Author Archives: aaronhen

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying

WILMETTE CENTER FOR THE ARTS 2014
Written By Frank Loesser and Abe Burrows
Directed By Aaron Henrickson
Music Direction: Joseph Brewer
Choreagraphy: Brayn Wlass
Lighting Design: John Kelly
Costume Design: Allison Smith
Sound Design: Christopher Walls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Great Gatsby

NEW STUDENT PERFORMANCE PROJECT 2012
Written by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Adapted and directed by Aaron Henrickson
Lighting Design: Max Horrowitz
Costume Design: Tom Keiffer
Photography: Emily Van Zandt

 

 

 

 

 

Peter + Wendy

CITY LIT ART OF ADAPTATION FESTIVAL. 2013
Written: By James Matthew Barrie
Adapted: By Aaron Henrickson and Lane Flores
Directed: BY Aaron Henrickson
Costume Design: Gina LoPiccolo
Fight Direction: Alex Farrington
Sound Design: Daniel Caffrey

 

 

 

 

The Music Man

WILMETTE CENTER FOR THE ARTS 2016
Words and Music By Meredith Wilson
Directed By Aaron Henrickson
Set Design: Kaitlyn Grissom
Lighting Design: Diane Fairchild
Costume Design: Jeanine Fry

 

 

 

 

 

Sandalwood Reviews

RECOMMENDED

“…a focused production, restrained to a handful of scenes backed by a continuous soundscape… Tympanic maintains precise control of Sandalwood’s strangeness ”

-Kevin Thomas, TimeOut Chicago

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RECOMMENDED

“…Director Aaron Henrickson’s staging makes the most of the small side project stage; his use of Dustin Pettigrew’s Western exoskeleton set is inventive.”

-Lisa Buscani, NewCity Chicago

RECOMMENDED

“I left the theater more than a bit unsettled…The staging of Sandalwood is good and Dustin Pettigrew’s set is wonderfully claustrophobic in portraying the open and empty Wild West. The bleached out wood and dark hues resemble a painting with dissolute characters moving through the scenery. The music by Maxwell Shults is an existential aural dream. I can hear the tumbleweeds and see the sun beached skulls listening to his music…. It’s an interesting and sometimes chilling 80 minutes. I have to give credit to Caffrey for creating a story that has room for dissection”

-Kat Hey, ChicagoTheatre Beat

 

Red Light Winter Reviews

 

RECOMMENED

“All three actors bring everything to their respective roles…Fairlane Theatre Company’s mission to “provide work actors truly want to perform and audiences want to see” is off to a fine start under Aaron Henrickson’s capable direction.”

– Colin Douglas,Chicago Theatre Review

 

 

 

RECOMMENED

“…all three performances combined for a trifecta of connecting relationships”

– Matt Koske, ChicagoCritic

 

RECOMMENED

“Director Aaron Henrickson makes capable if undistinguished work of all this, tossing his characters around their rooms to echo the way they have been displaced emotionally by their travels”

– Ellen Wernecke, Edge Chicago

Sandalwood

COMING SOON

A World Premiere by Dan Caffrey, directed by Aaron Henrickson

March 27-April 20, 2014

A co-production with Tympanic Theatre Company, this new psycho-Western explores humankind’s penchant for committing crimes against nature for selfish gain.

 

 

 

When a young man blazes a trail of blood and destruction throughout the American West, his father embarks on a quest to stop him.  But as he makes his way through the ghost towns his son has visited, he questions how evil the boy’s intentions truly are, and if his terrible acts are somehow bringing him closer to humanity.  Exploring the genetic inheritance of sin and violence, this true Western with elements of the fantastical is being produced in collaboration with the side project.

This will be the fourth collaboration between writer Dan Caffrey and director Aaron Henrickson, and the first collaboration between Tympanic Theatre Company and the side project

Inventing Van Gogh Reviews

RECOMMENDED

“I’m a sucker for art capers, and this one here is bolstered by some crisp direction from Aaron Henrickson and some refreshingly solid acting. Christine Vrem-Ydstie is great fun to watch as the wounded art ingenue, and Adam Schulmerich practically reinvents the role of the ruthless European art dealer. The performances, the direction, and the Bedfellows’ general enthusiasm for the material won me over”

–  John Dalton, Centerstage Chicago

 

RECOMMENDED

“…catapulting us through time at a velocity to induce vertigo in the most ardent Tom Stoppard fan. Well, why write about antic visionaries, if not to go a little mad? Director Aaron Henrickson never leaves us to wander alone and confused amid Dietz’ historical polemics, nor does his valiant cast… Thus are we immersed in an environment teeming with inventive actualization…”

– Mary Shenn Barnidge, Windy City Times

RECOMMENDED

“Sean Thomas gives an enlivening performance, his enthusiasms—much like those of Dr. Miller’s himself—being remarkably infectious. Thomas, more so than anyone else, aptly conveys the dream-like whimsy of the play, eschewing too strictly a realistic portrayal in favor of something ever-so-slightly exaggerated, larger-than-life and even magical. And Adam Schulmerich demonstrates a considerable range, fluidly transitioning between the effete Bouchard to the gruff Gauguin without a hitch. Exhaustively thorough, Schulmerich is one of those actors who employs all the resources at his disposal—both vocal as well as physical—in crafting subtle portraitures of incredible distinction.

