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The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
City Lit Theater
Chicago, IL
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The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

September 27, 2010. For immediate release.
For more information, contact Terry McCabe or Brian Pastor.

Washington Irving's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, in a world premiere City Lit adaptation by Stephen F. Murray and Brian Pastor, will play twelve performances only as a special Hallowe'en addition to City Lit's 31st season.  The production will begin performances on Friday, October 15 and will run through Sunday, October 31.  Press opening is Sunday, October 17 at 7:00 pm.  The production is directed by Murray and stars Pastor in a one-man portrayal of all the characters in Irving's story.  It features original music composed and performed by Matthew Bivins and live Foley sound effects created by Shawn Goudie.      
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is one of Irving's most influential and lasting pieces. It tells the story of Ichabod Crane, a school teacher in Sleepy Hollow who fancies Katrina, the daughter of the wealthy Baltus Van Tussel.  As he courts her, he discovers his rival in Brom Bones.  As the two fight for Katrina's attentions, the townspeople tell tales of the Headless Horseman that instill a great fear in Ichabod.  One fateful night, after a fall dance, his fear of the Horseman is realized on a shadowy path in Sleepy Hollow.      
"The Headless Horseman is the first ghost to appear in American literature," Murray said, "and he still does a good job of haunting us.  The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is the best-ever Hallowe'en story, and our goal with this show is to scare the audience, pure and simple."
Washington Irving is frequently called the father of the American short story, and he is heavily identified with those places in New York State he used as locales in his writing.  His A History of New York from the Beginning of the World to the End of the Dutch Dynasty, written under the name of Diedrich Knickerbocker in 1809, is Irving's comic history of the Dutch in New York and made the word Knickerbocker a nickname for New Yorkers.  Two years earlier, he had affixed the name Gotham —the Anglo-Saxon word for "Goat's Town"—to the city.  In 1819 he published The Sketchbook of Geoffrey Crayon, a collection of short stories inspired by German folklore that contained Irving's two best known stories, "Rip Van Winkle" and "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow."  Irving died in 1859 and is buried in Sleepy Hollow, New York.
Stephen F. Murray most recently directed Frank Wedekind's  Spring Awakening for Promethean Theatre Ensemble.  He is Promethean's former artistic director, and also directed their production of Timberlake Wertenbaker's Our Country's Good.  At the 2008 New York Fringe Festival he directed Ivan Faute's The Darling Children.  That same year his staging of Faute's adaptation of Edgar Allen Poe's The Fall of the House of Usher won City Lit's first Art of Adaptation festival.  
      Brian Pastor played the male lead in City Lit's The Body Snatchers last year as well as in five previous City Lit shows.  He co-adapted Mark Twain's Pudd'nhead Wilson for City Lit with artistic director Terry McCabe.  He has also acted with  The Mime Company, Chicago dell'Arte, Bailiwick Repertory, Strawdog Theatre, Arts/Lane, Authentic Theatre and Promethean. He is City Lit's managing director.    
      The design team for The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is Matthew Cummings (props), Christine Ferriter (lighting), and Ricky Lurie (costumes).  
      Preview performances for The Legend of Sleepy Hollow are Friday and Saturday, October 15 and 16, at 8:00 pm.   Press opening is Sunday, October 17 at 7:00 pm.  Thereafter, the schedule for the regular run is as follows:  Fridays at 8:00 pm, Saturdays at 3:00 and 8:00 pm, and Sundays at 3:00.  The show closes on Hallowe'en afternoon,  Sunday, October 31 at 3:00 pm.
In addition, City Lit is offering a special free performance of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow on Tuesday, October 19 at 7:00 pm, as its participation in two free theatre offers:  the Edgewater Chamber of Commerce's Edgewater Free Theatre Tuesdays and The League of Chicago Theatre's Free Night of Theatre.  
Ticket prices are $18 for previews and $25 after opening.    Discounts are available for seniors, students, and groups of ten or more.  Tickets may be purchased by 773-293-3682 or visiting   Tickets for the October 19 free performance must be reserved in advance, either by calling 773-293-3682 or by emailing
      City Lit specializes in literate theatre, including stage adaptations of literary material.  
      City Lit Theater is located in the historic Edgewater Presbyterian Church building at 1020 West Bryn Mawr Avenue, one block west of Sheridan Road and a block and a half east of the Bryn Mawr Red Line L stop. The 84 Peterson bus, the 147 Lake Shore Express bus, and the 151 Sheridan bus all stop near City Lit.
Valet parking is available for theatre customers through the Valet Metro service at Francesca's Bryn Mawr restaurant across the street from City Lit.  Discounted parking is available for theatre customers, with validation from the Edgewater Beach Café, in the Edgewater Beach Apartments' underground parking lot located one block east of the theatre. That Little Mexican Café, one block west of City Lit, offers free parking to City Lit patrons who make reservations to dine there before the show.  
      City Lit receives funding from the Alphawood Foundation, the Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs CityArts program, and the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.  Its outreach program is sponsored in part by A.R.T. League.


City Lit Theater
1020 W. Bryn Mawr Ave.
Chicago, IL 60660
United States


Arts > Theatre

Kid Friendly: No
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: No
Wheelchair Accessible: No


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