Black Ensemble Theater to begin Grandma's Jukebox

May 10, 2022
Grandma's Jukebox at Black Ensemble Theater

Black Ensemble Theater's Founder and CEO Jackie Taylor continues the 2022 Season of Excellence: The Season of Healing and Joy with the world premiere of Grandma's Jukebox, written and directed by Michelle Renee Bester. The production runs May 21-June 26, 2022. 

The spirit of Grandma B. lives on! Without her the family feels lost until they start hearing the music from her old juke box. It is through the music that the family comes to understand and accept the power of healing.

The production features songs made popular by Mary Mary, Boyz II Men, Michael Jackson, Nina Simone, Tina Turner, Jazmine Sullivan and Sly and the Family Stone, among others.

Jackie Taylor comments, "Michelle Renee Bester joins the Black Ensemble Theater artistic team as our newest associate director. We are so proud to preview her unique talents. She brings a different perspective of style and voice that is a great addition to the Black Ensemble Theater experience."

Grandma's Jukebox features Jessica Seals, Aeriel Williams, Vincent Jordan, Jeff Wright, and Blake Reasoner. Kayla Gilmore is the understudy.

The artistic team is: Executive Producer Jackie Taylor, Michelle Renee Bester (writer, director) Robert Reddrick (music director) and Oscar Brown Jr (band leader). The design team includes Bek Lambrecht (set), Denise Karczewski (costumes) and Marquecia Jordan (costumes). The Equity stage manager is Daryl D. Brooks, the production stage manager is Jessica Moore, and the technical director is Harrison Orneals.

Tickets are available at, (773) 769-4451 and at the Black Ensemble Theater Box Office, 4450 N. Clark Street in Chicago. Performances are Fridays at 7:00 p.m., Saturdays at 3:00 and 7:00 p.m. and Sundays at 3:00 p.m. Tickets for previews (May 21 at 7pm, May 22 at 3pm, May 27 at 7pm and May 28 at 7pm) are $50 and tickets for the regular run, May 29-June 26, are $55.