for his audacious, sometimes incendiary plays, Thomas Bradshaw sets his sights on American politics with his newest satire Carlyle. In the play, Bradshaw, whose work last appeared at the Goodman with 2011’s Mary, traces one African American’s path to becoming a Republican. Shortly before beginning rehearsals, Bradshaw spoke with Tanya Palmer, the play’s dramaturg,…

The Embattled Appointment of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas

With the spring, 1991 resignation of Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, then-President George H. W. Bush was presented with a unique challenge. Marshall had been a legendary liberal who, as the first African American Justice, brought his decades-long activism to Court decisions. But the 1990s lay nestled in a resurgence of political conservatism, and Bush,…

Creating Carlyle: Actor James Earl Jones II Takes on the Title Role

In the new political satire Carlyle, Carlyle Meyers is an African American lawyer for the Republican Party overcome by stage fright during a theatrical retelling of how and why he became a member of the GOP. Happily, no such affliction seems to be affecting the play’s leading actor James Earl Jones II, as he prepares…