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Archive for April 15th, 2013

Pfleger to Pols: “Vote for Commonsense Gun Bill or We’ll Vote vs. You”

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Clergy deliver 50,000 petitions to Quinn on “Advocacy Day”

 
walshBy Chinta Strausberg

Saying they are tired of going to funerals, a multi-racial coalition of anti-violence organizations Thursday held a rally in Springfield urging lawmakers to pass the commonsense gun bill with Father Michael L. Pfleger vowing to vote against those who oppose this reform legislation.

Referring to several lawmakers who refused to meet with him, Pfleger, who brought two busloads of supporters wearing blue shirts that said, “Standing Together for Common Sense Gun Laws! Illinois Advocacy Day,” said, “I knew they wouldn’t see us because they don’t ever want to face those who challenge them.”

Referring to Republican House Minority Leader Tom Cross, Pfleger said, “He was in the office, and he said he was going to come out and then he would not come out. That’s what they do. They hide because there is no way in the world they can justify not registering guns and not banning assault weapons. They don’t want to talk.

“But, Cross and all the others who are fighting against us have to understand they are fighting against 95 percent of the people of Illinois, and if they’re not going to vote for us, we’re going to make sure nobody votes for them,” vowed Father Pfleger.

But before leaving Chicago, two busses pulled up to Saint Sabina Church where Pfleger had Pastor Ira Acree, from Greater St. John Bible Church on the West Side minister, to lead supporters in prayer. Saint Sabina partnered with several groups including the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence (ICAHV) headed by executive director Colleen Daley who organized the rally.

His supporters arrived in Springfield armed with signs that read, “Connecticut protected their children, what will Illinois Do”? and “Legislators Protect Our Children! Pass Responsible Gun Laws.” Some were in wheelchairs or walkers.

Father Pfleger who was flanked by Gov. Pat Quinn, State Senator Jacqueline Collins (D-16th), clergy and a number of elected officials, spoke at a press conference held on the steps of the State Capitol.

Placing two boxes of signed petitions in front of the podium, Father Pfleger recalled a recent news report about an elephant that was shot in a drive-by in Mississippi. “It was a federal offense, and it was a $16,000 reward to see who shot the elephant….

“A child was killed last night in Chicago and another one wounded on 112th and it’s not a federal offense and there is no strong gun legislation and nobody knows yet how the other child is doing,”

Pfleger said presenting more than 50,000 petitions to Gov. Quinn. However, Pfleger made it clear that the 50,000 petitions but were “a piece of the 95 percent of Illinois residents who want background checks, 82 percent who support registering guns, titling guns like cars…. These are just a small percentage of what all Illinois want.”

Referring to Newtown, Connecticut shooting where Adam Lanza, 20, massacred 20 children at the Sandy Hook Elementary School and 6 adults, Pfleger said, “Connecticut responded when their children got killed.” He said they want the legislature to support Gov. Quinn in his push to get commonsense gun legislation passed.

Included in the coalition were, Gov. Quinn, Bishop Christopher Epting, the assisting bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago, Pastor Acree, Rev. B. Herbert Martin, Rev. Larry Martin, Hope Church Chicago, Marcinia Richards, executive director of the Peace Coalition Against Violence at Saint Sabina, State Senator Jacqueline Collins (D-16th), Senator Napoleon Harris (D-15th), Senator Dan Kotowski (D-33), Senator Don Harmon (D-39th), State Rep. Esther Golar (D-6th), Ald. Lona Lane (18th), Pam Bosley, from Purpose Over Pain, activist Camiella D. Williams, representatives from The Voices of the Surviving Siblings, and others appealed to those lawmakers who are opposed to the legislation “to do the right thing” and pass the commonsense gun bill.

In giving the invocation, Pastor Acree sent a message to the lawmakers, “We know they have the power of the pen to put in some commonsense gun legislation. We pray that you will make Illinois a model for the rest of the country as we end this epidemic of senseless violence.”

Addressing the crowd, Gov. Quinn turned and looked at the statue of Abraham Lincoln quoting the president remarks he gave in Gettysburg, Penn. on November 19, 1863. “Abraham Lincoln believed in the power of petitions, the power of every day people….” Quinn said the petitions he received “come from the hearts of the people of Illinois” and that there are many “devoted legislators who are committed to the cause of gun safety” like Senator Collins and Senator Harmon.

