February , 2019

EVANSTON, IL - Piccolo Theatre Ensemble's 2014/2015 Season opens this August with SMASH, by Jeffrey ...
Robert A. Clifford, founder and senior partner at Clifford Law Offices, was named the ...
Bi-Weekly Workshops Also Focus on How to Market, Protect, and Find a Home for your ...
More than 30 students from three area high schools recently spent the day at ...
The acclaimed Lira Ensemble, which specializes in Polish music, song and dance, celebrates the opening ...
Soap Box Rants/A WEEKLY COLUMN By Pamela Bratcher-McMillan, President, Chair & CEO, PETAL et al. ...
From: Black Lives Matter Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson announced the planned hiring of 970 more ...
  This year’s assessment features simpler format to improve process and reduce testing times   SPRINGFIELD, IL – ...
  (A Message from the Better Business Bureau)     CHICAGO, IL  - Every year the BBB receives thousands ...
Schools implementing Common Core Standards and moving toward multiple measures to gauge progress   SPRINGFIELD, IL – The ...

Archive for March 21st, 2016

President Obama’s Remarks at U.S. Embassy Meet and Greet — Havana, Cuba

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Melia Habana Hotel
Havana, Cuba

President Barack Obama:  Thank you.  Muchas gracias. Well, it’s so good to see everybody.  Thank you.  Hello, everybody.

Well, as our ambassador — or Chief of Mission just stated, it’s been nearly 90 years since a U.S. President stepped foot in Cuba.  It is wonderful to be here.

Back in 1928, President Coolidge came on a battleship.  It took him three days to get here.  It only took me three hours. For the first time ever, Air Force One has landed in Cuba, and this is our very first stop.  So this is a historic visit, and it’s a historic opportunity to engage directly with the Cuban people and to forge new agreements and commercial deals, to build new ties between our two peoples, and for me to lay out my vision for a future that’s brighter than our past.

Michelle and I wanted to start with all of you because nothing symbolizes better the new relationship between the United States and the Cuban people.  For the first time in more than half a century, as Jeff just noted, the American flag flies over a reopened U.S. embassy.  And having a U.S. embassy here means that we’re able to more effectively advance our interests and our values and understand the Cuban people and their concerns.

I want to thank the outstanding leadership team that’s here, especially our outstanding ambassador, Jeff DeLaurentis, and his wonderful wife, Jennifer.  Give them a big round of applause.  (Applause.)  As well as DCM, Scott Hamilton, and his wife, Isabel.  Give them a big round of applause.  (Applause.)

But most of all, I want to thank all of you, who embody the spirit of friendship and partnership that brings us together today.  We’ve got a lot of proud Americans here, but we also have a lot of proud Cubans.  Como andan?  (Laughter and applause.)

I want to mention three of our Cuban friends who have been a part of your work for decades, including all those years when we only had an Interest Section here.  A guard for 30 years, Carlos Flores. In our visa section, Caridad Castellanos. And a dedicated driver for almost 40 years, Francisco Camargo.

So I know it’s been a pretty busy seven months.  You’ve had to stand up America’s newest embassy, you’ve helped support high-profile visitors from across the administration, and the business community, and now me and Michelle.  And I know your workload is a lot heavier than it was, but I want you to know everything we’ve accomplished so far — more Americans coming to Cuba, more engagement with the Cuban people, civil society, faith groups, entrepreneurs, students, young people, more opportunities for the Cuban people to improve their lives — it’s all happening because of you.  Every single day, you’re bringing the Cuban people and the American people closer together.

So, oftentimes, when I come to embassies it attracts a lot of attention — and this one attracts more attention than usual. But I always say to people that no matter how much people are excited about Michelle’s visit or my visit, the most important ambassadors for the United States are all of you, because you’re the ones who, every day, are interacting with Cubans* people.  You’re helping businesses who are trying to figure out ways that they can start working together.  You’re helping people with visas.  You’re helping people with a whole range of things.  And so the interactions you have end up having the most lasting impact, because it sends a signal of the professionalism and dedication and the kindness and courtesy that I want the American people always to represent.

And so I am so grateful to all of you for the great work that you’ve done.  I’m glad that you had a chance to bring your families here because I always like taking pictures with kids. That’s the future that we hope for — young American children, young Cuban children, by the time they’re adults, our hope is, is that they think it’s natural that a U.S. President should be visiting Cuba, they think it’s natural that the two peoples are working together.  Their future is what we work for so hard, and I’m so grateful to all of you for making it happen.

Thank you very much.  Muchas gracias.

Source: www.whitehouse.gov

Local Republican Leader Appointed to Board of National Federation of Republican Women

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A local Republican woman leader will serve on the Board of Directors of the National Federation of Republican Women (NFRW) during the 2016-2017 term.


NFRW President Carrie Almond has appointed Susan Wynn Bence of Watseka, Illinois to the Board of Directors representing the state of Illinois.


“With the 2016 elections just months away, the NFRW is gearing up to help Republicans across the country win races at the local, state and national levels,” Almond said. “We are pleased that Susan is going to play a key role in this effort by sharing her talents and ideas with our members across the nation.”


