Route 66

Where the road Begins

GOLDFISH by Jon Kolvenbach

Route 66 Theatre Company presents

The Chicago Premiere of


By John Kolvenbach

Directed by Damon Kiely

June 11 through July 12, 2015


Route 66 Theatre Company is pleased to present the Chicago premiere of Goldfish, by John Kolvenbach, directed by Damon Kiely. Performances begin June 11 and run through July 12, 2015 at the Greenhouse Theater Center. Tickets are on sale at, by calling 773.404.7336, or in person at the Greenhouse Theater Center box office. The press opening is June 17 at 7:30 pm.


Goldfish will feature Francis Guinan and Shannon Cochran, with Alex Stage and Tyler Meredith.


Goldfish is a story of a young man who raises his father, then leaves home. He meets a young woman who undoes him, but the young woman has her own story: a mother who is a force of nature. It’s a play about legacy and leaving home. We raise our children to leave us, to walk out into the world. But then they do.


“John’s play, On an Average Day, launched our company back in 2008 and we are so excited to present the Midwest premiere of Goldfish“, said Stef Tovar, Route 66 Theatre Company’s Artistic Director. “We’ve put together the dream team of cast and designers to tell this beautiful story and I could not be more excited to see it finally come to fruition.”


The production team for Goldfish includes Scenic Design by Collette Pollard; Costume Design by Izumi Inaba; Original Music and Sound Design by Josh Horvath; Props Design by Jesse Gaffney and Lighting Design by Lee Keenan; with Ellen Willett (Production Manager), Nancy Staiger (Stage Manager), Matthew Bonaccorso (Assistant Stage Manager/Route 66 Company Manager), Skye Robinson Hillis (Dramaturg) and Stef Tovar (Assistant Director/Route 66 Artistic Director).


Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N Lincoln Avenue, Chicago

Previews June 11 – June 14, 2015

Press opening June 17, 2015

Regular run June 18 – July 12, 2015

Curtain times Thursdays at 7:30 pm; Fridays at 8 pm; Saturdays at 4 pm & 8 pm; Sundays at 2 pm

Tickets Previews $29. Regular run $39 Thursdays; $43 Fridays through Sundays.  Discounts available for groups of 10 or more, Students and Seniors.


Route 66 is Stef Tovar, Founder and Artistic Director; Frances Limoncelli, Literary Manager; Kelly Parker, Casting Director; Alana Parvey-Zalas, Business Manager; Matthew Bonaccorso, Company Manager; John Mohrlein, Consigliere


Click here to download the full Goldfish press release.

New Play Development Workshop Winner






Lamb receives a stipend and a week-long workshop

of her new play QUIVER

curated by Frances Limoncelli and Route 66 Theatre Company

With a public reading on MONDAY MARCH 16TH AT 8PM


CHICAGO IL- Route 66 Theatre Company’s Artistic Director Stef Tovar announces the winner of its inaugural New Play Development Workshop is Jenni Lamb and her play Quiver. Quiver is the story of twin siblings Adam and Diane’s annual bow hunting trip, which is interrupted when Cassie, Adam’s wife, arrives with their daughter Pearl who has been suspended from school for drinking. Cassie leaves it to Adam to watch over Pearl for the week and keep her out of trouble. She also leaves Adam with the task of telling Pearl that their marriage is ending. The play explores our relationship to our surroundings and habitat. It also delves into the way we experience the end of relationships, childhood, and life itself.


The workshop, led by Frances Limoncelli (Three-time Non-Equity Jeff Award Winner—New Adaptation), will be focused on the playwright and giving them what they need to move their script toward being production-ready. The workshop received over 330 submissions in its first year of existence. The finalists were: Cricket Daniel (Helen on Wheels), Barbera Blumenthal-Ehrlich (Romeo Chang), Stephen Kaplan (Una Casa/ A Home), Aline Lathrop (Trade Show), Jordan Nicole Puckett (Restore), Sylvia Reed (The Mentor), Jon Steinhagen (Cardboard All-Stars), Riley Thomas (The Corkscrew Grove), Laura Toffenetti (Sinkhole), Steve Totland (Home Sick for Rain) and Helen Valenta (We Are All Foreigners Here).


