Press Release


The Public Square presents this special event, written and performed by teens reacting to home foreclosures in their community.

CHICAGO – Join The Public Square, a program of the Illinois Humanities Council, and Free Street Theater for a special presentation of the play Sub-Prime Youth. This performance piece was developed by teens in the Free Street Theater ensemble as a creative reaction to the current economic crisis and rise in foreclosures. It focuses on a group of first generation Mexican-American youth who seek protection from the collapsing American Dream, weaving brutal realism of a family facing foreclosure with the emotional and surreal music of the Muses of Destruction.

This event will take place on Saturday, February 21 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Free Street Theater at the Pulaski Park Fieldhouse (1419 W. Blackhawk Ave., Chicago).

This event is free and open to the public, but space is limited. To reserve a place, email or call 312.422.5580. This event is co-sponsored by The Public Square and Free Street Theater.

After the play, there will be a discussion with ensemble cast members and panelists Ruben D. Feliciano, Latino Policy Forum’s Housing Policy Analyst, Ron Bieganski, Free Street Theater Artistic Director, and Anita Evans, Free Street Theater Creative Director. They will explore Free Street’s creative process of engagement and, more generally, the impact of foreclosures on the immigrant community in Chicago.

The Public Square, a program of the Illinois Humanities Council, fosters debate, dialogue, and exchange of ideas about cultural, social, and political issues with an emphasis on social justice.  Programs promote participatory democracy by creating space for public conversations.

This event is part of The Public Square’s "Looking for Democracy" series, designed to launch a conversation about the kind of world we want to build together by creating forums for intelligent discussion of politics in America through art and dialogue. The "Looking for Democracy" series is supported in part by a grant from the Woods Fund of Chicago.

For more information about The Public Square, please visit or call 312.422.5580.

The Illinois Humanities Council (IHC) is a nonprofit educational organization (501 {c} 3) dedicated to fostering a culture in which the humanities are a vital part of the lives of individuals and communities.  Organized in 1973 as the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the IHC creates programs and funds organizations that promote greater understanding of, appreciation for, and involvement in the humanities. The IHC is supported by state, federal, and private funds.

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