by Hank Boland
directed by Nic Dimond
Season 17
June 12—July 23, 2005
The True Ballad of Fall's Blessings is a testament to the creativity, dedication and staying power that is the driving force behind Chicago's Off-Loop theater scene.
— Chicago Sun-Times
You really need only two things for a shot at a successful drama: interesting characters and a good story. The True Ballad of Fall's Blessings the new musical that opened at the Strawdog Theatre Ensemble last weekend, has both in abundance … the piece is an entertaining triumph.
— Daily Herald

The watch, the compass and the coin. The death of Old Man Hennessey leaves his daughters Caroline and Elizabeth with nothing but three items of little apparent value to save their farm and boarding house from financial ruin. But after their meager legacy is given or sold to Joe Young, the farmhand who dreams of a life on the stage, Jacob Fairfield, who leads his pregnant wife Beatrice after visions sent by God, and the circus man Phineas Waterman who desperately needs an act no one has seen before, it becomes clear that these items exert a strange influence over the affairs of those who hold them. Where will these three artifacts lead our heroes? Why is Mr. Parker, a mysterious acquaintance of Old Man Hennessey, so keen to get a hold of them? And how are an aging cowboy, a gorgeous bearded lady, a card-playing cad, a one-armed Frenchman, a kid who can eat anything, and a band of otherworldly musicians going to fit into the story?

This world premiere musical, directed by Strawdog Artistic Director Nic Dimond, was built from the ground up by the Strawdog Ensemble and written by playwright Hank Boland to cap off our 17th Season.

Jennifer Avery *
Chris Hainsworth
Tyler Carter
Kyle Hamman *
Joe Young
Shannon Hoag *
Kat McDonnell *
Gregor Mortis *
Loretta Rezos
Rob Skrocki
The Kid
Jamie Vann *
JB Waterman
James Anthony Zoccoli
Edmund Jenkinson
Hank Boland
Nic Dimond
Assistant Director
Katie Hawkey
Set Design
Jackie Penrod, USAA
Rick Penrod, USAA
Light Design
Costume Design
Props Design
Daniel Pellant
Music Director
The Dust Band
Emily Albright
Donald Cardiff
Anita Deely
Angela Rojas
Stephanie Smith
Mark Winston
Amanda Delheimer
Fight Choreographer
Vocal Coach
Abigail Boucher
Stage Manager
Erin Carlson
Bill Burton
Laura Dieli
Production Manager
Stephen F. Murray
* = Strawdog company member
Photography by Jon Cole Media
Production photo by Chris Ocken
Photo by KBH Media
Photo by Donald Cardiff
Photo by John Flak
Photo by Dave Brennan
Photo by Heath Hays
Production photo by TCMcG Photography