The workshop will take place March 9-15, and will enlist the expert support of two dramaturg mentors, and a panel of special guest directors, artistic directors, and literary managers to provide support, criticism, ideas, and suggestions. The workshop will culminate in a public reading at Mrs. Murphy and Sons Irish Bistro as part of the Route 66 monthly reading series: The Driver’s Seat.


“This new play development workshop is an important next step in our growth as an organization.” says Tovar. “We began last season with the development of Caitlin Parrish’s The Downpour and had great success, but now we have a chance to give meaningful support to a new playwright, and to foster relationships with the playwriting community. Frances is the perfect person to lead this for us and I could not be more excited. We hope it will result in more exciting new plays for future seasons.”


Since its inception, Route 66 Theatre Company has always involved its patrons in the season selection process with The Driver’s Seat. “We’ve always chosen plays to produce that were given a public reading first because in the end, we are doing the work for our patrons who come to see us. I’ve always believed in putting our patrons in “The Driver’s Seat” for our season selection because it is crucial to choosing important work that is topical and meaningful for them, while creating a sense of family. Beth Murphy and Mrs. Murphy and Sons Irish Bistro established a beautiful venue to continue the monthly tradition of reading new plays.”




Route 66 New Play Development Workshop


Curated by Frances Limoncelli


Workshop: March 9 – March 16, 2015


Public Reading: Monday, March 16, 2015 8PM

Mrs. Murphy and Sons Irish Bistro

Admission to the public reading is FREE


About our Creative Team:


Frances Limoncelli (Curator, New Play Development Workshop) has been working in the Chicago theatre community for over 20 years, and has been a member of Lifeline Theatre’s artistic ensemble since 1995. As an adaptor she created Mrs. Caliban (Jeff Award nomination: New Adaptation), as well as the popular Dorothy L. Sayers series: Whose Body?, Strong Poison (Non-Equity Jeff Award: New Adaptation), Gaudy Night (Non-Equity Jeff Award: New Adaptation), and Busman’s Honeymoon (Non-Equity Jeff Award: New Adaptation), all for Lifeline’s Mainstage. For Lifeline’s KidSeries she created The Emperor’s New Threads; Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch; and Arnie the Doughnut with composer/lyricist George Howe, which was a Next Link Selection in the 2012 NY Musical Theatre Festival. Her plays have been seen in such regional theatres as the Cleveland Playhouse in Ohio, the PTC Performance Space in New York, Taproot Theatre in Seattle, and the Manitoba Theatre Center in Winnipeg. Frances teaches adaptation at Chicago Dramatists and as a guest lecturer at DePaul. She is a script evaluator for Steppenwolf Theatre and served as dramaturg for The Lord Of The Flies with Steppenwolf for Young Adults.


Jenni Lamb (Playwright) Jenni is a Chicago-based playwright and former improviser. Her plays include 12th and Clairmount, Candy Store, Memento Polonia, Period Piece (with Lisa LInke), Suicide Kills, Quiver, and Thou Proud Dream (with Damon Krometis). Jenni’s plays have had readings or productions with American Theater Company, Stage Left Theatre, Wordsmyth Theatre (Houston), Northwestern University, and Chicago Dramatists. Jenni is a two-time semi-finalist for the O’Neill Playwrights Conference and has received grants for her writing from the Illinois Arts Council. As an improviser, she performed on many Chicago stages as well as national comedy festivals in New York, Washington DC, and Los Angeles. She is a proud member of Living Room Playmakers, a collective focused on creating theatre in unusual spaces. Jenni holds an MFA in Writing for the Screen and Stage from Northwestern University.

The world premiere of The Downpour by Caitlin Parrish

DOWNPOUR (5 of 8) copy


Now extended through October 19th!

