Tag: Wonka Ball

Thursday, April 16, 8:58 PM written by About Face Theatre

Play the “Art is Forever” Raffle – now through April 30th!


Still got that Wonka fever? Weren’t able to come and join in on the fun this year? No worries!

We’ve got one more big prize to give away!


Screen Shot 2015-04-16 at 1.20.55 PMPlay the “Art is Forever” raffle online between now and April 30th for your chance to win an Exclusive Warhol prize package filled with art books, Warhol-inspired art and 2 bottles of limited edition Absolut Warhol. Tickets are just $10 each or buy 3 chances to win for $25. Purchase as many tickets as you like! We’ll randomly select a winner* on May 1st.


*Winner must be available to pick up their prize at our Edgewater offices, 5252 N Broadway Ave, Chicago, IL.

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Wednesday, March 25, 8:28 PM written by AFT Theatre

Wonka Ball: WARHOL – Meet the Artists!

benWe couldn’t throw a Warhol-themed party without amazing art now could we?! We are flipping our silver wigs over here about the amazing artists we have lined up to create art LIVE at the event and will be sharing images and info about them here on our blog each week.

Stay tuned and make sure to grab your tickets so you can come see them do their thing in-person!


Edgewater Workbench

Edgewater Workbench is a community workshop/makerspace located on the northside of Chicago that offers affordable work space to support local artists and artisans. While they support all things handmade (selling locally made goods and offering classes in their space) one of their most unique specialties is 3D printing and laser cutting. Given his penchant for replicating everyday objects, we are sure that is Andy Warhol were alive today, he’d be all over the 3D printing trend!

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Still a relatively new concept, 3D printing is one of those things that feels like it’s from the future…and if you are coming to Wonka Ball, you’ll get to see it happen in-person and even have the chance to walk away with an adorable, Warhol-inspired, 3D printed banana and/or soup can necklace like the ones pictures below! Read on to get to know the artists behind Edgewater Workbench.

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Ally Brisbin, Business Development & Marketing

Ally Brisbin is a community activist and small business advocate who has lived in Edgewater since moving to Chicago in 2008. Ally started and co-owned Kitchen Sink, a specialty coffee and sandwich shop in Edgewater, for four years. During her time as a business owner, she was accepted to and graduated from the competitive Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program. She was also one of 50 semi-finalists in the 2013 Scion Motivate contest for young entrepreneurs. In 2012, Ally co-founded Community Glue Workshop, a community repair collective focused on repairing, rather than replacing, broken and worn out possessions. Ally currently works at the Edgewater Chamber of Commerce as the Marketing and Events Coordinator.

Stuart Marsh, Operations & Design

Stuart Marsh is an artist and craftsperson. He grew up in a family of artists, spending much of his youth learning trades skills, including painting, carpentry, metalwork, and glassblowing.

After high school he moved to Chicago to pursue a career in animation. Stuart and his brother started a decorative finishes and painting company that allowed him to pay his way through Columbia College. After graduating with a degree in film and animation, he went on to an array of freelance jobs ranging from timelapse photography for the Discovery Channel to being the Director of Animation for an Independent Film Channel (IFC) pilot. His animation work can be found in the Rice Center at the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Field Museum’s Restoring Earth exhibit, and in D’agastino’s Pizza ads at Wrigley Field.

More recently, Stuart has delved into 3D printing. He has been a guest speaker in classes on the subject of design for 3D printing and its application to film at Columbia College and DePaul University. Stuart’s plans for a community 3D print center won ABSOLUT vodka’s “Transform Today” challenge, and Edgewater Workbench received funding from ABSOLUT for 3D printers, as well as business consultation from Wired Magazine and Makerbot Industries.

Visit Edgewater Workbench’s website to learn more.

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Tuesday, March 17, 10:16 PM written by About Face Theatre

Wonka Ball: WARHOL – Meet the Artists!

benWe couldn’t throw a Warhol-themed party without amazing art now could we?! We are flipping our silver wigs over here about the amazing artists we have lined up to create art LIVE at the event and will be sharing images and info about them here on our blog each week.

Stay tuned and make sure to grab your tickets so you can come see them do their thing in-person!


Matthew Lew

mattPainter, photographer, mixed media artist, Matthew Lew creates original artwork that is marked by bold individuality with subtle references to the fluidity of life. His diverse body of work suggests that art is life itself and ultimately contributes to one’s place in the world.

Born and raised in Reno, Nevada, Lew completed his art education in San Sebastian, Spain. He relocated to Chicago in 2005 and now proudly calls the city home. While his heart is rooted firmly in Chicago, Lew possesses a traveler’s spirit. He is inspired by influences from all corners of the globe and translates them into a mixed media approach that features photography, oil, acrylic and, at times, unique sources from around the world including water, wine and champagne – integrating these elements into his original work.

product1Lew’s multifaceted visual language speaks to the constant change that he sees in an ever-evolving contemporary world. His diverse body of work supports his belief that art comes in many forms and should be accessible to all.

