The Steep into 1113 Campaign will fund the renovation of the storefront adjacent to Steep’s theatre into a cabaret-style lounge at 1113 West Berwyn. An interior doorway will connect the lounge to our lobby, opening a new door to a welcoming space for conversation, performance, and enjoying the Steep experience. The lounge will include a full bar, comfortable sitting areas, additional bathrooms, and a small stage for music, storytelling, and other performance styles, widening the breadth of stories and art you‘ll be able to enjoy at Steep.
The renovation will include:
- An additional artistic space for individual performances, script development workshops, greater community engagement, and other creative uses
- A full-service bar to support patrons of Steep plays and performances in the lounge
- Two new restrooms
Watch the Lounge Take Shape
After taking down the set for HINTER on Sunday, we took out all of the chairs and tables that made this room home. After over a year of rehearsals and meetings, 1113 W Berwyn is full of great theatre energy, and it's ready for a makeover.
That didn't take long! In the first day of work, crews pulled down the ceiling and removed the HVAC ductwork. We also learned that there was linoleum beneath that carpet in back.
That's right ... we're exposing the brick wall! And making a huge mess in the process.
It's the end of the first week of work, and things are looking great! The brick wall is beautiful, and those piles of 2x4s are ready for action.
The bathroom walls are going up! There'll be more privacy once there's drywall ... and a floor.
Framing out the bathroom walls is coming along well - we're even going to have a little bit of storage space up above!
They've framed out the bar! That's the part that holds up the plumbing and electrical work. Don't worry, it'll be much cozier when it's finished.
Part of our plan for transforming this open room into a cozy place for conversation is building architectural archways into the ceiling. It's fascinating to see how they're put together.
There were guys crawling around under the floor for much of the day, and that can only mean one thing - PLUMBING!
The shape of the room is really starting to come together. Those arches are going to be so cool!
It might not look like much has changed this week, but there's so much new plumbing under that floor!
Most of the work recently has been behind the scenes (or under the floor, as the case may be), but those archways sure do look nice all covered up!
It looks like nothing has happened this week, but au contraire! In addition to much work under the floor, the back door is now in its new location, and the door between 1113 and 1115 is almost ready to open.
The floor, ceiling and walls are all filled with insulation. It sounds so different in there now!
We have walls, and a ceiling, and light switches, and it’s really starting to feel like a room! Most exciting of all, we’ve opened the doorway between the lobby and the new space!
The archways are very excited to have their bricks in place!
The brick on the archways is done, and looking mighty fine. Tomorrow they’ll get started on the bathroom tile!
Why, yes, those are paint swatches on the wall! We’re going with a dark blue, which will really make the bricks pop. It’s going to be so cozy!
We have paint! There’s another coat or two coming, but it’s wonderful to have some color in the space.
Today the brick wall got a good scrubbing, and the bar and bathrooms got their sinks!
Having a floor really brings the room together!
Lighting fixtures sure do brighten the place up!
It’s all in the details now. There are a million tiny things to do, but we’re in the home stretch!
We have hot water, and we’re ready to start washing glasses!
A little more paint, and some finishing touches, and we’ll be ready for furniture.
We’ve taped out the location of our future shelving behind the bar. Soon we’ll have places to store glasses, bottles, and other fun stuff.
Shelving is in place, and furniture deliveries have started arriving. We’re in the home stretch!
We got the proverbial keys today! The contractors finished their work yesterday, and this morning we began assembling furniture.
The furniture is assembled, and we’re almost ready to go.
We’re ready for service! In less than five months we converted an empty storefront to a cozy room full of stories, songs, and conversations.
About the Expansion
Nine years ago we left our wonderfully quirky little storefront in Wrigleyville behind and opened the doors to a newly remodeled theatre on Berwyn Avenue. That defining moment in Steep’s history marked the beginning of an incredible period of growth for our company, opening new opportunities for artistry and storytelling and introducing our work to countless new audience members. For many of you, 1115 West Berwyn was your entry point to Steep, with its comfy blue chairs, welcoming yellow lobby, and now famous post-show receptions. Thanks to Steep’s growing community of artists, audience members, supporters, and neighbors, we’re now ready for our next big step and the opening of a new doorway into the Steep community for artists and audiences.
We’re excited to announce that we have leased the storefront adjacent to our theater and will be expanding Steep by remodeling this new storefront into a cabaret-style lounge at 1113 West Berwyn. An interior doorway will connect the lounge to our lobby, opening a new door to a welcoming space for conversation, performance, and enjoying the Steep experience. The lounge will include a full bar, comfortable sitting areas, additional bathrooms, and a small stage for music, storytelling, and other performance styles, widening the breadth of stories and art you‘ll be able to enjoy at Steep.
Steep’s ensemble and board simply could not be more excited about taking this step, and we’re thrilled that you’re here to take it with us. With Small Business Improvement Funding from the City of Chicago and generous support from leaders in the Steep Community we’ve secured a portion of the funding needed to complete the project. We hope you will share our enthusiasm for this thrilling opportunity and help to bring this space to life.
We are so proud to have you in the Steep community, and we wouldn’t be where we are today without you. It’s an honor to share this thrilling moment of growth and expansion with you as we work together to tell stories that incite conversation and open our doors to new people and new opportunities.
Be a Leader
Inspirational leadership support of $1,000 or more has been provided by:
Casey Blass & Lee Manford
Reid & Jennifer Quinn Broda
Dean & Caroline Browell
Susan Burland & George Plumb
The City of Chicago Small Business Improvement Fund
Holly & David Collins
Kassie Davis & Bruce Beatus
The Edgewater Chamber of Commerce
Sara Foster & Adam Levy
Susan & Peter Gray
Leigh & John Hourihane
Stephen H. Johnson
Rita & Jim Knox
Kerry & Kenny Lassus
Shana Lowitz & William Swaim, M.D.
Barbara & Ed Mills
Anne Marie Dumas Mitchell
Anne & Richard Moore
Jennifer & Peter Moore
Margaret & Peter Morris
James T. O'Neill
Amanda & Doug Passmore
Jon and Catherine Putnam
Melissa & Jeff Riemer
Debra & Alan Rosenberg
Mike J Salinas
Karen & Frank Schneider
Jessica & Christoph Schrey
Elisabeth Rose & Owen Shapiro
Hope & Jeff Sheffield
Kate Welborn & Ann McGill
Anna Wermuth & Alex Gillmor
Lisa & Randy White
Join this illustrious group and help lead Steep into a bright future.