The Downpour…is filled with an intense clutch of performances from some of Chicago’s more unstinting actors…[it’s] quite the September sleeper.”
-Chris Jones
Chicago Tribune
“Impeccably performed…it’s a deeply affecting show.”
-Chicago Reader
“Erica Weiss’s production [is] well-rounded; for a deeply serious play, there are good laughs, awkward moments, and even romance.”
-Time Out Chicago

“The first act left me beautifully shaken…every character is finely drawn and motivationally executed.”

-Newcity Stage
“Caitlin Parrish’s new drama is timely and important… [it’s] an evening of theatre that’s both illuminating and entertaining.”
-Chicago Theatre Review

Route 66 Theatre Company is pleased to present the world premiere of The Downpour, by Caitlin Parrish, directed by Route 66 Theatre Company’s Associate Artistic Director, Erica Weiss. Performances begin September 10 and run through October 12, 2014 at the Greenhouse Theater Center: 2257 N Lincoln Avenue in Chicago.

Tickets are on sale at, by calling 773.404.7336, or in person at the Greenhouse Theater Center box office.


The Downpour features Brenda Barrie (Okay, Bye and Middletown at Steppenwolf; Julius Ceasar at Chicago Shakespeare Theater); Caroline Neff (Steppenwolf’s The Way West; A Brief History of Helen of Troy (Jeff Award recipient-2011) and The Knowledge at Steep Theatre); Peter Moore (Artistic Director of Steep Theatre where recent credits include If There Is I Haven’t Found It Yet and Strangers, Babies) and Route 66 Theatre Company’s Artistic Director, Stef Tovar (A Twist of Water with Route 66, Appropriate at Victory Gardens, 2013 Jeff Award nominee for his portrayal as Luther Billis in Marriott Theatre’s South Pacific).


Hazel survived a harrowing childhood with her older sister, Robin, who stepped up to take care of her at a very young age. When Robin announces that she and her husband are having a baby, the sisters’ relationship explodes in a storm of resentment, mistrust and a fear that history is doomed to repeat itself. From the writer/director team behind the hit A Twist of Water, The Downpour tells a story of a family re-made by terror and made again by love and bravery.


“I’ve been extremely fortunate to find a foothold in television over the last two years,” says playwright Caitlin Parrish, “But there is nothing like coming home and getting back to the artistic partnership that made it all possible. My first play and collaboration with my director and creative partner, Erica Weiss, since A Twist of Water, The Downpour has been in the works for almost two years, and to finally see it realized with this incredible cast, is a thrill. I’m so excited, and I can’t wait for Chicago to see our new work.”

Jagged Little Pill LIVE in Concert!


DO NOT MISS our final concert of 2014!  Monday, September 8th at Martyr’s Pub, Tammy Mader directs Diana Lawrence and her band Diana & the Dishes bring one of the most iconic albums of the 1990s to the stage with an ALL STAR line up of Chicago’s finest Divas: Brianna AguilarAudrey Billings, Molly Callinan, Dara Cameron, Lillian Castillo, Lara Filip, Meghan Murphy, Emily Rogers, Emily Rohm and Bethany ThomasGeneral admission is $20 and the concert starts at 8PM. More details and tickets HERE.

Reading Series Event at Theater Wit: “Gus’s Fashions & Shoes” by Ron Klier

ROUTE 66 THEATRE COMPANY brings you a special FREE Reading Series event:










It’s 1990, and Gus’s Fashions & Shoes is the hippest clothing store in downtown St. Louis. Gangstas, cops, everybody shops at Gus’s. With a crazy cast of characters, including Gus, his son Matty, a narcotics detective, an aspiring rapper, and Jimmy, the little person with a big old imagination — Gus’s Fashions & Shoes is as hilarious as it is combustible. From the director of On An Average Day, Route 66’s inaugural production, comes this play about the family you’re born into, the family you choose, and the difficulties of navigating each.


