Since 1969, Free Street has been dedicated to an OUTRAGEOUS idea: theatre matters. And if theater matters, it should be for everyone. And we mean EVERYONE. Anyone who wants to see it, and anyone who wants to make it. We believe in making theater by, for, about, with, and in Chicago’s diverse communities. We believe in making theater that defies the segregation of our city. We believe in a way of working that both invites people in and requires us to go out. We believe in telling stories about the real and complicated issues of our city from the point of view of the people most affected by them. We believe in making room for all of us. And right now we are asking you to join us, to help make this work possible, to #befreestreet. Because it takes all of us to make theater for all of us.

Here’s what we’ll be doing with your help:

Working to break down the economic barriers that keep people from making and seeing theater. We perform for free in public spaces, we have pay-what-you-can ticketing at all of our home shows, we pay all of our artists, and we offer childcare at rehearsals and at shows.

Producing new plays from a wide-range of Chicago artists. This season features 100 Hauntings, created by our own intergenerational ensemble; The Americans, a performance about Trump vs. Clinton vs Coke Vs Pepsi; No Hay Mal, a hilarious solo play about surviving from Chicago storytelling queen Lily Be; Or Nah?, a play about voting from the point of view of people who can’t vote; Night of the Living Moms, a new piece about radical parenting from Lani Montreal; and Meet Juanito Doe, a year-long project that archives the stories of Chicago’s Mexican-American population.

Creating opportunities for dialogue and skill-development. Free Street is well-known for our vibrant youth programming, where artists age 13-19 develop writing, performance, and critical thinking skills over an intensive 12-month process. But we also offer free performance workshops to people of all ages, all over the city. These range from storytelling workshops to our Performance for Direct Action and Intervention Training, which helps artists use their creative skills to support activist efforts they care about.

By joining our #befreestreet campaign, you–yes, you!– become part of making all of this happen. And as a Thank You for supporting our work, everyone who gives $25 or more will receive a #befreestreet t-shirt (pictured above).

Let’s do this! Let’s #befreestreet

Your contribution is fully tax deductible.



1419 West Blackhawk Street, Chicago IL 60642