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 What We're Up Against

 Special Performances

Compass Theatre was proud to present a slate of special performances. Post-show discussions were complimentary with same day ticket purchase.  

What We're Up Against Chicago/ Illinois 

Post show Discussion January 19th with Comptroller Susana Mendoza 

Comptroller Susana A. Mendoza is Illinois first Hispanic independently elected to statewide office. She is an independent, truth-telling, fiscal watchdog for the state of Illinois. Prior to statewide election she made history by becoming the first woman ever elected as Chicago City Clerk. Prior to her service as City Clerk, Mendoza served six terms between 2001 and 2011 as a Democrat in the Illinois House of Representative where she quickly earned a reputation as a tenacious and effective legislator. Mendoza has served as Co-Chairperson on the Conference of Women Legislators and has served three times as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention. Mendoza was listed as one of “18 to Watch in 2018” by Politico and most recently, highlighted in Governing Magazine for her role in managing Illinois through its fiscal crisis. Learn what women are up against in Illinois and advice on how to stay politically engaged in policy that matters. 

Gender Bias In The Work Place 

Post Show Discussion January 24th 

Nationally recognized advocates for women in the workplace and co-authors of the book Breaking Through Bias (named a Best Business Book for 2016 by Women@Work)  Andrea Kramer and Alton B. Harris will lead a discussion on gender bias in the workplace. Learn what women and men can do to prevent gender stereotypes and biases from obstructing women's ability to advance as fast and as far as they wish in their careers. More about the speakers can be found at

Gender Bias In The Theatre

Post Show Discussion January 26th

Gender imbalance is an unfortunate reality that exists in today's theatre industry. Hear about these three successful women's artistic experiences first hand and learn what actions can be taken to increase gender parity, artistic visibility and economic health of women in the performing arts. 

Erica Daniels has been the Managing Director at Victory Gardens Theater since January 2017. At VGT, Erica supervises Administration, Finance, Development, Marketing, Production and Education.She is in charge of Board recruitment and Producing as well, among many other things.

Before that, Erica Daniels was President of Second City Theatricals where she shepherded the remount of The Art of Falling with Hubbard Street Dance Company, as well as Black Side of the Moon with Woolly Mammoth Theatre, Second City’s collaboration with Slate on Unelectable You The Second City’s Completely Unbiased Political Revue, and The Second City’s Guide to America at The Kennedy Center. Previously, Erica was The Associate Artistic Director at Steppenwolf Theatre Company. She joined the company in 2001 as the casting director. Erica did the original casting for Manhattan Theatre Club’s Broadway production of Airline Highway, and the Broadway production of Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. She also cast the original production of August, Osage County (also for Broadway, The National Theatre of London and Sydney Theatre Company) and the Broadway production of Superior Donuts. Prior to that, Erica worked as an agent for Geddes, Arlene Wilson and Shirley Hamilton, and spent a year as The Theatre Department Coordinator at William Morris in New York. Working under George Lane, she worked with such writers as John Patrick Shanley, Richard Greenberg, and Edward Albee and directors such as Michael Mayer, Robert Falls and Daniel Sullivan.Erica began her career as a casting assistant at Jane Brody Casting. She has free-lanced with various Chicago companies, including Lookingglass, Collaboraction, and About Face. Erica recently cast the independent film Imperfections for Coin Op productions. Erica is the board president at Rivendell Theatre Company and is on the board of the League of Chicago Theatres. She holds a degree in Performance Studies from Northwestern.

Sylvia Hevia is the Managing & Development Director of Teatro Vista has a 15+ year track record of experience in producing/marketing successful events and securing sponsorships. In2013, she launched her own company, SylviaHevia Productions, which is a multicultural event production company dedicated to bringing Latinx cultural events, performances and recording artists to Chicago. Her company has designed innovative events for McDonald’s Hispanic Owner-Operators Association (MHOA), AARP, Univision Radio/TV, United Airlines and the Consulate of Argentina.Hevia worked at the International Latino Cultural Center from 2011-2014 as Director of Marketing and Development where she monitored sponsorship relationships, directed all marketing campaigns and special events including the historic Chicago Latino Film FestivalSylvia Hevia is a professional singer who has performed in various genres including, salsa, neo-soul, R&B, jazz, dance and Latin pop. She has shared the stage with international artists including Arturo Sandoval, Frankie Negron, Grupo Niche, Cano Estremeda, Spanish Harlem Orchestra and Trio Los Panchos. She continues to perform with her band SylviaHevia y su Orquesta, Mechilex, Zyanya, Azure and the 1950s Cuban Big Band.She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Purdue University. 