Route 66 presents a public reading of a play we are workshopping with the help of Aaron Carter (New Play Development Director, Steppenwolf Theatre Company) Annaliese McSweeney (Literary Associate, Stage Left Theatre) and Johnny Clark (Bobby in Route 66’s production of ON AN AVERAGE DAY and Artistic Director of VS. Theatre Company in Los Angeles). We hope you’ll join us!


WHAT: A special FREE Reading Series event
WHERE: THEATER WIT 1229 W. Belmont
WHEN: Wednesday August 13th at 7:30PM


Join us for a talk back after the reading!

Route 66 on the Rooftop!


Murphy’s Bleachers (3655 North Sheffield, Chicago, IL 60613, corner of Waveland and Sheffield)


Click HERE to purchase your tickets today!

You won’t want to miss this great Cubs rivalry in mid-August on the beautiful rooftop at Murphy’s Bleachers. $35 gets you the game and all food and drinks included! All proceeds benefit Route 66…
For you fans of baseball, you REALLY don’t want to miss an opportunity to meet former Cub (and Brewer) JODY GERUT!
 Beginning at 7:00PM, Jody Gerut, a former Cub and Brewer, will be available for a brief Q&A/Signing Session with Route 66 supporters. A native of Elmhurst, Jody spent 8 seasons in the majors with the Indians, Cubs, Pirates, Brewers, and Mariners organizations. Jody was named Rookie of the Year in 2003 by the Sporting News and holds multiple collegiate, Major League and Cooperstown accomplishments. Jody and his family reside in Oak Park. He is a founder of Quick Look Baseball, an online/in-person hitting academy for hitters ages 6 and up, and M.A.P.P. Hitting Systems, a new concept in hitting exclusively taught by Quick Look Baseball‘s Academy Pros.
Event details, FAQs, and tickets HERE

Email for any questions not answered in our FAQs!
Group pricing available upon request.
Can’t find a babysitter?  Kids are welcome, and we have specially priced tickets just for them!
Parking available for an additional charge, please let us know if you are interested.


CICADA closes this weekend!

cicada final week

Performances Thursday and Friday at 8PM, Saturday at 3PM and 7PM, and Sunday at 4:30PM. Tickets HERE!


CICADA opens our 2014 Season!!


Click HERE for tickets and more information!

Our World Premiere of CICADA is Jeff Recommended and a hit with audiences and critics!

“Dye’s voice is most definitely authentic and his understanding of trauma and loss palpable.”  – Chicago Tribune
“Both the quick and the dead are sensitively played by the fine cast of this Route 66 Theatre Company staging.”  –Chicago Reader (RECOMMENDED)
“In a [Erica] Weiss production, the lives and voices inside characters’ minds are just as active and powerful as the characters onstage, and it shows.” –Time Out Chicago
“Jerre Dye’s poetic southern drama rides over waves of angst and anger, laced with moments of unexpected humor. …audiences will find the promise of an exciting new playwright represented in a memorable, thought-provoking production by one of Chicago’s consistently fine theatrical companies.” – Chicago Theatre Review

Written by Jerre Dye and Directed by Associate Artistic Director Erica Weiss, CICADA plays at The Greenhouse Theater Center in Lincoln Park April 9th through May 25th. Get tickets HERE or by calling the box office at 773-404-7336!

Starring Aaron Kirby, Amy Matheny, Robert Breuler, Josh Bywater, Cecelia Wingate, Stacy Stoltz, Melissa Riemer, Susan Monts-Bologna, and Elodie Tougne.
Designed by Brian Sidney Bembridge, Christopher Kriz, Alarie Hammock, and Jesse Gaffney.

This World Premiere produced in association with Hear/Tell Productions was first workshopped at the Voices of the South Theatre in Memphis, TN, and was the 2011 winner of the Bryan Family Foundation Award for Dramatic Literature from the Fellowship of Southern Writers.

Learn more about this exciting world premiere at and we’ll see you at the show!