“What we have to do in the best tradition of Abraham Lincoln’s democracy is to listen to what people are saying all over our state, all over our country that it’s time for gun safety legislation,” Quinn bellowed.

Holding up one of the bills, Quinn said, “We have to make sure we limit high capacity ammunition magazines.”

Quinn told of one mother who lost her son in the Newtown shooting. “She said the killer had 300 bullets. He fired 154 shots in four-minutes because he had a high capacity magazine.” “If you save one life, you save the whole world….” “We’re tired of going to funerals.”

Kotowski told the crowd: “This is the last unregulated consumer industry in the United States of America. Teddy Bears are more regulated than guns. Teddy Bears are tested for sharp edges…. How many children died from Teddy Bears last year? He said the government took steps to protect the children and asked why can’t they do the same thing with guns.

Bishop Epting said more than 3300 people have been killed in the U.S. by gun violence. Hoping that the senators would pass one of the strongest bills in the nation. “We ought to limit guns in places like schools, stadiums, government building and public transportation.

“We must balance the Second Amendment with the rights we have to live in peace and free fear of another life lost to gun violence,” Bishop Epting said.

Representing the Voices of the Surviving Siblings, Victor Velante, 21, whose brother was murdered at the age of 17 at a party, said, “I demand that concealed weapons be banned at public places like casinos” and places that serve alcohol. Others like Debbie Velazquez, 13, in his group told of how her friend was killed when she was 7-years-old. One brother was killed at a gas station when she was 7-years. She wants weapons banned on the CTA.

Holding a sign that said, “Loose guns equals lost lives,” Sandy Baksys said she stands in solidarity with those who have been shot. “I’ve been more upset after every massacre, and I finally couldn’t take it after Newtown, Connecticut…. People have to be heard. There is a silent majority…. This is a public safety issue….” Ted Gieto, a consulting engineer in Springfield, held a sign that said, “Love thy neighbor, not thy gun.”

The crowd shouted, “We deserve a future” prompting Senator Don Harmon (D-39th) to say, “Oak Park has a long and proud tradition for standing for commonsense gun safety laws, and we’re not ready to back down.” He said the focus should be making the children and the community’s safe.

ICAHV Director Daley said commonsense gun laws saves lives, and Rep. Golar, who introduced the commonsense gun bill, sang a song of victory predicting her peers will pass the legislation.

Senator Collins said, “We know every 30-minutes a child or a teen is shot by gun violence, and every 3-hours a child or youth dies from gun violence. We have lost in Chicago more kids to gun violence than soldiers in Iraq. It’s time now to say stop the violence….”

“If America and Illinois can’t stand up for our children, black, white and brown, they don’t stand for anything,” Collins said.

Senator Harris said, “Too many of our children are being gunned down in our streets in our neighborhoods and someone has to take charge and take a stand to protect our children.”

Senator Harris acknowledged “Moms Demand Action” and the many signs of protest. “The time is now for legislators to make a change. Enough is enough. We don’t want our streets to be like the war zones in Iraq or Afghanistan…. We want our streets safe, and we want to stop going to funerals and start going to more graduations. We demand it…,” Senator Harris said.

Rev. B. Herbert Martin, pastor of the Progressive Community Center Church and a member of the Council of Religious Leaders of Metropolitan Chicago, said, in Bronzeville where his church is located “we have seen too much death and dying of children. Too many mothers and fathers following caskets to the cemeteries. It should be in reverse. Children should bury their parents….”

Rev. Martin referred to a similar fight in Washington where the Senate voted 68-31 to begin debating on a gun bill that will include background checks. The filibuster has ended and the debates are now beginning.

In the interim, Mary Long, one of the mothers at the Springfield rally who lost her son, Eric Williams, 25, on March 12, 2012 as he came out of Shark’s Chicken at 79th and Ingleside, wants the bill passed.

Her son was shot seven times. “The case has not been solved yet. I want the lawmakers to know that we’re not going to stand for them not representing them. I don’t understand what’s hard about commonsense….”

On Father Pfleger’s busses supporters passed out talking points and instructions on lobbying legislators who are opposed to commonsense gun laws.