Lauren Shouse is a freelance director and the Associate Artistic director at Northlight Theatre. Her recent directing credits include: The Cake at Rivendell Theatre (Jeff nomination for Best Director), The Legend of Georgia McBride at Northlight Theatre, Nice Girl and Betrayal at Raven Theatre; Avenue Q, Rapture, Blister, Burn, Superior Donuts, and A Christmas Story at Nashville Repertory Theatre, the world premiere of Long Way Down with 3Ps productions; the world premiere of Religion and Rubber Ducks with Ovvio Arte; Parallel Lives, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Last Five Years and Chess in Concert with Street Theatre Company; the world premiere of Rear Widow at Chaffin›s Barn Theatre, and Sylvia Plath’s 3 Women. She received her MFA in theatre directing at Northwestern University where she directed Stop Kiss, Eurydiceand In the Next Room or the Vibrator Play. In Chicago, Lauren has also worked with Steppenwolf Theatre, Goodman Theatre, Lookingglass Theatre, Sideshow Theatre, Route 66, The Gift, Chicago Dramatists, and Stage Left Theatre.

Moderator: Alissa Schapiro Alissa Schapiro is a Chicago-based museum curator and art historian who specializes in modern American art and the history of photography. She received her undergraduate degree in the History of Art and Architecture from Harvard University, her master’s degree in Curatorial Studies from the Courtauld Institute of Art, London, and is currently completing her Ph.D. in Art History at Northwestern University. Schapiro has contributed to numerous museum exhibitions and catalogues in the U.S. and abroad, including at the Art Institute of Chicago, the Terra Foundation for American Art, the Newberry Library, the Milwaukee Art Museum, the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Tate Britain, and the Courtauld Gallery. In addition to finishing her Ph.D. dissertation about American art and visual culture produced in response to the Holocaust, Schapiro is also currently working on the first major exhibition and catalogue on Life magazine, which will open at the Princeton University Art Museum and then travel to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston next year.

Women In STEM + Start-Up Careers (science, technology, engineering, math). 

Post Show Discussion January 27th

Loree Sandler is a Chicago-area entrepreneur, architect and mom.  In November 2011, while watching traditional wax candles spoil her youngest son’s cake, Sandler imagined candles that would instead enhance a celebration.  After significant research and development, Sandler introduced premium chocolate candles to light and eat, and founded her company: Let Them Eat Candles.  The product was recently featured in the Washington Post and on ABC’s Good Morning America digital platform.


Andrea S Kramer MD is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon specializing in pediatric orthopedics. She provides treatments for all the major congenital disorders as well care for scoliosis and traumatic injuries. Dr. Kramer is a physician at Illinois Bone and Joint Institute as well as the Director of the Pediatric Orthopedic Center of Excellence at Advocate Children’s Hospital in Park Ridge Il.  A dedicated athlete and mother of two boys, Dr. Kramer is highly committed to the physical well being of her patients and helps parents make treatment decisions for their children as if she were making them for her own. 


Women and minorities remain underrepresented in STEM and Entrepreneurial careers.  Learn about these two successful women’s disciplinary interests, their workplace environments, and advice for others who are thinking about  a career in these typically male-dominated fields. 

Happy Hour Pre-show drink and a bite to eat Thursday, January 31st at Fritzy's Tavern 6156 N. Clark St- across the street from Raven Theatre

Join other Chicagoans for pre-show  cocktails and a bite to eat before seeing the show. Socialize, network, develop friendships -first drink is on us! 

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