So ultimately despite Inventing Van Gogh’s more obtuse qualities, I’ll venture to say that Strange Bedfellow’s current mounting is still worth the price of admission. At times as wildly out-of-control as Van Gogh himself, there’s nonetheless something intoxicating about its particular brand of madness. Never content to simply tell us what it’s trying to say, the play requires that we actively wade through the muck to find it out. And only even then do we find ourselves reflected back at us. Much like the action internal to the play itself, extracting meaning from Inventing Van Gogh is its own form of self-portraiture.”

– Anthony Mangini, Chicago Crtic

 

“In Strange Bedfellows Theatre’s intimate, low-budget production, directed by Aaron Henrickson, the cast infuse Dietz’s sometimes grandiose preachments on art with earnest passion”

– Albert Williams, The Chicago Reader

 

“The story takes place in Patrick’s disheveled studio (designed by Dustin Pettigrew) and moves from past to present at any given time without warning; but the actors are as convincing in one realm as they are in the other. Patrick Cameron, bearing a striking resemblance to the late screen idol Patrick Swayze, exudes equal fear and confidence as the artist who has sold out and soon realizes that he may be in need of psychiatric help as he sees his own life mysteriously forming a parallel to Van Gogh’s.

Riley McIlveen is a stunning Vincent Van Gogh. He recreates all the bold passion, torture and sensitivity of Van Gogh, as he encapsulated fields of daisies, starry nights and made celebration of simple things like an empty chair. Christine Vrem-Ydstic, Adam Schulmerich and Sean Thomas make lighting quick changes that fuse past and present into a delightful hybrid here and now. In addition, to completely immerse the audience, artists abound in this production. Patrick Cameron paints onstage and in the lobby before the performance and during intermission, local artists are seated at easels painting Van Gogh portraits. Inventing Van Gogh is historic and audacious and runs through August 25 at the City Lit Theatre on the second floor of the Edgewater Presbyterian Church, 1020 W. Bryn Maw”

—Ruth Smerling, Theatre World Internet Magazine

 

 

Sandalwood

When a young man blazes a trail of blood and destruction throughout the American West, his father embarks on a quest to stop him.  But as he makes his way through the ghost towns his son has visited, he questions how evil the boy’s intentions truly are, and if his terrible acts are somehow bringing him closer to humanity.  Exploring the genetic inheritance of sin and violence, this true Western with elements of the fantastical is being produced in collaboration with the side project.

 

 

 

Sandalwood will be the fourth collaboration between writer Dan Caffrey and director Aaron Henrickson, and the first collaboration between Tympanic Theatre Company and the side project.

Tympanic Theatre Company

the side project

Inventing Van Gogh

NOW PLAYING

INVENTING VAN GOGH
By Steven Deitz
Strange Bedfellows Theatre
August 2nd – August 25th

“A painter’s haunting and hallucinatory descent into the mind and myth of Vincent Van Gogh.”

 

 

 

Directed By Aaron Henrickson
Set Design:Dustin Pettegrew
Lighting Design:John Kelly
Costume Design:Kristen Ahern
Sound Design: Rachel Regan
Properties Design : Aliza Fagan
Fight Direction: Alex Farrington

 

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Autobahn Reader Recommended!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Autobahn is Reader Recommened

“If you think Neil LaBute puts only broad, deliberately provocative acts of cruelty onstage, check out this fragile, achingly intimate 2004 work. In seven short two-person plays, each taking place in a car, he investigates moments of harrowing revelation: a freshly detoxed woman calculatedly admitting to her mother she “can’t wait” to use again, a wife hinting to her husband that her reported sexual assault was consensual, a teacher asking to stroke his 15-year-old student’s hair while she naps. When LaBute’s characters aren’t aggressively suppressing their anguish, they’re nurturing it for selfish ends. It’s a psychologically complex evening, and director Aaron Henrickson’s discriminating, understated cast tease out every nuance. Nearly everything in this two-hour Fairlane Theatre production falls gracefully in place.” —Justin Hayford $10-15

One Acts and Festival Projects

LEMON HEAD
side project, 2009

FOLKFIRE
Tympanic, 2009

GOSPEL HOUR
Tympanic Theatre Company, 2012

COUNTERPOINT
City Lit Art of Adaption Festival, 2012

 

 

Columbia College Chicago

COWBOY MOUTH Spring 2008

COME BACK, LITTLE SHEBA Fall 2008

PICASSO AT THE LAPIN AGILE, Spring 2009

 

 

 

 

 

COME BACK, LITTLE SHEBA
Written By William Inge
Directed By Aaron Henrickson
Set Design: Matthew Cummings
Lighting Design: Emily Barbian
Costume Design: Shareen Chahade
Sound Design: Kathy Chavez

 

 

COWBOY MOUTH
Written by Sam Sheppard
Directed by Aaron Henrickson
Set Design:  Mike Mroch
Lighting Design: Emily Barbian

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PICASSO AT THE LAPIN AGILE
Written By Steve Martin
Directed By Aaron Henrickson
Set Design: Rebbecca Beaudoin
Costumes: Emma Webber