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David Rosenberg

David Rosenberg Public Relations
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Strawdog Theatre Company Announces Casting for Midwest Premiere of THIRST

CHICAGO (December 5, 2019) – Strawdog Theatre Company is pleased to announce casting for its Midwest premiere of C.A. Johnson’s dystopian drama THIRST, directed by Andrea J. Dymond.

The cast includes Saniyah As-Salaam, Gregory J. Fields, Tamarus Harvell, Laura Resinger, Tracie Taylor and Johnard Washington.

THIRST will play January 9 – February 15, 2020 at 1802 W Berenice Ave. in Chicago’s North Center neighborhood. Single tickets are currently available at The press opening is Monday, January 13 at 7:30 pm.

After a devastating water shortage and war, Samira and Greta have made a life for themselves and their son Kalil in a clearing in the woods. When Kalil returns home one day without their water rations, Samira and Greta find themselves in conflict with the local political leader. Set in a tense segregated society, Thirst is a complex look at family and love in wartime. C.A. Johnson explores the politics of race and redefines community in this fierce post-apocalyptic story.

Comments Artistic Director Leda Hoffmann, “I am so excited have director Andrea J. Dymond and playwright C.A. Johnson at Strawdog for the second ever production of Thirst. During my interview processes to become Artistic Director at Strawdog, the ensemble brought this play to me and I loved it the first time I read it. Both intimate and epic, this play asks big questions about who we are as a society and what the future brings, by looking at the very specific lives of two women making a home in the woods and their families, past and present.”

The production team to date includes Evan Frank (scenic design), Jos N. Banks (costume design), Adrienne Miikelle (lighting design), Heath Hays* (sound designer), Sam Hubbard* (intimacy and violence design, Jason Fleece (dialect coach), Angela Forshee and Will Pettway (assistant directors), Karissa Murrell Myers (casting director), Paul Cook (production manager), Evan Sposato (technical director) and Jean E. Compton (stage manager).

*Denotes Strawdog ensemble member



Playwright: C.A. Johnson

Director: Andrea J. Dymond

Cast (in alphabetical order): Saniyah As-Salaam (Kalil), Gregory J. Fields (Terrance), Tamarus Harvell (Coolie), Laura Resinger (Greta), Tracie Taylor (Samira) and Johnard Washington (Bankhead).

Understudies: Azaria Adams, Tara Bouldrey, Arthur Lockhart, Bobby C. Owens, Jr., Larry D. Trice III and Kayla White.

Location: Strawdog Theatre Company, 1802 W. Berenice Ave., Chicago

Dates: Previews: Thursday, January 9 at 7:30 pm, Friday, January 10 at 7:30 pm and Sunday, January 12 at 4 pm

Board Night Performance: Saturday, January 11 at 7:30pm

Press performance: Monday, January 13 at 7:30 pm

Regular run: Thursday, January 16 – Saturday, February 15, 2020

Curtain Times: Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 4 pm.

Industry Performance: Monday, January 27 at 7:30 pm

Tickets: Previews $18. Regular run $35. Seniors: $26. Board Night: $55. Tickets are currently available at Half price rush and student tickets available at every performance and other discounts available. Call (773) 644-1380 for details.

About the Artists

C.A. Johnson (Playwright) hails from Metairie Louisiana, but currently lives and writes in Queens, NY. Her plays include Thirst (2017 Kilroys List,The Contemporary American Theater Festival), An American Feast (NYU Playwrights Horizons Theater School), The Climb (2018 Cherry Lane Mentor Project), All The Natalie Portmans (upcoming at MCC Theater in 2020) and Mother Tongue. She is a Core Writer at the Playwrights Center. She was previously the 2018 P73 Playwriting Fellow, The Lark's 2016-17 Van Lier Fellow, a Dramatists Guild Fellow, a member of The Civilians R&D Group, a member of The Working Farm at SPACE on Ryder Farm, a Sundance/Ucross Fellow and a 2018 Sundance Theatre Lab Fellow. Her work has been developed with The Lark, PlayPenn, Luna Stage, Open Bar Theatricals, The Dennis and Victoria Ross Foundation, and The Fire This Time Festival. BA: Smith College MFA: NYU

Andrea J. Dymond (Director) is very pleased to be working at Strawdog, on this fascinating new play. A Chicago-based freelance director, specializing in developing and directing new work, she most recently directed world premieres of The Greatest Theatrical Event...EVER! at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Shepsu Aahku's Black and Blue for MPAACT. Andrea was formerly Resident Director at Victory Gardens Theater, where she directed 11 productions, including 7 world premieres, and helped to develop and launch the The Ignition Festival of New Plays. In addition to directing around Chicago and the U.S., her experience includes literary management, research and production dramaturgy, directing at new works festivals; serving as thesis play advisor for MFA playwrights at Carnegie Mellon University and directing at NNPN’s MFA Playwrights Workshops at the Kennedy Center. A teacher at Columbia College Chicago, Andrea's courses have included Directing, Collaboration, African American Scene Study, Text Analysis, Dramaturgy, Acting and New Play Development. She was also facilitator of the Theodore Ward Award for African American Playwriting.

About Strawdog Theatre Company

Since its founding in 1988, Strawdog Theatre Company has offered Chicagoland the premiere storefront theatre experience and garnered numerous Non-Equity Jeff Awards with its commitment to ensemble acting and an immersive design approach. The celebrated Company develops new work, re-imagines the classics, melds music with theatre, asks provocative questions and delivers their audience the unexpected.

Strawdog Theatre Company is supported in part by The Alphawood Foundation, The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Illinois Arts Council Agency, The MacArthur Funds for Arts & Culture at The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation and the Northcenter Chamber of Commerce.