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Chicago Premiere

January 31 – March 24, 2024

Witness the powerful stories of 19 individuals fighting to overcome and transform America’s education and criminal justice systems.

THIS STRIKINGLY INTIMATE PIECE presents snapshots from a variety of real people, documenting their intersections with the American dream and the obstacles that work to block them from it. Utilizing verbatim dialogue pulled from more than 250 accounts from students, faculty, prisoners, activists, politicians, and victims’ families, Notes from the Field takes audiences on an emotional journey through the faults and injustices of an American criminal justice system that seems more focused on incarceration over education. Deeply human, profoundly moving, and full of moments of humor, compassion, and resilience, it’s a masterful work that asks you to observe, be present, and join the call for urgent and necessary change.

Originally performed by creator Anna Deavere Smith as a one-woman show, in TimeLine’s Chicago premiere, three actors weave together narratives of change makers, activists, and those caught within the system for an evening of theatre unlike anything you’ve experienced before.


CONTENT ADVISORY: To learn more about the specific content and themes of this production, please visit our content advisory page.


Runs approximately 2 hours 30 minutes, with one intermission

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World Premiere

February 1 – March 19, 2023

An historic night at the Oscars.
A
dream of what could have been.

Set on the night in 1940 that Hattie McDaniel made history at the Oscars, a story of dreamers striving to overcome considerable obstacles and fighting for recognition amidst the racism and inequity of Hollywood.

IT IS FEBRUARY 29, 1940, the night of the Academy Awards in Hollywood, California. Bartender Arthur Brooks, an ambitious Black man from rural Alabama, dreams of becoming a movie director. His best friend, Dottie Hudson, is a maid at the Ambassador Hotel who finds herself to be a cynic of all dreams. When the actress Hattie McDaniel stops in at the bar and decides not to attend the biggest event in show business, Arthur and Dottie do everything in their power to convince her to go and claim her historic win—while confronting their dark past and making their own dreams come to life.

This play about race, class, gender, and the ever-changing landscape of Hollywood has previously had public readings at The Echo Theatre Company (featuring TimeLine Company Member Mildred Marie Langford) and Morgan-Wixson Theatre’s New Works Festival. TimeLine’s production is its world premiere.


Boulevard of Bold Dreams runs 1 hour and 40 minutes with no intermission

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