ChiArts Welcomes Annie Calhoun as the New Theatre Department Head

We are thrilled to welcome Annie Calhoun as our new Theatre Department Head. She was a founding teacher at ChiArts and has a deep love for the school’s mission. She will succeed Rob Chambers, our Founding Theatre Department Head, who is moving to Arizona to lead the theatre department at Arizona School for the Arts.

Ms. Calhoun holds degrees in education and theatre. She returns to Chicago after five years teaching, directing and performing in Los Angeles. In LA, Ms. Calhoun taught and directed at the Professional, Collegiate (USC), and High School (LA County HS for the Arts) levels; she also founded an inner city theatre program for middle schoolers in South LA. She is a playwright whose pieces have been performed on stages all over Los Angeles and an actor whose work ranges from theater and film, to improv and stand up comedy.

A Chicago native, she is rooted in our values of play, ensemble, high standards and creative new work. The breadth and depth of her expertise in education and theatre offer a vast array of skills from classroom management and facilitating diversity, equity & inclusion to building ensemble among students and staff, and measuring student growth outcomes. Ms. Calhoun will begin her tenure in the fall for the 2017-18 school year!

Justin Gunn and Steven Cooper, students at ChiArts, join Good Day Chicago to talk about their new film “Bound.”

Justin Gunn and Steven Cooper, students at ChiArts, join Good Day Chicago to talk about their new film “Bound.”

The film follows the diverging lives of two African-Americans growing up in Chicago. Cooper and Gunn offer a positive alternative to life on the streets – arts education. As Cooper notes in the interview, “…Simple things like opportunities and exposure to different artistic lifestyles may be something that can get them out.”

 

Joshlyn Lomax Named Rising Star

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Joshlyn Lomax (Musical Theatre, ’18) and Mayor Rahm Emanuel

ChiArts’ very own Joshlyn Lomax has been named the “Rising Star” for this year’s Fifth Star Awards, hosted by the Department of Cultural and Special Affairs! Joshlyn received her award and perform before an audience of stars and artistic luminaries at Jay Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park on Wednesday, September 14th at 7:00 PM.

The Fifth Star Awards celebrate Chicago’s creativity and recognize institutions and individuals who have made significant contributions in arts and culture. This year’s honorees include Buddy Guy, Victor Skrebneski, Jackie Taylor, Carlos Tortolero, and The Second City. After their meeting last week, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said, “Talented young artists like Joshlyn are the reason Chicago has become a global destination for the arts, and suggest that the future is bright for our city.”

Click here for more information on Joshlyn and the Fifth Star Awards.