Season 34

What of the Night?

by María Irene Fornés
directed by Carlos Murillo
a co-production with Cor Theatre

January 8 – February 12, 2017

Previews: 1/10 & 1/11 @7:30pm, 1/8 @3pm
Opening: Thursday, 1/12 @7:30pm
Regular Run: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays @ 7:30pm; Sundays at 3pm

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Please note that this show contains explicit violence and sexual content. For mature audiences only.

The celebrated Cuban-American writer María Irene Fornés’s play, What of the Night?, is about sex, power, institutional failure, human frailty, betrayal, dreams and madness. A Pulitzer Prize finalist, it follows an extended family whose lives are intertwined even as they try to escape the ties that bind them. When the just-married 14-year-old Birdie leaves her impoverished home to seek a better life, she unwittingly sets in motion a sprawling epic told in intimate vignettes that spans across time and geography. Rainbow finds love. Charlie finds solace in loyalty. Ray finds the trappings of success. Though their yearnings are briefly rewarded, the lyrical story lays bare the difference between the hunger of the soul and the hunger of the ego.


Ray: Nelson Rodriguez
Birdie: Dionne Addai
Helena/Leah: Kate Black-Spence*
Rainbow: Kathryn Acosta
Charlie: Casey Morris
Joseph: Stephen Loch
Nadine/Reba: Tosha Fowler^
Greta: Allyce Torres
Pete: Miguel Nunez
Understudy: Graham Carlson
Understudy: Megan Caton
Understudy: Morgan Cohen
Understudy: Danny Dauphin



Production Team:

Stage Manager: Zoe Benditt
Production Manager: Michael Starcher*
Scenic/Props Designer: Eleanor Kahn
Lighting Designer: Eric Vigo^
Costume Designer: Brenda Winstead*
Sound DesignerJeffrey Levin^
Technical Director
Matt Super
Assistant Director: Jen Poulin
Assistant Director: Brittany Gillespie*
Dramaturg: Zev Valancy*
Assistant Stage Manager: Maddie Grubbs
Rehearsal ASM: Briana Schwartz
Assistant Scenic Designer: Tony Santiago
Violence Design: Nick Sandys
Photographer: Ian McLaren*
Graffiti Artist: Anthony Venturini

*Stage Left Company Member   ^ Cor Theatre Company Member


“Right now, “What of the Night?” is being produced in Chicago in an expansive and ambitious production by Stage Left Theatre and Cor Theatre under the direction of the playwright Carlos Murillo, an artist unafraid of risk. This is a heavy night of theater…and the running time is a hefty three hours of intimate involvement with dense work unconcerned with conventional narrative tension…But this is a rare chance to see a difficult but quite profound tetralogy that has been rarely produced since its premiere, a Pulitzer Prize nomination notwithstanding.” Chris Jones, Chicago Tribune

“A sordid family saga… Striking.” Tony Adler, Chicago Reader

“Murillo’s innate understanding and thorough direction created a scaffold to support these actors, elevating their performances and ensuring continual narrative momentum.” Bec Willett, Performink

“Don’t miss out on seeing this rarely-produced but pivotal piece…★★★½” Mark Davidson, Chicago Theater Beat

“Outstanding production design” Hector F. Pascual, Picture This Post

“I believe that WHAT OF THE NIGHT? is the type of theater that is so important because it does require commitment. Not only a commitment of emotion, intellect, and time, but even more a commitment to grow as a society of people and as a community of theater-makers. I encourage you to make that commitment.” Bec Willett, Performink