Sept. 1, 2023
A New Home at Loyola Park Fieldhouse
Jackalope is so excited to announce that we have officially secured a new home at Loyola Park! For the foreseeable future, you can find our offices, rehearsals, and community events at 1230 W Greenleaf Avenue, on the second floor of the main parks building. Our staff toured the space in July and fell in love immediately- the park features beautiful beaches, fun playgrounds, lush lawns, all while remaining connected to our beloved Edgewater community and our new friends in Rogers Park.
We want to thank all of you for your continued love and support as we navigate this crisis. The flood of messages we received this past week offering kindness, hope, guidance, and encouragement were deeply touching. In addition, the Chicago Parks department has been invaluable in helping us craft our next steps and find a new home, and we look forward to building upon our strong relationship with them as we plan for our future stage productions. Finally, we'd like to thank all of our donors- from our magnificent season sponsors, to those of you who contributed a few dollars to help us keep the lights on, none of what we do would be possible without you. If you'd like to donate to help us rehome, you can do so here.
We'll be announcing our education and performance programming for our 2023-2024 16th season soon.
August 24th, 2023
PRETTY SHAHID Update:
Operational & Production Issues that Led to Cancellation
As we've navigated the changes at the Broadway Armory, we haven’t had the chance to express our gratitude to the Pretty Shahid artists, cast, and production team who worked so hard to create this beautiful play.
As for the cancellation of the production, we take full responsibility for our part in internal communications eventually leading to the show’s cancellation, and recognize the space related obstacles combined into a perfect storm that the company was not prepared to navigate. Though we’ve been having conversations with the team behind the scenes, we’d like to take the time now to share what we've been working on since we've had to abruptly stop the production.
Consultation: We have been working diligently with the help of Greg Geffrard, our phenomenal conflict resolution consultant on a three month contract with JTC, to come to terms with the cancellation ourselves, and to resolve questions, comments, and concerns from the team regarding the way the situation was handled.
Staff: We have been reorganizing our staff with the addition of an interim executive director following the resignation of our managing director. They are strengthening and supporting our existing staff members and preparing new staff roles to be filled this fall.
Board: We’re bringing on some new faces and ensuring more voices that fully represent Jackalope. There’s room at the table. Interested in learning more? You can expect more updates on this soon. Send your inquiries firstname.lastname@example.org to be connected to the board president.
Space: As an arts partner producing in city-owned spaces, we are grateful for this partnership while acknowledging its unique challenges. Being this close to the community also means we are directly affected by it in real time. We learned the value of not taking this for granted and we’ve been in conversations with our partners at the park district about how to proceed. Going forward, productions will be planned with contingency venues and with other safeguards in place to plan for future unforeseen community challenges and interruptions to our shows.
We’re doing our best to look back and mend what we can before looking forward.
July 27th, 2023
We're making space
Read the official Chicago Park District Letter: Here.
As you may have heard, the City of Chicago has officially announced its plan to temporarily house legal asylum seekers at Broadway Armory Park, where Jackalope has produced its mainstage productions since 2013. This shift will be effective at the Armory August 1st, 2023. This emergency, along with other operational issues that we are navigating, resulted in the cancellation of our scheduled world premiere production of Pretty Shahid by Omer Abbas Salem, along with the postponement of our annual gala and our 16th season.
If you are unaware of the State of Emergency declared by the Mayor’s office and the current state of the Chicago migrant crisis, you can read more here. Though the response to asylum seekers disrupting Chicago Park fieldhouse programming in other parts of the city was met with resistance, Jackalope fully intends to respond with the opposite – creating a culture of welcome and support to our new American residents who have endured so much to arrive in this safe place. It is at the very core of our mission to expand the American identity.
It's safe to say that much remains unclear as we navigate this unprecedented national crisis. One thing is for certain: Jackalope is here to stay. We are assured by the strength of our relationship with the Parks department, along with the broader Chicago theatre community, and we are currently working to secure a new home base for the time being. Stay on the lookout for updates as to our new space and future events.