Abbie Hoffman Died for Our Sins X | Festival | Chicago Reader

Arts & Culture » Festival

Abbie Hoffman Died for Our Sins X

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

comment

The Mary-Arrchie Theatre's marathon showcase of emerging talent features a slew of fringe companies and solo artists. Hoping to honor the spirit of the late anarchist author of Woodstock Nation, "Abbie Hoffman Died for Our Sins" was founded to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Woodstock festival, and emulates that countercultural benchmark by offering an almost constant flow of acts while seeking to stimulate a communal spirit among performers and audience (which may be enhanced by sleep deprivation). As it happens, the festival's tenth annual edition also marks the 30th anniversary of the Chicago Democratic convention, which Hoffman and others turned into a forum for antiwar activism. A sliding admission-price scale allows audiences to attend a specific show or to come and go throughout the weekend; there's a convenience store at the gas station across the street for those in need of a middle-of-the-night snack, and the theater is air-conditioned. Participants include A Red Orchid Theatre, the Defiant Theatre Company, Drew Richardson, Abby Schachner, Broken Pilgrims in Gothic Sneakers, the Shit, Wax Lips Theatre Company, and Theatre Wyrzuc as well as Mary-Arrchie, whose own entries include Gas Mask 101, a nostalgic look at Vietnam War-era college life, and a remounting of its 1986 inaugural production, Sam Shepard's 4-H Club. Informality and spontaneity are the order of the day--so note that the schedule listed below, provided at the beginning of the week, may be subject to change. Mary-Arrchie Theatre, Angel Island, 731 W. Sheridan, 773-871-0442. August 21 through 23: Friday-Sunday, according to the schedule below. Tickets: $5 per admission (allows you to come in once and stay as long as you can take it); $10 for a one-day pass (allows you to come and go at will on a single day); $25 for a weekend pass to the full festival.

FRIDAY, AUGUST 21

Opening Procession

Celebrants will gather at 2 PM at Richard J. Daley Civic Center Plaza, 50 W. Washington, for a 3 PM march to Mary-Arrchie's home base at Angel Island.

Opening Ceremonies

Actor and festival organizer Richard Cotovsky adopts the persona of Abbie Hoffman to welcome the audience. 7 PM.

Stuff We're Saving Up

Rash Productions presents Conrad Bishop and Elizabeth Fuller's play about "two people going through life with all their emotional shit in a garbage can." Kirsten Kelly directs. 7:15 PM.

Someday I'll Be Saturday Night

Iguana Productions presents John Weagly's play about a reclusive woman who becomes obsessed with Jon Bon Jovi. 7:40 PM.

The Great Egress

G. Riley Mills's drama, written especially for this festival, concerns two clowns in a seedy Ohio hotel who are approached by a stranger offering them a mysterious job. It's presented by the Skeleton Crew Theatre. 8 PM.

Starbug: Episode #55

Chris Metzger performs his ongoing sci-fi superhero serial about an interstellar insect and his fight against evil. Each performance of Starbug during the festival will feature a different episode. 8:40 PM.

Morning Coffee

Frederick Stroppel's dark comedy, about a man and a woman ending their five-year relationship, is presented by Sparkwood and 21. 8:50 PM.

Man's Images in the 20th Century

The Gilead Theatre Company presents Phil Donlon's collection of monologues and vignettes about racism, homelessness, and other evils of our era. 9:35 PM.

Gas Mask 101

Arlene Cook's weirdly wistful portrait of college guys fretting over the draft in 1970--the era of campus protests, guilt-free dope, and sexually segregated dorms--is presented by the Mary-Arrchie Theatre. 10:15 PM.

Starbug: Episode #56

See listing for 8:40 PM Friday. 11:05 PM.

The Loveliest Afternoon of the Year

The Phoenix Theatre Company presents John Guare's short, quirky romantic comedy. 11:15 PM.

Cathode Sleep

"Two characters discuss their dreamless lives while waiting for the conclusion of a never-ending commercial break on TV," in Theatre Babble's production of Terry Hornsby's play. Midnight.

SATURDAY, AUGUST 22

Action Movie: The Play

The Defiant Theatre presents excerpts from its current production of Richard Ragsdale and Joe Foust's "reverent parody" of celluloid thrillers. "Action Movie: The Play . . . provide[s] its audiences with a visceral, confrontational theatergoing experience. [The show] walks a fine line between idolatry and irony, skewering the very features it lionizes. . . . As far as pure spectacle goes, [it's] always entertaining and frequently breathtaking," says Reader critic Nick Green. 12:20 AM.

