Absurdist People’s Theater Presents “Gem Of The Ocean” at Black Sheep May 19, 20, 21


Today we are excited to share with you all that we are once again teaming up with the new DIY theater troupe – “The Absurdist People’s Theater” for another round of performances at the end of this spring. The theater troupe will be taking on performing August Wilson’s “Gem of the Ocean” first performed in 2003 dramatizing the African-American experience in the twentieth century. There will be three performances of the play put on by The Absurdist People’s Theater at Black Sheep and those are as follows:

Friday, May 19th at 7:00 pm
Saturday, May 20th at 7:00 pm
Sunday, May 21st at 1:00 pm

The Absurdist People’s Theatre also have a new website launched where you can reserve tickets for each of the performances. Tickets are $12 per show, and you can find the site right here. More on the play from the facebook event:

Directed by Alex Martin

Set in 1904, August Wilson’s Gem of the Ocean begins on the eve of Aunt Esther’s 287th birthday. When Citizen Barlow comes to her Pittsburgh’s Hill District home seeking asylum, she sets him off on a spiritual journey to find a city in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Gem of the Ocean is the ninth work in Wilson’s ten-play cycle that has recorded the American Black experience and helped to define generations. The Broadway run starred Tony Award winner Phylicia Rashad as Aunt Esther.


The Illinois Times: “Radical Theater Pushes Boundaries”


We are excited to see more of our friends make it big to The Illinois Times once again- this time there is an article inside this week’s issue focusing on The Absurdist’s People Theatre – a newer DIY Theater Troupe based out of Springfield. Those of you may remember the theater troupe puttin gon a few performances of the play “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolfe” inside Black Sheep this past summer. They are now gearing up for their second round of performances for the play “Gem of the Ocean” by August Wilson to happen at some point later this year inside of Black Sheep.

Self-described by founder and director Alex Martin as “DIY rogue theater,” Springfield’s  Absurdist People’s Theater Troupe would like nothing more than to shake things up in Springfield. “I went to Blackburn College and did theater for four years,” Martin said. “When I came back here to my home community and looked around at the different theater projects that were happening, I noticed that there wasn’t much of the kind of theater I’m interested in happening in the local theater community.” Instead of passively waiting for Springfield’s theater scene to change, Martin decided to create her own company. “I want to show people that there are other kinds of theater out there, instead of just the same musicals, the same plays again and again. I’d like to do plays that haven’t ever been produced here, newer stuff by newer playwrights.”

Check out the full article online right here, or pick up a copy of this week’s Illinois Times inside Dumb Records or other local businesses. Stay tuned on date announcements for “Gem of The Ocean” performances inside Black Sheep.

Absurdist People’s Theater Holding Auditions for August Wilson’s “Gem of the Ocean” January 24th + 25th


The Absurdist People’s Theater is gearing up big for their second week of theater performances after a successful debut this past August with their performances of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolfe” which was also the first ever theater performances to have taken place inside Black Sheep. The Absurdist People’s Theater is a newly formed DIY Theater Troupe based right here in the capital city. This time around the group will be taking on the play “Gem of the Ocean” by August Wilson. Gem of the Ocean was first performed in 2003, and is set in the year 1904.

Auditions for the new play are from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm inside Black Sheep on Tuesday and Wednesday- January 24th and 25th. You do not have to be already a member of the Absurdist People’s Theater Troupe to audition. You can look over a list of the characters and find out more about auditions on the Absurdist People’s Theater facebook event right here.

Final performances are set to take place on March 24th, 25th, and 26th this year inside Black Sheep.

This Saturday at Black Sheep: Theatre Troupe Fundraiser


Good evening! Just us dropping by to let you know what is happening at Black Sheep this weekend. There aren’t any actual shows until Tuesday, November 9th with the Pretend I’m Not There tape release show, but we are hosting a benefit event for the Absurdist People’s Theater Troupe. This is going to be a Rocky Horror Picture Show themed fundraiser. Come dressed as your favorite Rocky character if you so wish and there will be games to participate in and also food.

The fundraiser is $5 entry, and then we have been told there will be certain games set up for $1. This will go from 7:00 to 10:30 pm. Proceeds will be going towards The Absurdist People’s Theater Troupe and their next production and also to Black Sheep. Check out a facebook event for all of that right here. Also check out our shows page for a closer look at everything coming up at Black Sheep and Southtown this fall / winter.

Theatre Auditions Tonight + Tomorrow


For those of you who were able to experience the excitement and success of the first performance done by The Absurdist People’s Theatre Troupe rendition of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” back in August, you’ll know that the next play they are soon to present is not one to be missed by either actors or audience members! For the former of the two, we have an announcement! There will be open auditions for an upcoming show held by the troupe titled “Gem of the Ocean” by August Wilson. Here’s an excerpt from the event page:

“This is the second full length production of the Absurdist Peoples’ Theatre Troupe for August Wilson’t Gem of the Ocean. This is the first play in his Pittsburg Cycle that chronicles the African American experience throughout the entire 20th century, one for each decade for a total of ten plays. We are planning on doing one per year through the saga.

Requiremnts for auditioning:
-2 audition pieces of 2 to 3 min. in length with two seperate tones. These can be pieces from the play or anything else you want to show us.
-willingness to join the troupe formally
-precollected theatre experience

The cast will be made up pf five males and two females, and will be all African American.”

To anyone interested in attending the auditions, they will be held tonight and tomorrow night at Black Sheep and will start at 5pm on both days! Take a look at the Facebook event page for more info and the best of luck to any and all that audition! For more on the Absurdist People’s Theatre involvement with Black Sheep, check out this WUIS segment on the theatre troupe and their first performance as well as this Black Sheep radio show interview!

Today + Tonight at Black Sheep: “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” Performances 2 & 3


The critics agree, last night was the first performance of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” at Black Sheep, and it was amazing! We encourage anyone who missed last night to check out one of the two plays going on today! We have two performances – one at 1:00 pm and the other at 7:00 pm. You can expect both to be around 3 hours long with intermission, and there will also be discussion at the end for anyone who wants to stick around after that. Go ahead and RSVP on either facebook event if you are interested in attending:



Also check out The Absurdist People’s Theater facebook page!

First Ever Theater Performances This Weekend At Black Sheep


We’ve been meaning to get an official announcement up on our site for this for a few weeks now! This upcoming weekend we are going to be hosting something very different at Black Sheep. On August 12th, 13th, and 14th (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) we will be hosting four different performances of a play being put on by the newly formed “Absurdist People’s Theatre“- an experimental DIY Theatre Troupe based in Springfield. The play they will be performing is Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolfe.” There will be four performances, all $12 each and limited to a certain number of seating. You can find more info on each performance by clicking links below:

Friday, August 12th at 7:00 pm
Saturday, August 13th at 1:00 pm
Saturday, August 13th at 7:00 pm
Sunday, August 13th at 1:00 pm

You can RSVP by clicking “going” on any of the events listed above. There will be an open discussion following each performance. Formal dress is optional. Presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service Inc. New York.