Written by Eugene Ionesco

Translated by Helen Gary Bishop
Directed by Sheldon Patinkin

“Patinkin and his actors never lose sight of the author’s pummeling of price of ignorance.”
-Jeff Rossen, Gay Chicago Magazine

CAST: Beata Pilch, Michael Pieper, Danny Belrose, Sharon Gopfert, Kristie Hassinger, Sandra Walters, Susan Mele, Norah Helling, Summer Chance, Rob Skrocki, Drew Affeld, Jim Carlson, Aaron Boucher, Brian Callaway, Myles Leevy, Jeremy Seymour, Derek Burke, Alex Emanuel and Shannon O’ Neill
LIGHTING DESIGN: Richard Norwood
SET DESIGN: Anastasia Platt
GRAPHIC DESIGN: Peat Wollaegher

A satire of man’s inhumanity to man, centered in the form of the plague.

An exploration of inherent human selfishness within every man, woman and child.

The plague of destruction rages through the city streets in Eugene Ionesco’s The Kiling Game. 

The Killing Game, The show everyone is DYING to see!


Born in Slatina, Romania in 1912, Ionesco spent most of his first thirteen years in Francem dreaming alternatively of being a saint and a warrior. Between the ages of thirteen and twenty-seven, he lived in Romania where he witnessed the rise of Facism, anti-Semitism, and the violence that encompassed it. Returning to France in 1938 he settled in Paris to live and write in his second language. He contributed to CAHIERS DU SUD and began writing avant-garde plays. His works stress the absurdity both of bourgeois values and of the way of life that they dictate. They express the futility of human endevor in a universe ruled by chance. They all announce a refusal to suffer while acting out the dislocation and the strange emptiness he found in the world. His play la Cantatric Chauve (1950) was suggested by the idiotic phrases in an English language textbook; it has become an enormously popular classic of the theater of the absurd. Anong Ionesco’s other plays are The Lesson (1951), The Chairs (1952), Victime of Duty (1953),Rhinocerous (1959), Exit the King (1959), and The Killing Game (1970). He wrote about the theater in Notes and Counternotes (1962, tr. 1964); a memoir, Present and Past, Past Present (1968, tr. 1971); and the novel The Hermit (1974). He died in 1994.


Sheldon Patinkin is the Chair of the Theater Department of Columbia College, Chicago, Artistic Director of the Getz Theater, Artistic COnsultant of the Second City, and on the faculty of the Lyric Opea Center and the Steppenwolf Ensemble Project. His recent directing pojects have been Awake and Sing at Steppenwolf, Puttin’ on the Ritz: an Irving Berlin American Songbook, which he also devised and which one Jeff Awards for Best Revue and Best Director, at the National Jewish Theater; Krapp’s Last Tape for the 1996 Buckets of Beckett Festival; his own adaptation of Chekov’s Ivanhov for Columbia College; and concert stagings of Carmen and Eugene Onegin for the Lyric Opera Center at the Grant Park COncerts. His translation of Bertolt Brecht’s The Good Person of Setzuanwas directed by Frank Galati at the Goodman Theatre. He received a 1991 special Joseph Jefferson Award for Service to the Chicago Theater Community, and the Illinois Associaition’s 1992 Outstanding Contribution Award.

Opened :May 1999