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Mission

Raven Theatre tells stories of today and the past that connect us to our cultural landscape.

Raven’s commitment to modern drama in all of its forms, as well as its first-class education programming, have helped it remain a cultural cornerstone on the north side of Chicago for 38 years and counting.

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Raven Theatre is in its 39th year of providing revivals of modern dramas and thought-provoking new works to the Northside Chicago community, as well as theatrical education to the children and schools in the surrounding neighborhoods. Founded in 1983, Raven moved into its current home in 2002 with its 85 seat East Stage and its 56 seat Schwartz Stage.

Subscription Series – Raven offers three productions in its subscription series, all in the East Stage, focusing on revivals of works primarily from the late 19th century to the present and including both Chicago and World Premieres.

Educational Programming – Raven provides teaching artists to neighborhood schools for in-school theatrical residencies, a field trip program for elementary school students, a Saturday series of classes for children, and a robust children’s theatrical summer camp program.

With efforts in the community, in neighborhood schools, and on the stage, Raven plays an important part in the city’s cultural landscape.

History

Raven is proud to be a cultural cornerstone of Chicago’s north side, where its artistic excellence is known among theatergoers and artists alike. Long acclaimed for its revivals of classic plays, Raven also gives voice to emerging playwrights whose work will help to shape the theatrical cannon for years to come.

The theater engages the next generation of artists and community leaders through its robust education program, “Take Flight.” Each year, teaching artists help 3,000 students unlock their creative potential through summer camps, field trip programs, and in-school workshops.

Raven works with local elected officials, businesses, and community development organizations to continually offer programs that meet the needs of its neighbors, allowing the theater to remain a destination for theatre and arts education and an artistic home for all who need one.

Land Acknowledgement

Raven Theatre Company resides on the ancestral homelands of an alliance of three Native American nations: Ojibwe, Odawa, and Potawatomi, known collectively as the Council of Three Fires.

Dozens of other tribes, including the Menominee, Miami, and Ho-Chunk nations, called this region home.

Today, thousands of native people continue to live and work in the city colonially known as Chicago.

 

Leadership

Artistic Director

Cody Estle became the Artistic Director at Raven Theatre in November 2017 where he had previously served as the Associate Artistic Director. His directing credits include Sundown, Yellow MoonHow I Learned To Drive (named by Windy City Times as the best of Chicago theatre in 2019), The Gentleman Caller (2019 Jeff Award winning new play by Philip Dawkins), The Assembled PartiesA Loss of Roses (named by Chicago Tribune honorable mention as one of the year’s best in 2016), Dividing the EstateVieux Carré (named by Chicago Tribune as one of the year’s best in 2014), Good Boys and TrueBrighton Beach MemoirsBoy Gets Girl and Dating Walter Dante at Raven Theatre; Damascus at Strawdog Theatre; Five Mile Lake at Shattered Globe Theatre; By the Water (named by Chicago Sun-Times honorable mention as one of the top theatre productions of 2017) at Northlight Theatre; American Hero at First Floor Theatre; Scarcity at Redtwist Theatre; The Seagull and Watch on the Rhine at The Artistic Home; Don’t Go Gentle at Haven Theatre; Uncle Bob at Mary-Arrchie Theatre and Hospitality Suite at Citadel Theatre. He is a member of SDC, serves on the board of directors of the League of Chicago Theatres, and is an alumnus of Columbia College Chicago.

Managing Director

Markie Gray most recently served as the Associate Director of Marketing & Communications at Yale Repertory Theatre. Previous positions include Company Manager for Yale Repertory Theatre, Management Fellow under Susie Medak at Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Production Manager at American Theater Company, and Artistic Producer at First Floor Theater. Originally from Ann Arbor, MI, she spent six years post college working as a producer, production manager, sound designer, stage manager, educator, and performer in Chicago, IL. She is an artistic associate of First Floor Theater, and a recent graduate of the Theater Management MFA Program at Yale School of Drama, where she was a leader of the Womxn’s Voices in Theater affinity group and a member of the Equity Diversity and Inclusion Working Group. She holds a BA from the University of Chicago.

Staff

Lorenzo Blackett, Jr.

Production Manager

Mechelle Moe

Director of Education

Ryan Wiechmann

Marketing Manager

Morgan Wrigley

Facility Manager

Ellen Campbell

Audience Services Manager

Morgan Araujo

Front of House Associate

Amy Carter

Front of House Associate

Jessica Posey

Front of House Associate

Ben Stacy

Front of House Associate

Craig Ymson

Front of House Associate

Board

Raven’s Board of Directors is made up of persons who support theater and who volunteer their time and talent to maintain and strengthen the organization in the fulfillment of its mission.

Stephen Johnson

President

Richard Rodriguez

Vice President

Jeremy Heckman

Treasurer

Nathan Taylor

Secretary

Holly Crilly

Dan De La Cruz

Cody Estle

Stuart Gold

Markie Gray

Kathleen McQueeny

Jeanette Samo

Sally Schwartz

Betsy Shepherd

Noah Sobe

Susan Schaalman Youdovin

Carol Zsolnay