Referring to the December 2012 7th Circuit Court of Appellate ruling giving the Illinois General Assembly 180-days to implement some form of concealed carry legislation, the Illinois Council on Handgun Against Violence (ICHV) joined Pfleger in his fight to lobby lawmakers to do the right thing and pass a bill he hopes will reduce violence and homicides in Chicago.

Pfleger and ICHV are demanding that any legislation proposed should allow local law enforcement to control who gets a permit, better known as a “May” issue. They also want included in the bill a provision asking the applicant to provide a “good cause” for wanting a gun.

Other provisions sought by Pfleger and the commonsense advocates include: universal background checks on all gun purchases and transfers, reporting of lost or stolen firearms to law enforcement and titling guns like cars.

But they also are demanding that any legislation include the banning of guns in the following places: stadiums, casinos, public transportation college campuses and all schools, at festivals and street fairs and places that serve alcohol.

They are also demanding that there be no reciprocity of carry permits with other states. A recent polls show that 95 percent of Illinois voters support a background check on the sale of every gun, 93 percent support mandatory reporting of lost or stolen guns, 82 percent support registering guns and 78 percent agree those wanting a gun permit should have a good cause.

Photo: Chinta Strausberg

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com. 

Teen Pleads Guilty and Receives 32 Years in Prison for CTA Brown Line Murder and Robberies

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

A 19-year-old man has been sentenced to 32 years in prison for an incident that caused the death of a 68-year-old woman at a CTA train stop, as he fled after stealing the cell phone of another passenger in 2011, according to the office of Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez.

Prince Watson, 19 of Chicago pled guilty to one count of First Degree Murder and two counts of Robbery for killing Sally Katona-King during a robbery at a CTA Brown line train station and for other two separate robberies on the CTA Brown line in 2011. 

According to prosecutors, on March 28, 2011 at 4:19 p.m. as the Brown Line train pulled into the Fullerton Station, Watson reached from behind a 37-year-old woman and grabbed her iPhone from her hands. The woman struggled with the defendant for control of the phone but Watson was able to take it from her.

The defendant then fled onto the platform and towards the stairs to the street.  The platform and stairs were very crowded and the defendant pushed and shoved his way through the crowd to get away. As Katona-King descended the stairs, she was pushed by Watson who was trying to get to the street.  The victim then fell down the stairs and suffered multiple massive injuries including a broken nose, fractured left clavicle, multiple rib fractures, cerebral contusions and bleeding.  She was treated at Illinois Masonic hospital but died the next day from her injuries.

Watson also pled guilty today and was sentenced for two other robberies on CTA Brown line stations in 2011: The first incident occurred on April 6, 2011 at the Brown Line train station at Armitage when Watson grabbed a female victim’s iPhone and struggled with her for control.  Once he had possession, the defendant fled to the platform and was chased by several witnesses. Watson dropped the phone before getting away.  He was identified by witnesses and the victim.

In the second incident, on April 17, 2011 as the Brown Line pulled into the Sedgewick Station, Watson grabbed a female victim’s iPhone, forcibly removing it from her hands.  The defendant then fled the train chased by the victim but he was able to escape.  Watson was later identified by the victim in lineups.

According to prosecutors, Watson was convicted of another iPhone robbery on the CTA Red Line in May 2011. In that case, he was sentenced to four years in prison with a recommendation for boot camp.

Cook County Judge James Linn sentenced Watson to the 32 year prison term during a hearing at the George Leighton Criminal Courts Building.

State’s Attorney Alvarez thanked Assistant State’s Attorney Christa Bowden for her handling of the case.

Emmett parents to hold press conference, demonstrate against Board of Education

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

CHICAGO, IL – Emmett Elementary School parents, staff, teachers, students and community members will defiantly demonstrate to save their school at the Board of Education community hearing on Monday, April 15. Chicago Public Schools has proposed that Emmett Elementary be closed and the students be funneled to Ellington Elementary School despite parent, teacher, staff and community outcry.

“We will stand up to the Board of Education and tell them their data is inaccurate and biased: Emmett can only be considered under-utilized because CPS has denied us funding for more teachers and classrooms; Emmett doesn’t have air-conditioning because CPS has denied us money for it,” said Tammie Vinson, an Emmett teacher.

