50 Years of Free Street

Home » Free Street Turns 50


In 2019, Free Street turned a very fabulous, beautiful, stunning 50. To celebrate this monumental occasion, we made a documentary!! Anchored by our 50x50 project, featuring performances in all 50 wards of Chicago in one day, this 28-minute documentary explores the ups and downs of Free Street’s 50-year history. 

We need your help to build a strong foundation for our future. If you believe in what the arts can do for our city, and support Free Street’s mission of making theater broadly accessible to all, please consider being an advocate for us in the coming year.  Here are four ways you can get involved in celebrating our jubilee year:


Love a good party? Join the Host Committee for our our major fundraising event for next year, a fun Jubilee to be held at the Garfield Park Conservatory on September 14, 2019. Host committee members commit to a $1000 give/get – either buying a table or bringing 10 friends to the event.

[Contact Artistic Director Coya Paz at coya@freestreet.org]


Free Street is absolutely committed to economic accessibility – we pay all of our artists, offer all of our programming for free/pay what you can, and provide free children’s co-programming at shows. But none of this is free for us! We need donor support to make it happen. We’ve set a goal of raising $50,000 for our 50th. Join our Be Free Street Giving Collective and be an integral part of our vision for Chicago theater.

Can you help?


Do you own (or work for) a business that could sponsor our 50th anniversary programming and gala? We want to work with you! Download more information here.


Do you know people who should know us? People you are sure would be excited by our work and mission? Potential donors? Board members? Host committee members? Business owners/event sponsors? How about journalists? Arts advocates? We’d be THRILLED to be the beneficiary of your matchmaking!

[Contact Artistic Director Coya Paz at coya@freestreet.org]


50 Years of Free Street

Since 1969, Free Street has been a necessary innovator in Chicago, seeking out new and effective ways to challenge racial and economic segregation through the arts.