Pubic Service Announcement and Rev. Anal Roberts

Scott Dominion, a longtime "Abbie Hoffman" fan turned participant, performs two monologues. 12:40 AM.

Broken Pilgrims in Gothic Sneakers

The comedy troupe performs improvisation. 12:50 AM.

Heat

Fat Jimmy Theater Company presents Paul Moulton's short political satire about an election in a developing nation. 1:20 AM.

Wild Dogs

Matt Borczon's play concerns "two males [who] turn their hostility toward women on each other," said Reader critic Tom Valeo when he reviewed this Mary-Arrchie Theatre production in 1991; the play is still trotted out for this yearly festival. 1:40 AM.

An Evening of Rant

Unprofessional Thtr. Chicago explores "light energy eccentrics" in this program of monologues, scenes, and audience participation. 2:10 AM.

Chester Drawers

Scott Dominion performs a monologue. 3:10 AM.

Fortune Cookie

Red Dawn Productions premieres a short piece by Adria Dawn and the Red Dawn ensemble, about a young woman's struggle with herself and life's ups and downs. 3:15 AM.

The Lawn Goose and Skull Museum

The Regal Beagles perform Matt Lageman and Jill Hutcheson's comedy about two rich eccentrics trying to convince a small town it needs culture. 3:45 AM.

To be announced

4:15 to 5 AM.

Take Talk

A Red Orchid Theatre performs early-morning talk radio for the stage. 5 AM.

To be announced

6 to 8 AM.

Breakfast With the Mole

Joe Winston of the cable-access TV show This Week in Joe's Basement presents a talk show hosted by the Mole. The program is presented by Ow Myeye Productions. 8 AM.

To be announced

The Author's Voice

Richard Greenberg's play, about a hack writer who keeps a brilliant gnome as his ghostwriter, is presented by OnWee Productions. 9 AM.

To be announced

9:45 AM to noon.

Famous in the Future

The comedy troupe performs an untitled series of skits and songs. Noon.

To be announced 12:55 to 1 PM.

Keep Both Eyes Open

John Corwin's play, presented by the Wax Lips Theatre Company, finds a woman talking to her boyfriend in almost total darkness, discussing a play whose description may also apply to the couple's relationship. 1 PM.

Krapp's Last Tape

Samuel Beckett's short, intense character study, about an elderly man reacting to his own tape-recorded memoirs, is performed by PUS (Performers Under Stress). Director Scott Baker's "ultralow-budget version of Beckett's 1958 masterpiece . . . is crisp, clean, and intelligent. . . . Sadly, [actor] Turk Muller lacks . . . range and depth, and his regular-guy, blue-collar stage persona is in constant conflict with Beckett's intellectually pretentious protagonist," said Reader critic Jack Helbig when he reviewed the production's original run. 2 PM.

To be announced

2:45 to 3 PM.

Heat

See listing for 1:20 AM Saturday. 3 PM.

Spookville

Catfish Productions presents three one-acts by Don Nigro; Jonathan Browning directs. 3:20 PM.

The Great Egress

See listing for 8 PM Friday. 4 PM.

To be announced

4:40 to 5 PM.

The Author's Voice

See listing for 9 AM Saturday. 5 PM.

My Shins

This comedy troupe combines live improv with film and video. 5:45 PM.

To be announced

5:55 to 6 PM.

Linger Awhile

Famous in the Future presents Terry Flamm's satire on the media and capital punishment, in which a family wins a government lottery to have a convicted killer executed in their home. 6 PM.

Starbug: Episode #57

See listing for 8:40 PM Friday. 6:55 PM.

The Psychology of Clumsiness

Self-styled "dramatic fool" Drew Richardson traces his art back to the day in 1964 when his mother laughed so hard at a Harold Lloyd film festival that her water broke and Drew was born. He performs his new one-man adult clown show, based on "the relationships between the brain, irrationality, decision making, and motor skills." Said Reader critic Jack Helbig when he reviewed the show's original run: "Richardson [is] a good artist [with] a delightful stage persona, a sweet naif constantly at war with mean-spirited inanimate objects. His current show is a series of sketches--some silent, some not--in which he explores the ins and outs of the human brain." 7:05 PM.

4-H Club

The Mary-Arrchie Theatre revives its 1986 debut production: Sam Shepard's study of "three men trapped by interdependency [who] struggle for power and belonging." 8 PM.

Searching in the Land of Burroughs

Brian Gary Kirst's solo show, presented by Theatre Wyrzuc, recounts a young man's journey through the geographical and psychosexual landscape inhabited by radical gay novelist William S. Burroughs. 8:40 PM.

