PlayMakers Laboratory is pleased to welcome back live audiences this summer with Summer of Stories, directed by Managing Artistic Director Brandon Cloyd.


July 26 at 6:00PM at HIAWATHA PARK, 8029 W Forest Preserve Ave
July 27 at 6:00PM at FRANKLIN PARK, 4320 W 15th St.
July 28 at 5:00PM at COLE PARK, 361 E 85th St.

Summer of Stories—DIGITAL PROGRAM


Directed By:
Brandon Cloyd
Stage Manager:
Maydi Díaz
The Cast:
Kaitlyn Andrews, Noah Appel, Marianna Gallegos, Linnaea Groh, Barry Irving, Jonathan Lee-Rey, Sam Nieves, Nick Crothers, & Bhak Yongwoo
Company & Production Manager:
Cedar Larson
Assistant Director & Assistant Stage Managers:
Becca Smith, Clara Radcliffe, Ashton Goren

The Stories:
The Party
The Evil Friends
The Reign of Sophie
Karito & Dino Nuggie
Ari’s Crazy Life
Fire Bomb Dragon Cutie
The Little Girl in the Basement with the Monster
Jen’s Struggle
The Little Minion and his OJ and his Lemonade
iPhone 13
Dogs vs Court
The Bee Thief

Also, Check us out on Social Media by following our: Youtube, Patreon, TikTok, Facebook and Instagram.

We are grateful for the direct support in funding this production from:
The Chicago Park District and The Paul M. Angell Foundation, for funding Support for this Production.

We are also grateful for the support of the following foundations & entities:
Crown Family Philanthropies, Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, Illinois Arts Council Agency, Illinois Humanities Foundation, Maurice R. and Meta G. Gross Foundation, Mardi Gras Fund, Polk Bros. Foundation, The Saints Foundation, Siragusa Family Foundation,  National Endowment for the Arts

Brandon Cloyd joined PlayMakers Laboratory in 2007 and has been deeply involved in many facets of the company ever since. Prior to joining PML, Brandon graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and a minor in Business Institutions. Within PML, Brandon has served as an actor, teaching artist, lead teacher, a member of Teacher Corps, as well as directing shows for schools and public performances of That’s Weird, Grandma. Before becoming the company’s Artistic Director in September 2017, Brandon served as PML After-School Program Coordinator at Loyola Park from 2014-2016 and Program Director from 2016-2017. Outside of PlayMakers Laboratory, he worked as the Associate Director of Camp Echo, where he has spent 13 summers managing campers and staff at a co-ed sleep away camp in Upstate New York. Brandon has worked with other theatre companies including Urban Theatre Company, American Theater Company, Filament Theatre, InGen Productions, ACLE’s Teatrino in Italy and Purple Crayon Players at Northwestern University. Brandon recently joined the Board of Directors for the League of Chicago Theatres.


What is That’s Weird, Grandma?

Now in its nineteenth year, That’s Weird, Grandma features adaptations of stories written during PML’s creative writing residencies in Chicago elementary schools. PML’s ensemble of professional actors, comedians and musicians bring the young authors’ stories to life as raucous sketches, songs and movement pieces, performing first for students in their schools and then for the public. These stories - from hilarious dialogues between unlikely characters to poignant pleas for social change - resonate with adults while celebrating the imaginations of young people.


Teen Arts Pass logo

PlayMakers Laboratory is excited to be an inaugural Teen Arts Pass (TAP) partner. TAP is a new initiative by Urban Gateways that gives young people ages 13-19 access to $5 tickets to see professional dance, music, and theater performances in and around Chicago. Learn more about the program and sign up here.

Some reviews of the show...

“[PML's performers are] the perfect blend of over the top energy, comedic timing, and wacky facial expressions . . .”

–Bonnie Kenaz-Mara, ChiIL Mama

“[PlayMakers Laboratory] brings its A-game every week. That’s not just devotion to the craft: it’s devotion to the cause.”

–Ian Rigg, Chicagoland Musical Theatre

“[PlayMakers Laboratory] shows, like chocolate chip cookies, are a source of infinite delight.”

–Jessie Bond, Chicago Splash

Read more reviews

That's Weird, Grandma

Jen Johnson, Mary Winn Heider, and Laura McKenzie performing in
Raquel Torre wearing a shark hat performing in

“I had so much fun; you opened me up to new ideas. Now I love to write and act.”

–Juliette, 6th grade, Loyola Park