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Provocative adult comedies premiere on Chicagoland stages

Reasons to Be Happy by Profiles Theatre Resident Artist Neil LaBute makes its Midwest premiere on August 22 at the company’s Main Stage on 4139 N. Broadway. The 2009 Tony-nominated comedy features Eric Burgher, Dennis Bisto, Domenica Cameron-Scorsese and Sarah Loveland. Tickets ($35-$40) are available at The production runs through October 12.

“I'm very excited to have Profiles be one of the first companies in the country to take on the second chapter in the Reasons saga,” says LaBute. “Chicago is such an important and vital part of the American theater and I have my own roots deeply planted in that world. I can't wait to have all the artists involved with Reasons to Be Happy tell this story. I am a lucky man indeed.”

The world-premiere production of The Qualms by Bruce Norris runs through August 31 at Steppenwolf’s Downstairs Theatre on 1650 N Halsted Street. For tickets ($20-86) and more information, visit

“I love that the play gets so quickly to the question of status and power,” notes Artistic Director Martha Lavey, “because status and power are precisely what the dominant social narrative both wields and conceals. We accept fidelity in marriage or a committed partnership as ‘natural.’ But, Bruce asks, is it? If fidelity is "natural" why is so much energy devoted to corralling the desire of one's partner?”

For the first time since its Broadway debut, the musical comedy Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown appears in Chicagoland from September 11 through October 12. The stage adaptation of Pedro Almodóvar’s Academy Award-nominated film includes direction by William Pullins, choreography by Danny Herman and musical direction/orchestrations by William Underwood with score by David Yazbek and book by Jeffrey Lane. Visit to purchase tickets ($40-$44) for performances at Theatre at the Center on 1040 Ridge Road in Munster.

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