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JUL-AUG 2017

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18 J U L Y / A U G U S T 2 0 1 7 in a ring, a horseshoe, a box or another configuration. "It's unbelievable," Clapp said of the venue's design. "They're basically making it a blank canvas for theater." The Steppenwolf Theatre Co. outgrew the church basement and today has about 50 ensemble members and three theaters: the 515-seat Downstairs Theatre, the 299-seat Upstairs The- atre, and the company's newest, the 1700 Theatre, a flexible, intimate 80-seat space dedicated to showing work of ensemble members and emerging local theater companies. W W W . L E A G U E O F C H I C A G O T H E A T R E S . O R G n e w y 's lea d i n g l a d y N ew York City may today be considered the leading lady of live theater in America, but theater didn't establish itself in the city until the 1750s and didn't arrive on Broadway for another century. Today, the lights of Broadway are shining as bright as ever. The 2016-2017 season, which ended in May, brought in audiences of more than 13.2 million, and Broadway shows grossed nearly $1.5 billion. OPENING NIGHT On Broadway, there's something for everyone: Groups will find long-running staples of live theater and debuting newcom- ers that aim to shake up the world of theater. "The Phantom of the Opera" opened in January 1988 at the Majestic Theatre, where it is still playing, with more than 12,200 performances to date. "Chicago" comes in second, with more than 8,500 performances since its opening in November 1996, although in that time, it has been housed in three theaters. It is now playing at the Ambassador Theatre. Along the Great White Way, several new Broadway produc- tions have opened or will be debuting this year, among them "Miss Saigon" at the Broadway Theatre, "Charlie and the Choco- late Factory" at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, "Anastasia" at the Broadhurst Theatre and "Hello, Dolly!" starring Bette Midler at the Shubert Theatre. This fall will bring the Tony Award-winning "M. Butterfly" to the Cort Theatre in the play's first Broadway return, and "Junk" will premiere in New York at the Vivian Beaumont Theater. Spring 2018 will see the opening of "My Fair Lady," "Harry Pot- ter and the Cursed Child" and "Escape to Margaritaville." OFF-BROADWAY Off-Broadway is both a proving ground for aspiring Broadway stars and a training camp for future Broadway hits. The term "off- Broadway" started gaining popularity in the 1950s to describe theaters that were located on a side street intersecting Broadway. On 42nd Street's Theatre Row, the Theatre Row Building houses six smaller studio theaters. The Laurie Beechman The- atre showcases singers, comedians, burlesque and drag shows, and Playwrights Horizons is dedicated to the work of up-and- coming writers. W W W . N Y C G O . C O M 1131 Janesville Ave, Fort Atkinson, WI 53538 800-477-9505 | Superb Musicals | Memorable Dining Family Hospitality | Spectacular Shops Cel ebrat ing our 40th Theatre Season ! 2018 Season On Sale Now! PHANTOM • NEWSIES • 42ND STREET CHURCH BASEMENT LADIES 2 - A Second Helping Disney's THE LITTLE MERMAID • GREASE ELF THE MUSICAL July 27 - Sept 10 Sept 14 - Oct 29 Nov 2 - Dec 23

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