Susan joined the NFRW in the late 1990s and has been significantly involved ever since. She is the past president of the Iroquois County Republican Women’s Club. She took office as the President of the Illinois Federation of Republican Women (IFRW) on January 1st. Susan has also served the IFRW as membership chairman prior to becoming the 2nd Vice President in 2014.


Recently, Susan served as the Chief of Staff and Campaign Manager for former State Representative Josh Harms and Chief of Staff to State Representative Tom Bennett before accepting her current position as the Springfield Director for Illinois Lieutenant Governor, Evelyn Sanguinetti.


“I believe that our key mission should include growing our membership and cultivating public awareness on the local, state and national levels,” Susan said. “We need to provide education on Republican values and engage, empower, and encourage woman at all levels to seek public office.”


Founded in 1938, the NFRW has thousands of active members in local clubs across the nation, making it one of the largest women’s political organizations in the country. The grassroots organization works to promote the principles and objectives of the Republican Party, elect Republican candidates, inform the public through political education and activity, and increase the effectiveness of women in the cause of good government.


For more information about the NFRW, visit nfrw.org


Preckwinkle Taps Brian Hamer, Longtime State Revenue Director, As Her New Chief of Staff

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS


Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle today announced the appointment of Brian Hamer as her new Chief of Staff effective March 23.

Hamer brings to the County extensive public sector experience.  Most recently, he served 12 years as Director of the Illinois Department of Revenue, from 2003-15, making him the longest-serving Revenue Director in Illinois history.

“I am grateful that Brian has agreed to join our team,” Preckwinkle said. “His substantial management experience, his thorough understanding of finance, his passion for public service, and his collaborative approach will fit well with our administration’s approach to governing.”

“I am pleased to join the Preckwinkle administration and have the opportunity to contribute to the continuing transformation of Cook County government,” Hamer said. “Public service is all about helping people, and President Preckwinkle’s emphasis on public health, public safety and criminal justice reform, and economic development are the kinds of policy priorities which do exactly that.”

As Director of the Department of Revenue, Hamer led the 1,800-person agency which is responsible for the collection and distribution of $40 billion of taxes each year on behalf of the state, local governments and school districts.

Under Hamer’s leadership, the Department increased collection of delinquent taxes to all-time highs, adopted new technology that transformed the way the Department conducts business, and implemented numerous initiatives to improve customer service.  He also worked to reform the state’s tax code and increase tax fairness.

During his tenure as Director, he was named one of the nation’s top 10 tax administrators by the trade publication State Tax Notes.

Prior to joining the state Revenue Department, Hamer served from 1990 to 1997 as a Chief Assistant Corporation Counsel in the Department of Law at the City of Chicago where he headed the Tax Division.  From 1998 to 2003 he served as the First Deputy in the Chicago Department of Revenue.

Earlier in his career, Hamer practiced law at two major Chicago law firms and worked at the Cook County Board of Tax Appeals.

Hamer attended Yale University, where he graduated in 1978 with a B.A. in history, and earned a law degree in 1982 from Columbia University Law School, where he was an editor of the Law Review.

Hamer lives in Chicago with his wife. The couple has two grown children.

Six Arrested on Drug, Weapons Charges

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
The Sacramento Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force (SSTF) executed six federal arrest warrants and conducted several searches during law enforcement activities in the greater Sacramento area. The arrests and searches are the culmination of a nearly two-year investigation to identify a network of individuals engaged in the trafficking of illegal drugs and firearms.

Individuals arrested yesterday include:

  • Noe Baeza-Bravo, 30, for distribution of methamphetamine
  • Hector Gonzales, 36, for distribution of heroin and distribution of methamphetamine
  • Vidal Gonzales, 56, for distribution of methamphetamine
  • Osvaldo Hernandez, 33, for distribution of heroin, distribution of cocaine, and distribution of methamphetamine
  • Christopher McCurin, 40, for unlicensed dealing in firearms and felon in possession of firearm
  • Brian Keith Mellor, 39, for dealing in firearms and being a felon in possession of firearm.

The allegations are only accusations and not evidence of guilt. All persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The SSTF includes officers, agents, and detectives from the Federal Bureau of Investigation; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Enforcement and Removal Operation; California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation; California Highway Patrol; Sacramento Police Department; and Sacramento Sheriff’s Department. The U.S. Postal Inspection Service was also involved in the investigation.

The national FBI Safe Streets Violent Crime Initiative began in January 1992 and was designed to enable each field office to address violent street gangs and drug-related violence through the establishment of FBI sponsored, long-term, proactive task forces focusing on violent gangs, crimes of violence, and the apprehension of violent fugitives.

Source: FBI

‘2016: Professional Political Gladiators’

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

For the rich men thereof are full of violence, and the inhabitants thereof have spoken lies, and their tongue is deceitful in their mouth. Micah 6:12.
By Rev. Harold Bailey
President of Probation Challenge/PCC Network

CHICAGO, IL – As in the Roman Empire’s medieval age, affluent rulers and spectators would watch enslaved-warriors as they fought unwillingly among themselves in coliseums to accommodate the biddings of their masters. Actions among today’s political gladiators are compelling even to point of drawing of blood. Fighting warriors who were without any clout that was worth-while, had to obey the dictates of those who sent them into battle or possible death. Thusly, professional warriors were deemed as invaluable … Slaves.


