Praise for Steppenwolf's New In-the-Round Theatre
We are delighted to celebrate the completion of Steppenwolf's new Ensemble Theatre in Honor of Helen Zell, the heart of the new Liz and Eric Lefkofsky Arts and Education Center which opened on November 2, 2021. For more information about the project - and our 10+ year partnership with Steppenwolf Theatre Company - visit our Steppenwolf case study page. To read about the theatre in the news, scroll down.
“All the time, all the people, all the hours, all the energy, that is this building's story," [Anna Shapiro, former Artistic Director of Steppenwolf] said. "I hope its story continues to intersect with the Chicago story, with the Illinois story and with each of your stories as long as you can make it through the door.”
“...the heart of the new campus, Flanagan said, is the Round Theater, a six-row, 400-seat room where the stage sits in the center and no audience member will be more than 20 feet from the actors.”
“Glenn Davis, Steppenwolf’s co-artistic director, said the 50,000-square-foot building was the company’s 'love letter to Chicago.' 'This building will allow us to expand our reach across this great city as we operationalize our theater’s commitments to inclusion, diversity, equity and access.'”
“The Ensemble Theater, a 400-seat theater in the round, replaces the former Upstairs venue at Steppenwolf’s Halsted Street campus, which has been reconfigured as a rehearsal space...The new complex was designed by Gordon Gill of Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture, with U.K. firm Charcoalblue handling the theater design and acoustics.”
“...the expanded Steppenwolf campus is a cultural nexus for Chicago—offering bold and ambitious opportunities for creative expression, social exchange, unparalleled accessibility, and arts-driven learning for Chicago youth in The Loft, Steppenwolf’s first-ever dedicated education space.”
“Chicago doesn’t have another space like it—in fact Steppenwolf is leading a renewed charge in defining rooms where dialogue and the immediacy of the performers is paramount.”