SPF 13: Greater Illinois

Saturday, July 9th @ 8:00 PM PST
Written By Steven Strafford
Directed By Andre Barron

A woman standing her ground, a gay man terrified for his life, the ghosts that haunt them, and what lengths we’ll go to seek justice. Greater Illinois tells two stories interwoven that examine the intersections of fear, race, homophobia, and The Greater Illinois Council, a government agency insistent on “making a brighter tomorrow today,” no matter the human cost. Greater Illinois is the story of who chooses fight, flight, or freeze and what happens when they choose.

Workshop, Great Plains Theater Commons, May 2022
Workshop, Tantrum East, November 2021
Workshop, Ohio University, February 2021
Workshop, 16th Street Theater, September 2020
Workshop, Great Plains Theatre Conf. June 2022
Official selection, MATC, March 2022

Steven Strafford is a playwright and actor. He is the author and performer of the award-winning solo show, Methtacular! which he has performed across the country. Methtacular! was filmed at Steppenwolf Theatre in 2019. His play Small Jokes About Monsters won the 2016 New American Voices and was a semifinalist for The O’Neill. Small Jokes About Monsters received productions in Chicago, Houston (nominated, Outstanding New Play) and Sioux City. In 2022, it won the Ready to Publish award and will be licensed and published by Broadway Licensing. His play Greater Illinois was a finalist for the Jackie Demaline New Play Award and a semi-finalist at The O’Neill. Greater Illinois is an official selection for Great Plains Theater Conference and MATC in 2022 and won the Tantrum East New Play Contest in 2021. His play The Match Game won the 2022 Jackie Demaline New Play Award.

Andre Barron

SPF welcomes Road Theatre Director Andre Barron back to our festival for the 8th time!

Andre Barron is an award-winning director/producer/actor who recently received Broadway World’s Best Direction Award for Edward Albee’s “The Play About The Baby” (Critic’s Choice, LA Times) at The Road Theatre Company. Other Acclaimed productions there include: West Coast Premiere “A Delicate Ship” by Anna Ziegler (Critic’s Choice LA Times), West Coast Premiere “Broken Fences” (NAACP Nomination) by Steven Simoncic, LA Premiere “The Other Place” by Sharr White (Critic’s Choice, LA Times), West Coast Premiere “Little Children Dream Of God” (13 Broadway World 2017 Nominations) by Jeff Augustin and LA Premiere “Things Being What They Are” by Wendy MacLeod as resident director at The Road Theatre Company. Barron has directed extensively in Los Angeles theatre and abroad. The live stage show “ I Ted E “ he directed for comedian David Strassman is currently on tour in Australia. Other LA credits include: “Fernando Richardson’s Treacherous Brain” by Monica Trasandes (LA Weekly GO) at The Open Fist, “The Ice-Breaker” by David Rambo, “Dreams Of The Washer King” by Christopher Wall & “Some Of My Parts” by Dari Mackenzie, “Rosen’s Son” by Joe Pintauro (Critic’s Choice LA Times), “A Death In Bethany” by Garry Williams & “Bedside Companion” by Mary Steelsmith at Theatre 40.

“Greater Illinois”

Donielle – Cherish Monique Duke*
Evan – Sedale Threatt Jr.
Wanda – Cheryl Francis Harrington*
Patrick – Danny Lee Gomez*
Mac – Blake Young-Fountain*
The Attendant – Susan Wilder
Ben – Eric Renna
Stage Directions – Dirk Etchison*

*Road Company Member