This one-woman tour-de-force celebrates the iconic work of Judy Garland, Patsy Cline, Billie Holiday, Edith Piaf and Maria Callas. Share in the unexpected encounters between these legendary divas and the ordinary women whose lives were changed by their brush with fame. Featuring such favorites as “Come Rain or Come Shine,” “Crazy,” and “Ain’t Nobody’s Business If I Do,” Songs for Nobodies illuminates the power of song to share a story, heal a heartbreak, and inspire a dream.
“Thomas is a true talent to be treasured…with this tour-de-force performance, she proves to be one such diva herself.” – BroadwayWorld
Bethany Thomas “was able to light up the stage with a 100-minute tour de force that showcased both her extraordinary vocal range and musical ventriloquism and her remarkable range and charm as an actress… Thomas has clearly found the kind of star turn that can change a career, and a life, while unquestionably generating immense happiness, awe and bravos among her audiences.” -WTTW
“Bethany Thomas shows new depth of her talent and range…You’d imagine it would be impossible for a single singer to do justice to such a disparate group of musical artists… Not this one.” -Chicago Tribune
“Jaw-dropping performance skills illuminate ‘Songs for Nobodies.’ A brilliant showbiz showcase for Thomas and the Northlight team.” -Daily Herald
“Breathtaking, startling, stunning, astonishing — this writer can’t think of enough synonyms to say Thomas amazes” -Picture this Post
“In many Chicagoland productions over the years Thomas has been a stellar supporting performer. Finally she has the stage all to herself and she seizes the moment to score a stunning personal triumph.” -Stage and Cinema
Bethany is beyond thrilled to make her Northlight debut and to finally share space with you all again. Credits include Into the Woods, A Moon for the Misbegotten (Writers Theater); Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Songs For Nobodies, The Color Purple (Milwaukee Rep); The Tempest (Chicago Shakespeare); Marry Me a Little (Porchlight Music Theater); and Porgy and Bess (Court Theater). She’s also frequently entangled with The Neo Futurists, Steppenwolf, Second City, The Fly Honeys, The Paper Machete, and The Hideout. As a singer/songwriter, BT tours and records with Jon Langford, and recently released an album with Tawny Newsome entitled Material Flats, and a solo album entitled BT/She/Her. Find Bethany’s music on iTunes, Bandcamp, Spotify, and everywhere else. Love to Rob. @bethanyt80
Joanna Murray-Smith is a Melbourne-based playwright, screenwriter and novelist. She has written over 20 plays including, Honour, Rapture, Bombshells, Nightfall, Redemption, Love Child, Flame, and The Female of the Species. Honour has been produced in over two dozen countries, including productions on Broadway and at the National Theatre in London and in the West End. Both Honour and Rapture won the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Best Play. Joanna has also published three novels Truce, Judgement Rock, and Sunnyside.
ROB LINDLEY returns to the Northlight stage after appearing in Funnyman. Rob is also the proud director of last season’s Jeff Award-winning Songs for Nobodies. Other acting credits include: Monsieur André in the North American Tour of Phantom of the Opera; The Sound of Music (Marriott); Fun Home (Victory Gardens); Secret Garden, James Joyce’s The Dead, Angels in America, Caroline or Change, Wild Duck, Carousel (Court); Candide (Goodman); My Fair Lady (Asolo Rep); The Temperamentals (About Face); Bach at Leipzig (Writers), and Oh, Coward! (Writers – Jeff Award for Best Actor). Rob has numerous directing credits including the Off-Broadway production of 50 Shades!: The Musical Parody, many productions for Porchlight Music Theatre, and many gala concerts, most recently and notably “Yours, Stephen Sondheim” with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at Ravinia Festival. Thank you Northlight and BJ for giving me a place to be seen. This performance is dedicated to all of the queer icons like Andy who came before me and did their very best to do their very best. IG: @RobLindley
Andra Velis Simon
Andra is pleased to make her Northlight debut. She works extensively in Chicago and around the country as a music director, adapter/arranger, pianist, educator, and vocal coach. Regionally, her work has been seen at Actors Theatre of Louisville, A.R.T. in Cambridge, Berkeley Rep, Brooklyn Academy of Music, NYU’s Skirball Center, Olney Theatre Center in Maryland, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Pasadena Playhouse, and Three Oaks in Michigan. In Chicago, she has had the pleasure of collaborating with Chicago Children’s Theatre, Firebrand Theatre, Goodman Theatre, The Hypocrites, Steppenwolf, Theater Wit, Writers Theatre, and dozens of others. She is a Practitioner in Residence at Columbia College Chicago, where she has taught musical theatre performance since 2008. Special thanks as always to Jamie. www.AndraVelisSimon.com
Jeffrey D. Kmiec
Jeffrey is an award-winning Chicago-based Theatrical Production Designer and Art Director. His designs have been seen at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, The Lyric Opera, Paramount Theatre, Drury Lane Theatre, Marriott Theatre, Timeline Theatre, American Players Theatre, Northlight Theatre, Porchlight, Raven Theatre, The Artistic Home, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre, Heritage Theatre Festival, and The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte. He received three consecutive Equity Jeff Awards for his designs on The Little Mermaid at the Paramount Theatre (2017), Deathtrap at Drury Lane Theatre (2016), and Les Miserable at The Paramount Theatre (Co-Design with Kevin Depinet in 2015). Jeffrey received his MFA from the University of Virginia, BA from Illinois State University, and is a member of USA 829.
