Apr 18th 2013

Young Jean Lee Theater Company: Untitled Feminist Show

@ The Museum of Contemporary Art

220 E. Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

Opening Thursday, April 18th, from 7:30PM - 8:30PM

On view through Sunday, April 21st

In Young Jean Lee’s newest theater work, six performers from New York’s theater, dance, cabaret, and burlesque worlds explore female identity. Untitled Feminist Show is a theatrical work that uses dance, music, minimal dialogue, and video projections to express ideas about conventional and unconventional female roles and expectations. The women perform nude and have a carefree attitude toward their bodies. Young Jean Lee is a Korean-American playwright and director who returns to the MCA Stage after her Chicago premiere of The Shipment in 2010. The performances are presented by MCA Stage in the Edlis Neeson Theater on April 18 – 21, 2013.

The show begins with the six performers descending the side aisles of the theater to gather onstage, fully nude, to evoke a private and intimate gathering. The desired effect of the nudity is to suspend the typical expectations the audience may have about the identity of the performers. The work features a range of vignettes including a comical casting of evil spirits; a frenzied dance in which the performers cycle through domestic chores like changing diapers, cooking, and housecleaning; a dance of death with heavy metal music; a seductress; performers giggling as they create a ballet; and a solo dance with impromptu vocals in Welsh. The only props are pink parasols that the performers frolic with before using as tools of violence.

The cast is comprised of Becca Blackwell, known for pushing gender boundaries; Desiree Burch, a solo performance artist, comedian, and writer; Erin Markey, a comedic and conceptual musical performer; and performance artists and dancers Katy Pyle, Malinda Ray Allen, and Jennifer Rosenblit. The production was created by Young Jean Lee in collaboration with the cast, choreographers Faye Driscoll and Morgan Gould, designer David Evans Morris, and Leah Gelpe who created the evocative projections. The performance is approximately 60 minutes, with no intermission.


Young Jean Lee’s Theater Company (YJLTC) is a New York City-based experimental theater company that has been developing and producing shows written and directed by Young Jean Lee since 2003.

Young Jean Lee was born in Korea in 1974 and moved to the United States when she was two. She attended the University of California, Berkeley, and majored in English. She studied Shakespeare for six years in Berkeley’s English PhD program, before moving to New York to become a playwright in 2002. She received a MFA from Mac Wellman’s playwriting program at Brooklyn College. Lee is an OBIE award-winning playwright and director who has been called “the most adventurous downtown playwright of her generation” by the New York Times and “one of the best experimental playwrights in America” by Time Out New York. She has written and directed nine shows in New York and is currently under commission from Plan B/Paramount Pictures, Lincoln Center Theater, Playwrights Horizons, and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Her plays include LEAR, The Shipment; CHURCH; Songs of the Dragons Flying to Heaven; Pullman, WA; The Appeal; and Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals.


First Night Post-Show Talk
Thursday, April 18, 2013
The artists discuss their work in this post-show discussion in the theater.

Young Jean Lee and Thomas Bradshaw in Conversation
Saturday, April 20, 2013, 1-3 pm, free with suggested museum admission
Edlis Neeson Theater
Young Jean Lee and Thomas Bradshaw are two of today’s most produced young playwrights. Their plays inspire many, and repel others, for taking precise aim at how people perceive and are perceived by others in a world that is fighting, organizing, and voting for change. The artists, both Brooklyn-based, are friends and discuss their work, writing process, and how each other’s plays relate to today’s culture and social concerns. The program begins with video excerpts of their plays and a Q&A with the artists takes place at the end of the conversation. Reservations are recommended and available at www.mcachicago.org.


Untitled Feminist Show takes place Saturday, Thursday – Sunday, April 18 – 21, at 7:30 pm at the Edlis Neeson Theater, 220 East Chicago Avenue. Tickets are $28, with a limited quantity of $10 student tickets available. One free museum admission is granted with an MCA Stage ticket stub, valid up to seven days after the performance.

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