The Hairy Ape

An Artist Life by Bradford Stevens

First day of rehearsal, oh how I love it. The seeing of familiar faces, the meeting of new ones. The exploring of characters, the developing of an ensemble. The beginning of the long journey of creating a play…tis nothing like it. Nothing at all!

I started rehearsal this week for, The Hairy Ape. The classic Eugene O’Neil play being produced by Oracle Theater, here in Chicago. With an all male, African-American cast, it’s a slightly different take on the production. But the central themes of class, and a need to belong are still at play; made more complex with the exploration of race.

Eugene O’Neil Oct 16, 1888 — Nov 27, 1953
First Day of rehearsal: The Table Read

It does my heart good, when art tackles serious issues. Issues many may avoid discussing in everyday life, yet made more approachable in a darkened theater, through the voices of characters on stage. Issues Eugene O’Neil touched on so poetically in the 1920’s, yet are just as relevant today.

I’m looking forward to exploring, “Paddy”, the old seamen with fond memories of the past; and a burning disgust for the present. Looking forward to climbing inside his skin, and connecting with this amazing ensemble of actors. And with our fearless director, Monty Cole at the helm, I have a sneaky suspicion that this show is going to be HOT!

More to come as we get closer to opening, and as always…. Dream Big! Dare to Be Great!

Oracle Theater: 3809 N. Broadway/Chicago, IL

The Hairy Ape: at the Oracle Theater Directed by Monty Cole The ensemble features Oracle Company Member Tony Santiago. He is joined by Julian Parker, Bradford Stevens, Rashaad Hall, Michael Turrentine, and Breon Arzell. Rasell Holt is understudy