NewTown Writers News

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Here is the Official press release (written by myself and sent out to the world, or at least the group’s mailing list and our Facebook group):

NewTown Writers announces the appointment of Michael Van Kerckhove as the new Artistic Director of the performance wing. Michael returns to Chicago after he and his partner, Ernie Nolan, spent three years working with Indiana University at South Bend. His affiliation with the group dates back to the inaugural edition of Working Stiffs in 2002.

Michael and long time member, Robert Klein Engler, have found a new home for their performance endeavors. After a number of years at the Bailiwick, stops at Live Bait and Chemically Imbalanced, the 2009 season will be presented in Strawdog Theatre Company’s Hugen Hall cabaret space located at 3829 North Broadway.

Plans are in the works for the 7th edition of Solo Homo in June and an evening of short plays in October. Stay tuned for details…

Pretty cool, huh?  In my reintegration into the city, dubbed “Operation Chicago Re-boot,” I became a board member of the group last fall and an “official” member of the performance wing.  Even though I’ve been involved with the group and have been published in both publication arms, I really do feel this sense of official-ness.  I haven’t been involved as much with the literary wing, though that could change now that I’m back, depending on Life and Everything Else.  Either way, the group has my support.

There was a noble effort to regroup and re-focus the theatre wing this past December.  The Holidays and New Year unraveled that a bit.  I was asked to step into the AD position and approved by the rest of the board.  Yay approval! 🙂  When recently asked my goals as AD, I basically replied “Focus and Process.”  Solo Homo will have some familiar faces, a few new ones, and will get back to its roots of writing & performance–that magical blend of the literary and theatre worlds I love so much.  How we get there should bring out the Best in all of us.  I like that.

Now, I just have to figure out what I’m going to do for my own piece in the show.  You know, the writing part.  I have a couple pieces I’d love to do, but they may be a little long.  So maybe this will be a good way to impose a deadline upon myself for new material.  The other pieces will definitely be incorporated into my full length solo show that maybe I’ve mentioned around here a few times.  It has a yet to be determined unleashing date, for sure.  But Battles With Boys will arrive….

NewTown Writers continues its bi-weekly workshops, and as in the past should have a table at the Printers Row Book Fair, also coming up in June.  Will definitely let you all know about that!

Happy Writing and Happy Spring.  It’s wonderful to be back! 🙂

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