AstonRep Theatre Company is pleased to welcome back live audiences this fall, kicking off with a revival of Yasmina Reza’s frenetic dark comedy God of Carnage, translated by Christopher Hampton and co-directed by directed by Derek Bertelsen* and Robert Tobin*. The cast includes Maggie Antonijevic, Mike Newquist Erin O'Brien* and Mark Tacderas. As part of the company’s ongoing Salon Series, artists from this year’s production will join those who worked on AstonRep’s 2012 production of God of Carnage for a discussion about the show to be streamed for free during the run.
The cast of AstonRep Theatre Company’s production of God of Carnage includes (top, l to r) Maggie Antonijevic and Mike Newquist (bottom, l to r) Erin O'Brien and Mark Tacderas.
The season continues this winter with AstonRep’s 13th Annual Writer’s Series, featuring free readings of new works by emerging writers. This year’s two-day festival will take place virtually via Zoom.
AstonRep’s 2021-22 season concludes next spring with the Chicago premiere of Sarah Treem’s courageous drama When We Were Young and Unafraid, directed by Sara Pavlak McGuire. The company’s original production was in rehearsals in spring 2020, but was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
God of Carnage and When We Were Young and Unafraid will be staged on The Edge Off-Broadway Theatre, 1133 W. Catalpa Ave. in Chicago. Tickets for all productions will go on sale at a later date. For additional information, visit www.astonrep.com.
*Denotes AstonRep Theatre Company Ensemble Member
AstonRep Theatre Company’s 2021-22 Season includes:
November 12 – December 12, 2021
God of Carnage
By Yasmina Reza
Translated by Christopher Hampton
Co-Directed by Derek Bertelsen and Robert Tobin
Featuring Maggie Antonijevic (Annette), Mike Newquist (Michael), Erin O'Brien* (Veronica) and Mark Tacderas (Alan).
at The Edge Off-Broadway Theatre, 1133 W. Catalpa Ave., Chicago
Press opening: Saturday, November 13 at 7:30 pm
Two high-strung couples, Alan and Annette Raleigh and Michael and Veronica Novak, decide to meet one evening for a civilized discussion about a playground altercation between their two young sons. What follows is a comically explosive downhill slide from polite, political correctness to full-on character assassination. A no-holds-barred look at what happens when the littlest things end up pushing us completely over the edge.
Production team: Jeremiah Barr* (scenic/props design, technical director), Uriel Gomez (costume design), Becca Venable (lighting design), Samantha Barr* (production manager) and Heather Branham (stage manager).
January 29 – 30, 2022
The 13th Annual Writer’s Series – Virtual Performances!
Titles to be announced.
Since the company’s founding, AstonRep has hosted its annual Writer’s Series – a festival featuring Chicago-based and national playwrights who get an opportunity to workshop near-finished plays and works in development. This season’s readings will be streamed for free via Zoom, followed by talkback sessions with the writers.
May 13 – June 12, 2022
When We Were Young and Unafraid – Chicago Premiere!
By Sarah Treem
Directed by Sara Pavlak McGuire
at The Edge Off-Broadway Theatre, 1133 W. Catalpa Ave., Chicago
Press opening: Saturday, May 14, 2022 at 7:30 pm
In the early 1970s, before Roe v. Wade, before the Violence Against Women Act, Agnes has turned her quiet bed and breakfast into one of the few spots where victims of domestic violence can seek refuge. But to Agnes’s dismay, her latest runaway, Mary Anne, is beginning to influence Agnes’s college-bound daughter Penny. As the drums of a feminist revolution grow louder outside of Agnes’s tiny world, Agnes is forced to confront her own presumptions about the women she’s spent her life trying to help.
About the Artists
Yasmina Reza (Playwright, God of Carnage) is a French playwright and novelist, based in Paris, whose works have all been multi-award-winning, critical and popular international successes, produced worldwide and translated into 35 languages. She has written seven plays (Conversations After a Burial, The Passage of Winter, ‘Art,’ The Unexpected Man, Life x 3, A Spanish Play, God of Carnage, How You Talk the Game) and six novels (“Hammerklavier,” “Une Desolation (Desolation),” “Adam Haberberg,” “Dans la Luge d'Arthur Schopenhauer,” ‘Nulle Part” and “L'Aube, le Soir ou la Nuit (Dawn Dusk or Night)”). Films include: Le Pique-Nique de Lulu Kreutz, directed by Didier Martiny and Chicas, written and directed by the author.
Derek Bertelsen (Co-Director, God of Carnage) joined AstonRep in 2012. Previous directing credits with AstonRep include Doubt, Next Fall, Wit, The Laramie Project, The Crowd You're In With, Equus and co-directing Eleemosynary with Jeremiah Barr. He served as Co-Founder and Artistic Director of The Comrades from 2016-2020 where he directed and produced numerous productions. Summer stock credits include Festival 56, Shawnee Summer Playhouse,and five seasons at Timber Lake Playhouse.
Robert Tobin (Co-Director, God of Carnage) is an actor, director and founder of AstonRep. Select directing credits with the company include 1984, The Women of Lockerbie, and The Water’s Edge. Acting credits with AstonRep include Equus, The Lonesome West, Time Stands Still, Les Liaisons Dangereuses and Doubt among others. Locally, he has worked with Steppenwolf, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, First Folio, Oak Park Festival Theatre and Redtwist, among others. Regional credits include Colorado, Montana and Utah Shakespeare Festivals.
Sarah Treem’s (Playwright, When We Were Young and Unafraid) A Feminine Ending premiered at Playwrights Horizons and went on to productions at South Coast Repertory and Portland Center Stage, among others. Her play The How and the Why premiered at the McCarter Theater starring Mercedes Ruehl (with Emily Mann directing) and went on to productions at Interact Theatre and Trinity Repertory, among others. Sarah’s other plays include Empty Sky (Bloomington Playwrights Project), Orphan Island (Sundance Theater Lab), Human Voices (New York Stage and Film) and Mirror Mirror. She has been commissioned by Playwrights Horizons, Southcoast Repertory and Manhattan Theater Club, and developed work at the Ojai Playwrights Festival, the Screenwriters Colony, Hedgebrook and Yaddo. In addition to her theater career, Sarah wrote and produced all three seasons of the acclaimed HBO series In Treatment, for which she won a WGA award and was nominated for a Humanitas award. She was also a writer/producer for the HBO series How to Make it in America. She has taught playwriting at Yale University, where she earned her B.A. and M.F.A.
Sara Pavlak McGuire (Director, When We Were Young and Unafraid) has been a company member with AstonRep since 2013, where she primarily served as casting director. The 2018-19 season was her first as Co- Artistic Director. Working primarily as an actor in Chicago, Sara has worked with many different companies around the city; namely Windy City Playhouse, Remy Bumppo, Oak Park Festival Theatre, Filament Theatre, Hubris Productions, Spartan Theatre and of course her home base at AstonRep. She is a two-time Jeff Award nominee (2011, 2018). She received the award in 2011 for her work in Agnes of God, with Hubris Productions. She has assistant directed several productions with AstonRep (Wit, The Lyons, The Laramie Project). Sara holds an MFA in acting from Western Illinois University.
About AstonRep Theatre Company:
AstonRep Theatre Company was formed in the summer of 2008. Since then, the company has produced numerous full-length productions, along with their annual Writer’s Series. They are currently in residence at The Edge Theater. AstonRep Theatre Company is an ensemble of artists committed to creating exciting, intimate theatrical experiences that go beyond the front door to challenge audiences and spark discussion where the show is not the end of the experience: it is just the beginning.