In 2009, Lew completed a large-scale commission to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Chicago’s iconic Lake Point Tower. Measuring 22 feet by 9 feet “Sun Rise,” has garnered substantial praise and devoted collectors, inspired new commissions and helped to position Lew as the Chicago Artist. After finishing the Lake Point Tower, Matthew was commissioned to do original paintings for the Chicago Fairmont Hotel, and recently President Obama has gifted two of his Chicago cityscape paintings to foreign dignitaries. His artwork has also been featured on, ABC’s “Extreme Makeover Home Edition”, “Cougar Town”, “Suburgatory”, HGTV’s “Divine Design”, BRAVO TV’S “Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis” and CBS’s “The Early Show.” Lew’s talent also extends to art and design in home products as seen in his work for CB2.

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Visit Matthew’s website to learn more.

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Monday, April 21, 5:21 PM written by AFT Theatre

Announcing the 2014 Leppen Leadership Award Winners!

Each year at Wonka Ball, About Face Theatre designates two recipients for our Leppen Leadership Award. Named in honor of Michael Leppen, a friend and generous benefactor of our company, the honor is bestowed upon an individual and an organization that has demonstrated extraordinary support for LGBTQA youth.

This year, we are pleased to announce that the
individual award goes to two inspiring individuals:
Patricia Ewert and Vernita Gray!


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Wednesday, February 19, 2:00 PM written by AFT Theatre

Benjamin Sprunger Joins the AFT Team as Development Director

Benjamin Sprunger AFT Development Director head shotWe’re excited to announce the appointment of Benjamin Sprunger as our new Development Director. Ben, who has served on AFT’s Board of Directors and as an Artistic Associate, will begin the full-time staff position in March.

“I am so pleased to welcome Benjamin Sprunger to the About Face Theatre staff,” comments Artistic Director Andrew Volkoff. “Ben brings more than 15 years of history with About Face as an actor, Artistic Associate, and Board member. His commitment to the company and its growth as well as his energy, institutional knowledge and community relationships will be a huge asset to AFT.”

Ben comes to About Face from House of Blues/Live Nation Worldwide, where he worked more than twelve years in finance and accounting. He has been an AFT Artistic Associate since 2010 and served on the company’s Board of Directors from 2011 – 2014. During that time, Ben spearheaded several fundraising initiatives and co-chaired Wonka Ball for four years.

As an actor, Ben has appeared in seven AFT productions to date including Whitman, Take Me OutSay You Love Satan, Wedding Play, The Flowers, The Homosexuals and The Pride. He has also worked with The House Theatre of Chicago, TimeLine Theatre, Steep Theatre, Griffin Theatre, Pegasus Players, CityLit Theater, Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago Dramatists, Victory Gardens Theater, Goodman Theatre, Strawdog Theatre, LiveWire Chicago Theatre and Sideshow Theatre in Chicago, as well as Mark Taper Forum, The Blank Theatre, Hudson Theatre, Pasadena Playhouse, Met Theatre, Secret Rose Theatre and Greenway Court in Los Angeles.  Television credits include Passions, It’s All Relative and several episodes of Will & Grace, where he played Will’s boyfriend’s sister’s fiancé.  He holds a BFA in Music, Theatre and Dance from Otterbein College in Westerville, Ohio.

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Wednesday, February 12, 4:41 PM written by AFT Theatre

Wonka Ball Tickets are Going Fast!

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Wonka Ball: The Gayme Show!

Friday, May 9th
9th floor event center at Macy’s on State Street
VIP Cocktail Party 7 pm; General Admission 8 pm


AFT is celebrating our 18th year of producing LGBTQ theatre by hosting the gayest of galas.  Join us for an evening of fantastic food and delicious drinks dedicated to this year’s theme: the television game show.  Or as we like to call it, The Gayme Show.

Event Ticket: $150 – open bar, delectable edibles, chances to win fabulous prizes at our live and silent auctions, dazzling performances, a tempting silent auction, dancing, and more!

VIP Ticket: $200 – an extra hour to enjoy the open bar and delectable edibles, free raffle tickets, parting gifts, and the presentation of the Leppen Leadership Awards.

This year, we are pleased to announce that the individual Leppen Leadership Award goes to two inspiring individuals:
Patricia Ewert and Vernita Gray!  And the Leppen Leadership Award for an organization goes to Chicago House’s TransLife Center!

Special Awesome Bonus: If you purchase 10 event tickets, two members of your party will have their tickets upgraded to VIP!

Business and Corporate Partnership Opportunities
There are many opportunities to make your business a part of Wonka Ball!  Please reach out to us for information about Corporate Partnerships, Silent Auction Donations, and Ad Sales.

To get involved and help make Wonka Ball a success, please email Biz Wells or call our offices at (773) 784-8565

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