“CPS has coordinated years-long, well-organized attacks on Chicago’s children’s future,” said Lettrice Jamison, Local School Council president.

The parents, teachers, staff, students, and community members will present accurate information about how Emettt has outperformed other schools, despite limitations inflicted by CPS funding. The group will then demonstrate against the hearing and the Board of Education.

Emmett students have already received reassignment slips to Ellington and other schools.

“These hearings are kangaroo hearings. They’re for show and mean nothing. CPS isn’t listening to us, they haven’t listened to us about air conditioning and more teachers, why would they listen to us about keeping Emmett open?” said Vinson.

The schedule is as follows:

5 p.m.: Press Conference

7:30 p.m.: Presentation to Board of Education representatives at community hearing, Austin High School 231 N. Pine, Chicago

7:40p.m.: Demonstration at Board of Education community hearing Austin High School 231 N. Pine, Chicago

For more information, contact Tammie Vinson, 708-299-9248. Greg Goodman, 248-770-2760.

Lt. Governor Simon announces transparency initiative

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

As tax filing deadline nears, Simon introduces taxpayer receipt 

 

CHICAGO, IL – As Illinois residents prepare to meet today’s deadline to file their taxes, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon is calling for more transparency on how income tax dollars are spent. Simon wants taxpayers who file online to receive an itemized receipt that illustrates where their money goes and how it fits into the state’s multi-billion budget.

“When you buy groceries, you automatically receive a receipt outlining how your money was spent,” Simon said. “Taxpayers deserve the same clear information on how the state spends their money on education, prisons and pensions.”

Simon’s office is working with the Department of Revenue and the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget (GOMB) to design a taxpayer receipt, which will be introduced before the start of the next tax filing season in January. The taxpayer receipt will be available to the roughly 500,000 residents who file online for free, and a webpage will be available to those who file by other means.

“This new feature will give taxpayers a better understanding of how Illinois spends tax dollars on schools, public safety and the services they and their neighbors rely on,” said Assistant Budget Director Abdon Pallasch.

Simon will also work with Revenue and GOMB to ensure that the receipt is created and made available annually. This transparency initiative comes at no cost to the taxpayer.

Simon’s office offered a sample receipt for a taxpayer who pays $1,000 in income taxes to the state.

The illustration should help taxpayers understand the state’s growing pension obligations and the strain that places on other areas such as Medicaid and the state’s backlog of unpaid bills, Simon said. It also reflects the state’s move toward “Budgeting for Results,” a budget system that aligns spending with how effectively a service or program achieves its objectives – rather than spending being based on historical funding.

A similar taxpayer receipt has been proposed at the federal level by Congressman Mike Quigley, and the White House has operated a taxpayer calculator as shown here.

Second grade Joliet teacher named 2012 National Milken Educator

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Surprise announcement recognizes teacher for her success as role model for students and peers 

 

JOLIET, IL – The Illinois State Board of Education and the Milken Family Foundation announced today that Stephanie Hawkins, a second-grade teacher at Lynne Thigpen Elementary School in Joliet, has been chosen as the Illinois recipient of the Milken National Educator Award. Hawkins will receive $25,000 as part of the award.

“We are thrilled to join the Milken Foundation in recognizing another outstanding Illinois teacher,” said State Superintendent of Education Christopher A. Koch. “Stephanie is known among her peers and school community for employing a wide variety of strategies to reach all students. Today, she’s getting some well-deserved credit for her quiet can-do attitude.”

An educator for seven years, Hawkins has just been at Lynne Thigpen in Joliet Public Schools District 86 for two years but has already proven to be an invaluable member of the faculty and committees focused on curriculum and school improvement, according to Principal Kimberly Gordon. Through research and innovation, Hawkins excels at differentiating instruction so that every child gets the support he or she needs in order to learn and succeed. Her efforts helped two students who were nearly retained at their grade level become above average readers, Gordon said.

“She doesn’t give up, she’s strategic and thoughtful about what will work for each individual student,’’ Gordon said. “She’s always open to new ideas. If I would pass on an article about a new reading strategy, she would read it, devour it, apply it and work with our team to get on board with it.”