Devious warfare of our many historical yesterdays has now re-surfaced on today’s political front where one   candidate-dictator has the audacity to represent himself as a god. Assuming to be a superior leader, this one pretentious so-called-leader dare to take-on the role of Caesar, and has pronounced himself sublimely as ruler over the lives of thousands while seeking to under-mind the thoughts of those under-educated blacks, Hispanics and whites.


Any effort to earmark blacks for a sure vote should be reconsidered! Blacks are more politically astute today and should not be taken for granted!  A large number of African Americans are fully aware as to the concerted efforts to use and misuse the black voters. Some candidates believe that blacks are considered as slaves for the slaughter!


The change of the political climate recently took place in Chicago as disgruntled voters marched to the polls to demonstrate their displeasure with the City and State Governments. It is suggested by a source that the State of Illinois and Chicago City Hall along with its Aldermen and Women are to expect a change in administration. The voter turnouts were not expected nor were the results. There was a message forward to the recently re-elected Mayor Rahm Emanuel who made unfulfilled promises; the voter message is that his time is marked. Young black men and women are not apparently going to submit to the slave mentality of yesterday… they are looking and expecting constructive change.


On both local and the national scene politics should be watched with a jaundice eye. And, when political lying perpetrators make declarations that whatever they said becomes law… the tax payer best become acutely careful!  Scriptures makes it clear that when a man believes he’s more than he or she actuality is – then comes the fall!  In debating forums some politicians know in their hearts when they are fabricating lies, and know that they are disseminating hate and distrust among the American taxpaying public. However, the follower who believes in the perpetrators’ lie … embellishes upon what he or she considers as truth!


Many are not aware as to the deliberated intent of the deceiver. The deceiver who is Satan will fool the very elect if possible!  Remembering: Above all things the heart is desperate and evil… who can know it but God!  Be assured that there is a reckoning day for: backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, and inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents. Romans 1:30.


There is a day of gloom and doom for the evils inflicted on God’s people who were created to have life more abundantly.  God is not a man that he should lie; neither the son of man that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it?  Or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good? Numbers 23/19. Politicians with evil mentalities will convincible lie, steal and even kill to achieve their goal for the United States White House, but God continually speaks throughout eternality to those believers who would be his devoted servants.


But as for liars and the rich: For the rich men thereof are full of violence, and the inhabitants thereof have spoken lies, and their tongue is deceitful in their mouth. Micah 6:12.


As we review the medieval era history, we query how people in that day ever accepted the mindset of those that had the rule over them. Thousands of people could have fought against the soldiers and escaped the perils of the lion dens… and other means of death. Sound familiar?  The taxpayer cannot allow this to happen in this 21st Century.  Obeying the laws of the land, we must fight the good fight of faith.


In this year 2016, the true baptized believers in Christ… are allowing the rulers of darkness to sit in the various arenas… calling for the heads of taxpayers seeking to be set free from enslavement. Question: Will the taxpayer in this dispensation allow a few evil minded political persons to send the large majority of blacks and Hispanics to their demise? All the general public has to do in this mad dilemma is to rush peaceably to the ballot-box and do a massive and rightful take-over! It can be done, but only if we not forget historical failures and press for the higher calling which is in our Lord, Christ Jesus.


And in yet a biblical vein; the Israelites, when in the wilderness with a complaint against God… as the desolating result they were sentenced to stay there for 40-long-long-years, when the Promised Land was just over the mountain.  Where is today’s hopeful ‘Promised Land’ as blacks and Hispanics continue to complain against God… as the result of complaining against the creator of the Universe, many hearts have waxed cold, and rather than with a sober mind some tent now to disobey Gods word while losing a sense of sanity… Now the drunken hearts that once loved the voice of God, will now vote for today’s evil-minded Pharos? One disciple of the bible said: It is better to obey God rather than man.




Contact Rev. Harold E. Bailey: 773.978.3706

Ed Paschke Art Center Announces Artist Residency

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
Gallery dedicated to exhibiting Chicago artists transforms into “open studio”

CHICAGO, IL – The Ed Paschke Art Center (EPAC) is pleased to announce it’s second annual Artist Residency program.


Developed to provide Chicago artists with the time, space, and resources they need to pursue their creative work, EPAC’s inspiring surroundings give residents a professional platform to create and exhibit their work within.


In partnership with Luminarts Cultural Foundation of the Union League Club Chicago, EPAC will host 2016 Luminarts Visual Arts Fellowship award recipients Jeffrey Michael Austin and Lily Dithrich.


Beginning Monday, March 14, 2016 and running through April 24, 2016, the Ed Paschke Art Center (5415 W. Higgins Ave., Chicago IL) will welcome Austin and Dithrich on site to exhibit finished works alongside transforming the space into an “open studio.” Viewers are invited to step in to their workspace and see art making in action. This dynamic showcase of the best in emerging contemporary artistic talent is also a generative exhibition. Visitors are encouraged to check back throughout the exhibition’s run and watch as these artists take a work from concept to completion over the course of their residency.


