The umbrella title for the 2018 season at Berwyn’s 16th Street Theater is “Heroes,” and it includes five plays about “combat, and those who wield weapons,” asking the question: Who are protected and served, and what are the consequences? The lineup features work by Chicago writers Ike Holter, Aline Lathrop and J. Joseph Cox, along with Kathleen Cahill and Sean Christopher Lewis.
In a prepared statement, Ann Filmer, artistic director of 16th Street Theatre, explained: “Each play features characters who are soldiers, marines or police officers. With current American leadership inspiring violence and hatred, and in a time when distrust dangerously grows, it feels urgent to try to understand those with whom we may not identify—those whose day-to-day existence involves separating out ‘the bad guys’ from ‘the good guys,’ and carrying out the law of the land while wearing a uniform. These are all parts of our real world I understand the least.”
Here is a closer look at the company’s 11th season:
• “HARBUR GATE” (Jan. 11 – Feb 17): The Midwest premiere of Kathleen Cahill’s three interconnected plays about female soldiers involved in an incident during the War in Iraq.
• “THE WOLF AT THE END OF THE BLOCK” (March 29 – May 5): A new production of Ike Holter’s political thriller, directed by Lili-Anne Brown, that is set in Chicago as a boarded-up bar becomes a terrifying crime scene.
• “BLACK AND BLUE” (one night only in March at an alternate location TBA): Sean Christopher Lewis’ play, set in the Fuller Park section of Chicago, about a cop, a suspect and a case still in question a decade after the fact.
• “THE HERO’S WIFE” (July 12 – Aug. 18): Aline Lathrop’s world premiere play, directed by Ann Filmer, about a man who served as a Navy SEAL, and who has a troubled and troubling relationship with his wife.
• “KOALAS” (Sept. 20 – Oct. 27): A play by J. Joseph Cox , directed by Josh Sobel, about a veteran with a dangerous escaped koala living in his backyard and a gender-nonconforming child about whom he is wildly protective.
For additional information and tickets call (708) 795-6704, ext. 107, or visit www.16thstreettheater.org.