Redtwist Theater: Beginnings


Redtwist Theatre, formerly Actors Workshop Theatre, embarked upon its first production as an itinerant company in 1994 with Simon Gray’s Otherwise Engaged. AWT incorporated as a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation in May 2001. It produced five more plays before moving to its current home in the vibrant Bryn Mawr Historic District of the Edgewater neighborhood in Chicago in the fall of 2002. Redtwist’s first show in Edgewater, Praying Small, opened in September 2003. It was designated as a Critic’s Choice by the Chicago Reader and was extended two times by popular demand. Michael Colucci, the founder of Redtwist Theatre, is the Artistic Director. His producing partner and wife, Jan Ellen Graves, is the Managing Director. In addition to acting, she directed the critically-acclaimed The American Clock by Arthur Miller and the Jeff-recommended, world premiere and now published plays, Geezers and Aura, by company member, Tommy Lee Johnston. Michael’s direction of All My Sons, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Three Hotels, That Face, and Broken Glass was also critically-acclaimed and Jeff-recommended. During Redtwist’s time at the Bryn Mawr location, its productions have received 52 Jeff nominations and won 9 Non-Equity Jeff Awards including one for Best Production for Man from Nebraska in 2011. As of March 1, 2008, AWT’s corporate name officially changed to Redtwist Theatre.


–from the Redtwist Theater website