Gordon also cited Hawkins’ calm and respectful demeanor, saying students emulate her – even when they’re out of her sight. At the same time, Gordon said that Hawkins exhibits strong leadership skills.

“She’s not afraid to challenge the status quo,” Gordon said. “Even as a new teacher in the building, she’s willing to stand up for what she believes in.”

The Milken National Educator Award is given annually to teachers demonstrating exemplary skills and a personal commitment to education. Each winner receives $25,000 from the Milken Family Foundation.

To date, more than 2,500 educators across the country have been awarded a total of more than $63 million in individual, unrestricted awards. Started in 1987, Illinois joined the Milken Educator Awards program in 1988 and there have now been 111 Illinois Milken National Educators. Last year’s winner was Brad Abel, a social studies teacher from John Hersey High School of Township High School District 214. For more information, visit:

http://www.mff.org/mea/

For the latest news from the Illinois State Board of Education, follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Illinois-State-Board-of-Education/136022251779 or Twitter at https://twitter.com/#!/ISBEnews. Visit the official ISBE website at http://www.isbe.net.

Author Pennie Murray announces release of book, “Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place”

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS
An unexamined perspective for overcoming the learned inhibitions that frustrate and discourage efforts towards success

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — Author, speaker, and emotional clarity coach, Pennie Murray draws on her experiences growing up in a very critical, rules-driven home as well as her academic research and observational knowledge from corporate America to take aim at the learned inhibitions that sabotage individuals in her newly released book, Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place.

Pennie Murray is the creator of the Giving Myself Permission Initiative (GMSP): that advocates lessening the grip of emotions that sabotage success, and ending the addiction of seeking the approval of others. In this book, she offers an unexamined perspective of early examples of permission-seeking conditioning: “Consider this: Mother, May I? Simon Says…. Red light/Green light. On the surface, these are just silly games. But their message resounds – “do not act without permission; if you do, you are out!” Events that seem entirely innocent in fact have the potential to leave the mark of self-doubt on individuals for life.”

Murray describes Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place as a transformative, self-coaching book that addresses the five emotions that discourage our efforts towards success. She details three transformational shifts that provide the clarity to put fear and doubt in their place. In her sometimes humorous, yet always frank and inspiring way, Murray exposes the culprits of self-sabotage, while also offering useful exercises that challenge our basic assumptions and conditioning. Giving Myself Permission is more than a book title; it’s a higher level of living.

Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place is available in paperback at all online retailers. Autographed and multiple copies are available exclusively on the author’s website. The book is also available through major distributors. Electronic version is available in Kindle, Nook Book, Sony Reader, eBookIt.com, and other e-book readers. [ISBN 978-0965194228]

Pennie’s various careers as a police officer, radio talk show host, business owner, and corporate trainer have shaped her passion for helping others manage the emotional side of their success. She is a speaker, certified NLP coach, and author of the book, Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place and the audio CD, Asking for Richer Ground: The Power of Your Words. Pennie is also the creator of the Giving Myself Permission (GMSP) Initiative and Emotional Clarity Workshops(TM).

For more information about Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place, please visit the website at http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?e=001voSnuZ2F5wj9aDLhwiX61O22aIU6zWj3NVyfdTNVpH_3dkAyjSnxeLdKfvzOmnDZiA13OiHN6obix9ZRVa9arI8BwCyUfx1hU2NHn12ZY6bSmpGjf3qZUn0lbzfjAjkk.

Photo Caption: Bookcover

Cedric the Entertainer, the “Original King of Comedy”, to perform live in Columbus, Ohio

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — Get ready Columbus, Ohio! The Original King of Comedy will be in the city live 8:00pm, Saturday, May 11, 2013 at the Palace Theatre. Get ready to be entertained and laughing out of your seat. You’ve seen them both on B.E.T. – Malik S and JJ will also be in the building. Tickets go on sale Saturday, April 6th, and can be purchased at http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp e=001c9rQ3wYaCg95gQcGDpV8oUny1al4KfLUh151cL_LIM8fY-3vRNs64P4cTjD1bHqJ1OSqbuizgbE7iJUKa1LNKegYx9usplgrIszrdSaqFIVWYMVqIaAbGw== or 1-800-745-3000. Tickets are also available at the CAPA Ticket Center on 39 E. State St or 614-469-0939.