“One of the goals of the Ed Paschke Art Center is to support the careers of Chicago artists by providing them with a space to not just exhibit their work, but to engage with our community,” said Vesna K. Stelcer, chair of the Ed Paschke Foundation. “This residency program allows viewers access to the typically off limits, behind-the-scenes territory of an artists’ studio, similar to our installation of Paschke’s Howard Street Studio space already on site.”
Jeffrey Michael Austin is an interdisciplinary artist, musician and educator based in Chicago. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, recently including such venues as Le Carreau de Cergy (Paris), Chicago Artists Coalition, Kunstenfestival Watou (Belgium), The University of North Texas Art Galleries, Lehr Zeitgenössische Kunst (Berlin), The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and Fondation Vasarely (Aix-en-Provence). Austin received his BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and currently works as Deputy Director of The Chicago Perch and as a Teaching Artist with Marwen.
Lily Dithrich is a Chicago based artist working sculpturally with wood and textile. She received her BA at Oberlin College in 2013, and has since been working independently in Chicago. She has participated in a number of artist residencies nation-wide, including at the Ox-Bow School of Art and Artist Residency, the Anderson Ranch Arts Center, and the Wassaic Project. Her work has been exhibited at a number of galleries in Chicago and the midwest including the Hyde Park Arts Center and the Chicago Artists Coalition. 



The mission of the Ed Paschke Art Center (EPAC) is to preserve and provide public access to the work of the legendary Ed Paschke; to serve as an educational resource for youth, adults, artists and academics; and to function as an accessible platform for artists to showcase their work.


Located in Chicago’s Jefferson Park neighborhood, EPAC opened June 22, 2014, almost ten years after the artist’s death, on what would have been his 75th birthday. Built in tribute to Chicago’s most famous artist, EPAC provides permanent access to the world’s largest public collection of Paschke’s work.



EPAC houses 2,800 square feet of gallery space and 1,700 square feet of educational space, alongside a re-imagination of Ed Paschke’s 2004 studio. The permanent collection showcases the Ed Paschke Family Foundation’s holdings of the many styles and periods Paschke explored throughout his artistic career, which spanned from 1969 to 2004. The Chicago Artist Gallery is dedicated to exhibiting the work of Chicago artists, organizations and communities.


The Ed Paschke Art Center is proudly funded by The Rabb Family Foundation. Since its inception in 2013, the foundation has provided more than one million dollars to health, environmental and arts-related initiatives, including institutions such as the Ed Paschke Art Center and the National Veterans Art Museum. The Rabb Family Foundation works to support programs that overcome social and economic barriers as well as recognize citizens who have positively impacted the communities in which they live and work. Additional major supporters of the Ed Paschke Art Center include the 3M Company, Bank of America and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.


The Ed Paschke Art Center is free and open to the public seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.  For more information call 312.533.4911 or visit edpaschkeartcenter.org.
Image Credits, from left to right:
Jeffrey Michael Austin, Untitled (In Search of an Authentic Gesture), 2015. Burlap, window screen, glue, plaster, paint and nails on panel, 40 x 52 inches.
Lily Dithrich, Eight Line Poem, 2015. Found chairs, upholstery, flock, 33 x 20 x 35 inches.

State Board Honors Art Poster Contest Winner

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Contest celebrates annual Illinois Arts Education Week

SPRINGFIELD, IL — This week marks the 34th annual Illinois Arts Education Week, a celebration reflecting and highlighting the importance of fine arts. Students across the state competed to create posters reflective of this year’s theme, “There is Magic in the Arts!” The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) honored first-place winner, Julia Zhang, at its regular business meeting Wednesday.

“Art is an essential part of a well-rounded education and Illinois Arts Education Week reminds us to celebrate fine arts in our schools and communities,” said State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith, Ph.D. “Thank you to all of the participants and congratulations to the winners along with their amazing teachers who work hard every day to encourage these promising talents.”

First place winner Julia Zhang is an 11-year-old sixth-grader at Highland Middle School in Libertyville. Her art instructor is Cindi Sartain in Libertyville District 70.

“I gave this piece more than just the original meaning; I used my style to create a piece that will inspire other students to join the arts and see how amazing the arts really are,” said Julia.

Julia’s winning artwork is featured on a poster promoting Illinois Arts Education Week. Her entry features the four areas of fine art, which are dance, drama, music, and visual arts. A framed poster will be displayed in the Springfield board room.

Second place went to Samara Jaquez, a seventh-grader at Westview Hills Middle School in Willowbrook. Samara’s art instructor is Josh Vance in Maercker School District 60.

Nelly Gil, a 10-year-old fifth-grader at Southside Elementary School in Morrison, received third place in ISBE’s poster contest. Nelly’s art instructor is Stasha Hayes in District 6.

This year’s poster contest winners will receive recognition at the 68th annual Illinois Art Education Association (IAEA) Fall Conference, November 3-5, in Normal. 

Illinois Arts Education Week 2016 is sponsored by the Illinois State Board of Education in conjunction with the IAEA and the Governor’s Office. The IAEA is a professional nonprofit organization for art educators, individuals, and groups who support visual arts education. The statewide poster contest celebrating Arts Education Week alternates between elementary/middle and secondary students each year. The contest was open to all students in grades K-8 this year.

Additional posters can be requested by contacting the Illinois State Board of Education’s College and Career Readiness Division at (217) 524-4832, at arts@isbe.net, or via mail at 100 N. First St., C-215, Springfield, IL 62777-0001.

