Strawdog Theatre Company

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Strawdog Theatre Company is a Chicago-based theatre company founded in 1988.


The whole wide world in a little black box.

Strawdog Theatre Company is committed to ensemble acting and an immersive design approach, offering Chicago the premiere storefront theatre experience. Strawdog develops new work, re-imagines classic plays, explores new fusions of music and theatre, asks provocative questions and delivers the unexpected to our audience. Strawdog provides a home for our celebrated ensemble to work and play with the most sought after artists in Chicago theatre along with the best new talents in the city.

2012-2013 - Season 25[edit]

  • Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom
    • by Harold Pinter
    • directed by Joanie Schultz
  • Improbable Frequency
    • by [[Book & Lyrics by Arthur Riordan

Music by Bell Helicopter]]

    • directed by


Lawrence Novikoff and Paul Engelhardt founded Strawdog Theatre Company in 1988 after performing together in a production of Euripides’s Helen. Strawdog was intended to be a home for a company of actors drawn to a gritty, realistic theater style. The group took their name from Sam Peckinpah’s movie “Straw Dogs” and was founded with the commitment to the ensemble approach, which remains the backbone of Strawdog today [1]. From its inaugural production of Five of Us by Len Jenkin to the most recent production of St. Crispin's Day, Strawdog Theatre has not only survived, it has flourished.

In 2000, the Company went through a period of restructuring. Many ensemble members left the Company and new members were recruited. This personnel change led to a shift in leadership and focus for the ensemble. Jennifer Avery and Michael Dailey took over as Co-Artistic Directors. They added many new ensemble members of varying disciplines, restructured the administration of the Company and gradually moved its focus from gritty kitchen sink dramas to a wider range of styles that embraced a true commitment to ensemble - based productions.

In August 2003, the Company hired Nic Dimond, a former ensemble member, to helm the Company as Artistic Director. Dimond has refined the way the Company runs and strengthened the Board of Directors. He has continued to push the ensemble in new and challenging artistic directions, including the creation of original material, the use of live music and elevating the design elements to match the acting sophistication inside the ensemble. [2]

Strawdog first garnered national attention when Terry Teachout ("America's Theatre Critic") of The Wall Street Journal named Aristocrats one of the best shows of 2007 [3]. Last season, Mr. Teachout once again lauded Strawdog for their production of RUR, a rarely seen parable about robots and technology [4].

Production history[edit]

2003-2004 - Season 16[edit]

  • Wireless: Programme One
    • by Gregor Mortis
    • directed by Gregor Mortis

2004-2005 - Season 17[edit]

  • Wireless 2
    • directed by Gregor Mortis
  • Wireless 3
    • directed by James Anthony Zoccoli
  • Impossible Marriage
  • The True Ballad of Fall's Blessings
    • by Hank Boland
    • directed by Nic Dimond

2005-2006 - Season 18[edit]

  • Detective Story
  • Wireless 4
    • directed by Nic Dimond
  • Wireless 5

2006-2007 - Season 19[edit]

  • Marathon '33
  • Radio Theatre 6
    • by Hank Boland
    • directed by Jennifer Avery
  • Radio Theatre 7
    • by Michael Dailey
    • directed by Amanda Delheimer

2007-2008 - Season 20[edit]

  • Old Town
    • by Brett Nevue
    • directed by Kyle Hamman

2008-2009 - Season 21[edit]

  • Red Noses
    • by Peter Barnes
    • directed by Matt Hawkins

2009-2010 - Season 22[edit]

  • St. Crispin's Day
  • Good Soul of Szechuan
    • by Bertold Brecht
    • directed by Shade Murray

2010-2011 - Season 23[edit]

  • Red Noses (Remounted)
    • by Peter Barnes
    • directed by Matt Hawkins
  • Conquest of the Southpole
    • by Manfred Karge
    • directed by Kimberly Senior

2011-2012 - Season 24[edit]

  • Old Times
    • by Harold Pinter
    • directed by Kimberly Senior
  • The Duchess of Malfi

2012-2013 - Season 25[edit]

  • Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom
    • by Harold Pinter
    • directed by Joanie Schultz
  • Improbable Frequency
    • by [[Book & Lyrics by Arthur Riordan

Music by Bell Helicopter]]

    • directed by



Old Town
After Dark Awards

  • Outstanding Musical
  • Outstanding Original Song/Score
    • Misha Fiksel
  • Outstanding Performance in a Musical or Review
    • Kat McDonnell

Lie of the Mind
Joseph Jefferson Awards, Non-Equity Wing

  • Incidental Music
    • Misha Fiksel & Gregor Mortis


Marathon '33
Joseph Jefferson Awards, Non-Equity Wing

  • Outstanding Ensemble


Three Sisters

Joseph Jefferson Awards, Non-Equity Wing

  • Best Adaptation
    • Curt Columbus
  • Best Scenic Design
    • Bryan Sydney Bembridge

After Dark Awards

  • Best Overall Technical
  • Best Production

Board of directors[edit]

  • Altman, Gregory
  • Bennett, Stephen
  • Hobart, Jim
  • Ichbiah, Romain
  • Linguanti, Thomas
  • McGreevy, Joyce
  • Nelson, Jennifer
  • Rickard, Seth
  • Rubin, Jack
  • Stapleton, Nora
  • Warner, Mark
  • Yuzawa-Rubin, Pat
  • Zingelman, Tim

Artistic Associates[edit]

  • Hawkins, Matt
  • Murray, Shade
  • Senior, Kimberly


  • Avery, Jennifer
  • Boland, Hank
  • Dailey, Michael
  • Deely, Anita
  • Ferrick, John
  • Greeves, Aly Renee
  • Grisola, Carmine
  • Hamman, Kyle
  • Hickey, Tom
  • Hoag, Shannon
  • Lawfer, Anderson
  • Mallary, Sean
  • McDonnell, Kat
  • Mortis, Gregor
  • Petro, Michaela
  • Roberts, John Henry
  • Vann, Jamie