Prices: $39.50 and $47.50

Cedric The Entertainer is perhaps most widely known for his work on the record-breaking “Kings of Comedy” tour with Steve Harvey, the late Bernie Mac, and D.L. Hughley. The highly successful tour led to the hit film “The Original Kings of Comedy,” which was directed by Spike Lee. Other film credits include “Barbershop” (2002), “Ice Age” (2002), “Intolerable Cruelty” (2003), “Johnson Family Vacation” (2004), “Madagascar” (2005), “Be Cool” (2005), “Charlotte’s Web” (2006), “Talk to Me” (2007), “Street Kings” (2008), “Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa” (2008), “Larry Crowne” (2011), “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted” (2012), and the current comedy-horror spoof, “A Haunted House” (2013), among others.

Still at the top of his game, Cedric can be seen in the TV sitcom “The Soul Man,” starring as Rev. Boyce “The Voice” Ballentine, a spin-off character that originated from a guest appearance on “Hot In Cleveland.” Cedric is doing big things; he was recently named the new host of “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”, which airs this fall.

Don’t miss THE KING OF COMEDY! Get your tickets now!

“Bluebugging” on the rise as Bluetooth usage increases

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

CHICAGO, IL – Chicago has taken a stance against driving with hand held cellphones and passed a prohibitive law in 2005. Many surrounding states, 10 in total, have also passed similar laws. As a result, drivers are turning to use Bluetooth technology to talk hands-free. The Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois (BBB) warn that scammers are finding ways to exploit this technology for their gains.

Scammers have a new technique called “bluebugging” to gain access to sensitive information stored in cellphones. Through special software the scammer intercepts the Bluetooth signal to hack into the cellphone and gain access to contacts, photos, text messages and call history. Scammers have the most success “bluebugging” while in busy areas and the new trend is to set up pay-per-minute numbers on the hacked phone to rack up charges.

 

“As technology becomes more advanced, scammers evolve to find new ways to access personal information through technology,” said Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois. “It is important to understand how scammers access this information to protect against it.”

 

The BBB offers tips to protect against “bluebugging”:

  • Passwords. Always use a minimum of eight characters in your PIN. The longer your code, the more difficult it is to crack.
  • Sign-off. Switch your Bluetooth into “not discoverable” mode when you aren’t using it. If you make a call from your car, be sure to switch it off when you get out.
  • Be wary of unknown requests. Don’t accept pairing requests from unknown parties. If you happen to pair your phone with a hacker’s computer, then all your data is at risk.
  • Stay updated.
    Make sure you download and install regular security updates. Keeping your phone updated is an important way to protect it.

For more consumer advice you can trust and to check out a moving company near you, visit www.bbb.org

 

Steppenwolf Theatre Company stages Chicago Premiere of “Slowgirl” by Greg Pierce featuring Ensemble member William Petersen

Posted by Newsroom On April - 15 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS
 
Ensemble member Randall Arney directs Petersen with Rae Gray in The Upstairs Theatre, July 18 – August 25, 2013 
 
 
CHICAGO, IL  – Steppenwolf Theatre Company ensemble member Randall Arney directs fellow ensemble member William Petersen with Rae Gray this summer in Slowgirl by Greg Pierce. Performances of this Chicago premiere are in Steppenwolf’s newly reconfigured Upstairs Theatre (1650 N Halsted St). Slowgirl begins previews July 18, 2013 (opening night is July 28; press performances are July 27 at 3pm and July 31 at 7:30pm) and runs through August 25. Tickets ($20 – $78) go on sale May 3 to the public through Audience Services (1650 N Halsted St), 312-335-1650 and steppenwolf.org.
The production team for Slowgirl includes: Takeshi Kata (scenic design), Janice Pytel (costume design), Daniel Ionazzi (lighting design) and Richard Woodbury (sound design). Additional credits include: Erica Daniels (casting), Laura D. Glenn (stage manager) and Brianna Perry (production assistant).
           
