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A staged reading series that showcases new, full-length work by Chicago area playwrights.

Each script is brought to life through collaboration with a director and cast of talented actors.

THREE CHORDS by Kimberly Kolarich

Directed by Katherine Lamb

Featuring Sara Gianola, Daria Harper, Richard Hatcher, Lewis R. Jones, Jonathan Schwart, and Reilly Willson

7:30pm on Monday, June 27

The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL

$5 suggested donation


THREE CHORDS drops us into the living rooms, dressing rooms, and rehearsal rooms of three very different sets of people who have all reached a moment of reckoning in their lives. Whether it’s the wannabe, the master, or the has-been, various characters muse on their relationship to music and take stock of their lives and loves as they wander the line between their own ambition and the compromises they make.

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KIM KOLARICH is an actress, playwright, and fiction writer from Chicago. Her plays have been produced in Chicago and New York, received an honorable mention at the Pittsburgh New Works Festival, and placed as a finalist for the O’Neill Playwrights Conference. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee and her fiction has appeared in many publications including the Bridport Prize Anthology. This fall she can be seen acting opposite her six-year old daughter in the Henry Jaglom film Ovation.

We were delighted to interview Kim about her work and her thoughts on writing for theatre.

Read on below to find out what she had to say!

Q. What brought you to play writing?

After working as an actress in a film, the director told me that I sounded like a writer. He gave me a computer and told me that I should write. That suggestion changed my life. I think it's a natural creative progression for actors to be interested in writing. We read so many scripts.


Q. What kind of writing are you inspired by? Are there any playwrights or artists in particular?

I especially like Irish plays. I'm inspired by Chekhov, Conor McPherson, Martin McDonagh, Brian Friel, and Jon Robin Baitz. I'm currently reading Tennessee Williams' book of one-act plays.

Q. How did you come to write ‘Three Chords’?


Two wonderful actors performed a staged reading of the first act of my play at "The Make Ready" and I thought: This might work.

My play is about rock stars at different points in their careers. I love rock music from the seventies because it reminds me of my childhood. Things like hearing songs from Physical Graffiti then riding on the back of one of my brothers' motorcycles. It is that kind of feeling of freedom I wanted to express. The album Who Are You never grows old and brings me right back to high school in the good kind of way. I've always been curious of musicians' lifestyles, their provenance, and how they came to be. I must admit: Life by Keith Richards is a fascinating book. What I wanted to capture in a play was: the beginning, the pinnacle, and the end of a rock star's career. The title "Three Chords" comes from the belief that it only takes three chords to write a rock 'n roll song.

Q. Are you working on anything now?


I'm writing as many 10 minute plays as I can - inspired by Dandelion Theatre's "The Make Ready."


I'm also collecting notes for a full-length play about a recording studio. I wish I were around in the early 60s when rock 'n roll was blossoming. I would have loved to have been a producer or an A&R man and find new talent and promote them. I've lived on my own since I've been sixteen. Nothing really was ever given to me - I had to go and get it. I think with that drive and talent manager instincts - I might have signed... (this is where you can fill in the blank).


Q. What kind of theatre are you passionate about?

I'm sure if I had studied Shakespeare, I would have said Shakespeare. But what's most important for me to see on stage is two actors listening to one another.

I believe I'm most passionate about improv. I think it's a very important skill for any human being to have in any walk of life. It's kinda like mediation for creative types. Improvising teaches a long-lost art called listening. By the time my daughter was seven, she had already participated in over 100 improv shows. I've seen hundreds of shows and studied improv at Bang! Studio in LA, which lead me to work in several Henry Jaglom movies. Before I put anything down on paper for a play - I'm improvising the characters in my head.



KATHERINE LAMB is Dandelion Theatre’s Founding Artistic Director as well as an actor and writer in Chicago. Her directing credits include Body Awareness by Annie Baker, which was also Dandelion’s inaugural production. Katherine attended New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, where she studied directing, and graduated with a B.F.A. in Film and Television Production. 

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