The Steppenwolf Theatre Company is one of the most highly regarded companies in the country, and it has come a long way since its founding in 1974. Founders Gary Sinise, Terry Kinney, and Jeff Perry hatched the Steppenwolf Theatre Company in the basement of a Highland Park, Illinois, church, taking the name from the Herman Hesse novel. By 1980, the founders had taken their company to Chicago's Broadway Avenue, where they set up shop in the Jane Addams Hull House Center. Only two years later, they moved their operation from Little Italy to Lincoln Park, taking up residence in a 211-seat venue at 2851 N. Halsted Street. In 1991, the Chicago Steppenwolf theater finally relocated to its current location at 1650 N. Halsted Street. The current theater is state-of-the-art, and thanks to a relatively large budget, the productions that are held here are of high quality.
The Chicago Steppenwolf theater has earned numerous accolades for its work over the years, and it's safe to say that it has also launched a fair amount of careers. In addition to founder Gary Sinise, such personalities as John Malkovich, John Mahoney, Joan Allen, and Laurie Metcalf got their starts at Steppenwolf in Chicago. It's impressive to note that the Steppenwolf Theatre has been in business for more than 30 years, and one can imagine that more rising stars will appear on its stage in the years to come. Getting tickets to see a show at the Steppenwolf in Chicago is a great idea for any Windy City visitor who enjoys the performing arts, and there are plenty of other great Chicago theaters that you'll also do well to consider.
Some might argue that the Chicago Steppenwolf theater has lost some of its indie appeal in recent years, due in part to its big time status, but that's hardly the case. From time to time, some of the more notable actors who have passed through the Steppenwolf in Chicago come back to perform, which is a real treat if you happen to catch one of them. These special performances are relatively rare, but you might still keep an eye on them when planning your Chicago vacation. Stage plays are the most common type of performances you'll see at the Steppenwolf Theatre, and you might also check out the schedules at Chicago theaters like the Oriental Theater and the Chicago Theatre if you are interested in seeing similar performances.
Image: City of Chicago