Warming Up – a LezPlay Salon

Are web series the new L word? An evening of lesbian web series screenings in LezPlay Salon Series’ kickoff event WARMING UP Friday, June 19 at Apollo Studio Theate Pride Films & Plays is delighted to announce the first event in our LezPlay Salon Series, WARMING UP, a hilarious evening of lesbian web series screenings hosted by local comedian Shannon Noll. Join us on Friday, June 19 at the Apollo Studio Theater. Tickets are $10 and are available at We will be screening several web series featuring Chicago actors and filmmakers, including the first season of the Andersonville-based #Hashtag. The evening will also include a conversation with tello Films producers Jessicn King and Julie Keck about this brave new world of lesbian and queer representation online. There will be a cash bar at the theatre. The evening will be hosted by Shannon Noll, a stand up comedian and improvisor. Currently she can be seen performing as a cast member at 100 Proof Comedy (ComedySportz), Good Morning Lakeview (Annoyance Theater), and Skinprov (Annoyance Theater). She also writes for the podcast The Koch Brother’s Mystery Show (Cards Against Humanity). She is graduate of Columbia College Chicago. Past credits include ChiGayGo (LaughMore…


“Safe” is named winner of 2015 Great Gay Play Contest

Pride Films and Plays has for the last five years celebrated unique voices in the annual Great Gay Play And Musical Contest with a festival of staged readings in the Hoover-Leppen Theater at Center on Halsted. This year, four new plays and one new musical were performed as enhanced staged readings to enthusiastic audiences. And as the weekend concluded, Safe by Donna Hoke was named the winner, based on scores submitted by readers across the country who judged our 2015 entries, and by comments and reactions from PFP’s Artistic Ensemble and audience members who watched all five readings. In Safe, Hoke portrays events in the life of central character Nancy. In 2011, a young gay teen hangs himself–but the events leading to the suicide began decades before, in 1986, when bullies tormented Nancy and her closeted best friend. Twenty-five years later, the cycle continues when Nancy is confronted by another bully–her son. Donna Hoke is Western New York regional representative for the Dramatists Guild, and her work has been seen in 33 states (so far!) and on five continents. Her full-length plays include The Couple Next Door (currently in rep in Romania), Seeds (Artie award winner for Outstanding New Play),More…

Awards, Benefits

Nominee Night

Performers from Bailiwick Chicago, Theo Ubique, Kokandy Productions, Pride Films and Plays, Boho, and Signal Theater Ensemble Celebrate Nominee Night at Sidetrack on Tuesday, May 19. Artists from many of the Jeff Award Nominated musical productions of the 2014-15 Season will be featured at Nominee Night, a showcase at Sidetrack on May 19. Performers scheduled to appear include Garret Lutz and Carol Buinis from Kokandy’s The Full Monty, Jim DeSelm from Boho’s Parade, Callie Johnson from Bailiwick Chicago’s Carrie, Sam Button-Harrison from Pride Films and Plays’ The Book of Merman, and Courtney Jones from Signal Theater Ensemble’s The Next Thing. Also on the bill are Don Johnson, Maxwell J. DeTogne from Jesus Christ Superstar at Theo Ubique, and Matthew Keffer, Danni Smith, and Sharriese Hamilton from The Wild Party at Bailiwick Chicago. And a very special guest is David Schlumpf, last year’s Jeff Award Winner for Best Actor in a Musical. Accompanists for the evening are Robert Ollis and Jeremy Ramey, both past Jeff Award Recipients. Attendees can also purchase chances to win exciting door prizes including dinners, Wendella Boat Rides, Theater Tickets, and more! Doors open at 6:30 pm, with a musical program from 7:00 to 8:30. General AdmissionMore…


An Interview with Filmmaker Carlos Ocho

“It is very important for me that my films add a value to this world we live in, either through the drama, comedy or horror. Providing seeds of consciousness and giving questions to think about.” –Carlos Ocho Carlos Ocho is a filmmaker based in Barcelona, Spain. His short film “Open Relationship” was included in Queer Bits Fall Film Festival last November and his film “My Reality” will be screened during Queer Bits Summer Film Festival which is on June 1st, 2015 at 7:30PM at The Public House Theatre. Tickets can be purchased at Carlos answered some questions posed by PFP Artistic Associate Nelson Rodriguez. Nelson Rodriguez: What inspired you to be a filmmaker? What continues to inspire you? Carlos Ocho: When I was 14 years old, I wanted to be an actor, and I started doing small plays in my village. Then I studied four years of interpretation during my college days, but [then] I had to stop and focus on finishing my studies in Economics basically because of money. Likewise, I still loved it a lot. I’ve been swallowing cinema nonstop since the age of 14. When I was 26, I moved to Barcelona [and] ​​a good friend of mine gave me a video camera as a gift.More…

Events, Films

Queer Bits Summer Film Fest Selections Announced!

Pride Films and Plays’ Queer Bits Summer Film Festival Announces Eight Short Films to Receive Chicago Premieres Pride Films and Plays (PFP) begins an exciting season of new screenplays and short films receiving their Chicago premieres! PFP is now accepting submissions for the 2015 Great Gay Screenplay Contest via with an Early Bird Deadline on May 31st and a Regular Deadline on June 30th. Also two screenings of short films will be presented at the Public House Theatre (3914 N Clark); Queer Bits Summer Film Festival on June 1st and Queer Bits Fall Film Festival II on November 9th, 2015.   Queer Bits Summer Film Festival announces eight short films from six different countries receiving their Chicago premieres at the Public House Theatre (3914 N Clark) on June 1st, 2015 at 7:30PM.   Pride Films and Plays’ Queer Bits Summer Film Festival will include a charming Brazilian comedy about a young man that buys a device to help him know whether other people are gay or straight, a sexy Spanish psychological drama about a man that uses an unconventional method to deal with a breakup, a bittersweet American coming-of-age tale centering around two best friends graduating high school, aMore…

Events, Plays

‘The Boy From Oz’ Sizzles This August!

