League of Chicago Theatre press release:
CHICAGO (April 2, 2010) – The League of Chicago Theatres is pleased to announce Steep Theatre Company as the recipient of the 2010 Broadway In Chicago Emerging Theater Award. Steep Theatre Company will receive $5,000, consultation with Broadway In Chicago staff members, and a marketing support package that includes advertising support from the Chicago Tribune and Time Out Chicago.
The award was created in 2007 to encourage, support and promote emerging theaters in Chicago that have demonstrated great ability and promise, artistic excellence and fiscal responsibility in business practices. Steep Theatre Company has been selected by a majority vote of their peers – member companies of the League of Chicago Theatres.
Steep Theatre Company was founded in 2000 with a mission of reaching out to non-traditional theater goers by seeking out stories and creating experiences relevant to their lives. In 2003, the company opened its first storefront theater in the Wrigleyville neighborhood. The company produced over 20 shows at this location which were met with remarkable critical and commercial success. Five years later, the company built a new theater in the vibrant Edgewater neighborhood that could better accommodate its growing productions and audiences. This theater has been called one of the newest, best-outfitted storefront theaters in Chicago.
Steep has become known in the Chicago arts community as a home for hard-hitting, finely-tuned ensemble work. Its productions have been named to Time Out Chicago's Top Ten Shows of the Year list three times, the Chicago Tribune's "Best of the Fringe" list twice and has been included in WBEZ’s top ten shows of the decade. In four years of Jeff Eligibility, Steep has received 8 Jeff Nominations and won the 2008 Jeff Award for Best Ensemble (In Arabia We'd All Be Kings). The company is currently in the midst of an unprecedented three-month, sold-out run of Simon Stephens’ Harper Regan, which Chris Jones of the Tribune gave four stars and called "one of those great, not-to-be-missed, only-in-Chicago productions.” Visit www.steeptheatre.com for more information.
Lou Raizin, President of Broadway In Chicago says, “We are proud to be associated with the Emerging Theater Award for the fourth year. The emerging theatres across Chicago, especially Steep Theatre Company, are what distinguish Chicago from the rest of the country.”
“Steep Theatre’s commitment to engage those who do not already frequent the theatre is an absolutely vital part of the success of Chicago’s theatre community,” says Eileen LaCario, Vice President of Broadway In Chicago and Chair of the League of Chicago Theatre’s Foundation.
"We are absolutely thrilled and honored to receive the 2010 Broadway In Chicago Emerging Theater Award,” said Peter Moore, Executive Director of Steep Theatre Company. “We were especially honored to be considered along side such an impressive slate of candidates and we'd like to thank our fellow nominees for using our collective candidacy to celebrate the wonderful work that is happening throughout the Chicago theater community. This award will provide us with a unique opportunity to further our mission of reaching out to non-traditional theater-goers. We are eager to get to work on invigorating our efforts to spread the word about the exciting work taking place at Steep."
“We are pleased to honor Steep Theatre with the 2010 Broadway In Chicago Emerging Theater Award,” says Deb Clapp, Executive Director of the League of Chicago Theatres. “Their company exemplifies the spirit of this award and we look forward to celebrating their achievements at our annual Gala on May 24th”
Applications for the award were accepted from January through February. Eligible companies must be a member of the League of Chicago Theatres, have been in existence at least 3 and no longer than 10 years, and have demonstrated artistic excellence, fiscal responsibility, community leadership, and potential for future growth.
A nomination committee comprised of Chicago theatre administrators, artists and educators reviewed the applications and selected five finalists. The 2010 finalists were Caffeine Theatre, Dog and Pony Theatre, New Leaf Theatre, Steep Theatre Company and Theatre Seven of Chicago.
The finalists were presented before the entire League membership for a vote in March. The award recipient was determined by majority vote from the entire League membership. Each member company is permitted to cast one vote towards the finalist of its choice. The House Theatre of Chicago, Silk Road Theatre Project, and the side project are previous recipients of the award.
The award will be presented at the League of Chicago Theatres annual Gala. This theatrical celebration will take place Monday, May 24, 2010 beginning at 5:30 p.m. at the Palmer House Hilton, 17 E. Monroe Street. Guests of the League of Chicago Theatres’ annual gala will dine in the Empire Room of the historic Palmer House Hilton in downtown Chicago and be entertained as they pay tribute to Arlene Crewdson, Sheldon Patinkin and The Prince Charitable Trusts for their roles in developing and supporting Chicago theater.
Tickets are available for $300 per person, and all proceeds benefit The League of Chicago Theatres which promotes, supports and advocates for theater in Chicago. To purchase tickets, or for sponsorship opportunities and participation information, visit www.chicagoplays.com or call 312-554-9800.