Classic works and timeless themes from a theater that has gained a national reputation for excellence and innovation.

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Discover the power of classic theatre. Guided by a mission to create innovative productions of classic works, Court Theatre in Chicago packs its seasons with plays that are thought-provoking, character driven and thematically enduring.

The depth of each work and the extraordinary talents at Court Theatre has garnered critical acclaim. Named "the most consistently excellent theater company in America" by The Wall Street Journal, Court has mounted many incredible performances of note. Just the last five years have seen the epic historical drama Angels in America, the world premiere of Invisible Man, a bold one-man adaption An Iliad, a never-before-seen retelling The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess and Tony Kushner's Caroline, or Change.

Know that each classic text has been re-examined, re-envisioned and renewed. And enjoy each moment as Court Theatre discovers fresh, new ways to tell enduring stories.



Court Theatre
5535 S. Ellis Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60637

The intimate, 251-seat Abelson Auditorium is the home to Court Theatre. Founded at the University of Chicago in 1955, the professional theatre remains in residence on this stunning campus in the Hyde Park neighborhood. Court Theatre is strongly connected to the rich, cultural landscape within this community and is the largest performing arts organization on the Chicago's South Side.

The academic and creative sphere is a heady combination, and you won't want to miss the latest showstopper.



Get ticket details, including group sales options and special pricing discounts, at courttheatre.org/tickets. Individual tickets for the season are available online and through the Box Office: (773) 753-4472.

  • Monday through Saturday: open 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm
  • Performance days: open 12:00 pm until curtain


2015/2016 SEASON

See the rigorous exploration of dramatic texts, including the African-American canon and musical theatre works, during the 61st Season:

Gem of the Ocean
September 10 - October 11, 2015

  • The story: A new century has dawned in America, but the shadow of slavery's legacy looms large across the country. As a city desperate for freedom descends into chaos, a murderer arrives on the doorstep of the only peaceful haven in town.
  • The background: Resident Artist Ron OJ Parson continues his triumphant tour through August Wilson's iconic century cycle with his seventh Wilson production at Court Theatre. Nominated for the Tony Award for Best Play in 2005, Gem of the Ocean is a fantastical story of freedom, justice, and redemption.

**WORLD PREMIERE** November 5 - December 6, 2015

  • The story: A beacon is set ablaze at the city of Argos — Troy has been captured and the Greek army will return victorious. Inside the walls, Agamemnon's wife, Clytemnestra, orchestrates an unexpected welcome for her King as she patiently awaits his fateful return to a house torn apart by horror and sorrow.
  • The background: Featuring a world premiere adaptation by renowned scholar and Founding Artistic Director Nicholas Rudall, Agamemnon delivers the second installment of Court's groundbreaking Greek Cycle.

Satchmo at the Waldorf
**MIDWEST PREMIERE** January 7 - February 7, 2016

  • The story: It's 1971, and Louis Armstrong is at the end of his incredibly successful career. He begins to reminisce about his life, revealing an intimate, unknown portrait of the man behind the trumpet and the ever-evolving struggle to live with dignity as a Black musician in a White world.
  • The background: Armstrong's story is told through the voice of a single actor playing both Armstrong and his Jewish manager Joe Glaser, bringing to life an emotional journey of deep friendship and its tragic destruction. Fresh from off-Broadway, this remarkably imaginative play was written with theatrical ingenuity by Terry Teachout and will enjoy its Midwest premiere under the electric direction of Artistic Director Charles Newell.

Long Day's Journey Into Night
March 10 - April 10, 2016

  • The story: Aging patriarch James Tyrone has ascended from humble beginnings as an Irish American immigrant to build a legendary and lucrative career as an actor. Beneath the shiny veneer of the Tyrone family's success, however, something is deeply and irreversibly amiss. As a once bright morning fades slowly into a dreary fog of evening, the characters crash together and pull apart inside a web of long-held suffering, buried secrets, and unspoken trauma.
  • The background: Court Theatre is thrilled to deepen its relationship with playwright David Auburn as he directs one of the greatest plays penned in the twentieth century.

One Man, Two Guvnors
**CHICAGO PREMIERE** May 12 - June 12, 2016

  • The story: Despite an abundance of sausage rolls, Pauline and Alan's engagement party has gone horribly awry. Pauline's deceased (and former) fiancé appears in the form of his twin sister Rachel, who is posing as her own dead brother Roscoe, who was killed by Rachel's lover Stanley, who needs the money to flee to Australia! Set in 1963 on the coast of Brighton and delightfully underscored by a live skiffle band, this hilarious play with music transforms Goldoni's 18th century Comedia dell'Arte classic Servant of Two Masters into modern comedy full of satire and slapstick.
  • The background: A dazzling and award-winning success from London to Broadway takes the stage at Court for its Chicago Premiere.  

Check out our Events Calendar to see what exciting new shows are on Chicago's stages while you're here and get the inside scoop from our Chicago Like a Local theater blog.

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