Pride Films and Plays will conclude its remarkable Summer Season with The Boy From Oz, the Broadway musical which tells the amazing life story of celebrated songwriter and performer Peter Allen. Featuring songs by Peter Allen, book by Martin Sherman and Nick Enright, Direction by David Zak, and Musical Direction by Robert Ollis, The Boy From Oz tells the exuberant yet heart-warming true story of a young Australian boy who loved to perform and ended up in the glamorous orbit of Judy Garland and her soon-to-be famous daughter Liza. The Boy From Oz previews Wednesday, August 5 and Thursday, August 6. Press opening is Friday, August 7 at 7:30. Press tickets are also available for Saturday, August 8 at 7:30. Regular performances are Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 7:30 and Sundays at 5 through August 30 only. Tickets are $25 Wednesday, $30 Thursdays and $40 on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Seniors can save $5 per ticket. For tickets call Stage 773 (773-327-5252) or order online at Other events in PFP’s Summer Season include: June 1: Queer Bits Film Fest, featuring the Chicago debut of short LGBT films from around the globe. The fest is at The Public HouseMore…

Company News, Events, Plays

**JEFF RECOMMENDED** – ‘The Book of Merman’ Now At The Apollo!

Pride Films and Plays Jeff Recommended production of The Book of Merman continues at Apollo Studio Theatre through May 17. The new musical comedy by Jeff Award-winning author Leo Schwartz has been playing to sellout crowds at Mary’s Attic in Andersonville since its opening on January 17, 2015. Showtimes at the Apollo are 7:30 pm on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays; and 3:30 pm on Sundays. Tickets are $30 for all performances, with $5 discounts for seniors and students and are on sale through Ticketmaster and the Apollo box office (773-935-6100).The final performance is May 17. When two Mormons ring a doorbell marked E.M. in a small town, they have no idea that a certain Ethel will open the door. With some dazzling parody music and Schwartz’s original songs, you will laugh throughout The Book of Merman and leave smiling, as it takes you beyond parody and into a sweet story of self-awareness and acceptance. Jeff Award-winner David Zak directs with Jeff Award-winner Robert Ollis musical directing.  Sam Button-Harrison and Dan Gold as the two Mormon missionaries who happen upon Merman. Luke Meierdiercks is a regular understudy. Details: The Book of Merman by Leo Schwartz, directed by David Zak, musical directionMore…

Events, Plays


***JEFF RECOMMENDED*** Pride Films and Plays is thrilled to join the 2015 Steppenwolf Garage Repertory to present the Chicago premiere of Topher Payne’s Award-winning Angry Fags. PFP Artistic Associate Derek Van Barham directs. Topher Payne’s comedy Angry Fags illustrates what happens when activism gets angry. Cooper and Bennett are men who feel helpless when their friend is the victim of an assault at a bar. Then, they feel something new: pure, unfiltered rage. Cooper presents the argument that no one is granted the rights they deserve until people are a little afraid of them. And no one is afraid of gay guys. Not yet. Angry Fags is an Oscar Wilde-meets-‘Fight Club’ fever dream about how good ideas go bad, with fascinating forays into American politics, bomb building, and pistachios. “It doesn’t get better. We have to MAKE it better.” An Oscar Wilde-meets-Fight Club fever dream about how good ideas go bad, with fascinating forays into American politics, bomb building, and pistachios Pride Films and Plays is excited to introduce Chicago audiences to this award-winning new writer, and thrilled that his fierce, fabulous, and unapologetic new play will be presented as part of Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s Garage Rep in Spring, 2015.More…

Benefits, Company News


It feels like 2015 just arrived, and Pride Films & Plays already has a lot to celebrate!  The Book of Merman has been extended by popular demand, our Great Gay Play finalists have just been announced, and we’re about to open a show at the Steppenwolf Garage. We’re ready to raise a glass, sing a song, and spend the afternoon with friends like you!   Join us on Sunday, March 8 for AFTERNOON DELIGHT– a Celebration of all things Pride! The party is from 4-6PM at Ada Street Chicago (1664 N Ada St). Tickets are $50, and include live entertainment, snacks, and a selection of beer, wine, and signature cocktails. Meet both casts of our current hit shows, and find out more about upcoming PFP events. Tickets can be purchased here or 773-697-7069.  Tickets for this event are very limited, so don’t miss the opportunity to spend the afternoon with Pride!  


Nominee Night

Mark your calendar for a very special night at Sidetrack, which will celebrate all of Chicago’s great musical theaters. And help fund PFP’s new musical program! Watch for details for the event slated for May 19 from 6 to 8 pm. Doors open at 6:00 pm, with a program from 7:00 to 8:30. General Admission tickets are only $20 and include one drink coupon. VIP tickets include 2 drink coupons and program recognition. They can be purchased at, or by calling 1800 838 3006. Attendees can also purchase chances to win exciting door prizes!