About UTC

Mission

UrbanTheater Company (UTC) is committed to the creation and exploration of urban-inspired works that convey, illuminate and empathize with the human experience. The multicultural company was founded in 2005 by a Latino ensemble deeply rooted in their community and culture, who through performance art bring awareness to the social issues impacting Chicago communities. As a platform for multicultural representation in the performance arena, UTC serves as a bridge between Chicago performing artistic, our respective communities and the youth we work with. Although UTC operates with an intrinsic focus on creating new works, we also engage in performing classic plays and contemporary adaptations.

History

UrbanTheater Company (UTC) was founded in 2005 by a Latino ensemble deeply rooted in their community and culture. In 2005, UTC presented its inaugural production of Miguel Piñero’s 1974 Drama Critics Circle Award and Obie Award winning play Short Eyes, directed by Court Theatre’s Resident Artist/Director Ron OJ Parson. The theatrical communities support of UTC’s inaugural offering, and the critical success of Short Eyes led to UTC dedicating it’s Premiere Season to producing the Major Plays of Miguel Piñero. In 2006, UTC produced two Piñero plays, both Midwest Premieres: The Sun Always Shines for the Cool, directed by UTC Co-Founder Madrid St. Angelo and ‘Eulogy for A Small Time Thief’, directed by Collaboraction Theater’s Joel Moormon. Both plays were critically acclaimed by Chicago’s theatrical community and garnered UTC with two awards and citations: Performink and Gay Chicago’s Top Ten Best of the Year, The Sun Always Shines for the Cool; After Dark Best Actor and Best Set Design, UTC Co-Founder, Ivan Vega and Jorge Félix, respectively. UTC also participated in Suzan-Lori Parks groundbreaking 365 Days/Plays. In 2007, UTC brought to light and stage the Midwest Premiere of Elizabeth Swados urban Musical Runaways, directed by Nikkieli DeMone.

UrbanTheater Company is committed to high quality artistic programming. In 2008, UTC participated in the Goodman Theatre’s Latino Theatre Festival demonstrating the company’s sustainability by performing selections of it’s earlier work to a full house. In 2009, UTC unveiled it’s partnership with two exciting playwrights, Wysteria Edwards and Judy Veramendi, by presenting the World Premiere of Broken Thread by Edwards and the acclaimed Instituto Cervantes sponsored The Empty Chalices by Veramendi. In 2009 UTC demonstrated the strength of it’s ensemble and mission with a powerful Midwest Premiere of Reinaldo Povod’s, Cuba and His Teddy Bear, featuring Madrid St. Angelo (Joseph Cuba) and Ivan Vega (Redlights), directed by UTC Co-Founder Marilyn Camacho and set design by Jorge Félix. This production garnered UTC with it’s first Joseph Jefferson Recommendation and performed to sold out houses.

As a platform for multicultural representation in the arena of performance and story-telling, UTC serves as a bridge between artists of all mediums, our varying and respective communities of color and our communities’ youth. UTC engages itself in the work of community responsibility and has worked to raise awareness concerning many of the social issues facing our diverse backgrounds. Although UTC operates with an intrinsic focus on creating rarely produced and new works, we also engage in performing classic plays and contemporary adaptations. Marking it’s 5th year of operation, UTC is excited to announce it’s 2010 Season offering of the Midwest Premiere of Academy Award nominated screenwriter and renowned playwright Jose Rivera’s, Brainpeople, directed by Marti Lyons.