The back of the poster contains references to the Illinois Learning Standards for fine arts, upcoming art events for 2016, Internet resources and more. Go to http://www.isbe.net/arts-week/default.htm to view the winning poster and artwork.

New Book Reveals Top 50 Black Woman-Owned Beauty Products, Haircare Products, and Skincare Products

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS


Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — A new book entitled, Black Girl Magic: Top 50 Black Woman-Owned Beauty Products, Skincare Products, Haircare Products and More! (exclusively available at www.UrbanEbooks.com), does just what it promises to do! It helps women find beauty products that are created, owned, and manufactured by African American women entrepreneurs.

So what exactly does “Black Girl Magic” mean? Well, it started out as a popular hashtag on Facebook and Twitter to describe how African American age so well, and how beautiful they still are even at the ages of 60 and 70+ years old. And it’s true, African American women are known around the world for their ability to age well!

To celebrate this phenomenon, this book uses the “Black Girl Magic” theme to bring life to the first ever directory of Black woman-owned beauty products. And yes, it’s true! Every one of them are 100% owned by African American women business owners.

Some of the high-quality products produced by these companies include:

* Organic, unrefined shea butter
* Hand-crafted mineral makeup
* Organic argan oil
* Organic coconut oil
* All-natural lip balm
* All-natural finish slick
* Pure Moroccan black soap
* Moroccan ghassoul clay powder
* Organic mango butter
* Organic lipstick
* Glitter-crazy lipstick
* 100% natural lashes
* Organic nail polishes
* Grow It! hair balm
* Marshmallow moisturizing cream
* Flaxseed moisturizing cream
* Aloe vera conditioner
* and many, many more!

For more details about the book, and/or to purchase for $2.49, visit www.UrbanEbooks.com


Photo: Bookcover


Robert Falls Marks 30 Years as Artistic Director in the 2016/2017 Season that’s “Essential Goodman”: An Unprecedented 11-Play Slate of New Plays, Reimagined Classics, a Major Musical Revival + New Stages

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Falls continues his career-long exploration of Eugene O’Neill, directing the comedy Ah, Wilderness! Plus Annie Baker’s adaptation of Uncle Vanya by Anton Chekhov – A Chicago Premiere

Mary Zimmerman’s production of Leonard Bernstein’s Wonderful Town kicks off a year of new works by Playwrights Andrew Hinderaker, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Dael Orlandersmith, Charles Smith, Lauren Yee and Karen Zacarias


CHICAGO, IL – Artistic Director Robert Falls announces the 2016/2017 Season—his 30th year as “Chicago’s most essential director” (Chicago Tribune) and the creative force behind the 92-year old not-for-profit Goodman Theatre, “one of the country’s most respected stages” (NPR ). For the first time, Falls expands the Goodman’s subscription season from eight to nine diverse works that embody the Goodman’s values, ambitions and artistic priorities over the past three decades: new plays, large-scale musicals, reimagined classics and Goodman commissions. The season includes some of the hottest emerging voices of the American theater, as well as members of the Goodman’s esteemed Artistic Collective—a group of culturally and aesthetically diverse American theater artists that Falls established when he became artistic director in 1986.  The 2016/2017 Season begins in September 2016 and continues through August 2017, including plays on both of the Goodman’s stages: the 856-seat Albert Theatre and 350-seat flexible Owen Theatre. Subscription tickets are on sale now; call 312.443.3800 or visit GoodmanTheatre.org/Subscribe. For new subscribers, the Goodman offers introductory $90 five-play packages in both Albert and Owen Theatres. Select individual tickets will become available in early August.

In addition to the nine plays offered on subscription, three annual non-subscription events take the stage: the New Stages festival of new plays and two holiday offerings—A Christmas Carol featuring Larry Yando as Scrooge and The Second City’s Twist Your Dickens. An initiative established by Falls in 2004 that remains unique in the country, New Stages is a cornerstone of the Goodman’s efforts to develop new American plays; more than one third of the 72 plays developed received a world premiere production at the Goodman or another leading U.S. theater, and nearly half (49%) were authored by playwrights of color and 43% authored by female playwrights.


“We are undeniably living in a ‘Golden Age’ of playwriting; not since the 1970s and 1980s have so many bold, extraordinary new voices emerged at once,” said Artistic Director Robert Falls. “It’s an honor to celebrate this milestone season with plays so emblematic of the essential role the Goodman has played in the cultural life of Chicago for three decades: a theater that puts diversity at the center of the company, and a theater that recognizes the importance of producing new work.


Continued Falls, “We’ll open the season on a high note in the Albert Theatre, with Manilow Resident Director Mary Zimmerman’s major revival of Wonderful Town—Leonard Bernstein, Betty Comden and Adolph Green’s song-and-dance-filled ode to New York City. It’s occasion to celebrate the work of Leonard Bernstein, in anticipation of his centennial in 2017. Next in the Albert is Gloria by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, one of the most exciting plays to premiere off-Broadway last year. Branden wished to continue work on his bitingly comic new play about contemporary workplace issues and more, and we are pleased to welcome him to the Goodman. The outrageous new comedy, Destiny of Desire by Karen Zacarías follows, bringing the high energy hijinks of Latin American telenovelas to the stage. We’re thrilled to welcome back Karen with this seductive and scandalous new work. A powerful new play, Objects in the Mirror by Charles Smith, makes its world premiere, directed by Goodman Resident Director Chuck Smith. This work about the refugee and immigrant experience was developed in New Stages last year, where it was wonderfully received by audiences. To conclude the season in the Albert, I will return to a touchstone of my artistic direction at the Goodman, Eugene O’Neill, to stage his comic masterpiece, Ah, Wilderness!