Title                                         Slowgirl
Author                                      Greg Pierce
Director                                    Ensemble member Randall Arney
Featuring                                 Ensemble member William Petersen with Rae Gray
 
Location                                   Steppenwolf Upstairs Theatre, 1650 N Halsted St 
Dates                                        Previews: July 18 – 27
Press Performances: July 27 at 3pm and July 31 at 7:30pm
                                                            Opening: July 28 at 3pm
Regular Run: July 28 – August 25, 2013
Accessible Performances         Audio Description and Touch Tour: August 4 at 1:30pm (3pm performance)
Open Captioning: August 11 at 3pm 
American Sign Language Interpretation: August 16 at 7:30pm
 
Curtain Times                         Wednesday through Saturday at 7:30pm.
Saturday and Sunday at 3pm.
Note: The 3pm performance on July 28 is by invitation only.
                                                                                                                            
Ticket prices                            Previews: $20 – $52
                                                            Regular Run: $20 – $78
20 for $20: Twenty $20 tickets are available on the day of the performance at 11am (Wed – Sat) and 1pm (Sun), by phone only at 312-335-1650. Limit 2 per person.
Rush Tickets: Half-price rush tickets are available one hour before each show.
 
Student Discounts: Limited $15 student tickets are available online. (Limit 2 tickets. Must present a valid student ID for each ticket). For additional student discounts, visit steppenwolf.org/students.
Group Tickets: All groups of 10 or more receive a discounted rate for any performance throughout the season.
 
Audience Services                   1650 N Halsted St, 312-335-1650
Online ticketing available at steppenwolf.org
 
Free post-show discussions are offered after every performance in the Subscription Season. Steppenwolf is located near all forms of public transportation and is wheelchair accessible. Street and lot parking are available. Assistive listening devices and large-print programs are available for every performance.
 
Steppenwolf Theatre Company is America’s longest standing, most distinguished ensemble theater, producing nearly 700 performances and events annually in its three Chicago theater spaces—the 515-seat Downstairs Theatre, the 299-seat Upstairs Theatre and the 80-seat Garage Theatre. Formed in 1976 by a collective of actors, Steppenwolf has grown into an ensemble of 43 actors, writers and directors. Artistic programming at Steppenwolf includes a five-play Subscription Season, a two-play Steppenwolf for Young Adults season and three repertory series: First Look Repertory of New Work, Garage Rep and Next Up. While firmly grounded in the Chicago community, nearly 40 original Steppenwolf productions have enjoyed success both nationally and internationally, including Off-Broadway, Broadway, London, Sydney and Dublin. Steppenwolf has the distinction of being the only theater to receive the National Medal of Arts, in addition to numerous other prestigious honors including an Illinois Arts Legend Award and nine Tony Awards. Martha Lavey is the Artistic Director and David Hawkanson is the Executive Director. Nora Daley is Chair of Steppenwolf’s Board of Trustees. For additional information, visit steppenwolf.org, facebook.com/steppenwolftheatre and twitter.com/steppenwolfthtr.
 
Currently on stage are the world premiere of Head of Passes by ensemble member Tarell Alvin McCraney, directed by ensemble member Tina Landau (through June 9, 2013) in the Downstairs Theatre (1650 N Halsted St); The Birthday Party by Harold Pinter, directed by ensemble member Austin Pendleton (through April 28, 2013) in the Upstairs Theatre (1650 N Halsted St); and Garage Rep, featuring BlackTop Sky by Christina Anderson, directed by Cassy Sanders, presented by Theatre Seven of Chicago; See What I Wanna See, words and music by Michael John LaChiusa, directed by Lili-Anne Brown, music direction by James Morehead; and She Kills Monsters by Qui Nguyen, directed by Scott Weinstein, presented by Buzz22 Chicago (through April 21, 2013) in the Garage Theatre (1624 N Halsted St). The 2012/13 Subscription Season concludes with Belleville by Amy Herzog, directed by Anne Kauffman (June 27 – August 25, 2013) in the Downstairs Theatre.

In the wake of a harrowing accident at a house party in Massachusetts, a teenager flees to her uncle’s isolated retreat in the Costa Rican jungle to await, or avoid, the repercussions. As the reclusive Sterling (Petersen) and his impulsive niece (Gray) get reacquainted over the course of a week, startling details about their pasts slowly unfold. Performed in the newly configured intimate Upstairs Theatre, Slowgirl is a compelling story about owning your past—and getting on with your life.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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