All posts by John N. Frank

Hear about the costumes for New Year’s Eve at Grandma’s House

The costumes for the 2nd Act Players' fall premiere of New Year's Eve at Grandma's House are the most elaborate the theater has done in its five years in existence. 2nd Act Players' Cofounder Carolyn Calzavara has made dresses for all the women in the Smaldone family who you'll meet in our story. The time ...

Vote to help end fear, panelists advise

American immigrants, even those  with green cards and those who have become naturalized citizens, today are living in fear for their own well-being and that of their families, said speakers at the 2nd Act Players' post-show panel on immigration Sunday, Nov. 4. What the rest of us need to do to end the nightmare they ...

Opening Weekend Audiences Rave about New Year’s Eve at Grandma’s House

Opening weekend audiences were almost universal in their praise for the new 2nd Act Players' show, New Year's Eve at Grandma's House. Comments such as "Great, it was great!" and "The acting was really good," were common on audience feedback forms during the first two shows Nov. 3 and Nov. 4. Other comments: "Timely, serious, ...

Watch Julie Mitre discuss her character in New Year’s Eve at Grandma’s House

Julie Mitre will be making her fourth appearance on the 2nd Act Players' stage this November in New Year's Eve at Grandma's House, playing the matriarch of a large Italian-American family in 1960 and 1961. Hear Julie discuss her character here, then click here to buy your tickets to see her, Saturday nights at 7 ...

Hear about New Year’s Eve at Grandma’s House on WFMT

The 2nd Act Players, in its ongoing efforts to reach a wider audience with its dynamic new works for the stage, this season is advertising on Chicago classical station WFMT, in addition to running ads in the Pioneer Press north suburban papers, in the Chicago Tribune, on Evanston's own WCGO and with the CTA. Our ...

Speakers added to 2nd Act Players’ Nov. 11 immigration panel

The 2nd Act Players' November play, New Year's Eve at Grandma's House looks at the American immigrant experience circa 1960. Its first two Sunday shows, Nov. 4 and Nov. 11, will be followed by panel discussions on issues immigrants face today. Speakers for the Nov. 11 panel will include: Fernando Moreno, chief operations officer, SpanishPublicRadio.org ...

Watch Ryan Hall discuss his character in New Year’s Eve at Grandma’s House

Ryan Hall this year finds himself playing a character in New Year's Eve at Grandma's House who is based on the father of the character he played last year in the 2nd Act Players' drama Moving Boxes.It's not often an actor gets to play two generations of characters from the same family. Watch what Ryan ...

Watch Anne Tracy talk about her character, Faye

Faye is one of the Smaldone sisters you'll meet when you come to see New Year's Eve at Grandma's House, a look at the American immigrant experience through the eyes of an Italian-American family in 1960 and 1961. Faye tries to honor her father's wishes even after his death, but doing so comes with a ...

Listen for the 2nd Act Players Sunday on WCGO’s Playtime with Bill & Kerri

Listen for 2nd Act Players' cofounders John N. Frank and Carolyn Calzavara this Sunday, Oct. 28, on WCGO radio's PLAYTIME with Bill Turck and Kerri Kendall. Discussion will revolve around New Year's Eve at Grandma's House, the 2nd Act Players' world premiere play that opens Nov.3 at Northminster Presbyterian Church's theater in Evanston. "PLAYTIME is ...

Who Will You Meet at Grandma’s House? Meet Momma

The family matriarch, momma (Julie Mitre) has been slowed by strokes and cataracts from the days when she led her church rosary society in a wide range of church activities. She's raised eight children through some of the most difficult times in U.S. history but as the party begins in New Year's Eve at Grandma's ...