Mon, 12/05/2022 - 6:30pm to 10:00pm

 PlayMakers Laboratory celebrates its 25th anniversary of arts education in Chicago schools with 25 Years of Students’ Stories, two public performances featuring stories written by Chicago youth on Monday, December 5 at 6:30 pm & 8:30 pm at the Neo-Futurist Theater, 5153 N. Ashland Ave. in Chicago. Tickets ($25) are currently available at All proceeds from the performances benefit PML’s ongoing arts education initiatives.

For 25 years, PlayMakers Laboratory has provided vital arts education by conducting creative writing residencies in Chicago elementary schools. PML’s ensemble of professional actors, comedians and musicians bring the young authors’ stories to life as raucous sketches, songs and movement pieces, performing first for students in their schools and then for the public. These stories – from hilarious dialogues between unlikely characters to poignant pleas for social change – resonate with adults while celebrating the imaginations of young people. 

PHOTO CREDIT: (center) Elisa Carlson and PlayMakers Laboratory company members perform the student-written story “Crazy Rockers.” Photo by Evan Hanover.

COVID-19 safety: The Neo-Futurist Theater requires masking during all performances.

About the Director

 Brandon Cloyd joined PlayMakers Laboratory in 2007 and has been deeply involved in many facets of the company ever since. Prior to joining PML, Brandon graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and a minor in Business Institutions. Within PML, Brandon has served as an actor, teaching artist, lead teacher, a member of Teacher Corps, as well as directing shows for schools and public performances of That's Weird, Grandma. Before becoming the company’s Artistic Director in September 2017, Brandon served as PML After-School Program Coordinator at Loyola Park from 2014-2016 and Program Director from 2016-2017. Outside of PML, he worked as the Associate Director of Camp Echo, where he has spent 13 summers managing campers and staff at a co-ed sleep away camp in Upstate New York. Brandon has worked with other theatre companies including Urban Theatre Company, American Theater Company, Filament Theatre, InGen Productions, ACLE's Teatrino in Italy and Purple Crayon Players at Northwestern University. Brandon is a former board member for the League of Chicago Theatres.

About PlayMakers Laboratory

Since PlayMakers Laboratory’s inception in 1997 as Barrel of Monkeys, its teaching artists have served more than 60 Chicago Public Schools. Over 15,000 elementary school students have participated in the PlayMakers programs, which aim to build students' writing skills, improve self-esteem, and instill confidence in their ideas and abilities.

PlayMakers Laboratory is sponsored in part by Crown Family Philanthropies, Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, Illinois Arts Council Agency, Illinois Humanities Foundation, Maurice R. and Meta G. Gross Foundation, Mardi Gras Fund, Polk Bros. Foundation, The Saints Foundation, Siragusa Family Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Paul M. Angell Foundation, Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, The Chicago Community Trust and many other generous individuals.