Falls continued, “We proudly expand our Owen Theatre season to include a fourth production, something we have been working toward for a number of years. Three of these plays are world premiere Goodman commissions developed in New Stages, including The Magic Play by Andrew Hinderaker. Celebrated director Halena Kays makes her Goodman debut with this spellbinding new play that blends a magic show and theatrical storytelling. I am thrilled to direct Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Annie Baker’s adaptation of Uncle Vanya by Anton Chekhov—a fresh, inspiring new take on a play I’ve wanted to direct my entire career. Next up, The King of the Yees by Lauren Yee, also presented to great acclaim in New Stages, is Lauren’s hilarious and moving portrait of her father’s world in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Concluding the season in the Owen is, Lady in Denmark by Dael Orlandersmith directed by Chay Yew, Dael’s latest work that explores the power of Billie Holiday’s music, also developed at New Stages last fall.


“We also eagerly look forward to Henry Wishcamper’s  return to directing Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, which will again feature Larry Yando as Scrooge, in the Albert Theatre and are pleased to continue our partnership with the Second City’s hilarious send-up Twist Your Dickens in the Owen,” said Falls.



About the Productions and Events in Goodman Theatre’s “Essential Goodman” 2016/2017 Season

Plays, artists and dates are subject to change; visit the Press Room for bios and imagery.




Wonderful Town                                                                                                                                                   

Music by Leonard Bernstein

Lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green

Book by Joseph A. Fields and Jerome Chodorov
Directed by Mary Zimmerman
In the Albert Theatre

September 10 – October 16, 2016

Mary Zimmerman directs a dazzling revival of Leonard Bernstein’s classic, song-and-dance-filled ode to New York City that “fizzes and pops and rhumbas with timeless energy” (Variety). Combining the musical artistry of Leonard Bernstein, Betty Comden and Adolph Green, this whimsical love letter to Manhattan finds two sisters, one an aspiring journalist, the other a bombshell actress, leaving Ohio in 1935 determined to conquer New York City. Roughing it at first in a dingy basement apartment isn’t quite how sisters Ruth and Eileen imagined living, but they can’t resist the city’s bustling energy. Soon they find their professional—and romantic—hopes coming true. Chock-full of swinging show tunes and spectacular choreography, Wonderful Town captures as no other musical the thrill of chasing one’s dreams.

The Magic Play                                                                                                            

By Andrew Hinderaker                                              

Directed by Halena Kays
A World Premiere Co-Commission with Roundabout Theatre Company
In the Owen Theatre

October 21 – November 20, 2016


World-class magic and a deeply human story of loss and love come together to create one astonishing theatrical experience. A good magician is always in control of his show. The rest of his life can be as fragile as a house of cards. When a rising young magician takes the stage just hours after his lover has left him, his performance begins to unravel. As the past invades the present, and the charismatic entertainer gives way to a heartbroken man, the magician strives to find one aspect of his life that feels like magic and not a trick. Critically acclaimed magician, illusion designer and actor Brett Schneider stars in this mind-blowing and altogether astounding spectacle that combines a live magic show with the poignant punch of Chicago theater. Recommended for ages 13 and up.


By Branden Jacobs-Jenkins                                                                                                     

Directed by Evan Cabnet
A Chicago Premiere
In the Albert Theatre

January 14 – February 19, 2017

A workplace nightmare paves the way for “sharp-toothed…whip-smart satire” (The New York Times ) in Obie Award winner Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’ dark comedy. Style. Status. Success. A group of twentysomething editorial assistants are pursuing it all at one of New York’s most esteemed cultural magazines. When a seemingly normal day at the office turns out to be anything but, these cubicle captives and aspiring journalists recognize an opportunity to become the next Big Thing. But whose account is most valid, and to what lengths will each go to own the story? In this biting new comedy, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins shrewdly skewers the ravenous contemporary media landscape while demonstrating how professional relationships influence our lives in unexpected ways. Goodman Theatre presents the acclaimed Vineyard Theatre Production.

Uncle Vanya                                                                                                                

By Anton Chekhov                                                                                         

Adapted by Annie Baker                                                                               

Directed by Robert Falls
A Chicago Premiere Adaptation
In the Owen Theatre

February 11 – March 12, 2017


Pulitzer Prize winner Annie Baker (The Flick, Circle Mirror Transformation) injects a “distinctly contemporary American sound” (Variety) into Chekhov’s masterpiece with a new adaptation helmed by Artistic Director Robert Falls. A secluded country estate becomes the setting for unrequited love, renewed rivalries and ruminations both absurd and tragic on roads barely taken and passions left unfulfilled. Chekhov’s timeless study of the agonizing intersections of youth and mid-life finds contemporary immediacy in Pulitzer Prize winner Annie Baker’s fresh and compelling new adaptation.