Pubic Service Announcement and Rev. Anal Roberts

See listing for 12:40 AM Saturday. 9 PM.

The Lawn Goose and Skull Museum

See listing for 3:45 AM Saturday. 9:10 PM.

Letters From Darkness

Audra Budrys performs the work of Romanian poet Daniela Crasnaru in this Mary-Arrchie Theatre production. 9:40 PM.

Stuff We're Saving Up

See listing for 7:15 PM Friday. 9:50 PM.

Starbug: Episode #58

See listing for 8:40 PM Friday. 10:10 PM.

Unauthorized

The Shit improv team performs a weekly "unauthorized biography." 10:20 PM.

Dead Dwarf Intermezzo

The Mary-Arrchie Theatre presents John Weagly's play. 11:20 PM.

Back and to the Left

The Conspiracy Theater Company's improvised comedy uses audience suggestions to invent a different conspiracy theory at every show. 11:30 PM.

SUNDAY, AUGUST 23

Meet the Mole

See description for Breakfast With the Mole at 8 AM Saturday. 12:15 AM.

Klondike Kelly

The Mary-Arrchie Theatre presents Karen Burris in John Weagly's one-woman play about "life as a hobo." 12:35 AM.

Broken Pilgrims in Gothic Sneakers

See listing for 12:50 AM Saturday. 12:45 AM.

Stuff

Monologuist Abby Schachner performs "30 minutes of spontaneous eruptions stemming from the inner sanctums of her mind." 1:15 AM.

M.C. Square

Scott Dominion performs a monologue. 1:45 AM.

To be announced

1:50 to 2:20 AM.

My Shins

See listing for 5:45 PM Saturday. 2:20 AM.

Slimm

The comedy group performs an improv set. 2:30 AM.

Bitch With Rich

This late-night kvetch session is hosted by talk-show terrorist "Skid Mark" (aka Richard Cotovsky); a regular ensemble, guest artists, and video segments are featured, and audience participation is de rigueur in this Mary-Arrchie Theatre effort. 3 AM.

Meet the Mole

See description for Breakfast With the Mole at 8 AM Saturday. 4 AM.

To be announced

4:15 to 5 AM.

Take Talk

See listing for 5 AM Saturday. 5 AM.

To be announced

6 to 8 AM.

Breakfast With the Mole

See listing for 8 AM Saturday. 8 AM.

To be announced

Wild Dogs

See listing for 1:40 AM Saturday. 11:30 AM.

Readings From Revolution for the Hell of It

Don't steal this book, just listen to it: actors perform passages from Abbie Hoffman's manifesto. Noon.

Krapp's Last Tape

See listing for 2 PM Saturday. 1 PM.

To be announced

1:45 to 2 PM.

Nux

Chongo's Bongo Village presents "a psycho-sonic adventure dealing with civil liberty and organic chemistry." 2 PM.

Morning Coffee

See listing for 8:50 PM Friday. 3 PM.

Someday I'll Be Saturday Night

See listing for 7:40 PM Friday. 3:45 PM.

The Loveliest Afternoon of the Year

See listing for 11:15 PM Friday. 4 PM.

To be announced

4:45 to 5 PM.

4-H Club

See listing for 8 PM Saturday. 5 PM.

Searching in the Land of Burroughs

See listing for 8:40 PM Saturday. 5:40 PM.

Famous in the Future

See listing for noon Saturday. 6 PM.

Starbug: Episode #59

See listing for 8:40 PM Friday. 6:55 PM.

Keep Both Eyes Open

See listing for 1 PM Saturday. 7:05 PM.

My Shins

See listing for 5:45 PM Saturday. 7:45 PM.

To be announced

7:55 to 8:05 PM.

Spookville

See listing for 3:20 PM Saturday. 8:05 PM.

The Author's Voice

See listing for 9 AM Saturday. 8:40 PM.

Meditations

Writer-actor Christian Murphy's one-man play, a winner of the Factory Theater's "Shut Up and Laugh!" comedy festival, concerns a young salesman confronting his empty lifestyle of conspicuous consumption. 9:20 PM.

Klondike Kelly

See listing for 12:35 AM Sunday. 10 PM.

Fortune Cookie

See listing for 3:15 AM Saturday. 10:10 PM.

Starbug: Episode #60

See listing for 8:40 PM Friday. 10:30 PM.

To be announced

10:40 to 11 PM.

Gas Mask 101

See listing for 10:15 PM Friday. 11 PM.

Closing Ceremonies

Richard Cotovsky as Abbie Hoffman pronounces a farewell benediction. Midnight.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): 4-H Club photo by Daniel Guidara.

Add a comment