UIC Theatre Presents ‘Our Lady of 121st Street’

University of Illinois at Chicago acting students will perform “Our Lady of 121st Street,” a comedy by Stephen Adly Guirgis, directed by Shanésia Davis, film and television actress and UIC adjunct lecturer in theatre.

Performances are Feb. 23, 24, and 25 at 7:30 p.m.; Feb. 22 at noon; and Feb. 26 at 2 p.m. at the UIC Theatre, 1044 W. Harrison Street.

The play opens after Sister Rose, a nun, teacher and beloved activist in Harlem, has died of alcoholism, and her body has been stolen from the funeral home. Her distraught mourners are over-the-top characters who grew up together, but have not seen each other in years as their lives went astray in various directions. Suddenly needing to come clean, they square off against each other, unleashing their pain and fear in reminiscences, quarrels, and confessions.

The New York Times praised this play as “a scorching and dark new comedy…Mr. Guirgis has one of the finest imaginations for dialogue to come along in years.”

Shanésia Davis is a Jeff-nominated actress who has appeared in feature films such as “The Weatherman,” “Backdraft” and “With Honors,” and in a lead role in the CBS television series “Early Edition.” She has performed onstage at Chicago’s Goodman, Northlight, Court and Royal George theaters, and at the San Diego Repertory Theatre.

Stephen Adly Guirgis is co-artistic director of New York City’s LAByrinth Theater. He first became known for his play, “Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train,” nominated for London’s Olivier Award for best new play.

General admission tickets for “Our Lady of 121st Street” are $16; $14 for UIC faculty and staff; $12 for students; and $11 for UIC students. Tickets may be purchased at theatreandmusic.aa.uic.edu or through the box office at (312) 996-2939.

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