Destiny of Desire                                                                                                        

By Karen Zacarías                                                                                                        

Directed by José Luis Valenzuela
A Chicago Premiere
In the Albert Theatre

March 11 – April 16, 2017


Karen Zacarías brings the seductive power of Latin American telenovelas to the stage in this hilarious and smart new comedy. In her new high-drama and explosive comedy, Zacarías explores race, gender and class politics through the lens of the Latin American telenovela, one of the world’s most popular storytelling genres. On a stormy night in a Mexican hospital, two baby girls are born―one into a life of privilege, the other to an impoverished family. But when the girls are deliberately swapped, the stage is set for two outrageous misfortunes to grow into one remarkable destiny. Destiny of Desire is a smart, stylish and sexy comedy that dishes a lot of dirt and even more surprises. Produced in association with South Coast Repertory.

King of the Yees                                                                                                         

By Lauren Yee
Directed by Joshua Kahan Brody

A World Premiere Goodman Commission
In the Owen Theatre

March 31 – April 30, 2017


King of the Yees is an offbeat and electric joy ride about living in the contemporary world while honoring one’s rich ancestral heritage—and the conflict that ensues. The affable Larry Yee remains a driving force in the San Francisco Chinese American community as the head of the Yee Family Association, a seemingly obsolescent men’s club dedicated to the preservation of the Yee line. His daughter Lauren, however, is dismissive of its patriarchal culture policy, despite her father’s lifelong dedication to the group. When Larry suddenly goes missing, Lauren’s desperate search drops her into a strange but familiar world where she will have to embrace the past if she wants to get her father back. Explore the vivid history of America’s largest Chinatown through the eyes of a new generation in Lauren Yee’s hilarious and touching theatrical quest to connect with her family lineage. Produced in association with Center Theatre Group.


Objects in the Mirror                                                                                                            

By Charles Smith                                                                                                              

Directed by Chuck Smith
A World Premiere
In the Albert Theatre

April 29 – June 4, 2017


Charles Smith presents a gripping account of one African refugee’s attempts to find peace by exposing a potentially dangerous, lifelong secret. After surviving a tumultuous upbringing in war-torn Liberia, Shedrick Yarpai has found a new home in a sunny, coastal Australian city. Safe from the horrific perils of guerrilla soldiers and refugee camps, Shedrick now faces a different type of danger: the haunting memories stirring inside him. Inspired by writer Charles Smith’s friendship with a Liberian refugee-turned-acclaimed-actor, the playwright crafts a harrowing story of personal honor vs. familial obligation and the responsibility that comes with being a survivor.


Lady in Denmark                                                                                                         

By Dael Orlandersmith                                                                                   

Directed by Chay Yew
A World Premiere Goodman Commission
In the Owen Theatre

May 19 – June 18, 2017


Dael Orlandersmith’s soulful tribute to legendary torch singer Billie Holiday and her music’s power to heal and inspire. Back when smoke curled thickly in night clubs and crowds never left the dance floor, jazz great Billie Holiday could scorch audiences with her singular, insinuating voice. With Lady in Denmark, Pulitzer Prize finalist Dael Orlandersmith delivers a stirring ode to “Lady Day.” This one-woman show follows Helene, a Danish American woman who finds solace in Holiday’s hauntingly beautiful music in the wake of her husband’s death. Infused with Holiday’s iconic songs, Lady in Denmark presents a passionate meditation on life, marriage and mortality, assuring audiences that even in the most troubled times, music can make life worth living.


Ah, Wilderness!                                                                                                           

By Eugene O’Neill

Directed by Robert Falls
In the Albert Theatre

June 17 – July 23, 2017


“Chicago’s most essential director” (Chicago Tribune), Artistic Director Robert Falls, continues his career-long exploration of Eugene O’Neill with the iconic playwright’s masterful comedy. Following his critically lauded production of Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh, Robert Falls takes on the legendary playwright’s sweeping, heartfelt salute to youthful indiscretion and small town life. For the shy and scholarly Richard Miller, fireworks aren’t the only flames burning on Fourth of July—this 16- year-old has started going steady with his beautiful neighbor Muriel. Her father, however, disapproves of their relationship and forbids the couple from seeing each other. Spurred by this obstacle, Richard embarks on an evening of hilarious and unexpected rebellion. Ah, Wilderness! delightfully captures the rush of excitement, torment, emotional confusion and bliss that accompanies first love and growing up.



New Stages Festival
In the Owen Theatre
September 21 – October 9, 2016 (“Industry Weekend” is October 7-9)

Three Developmental Productions and Three Staged Readings TBA

The 12th annual New Stages festival of new plays includes three developmental productions in repertory and three staged readings. Three productions in the 2016/2017 Season emerged from New Stages, including The Magic Play, Objects in the Mirror and King of the Yees. Founded in 2004, the New Stages Festival is a celebration of innovative new plays designed to give playwrights an opportunity to take risks and experiment. New Stages offers Chicago theatergoers a first look at dozens of plays, many of which have gone on to become successful full productions—including Noah Haidle’s Smokefall and Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Ruined.

