The Stockyards Theatre Project's third annual showcase of woman-centered drama, coproduced with Link's Hall, features storytelling, dance, improv, stand-up comedy, and other forms. The festival runs October 24-26 at Link's Hall, 3435 N. Sheffield. Performances are at 8 PM; each evening features a different lineup of seven to nine pieces (scheduled times for individual presentations each night are listed below). Latecomers will not be seated until intermission. Tickets cost $12 per night; call 773-281-0824 for reservations or 312-409-2641 for general information.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 24
Choreographer Rachel Thorne Germond performs her own dance piece (set to music by Philip Glass) about a woman confronting her destiny. 8 PM.
Neo-Futurists Rachel Claff, Genevra Gallo, and Chloe Johnston perform a piece about three women's experiences on a road trip on September 11, 2001. 8:14 PM.
The all-female comedy group Sirens presents a program of improvised monologues. "The monologues are hit-and-miss. . . . But the talented ensemble twists the ideas in the monologues into fresh, exciting comedy about relationships, family, sex, and beauty. . . . There are some outrageous moments . . . and many ribald ones, but they arise naturally from the characters. It turns out the Sirens are as enticing as their name suggests," says Reader critic Jennifer Vanasco. 8:24 PM.
Born in the Other Room
Silvia Gonzalez S.'s drama concerns an infertile woman awaiting the birth of her biological child by a surrogate mother. 8:54 PM (the piece is followed by intermission).
Females Die Violent Deaths in the Wilderness
Karen G. Williams's multimedia solo piece deals with issues related to health care--including the harvesting of organs from Chinese political prisoners. 9:14 PM.
Fivestar Boogie Productions presents a dance set. 9:34 PM.
Jenny Burkholder and Lydia Bueschel--aka Burkholder v. Bueschel, a Limited Liability Dance Partnership--present a program of spoken word and movement in which Bueschel creates dance responses to Burkholder's poetry. 9:44 PM.
Grace Fill's solo piece combines storytelling and martial arts. 9:54 PM.
Missing Cool Hand Luke
Risa Tolentino's performance piece examines themes of "solitude, alienation, death, and sexual fantasies." 10:01 PM.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 25
This all-female collective of musicians, poets, and dancers improvises a pair of short pieces. 8 PM.
The Thick Routes Performance Collage presents an experimental work exploring "stories and gestures of blackness." 8:20 PM.
The Real-Life Adventures of Lizzy and Rilla
Katie Carey Govier and Joie Devoney star in a comedy about two women fighting the "Beauty Myth." 8:40 PM.
On My Table
The Thick Routes Performance Collage returns with a poetry-percussion piece about "what it means to prepare and share a meal." 9 PM (the piece is followed by intermission).
The Dreams of Black Men
Jane Alderman directs her own short play about a woman and man discussing their dreams. 9:30 PM.
Milwaukee-based performance artist Elizabeth Whitney presents an excerpt from Grrrls, her "queer-focused" examination of gender and sexuality in pop culture. 9:50 PM.
Judy in Disguise (With Glasses)
Angela Farruggia performs an excerpt from her interactive one-woman show about a famous writer facilitating a self-help seminar for young authors with low self-esteem. "The concept is overflowing with possibilities. . . . The script, however, feels awkwardly adolescent in its development," says Reader critic Kim Wilson. 10:10 PM.
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26
Scratched in Pencil
The all-woman percussion ensemble Big Smith performs a work in progress that incorporates movement, poetry, and music. 8 PM.
Writer-performer Dee Bolos performs excerpts from her debut solo show, which offers a distinctly female perspective on life in Chicago's white-ethnic Catholic south side. Clearly influenced by (and sometimes strikingly reminiscent of) Lily Tomlin, Bolos is an engaging comic, seemingly laid-back though her timing is sharp, and her often raunchy jokes are balanced by an appealing sweetness. 8:20 PM.
Inside the Mirror
Kara Lashmet performs an excerpt from her full-length solo show about issues related to self-image and weight loss. 8:40 PM (the piece is followed by intermission).
The perspectives of three women--one American, one German, and one Japanese--shape this study of identity, stereotypes of the "other" during wartime, and contemporary American perceptions of Iraqi women. 9:10 PM.
Jill Elaine Hughes's monologue recounts her experiences with Buddhism--including going shopping for New Age merchandise. 9:30 PM.
Susan Karsnick performs an excerpt from her full-length work Wet Appetite, about a woman's attempt to enhance her beauty with makeup. 9:45 PM.
Sarah Gavitt performs an experimental monologue about "Jesus, Uganda, and Oprah Winfrey." 9:50 PM.
Brave New Union
Amy Rath's spoken-word piece examines marriage as public institution and private experience. 10 PM.