Prop Thtr says Goodbye to Elston Ave

Saturday, July 18th, 2020


Dear Prop Thtr Community,


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Prop Thtr will say goodbye to its storefront at 3502 N Elston Avenue as of October 1st. Avondale has been our home for the last 15 years and it has been truly beautiful. We have spent weeks upon months devising innovative and meaningful work with artists across all disciplines. We have spent more nights than we can count at Chief O'Neill's trying to get that order of fries in before the kitchen closes. Catching a glimpse of actors in period garb running outside in the snow to make an entrance while debating the merits of Brecht’s alienation effect.  We will be sad to say goodbye to a place that has been so special to so many people. Our community is what has kept us going for 40 years and our community will keep us going now as we step into the unknown. Prop Thtr is no stranger to the art of adaptation, and with this opportunity to re-imagine there is no telling what we can accomplish. Lastly, to every artist, audience member, staff member, board member, and anyone who has supported Prop Thtr over the years: Thank you.

Artistic Director Olivia Lilley says, “This move signals the beginning of a new chapter in Prop Thtr's 40 year history. Becoming itinerant after 15 years in our storefront on Elston will allow us to focus on the work of creating intentional spaces for devising and developing new plays. Prop Thtr will still be producing world premiere productions, and we plan to partner with venues, community centers, and alternative spaces throughout the city. I'm excited to return to my roots of site specific theatre where I first built my reputation as an artist and producer. 

True to the legacy of Prop, we will continue to develop our worker-owned models. Thanks to a Professional Development Grant from Driehaus, we will provide fundraising education and strategy to our Board and Staff through the expertise of Artistic Fundraising Group led by Chicago actor, Erica Bittner. As we prepare for the future in many ways, it is important to us that our new strategic plan be heavily informed by the demands listed in the document by We See You WAT. 

Prop Thtr continues its commitment to build theatre for the 21st century. We have very fond memories of our home on Elston, and the excellent work we were able to do there. We look forward to what lies ahead.”

Stay tuned, y’all. It’s gonna be a real fun time. 


Yours in Art,


Prop Thtr Staff & Board


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© 2019 Prop Thtr

Prop Theatre Group (DBA Prop Thtr) is a 501(c)3 organization registered in the state of Illinois. 

View our Annual Report here!

3502 N. Elston Avenue Chicago, IL 60618 | (773) 742 5420

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