A Christmas Carol (39th Annual production)                                                                               

Adapted by Tom Creamer, directed by Henry Wishcamper
In the Albert Theatre                                       

November 19 – December 31, 2016

Acclaimed Chicago actor Larry Yando returns for his 9th consecutive season as Ebenezer Scrooge in A Christmas Carol at Goodman Theatre, directed for the 4th year by Artistic Associate Henry Wishcamper. More than 1.2 million theatergoers have attended “the crown jewel of the holiday season” (Daily Herald) since the Goodman established it as an annual offering in 1978—a time when only a handful of US theaters mounted the production. Dickens’ holiday classic is the iconic tale of greedy British businessman Ebenezer Scrooge, whose sizable bank account is only matched by his hatred of the holidays. One Christmas Eve, Scrooge is visited by four ghosts who take him on a spectacular adventure through his past, present and future, helping him rediscover the joys of life, love and friendship. Former cast members include stage and screen notables Jessie Mueller, Del Close, Harry J. Lennix, Felicia P. Fields, Raul Esparza, Sally Murphy and Frank Galati.

The Second City’s Twist Your Dickens                                                                                    

By Peter Gwinn and Bobby Mort
In the Owen Theatre
December 1 – 31, 2016


Scrooge, Tiny Tim, three ridiculous ghosts and a cast of Second City’s funniest members take the Owen stage by storm, as wicked parody and daring improv run rampant. Add in Second City’s trademark improvisation and it makes for a heaping host of holiday hilarity for all. The Second City’s Twist Your Dickens is written by former The Colbert Report writers Peter Gwinn and Bobby Mort.



Visit the Goodman virtually at GoodmanTheatre.org, and on Twitter (@GoodmanTheatre), Facebook and Instagram.

Phoenix Man Convicted of Conspiracy to Support ISIL and Other Terrorism-Related Offenses

Posted by Admin On March - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Abdul Malik Abdul Kareem, 44, of Phoenix, was found guilty by a federal jury of one count each of the following five crimes: conspiracy to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), a designated foreign terrorist organization; conspiracy to transport firearms and ammunition in interstate commerce with the intent to commit murder and aggravated assault; transporting firearms and ammunition in interstate commerce with the intent to commit murder and aggravated assault; making false statements to the FBI; and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The verdict was announced by Assistant Attorney General for National Security John P. Carlin, Acting U.S. Attorney Elizabeth Strange of the District of Arizona and Acting Special Agent in Charge Justin Tolomeo of the FBI’s Phoenix Division.

“In the first jury trial in the country involving a homeland attack committed in the name of ISIL, Abdul Kareem was convicted of conspiring to provide material support to the foreign terrorist organization and other federal offenses,” said Assistant Attorney General Carlin.  “The defendant conspired with Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi to provide material support to ISIL and to transport firearms in interstate commerce with the intent to commit murder and aggravated assault.  Thanks to the response of brave law enforcement officers at the scene, no innocent lives were lost when Simpson and Soofi attacked the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland, Texas.  The National Security Division will continue to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law those who conspire with others to support foreign terrorist organizations and to commit acts of violence.”

“Today’s guilty verdict, in one of the country’s first trials involving terrorist acts committed in the United States by ISIL supporters, demonstrates our office’s deep commitment to combatting terrorism,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Strange.  “I want to thank the FBI for the massive effort that went into the underlying investigation, as well as the brave law enforcement officials in Garland whose quick action during the attack prevented a much larger tragedy.”

“This verdict sends a strong message to those who support terrorists,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge Tolomeo.  “People who are plotting to harm America and Americans are no longer a world away.  Our agents and analysts will continue to confront this threat with a strong and coordinated effort as we work to protect all Americans.  The FBI would like to thank the U.S. Attorney’s Office as well as our federal, state and local law enforcement partners of the Joint Terrorism Task Force for their assistance in this case.”

The evidence at trial showed that, beginning around June 2014, Kareem and his two roommates, Simpson and Soofi, began conspiring to support ISIL.  Their conspiracy focused on supporting ISIL by attacking targets in the United States.  Over the course of the conspiracy, Kareem, Simpson and Soofi considered perpetrating an attack against military bases; individual military service members; shopping malls; the Glendale, Arizona, Super Bowl; and the so-called “Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest,” which was to take place in Garland.  On May 3, 2015, the morning of the contest, Simpson and Soofi drove from Arizona to Texas.  Simpson and Soofi stopped their car near the contest’s location, got out of their car and began firing assault rifles at security personnel and law enforcement officers.  A security guard was injured by one of their bullets, and Simpson and Soofi were shot and killed by police officers in the firefight.  Kareem did not travel to Texas and was not injured during the attack.  During an interview with FBI agents soon after the attack, Kareem lied about having prior knowledge of the attack and the contest.

The case was tried over the span of several weeks before U.S. District Judge Susan R. Bolton of the District of Arizona.  Kareem is being detained pending sentencing, which is currently scheduled for June 27, 2016, before Judge Bolton.  Kareem’s counts of conviction carry a potential sentence of at least 45 years in prison.

The case was investigated by the FBI, and the prosecution was handled by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joseph Koehler and Kristen Brook of the District of Arizona, with assistance provided by Trial Attorney Rebecca Magnone of the National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section.

Source: U.S. Department of Justice & FBI

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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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