Mieka van der Ploeg
Credits include designs with Goodman Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Steppenwolf, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Court Theater, Writers Theatre, Lyric Opera Unlimited, Lookingglass Theatre, Paramount Theatre, Marriott Theatre, Remy Bumppo, Second City, Redmoon, The Hypocrites, Chicago Children’s Theatre, About Face Theatre, Steep Theatre, Theater Wit, Albany Park Theater Project, Manual Cinema, and the Under the Radar Festival at The Public Theatre. She won a non-Equity Jeff award in 2020 for First Love is the Revolution at Steep Theatre. She is proud to be a member of USA829. www.miekavanderploeg.com
Credits include the National Tour of The Screwtape Letters. Off Broadway: The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity (Second Stage, Lortel and Hewes Nomination), The Screwtape Letters (Westside Arts), Romulus (Guggenheim Museum), The Hourglass (NYMTF). Chicago: Northlight, Chicago Shakespeare, Drury Lane, Goodman, Victory Gardens, Lookingglass, Steppenwolf, Court, Writers, Marriott, TimeLine, American Theatre Company, Noble Fool, Chicago Dramatists, American Theatre Company. Regional: Fulton Theatre, Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble, Portland Center Stage, Boars Head Theatre, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Milwaukee Repertory. Resident Lighting Designer for Drury Lane, Route 66 and Chicago Tap Theatre. Jeff and After Dark award winner. www.jessekluglightingdesign.com
Broadway: Slave Play, The Nap, Bronx Bombers, and A Time to Kill. Off Broadway: Privacy (The Public Theater), Bootycandy (Playwrights Horizons), Rx (Primary Stages), Top Secret (New York Theatre Workshop), and many others. International: Royal Shakespeare Company, Stratford Festival, many others. Regional: South Coast Repertory, Arena Stage, Goodman, McCarter, Steppenwolf, Guthrie, Hartford Stage, Chicago Shakespeare, Woolly Mammoth, and others. Film scoring: The Brass Teapot (Magnolia Pictures) and the Academy Award–winning A Note of Triumph (HBO Films). Audio drama work includes A Streetcar Named Desire for Audible, and the award-winning weekly podcast for children The Imagination Neighborhood. Lindsay has received two Tony Award nominations for Best Score and Best Sound Design of a Play, seven Joseph Jefferson Awards and 24 nominations; two Ovation Awards and three nominations; and many others. www.lindsayjones.com.
Production Stage Manager
Rita Vreeland has been a frequent stage manager at Northlight since 2007, with Birthday Candles marking her 42nd production here. Other favorite recent projects include Ernest Shackleton Loves Me at Porchlight Music Theatre, A Christmas Carol at Drury Lane, The Luckiest at Raven Theatre, three years of The Polar Express Train Ride, and productions at Mercury Theatre, Victory Gardens, Route 66 Theatre Company, Theatre at the Center, and The Galway International Arts Festival in Galway, Ireland. She is the proud wife of actor Tom Hickey and mom to ten-year-old Charlie, and this year she celebrated her 22nd anniversary as a member of Actors’ Equity Association. Thank you for supporting live theatre!
Originally from Southern California, Adrian Abel Azevedo is a freelance director, producer, and teaching artist in the Chicagoland area. He is an alumni of Columbia College Chicago. His most recent credits include directing Music Theatre Works’ Richard Rogers Greatest Hits Concert. Upcoming: Production Associate for Porchlight Music Theatre’s ICONS Gala honoring Chita Rivera, followed by directing Music Theatre Works’ 2022 summer musical. He has worked with Chicagoland theatre companies including Goodman Theatre, Porchlight Music Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Steep Theatre, Teatro Vista, and Music Theatre Works. Yando Lopez, I love you. Please get vaccinated and thank you for coming to the show.
Eva is a voice and text coach based in Chicago. Recent Chicago credits include Nell Gwynn (Chicago Shakespeare), Lady In Denmark (Goodman), The Doppelganger (Steppenwolf), Plantation! (Lookingglass), Master Class (Timeline), The Belle of Amherst (Court Theatre). Regional: Four seasons with American Players Theatre; Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley, The Who and the What, Always Patsy Cline (Milwaukee Rep); Love’s Labour’s Lost (Actor’s Theatre of Louisville); The Woman in Black (US Tour); Around The World In 80 Days (Baltimore Center Stage/Kansas City Repertory) and Mamma Mia! (National Tour/Las Vegas). Television: Empire, Betrayal, The Chicago Code. Eva is an associate artist at TimeLine Theatre Company.
Northlight is fully wheelchair accessible and offers select wheelchair seating in our theatre. If you require wheelchair access, please inform the Box Office or make a note on your subscription form.
For our hearing impaired patrons, we offer a Radio Frequency (RF) Headset system. This two-part system features a radio belt pack and headset, and can be obtained from House Management (ID deposit required).
Each production in the 2021-22 Season will offer one performance that includes both OPEN CAPTIONING and AUDIO DESCRIPTION.
At an audio-described performance devices are available for patrons who are blind or have low vision which will allow them to hear live spoken narration of the action on the stage, along with descriptions of the scenery, costumes, lighting, and more.
During open captioned performances, an electronic text display is positioned to the side of the stage, which shows what the actors are saying or singing and describes sound effects on stage, for patrons with slight to profound hearing loss.
The Songs for Nobodies captioned & audio-described performance is Saturday, October 16, 2021 at 2:30pm. To purchase, call the Box Office 847.673.6300 and indicate if you desire seats designated for Audio Description services or for best view of the Captioning display. Or buy online. Use the promo code NACCESS to receive tickets at the discounted rate of $40 each (standard fees still apply).