“Bringing together our unique talents to inspire action and assist local and national organizations that need our support.”
We are holding events every month across Chicago, each one focusing on a particular cause and organization. We are aiming to work with groups involved with the environment, LBGT issues, minority groups, women’s health, immigration, refugees, education, civil rights and other issues.
If you’d like to be kept up-to-date with our events and action ideas please sign up for our newsletter here.
Fantastic response to our Voter Registration weekend—80 people signed up!
CACTA teamed up with the League of Women Voters of Chicago on September 29 & 30 at the Edgewater Arts Festival, to register people to vote in the upcoming midterms. The tireless work of a dedicated group of 30 volunteers, including Anne Smith, Paula Baron, Ben Veatch, Eileen Vorbach, Anne Jacques and Johnnie Anderson, who oversaw and facilitated the volunteer activity, resulted in 80 new registered voters this weekend and increased awareness of the upcoming elections and how important it is to vote.
We are so proud of the volunteers’ commitment to helping others learn more about how they can vote this November and getting them that much closer through registration. Special thanks to Rae Ann Cecrle, the Chair of the festival for accommodating us with a table and shelter from the rain. We will be holding more events closer to the election to support important missions that aim to protect our democracy and inspire us to the polls, so keep in touch. And make sure you are registered!
Thank you ALL!
REMINDER ELECTIONS ARE ON Tuesday, November 6, 2018 — and in most places you can vote early or by post.
Back to help save the planet! Our new season of benefits kicks off with our second BIG GREEN BENEFIT
Last April we held an amazing evening to benefit and raise awareness of a whole range of issues concerning the health of the planet. We raised $1,400 for the NRDC (Natural Resource Defence Council). They are now, as a result of current legislation and proposed repeal of existing legislation busier than ever and they need our CACTA help.
Come and join esteemed Director Steve Scott and a whole host of extremely talented people back at Uncommon Ground in Edgewater on September 24th. More information coming soon, put the date in your diaries.
Beautiful evening in Edgewater raises $1,100 to help end child abuse
A packed house joined us at Uncommon Ground to come together to help end child sexual abuse. Songs and stories from a large cast of talented Chicago performers joined Emcees Sara Sevigny and Corbette Pasko to create an inspiring evening and raise $1,100 for Childhood Fractured. More details and photos, by the wonderful Nomee, here.
All the performers gave their talent and time for free to help raise awareness of child abuse and help raise funds to end it.
If you'd like to know more about our events please sign up for our newsletter above.
NEXT EVENT JUNE 4th
Teaming up to help fight child abuse
We have assembled a rather special line up, even by our standards, for our next event. Here they are, more details to follow, but they are giving their time for free to help us raise money for Fractured Childhood (info here) a non-profit humanities-based human rights initiative centered on using contemporary art to prevent the sexual abuse and exploitation of children.
CACTA Benefit raises $2,000 for CAIR CHICAGO!
At an extraordinary night at Uncommon Ground in Edgewater, our guests and stars raised an astonishing $2,000 to help the work of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. A full report to follow. But a big thank you to all who came, all who bought tickets and didn't come, all who donated on the night and all our beautiful performers who not only gave their time for free but put their heart, souls and minds into their performances.
Pictures from the night on our event round up page here.
NEXT EVENT: April 9th for CAIR CHICAGO
Our next event is to benefit the vital work of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CHICAGO). They advocate for Muslims' rights in the Chicago area — fighting for representation and justice.
The event will be on Monday April 9th, 7:30pm and we’ll be announcing more information in the coming days. Tickets are now on sale from here and find out more about the great work of CAIR Chicago here.
Our first event for 2018, Feb 12th - The Trevor Project Helping save LGBTQ+ lives
Our first event of 2018 is to raise awareness and cash for The Trevor Project. Founded in 1998 by the creators of the Academy Award®-winning short film TREVOR, The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24.
And we have a wonderful event planned at Uncommon Ground on Devon, with a stellar line up of comedy, songs and performance hosted by Scott Duff, host of Out Chicago. Advance tickets are $20 ($25 on the door) use the code EARLYBIRD and buy your ticket here.
Nov 13th—join with us to help make homelessness history
At this time of year the plight of the city's homeless becomes ever-more pressing as the nights grow shorter and the weather grows, colder and wetter. There are by most conservative estimates over 5,000 people who live on our streets, and ten times that number who do not have permanent housing. On November 13th we are joining up with AllChicago who work with over 80 agencies and groups to help make homelessness history.
The event is back at Uncommon Ground and we will be featuring singers and performers from all across the city to raise awareness and funds to help fight homelessness. Please grab your tickets now.
Inspiring event raises over $800 for Latinx Rights!
Our eighth event took place back at Uncommon Ground, hosted by Laura Crotte and featuring a fairly amazing line up of music and performance for a crowd of over 50, who raised nearly $800 on the night. If you missed it you can still contribute here.
A full report of the event will be coming soon! And check back for more details about our next event to help make homelessness history, partnering with AllChicago on November 13th - make a note in your diary.
Line up announced for Mon Sept 18th
Guest Emcee Announced for September 18th
We are delighted and honored to reveal Laura Crotte as our guest Emcee for September's event.
Hailing from Mexico where she developed a career as theater actress, stage director, vocalist, and educator, Laura has performed in full productions and staged readings with some of the main theaters in Chicago: Goodman, Steppenwolf, Chicago Dramatists, Silk Road Rising, 16th Street, Aguijòn, Teatrovista, Chopin, Raven, and Chicago Children’s. As a vocalist, she has collaborated and been featured in Chicago Symphony Orchestra, House of Blues, Old Town School of Folk Music, Hot House, and Latino Cultural Center in UIC. Her touring with theater productions include many cities in Mexico, Cuzco, Buenos Aires, La Havana, and Montreal.
We have more guests and performers to announce soon, but make sure you get your tickets now. It's at Uncommon Ground, Edgewater on Monday Sept 18th, doors open at 7pm.
Stars aligning for our next event Sept 18th
To raise money and highlight the work of MALDEF
We are back at UncommonGround in Edgewater for our first event after the summer break. Date for your diary is Monday September 18th, 1401 W Devon Ave, from 7pm. We are delighted to be working with MALDEF who are ‘the lawyers for the hispanic community’. Find out more about their work here.
More news to come soon about how to get tickets and who is in the show!
Full line up announced for RefugeeOne Benefit: 10th July
We are delighted to announce our full line up for Monday 10th July at Stage 773 on Belmont.
Proceeds go to RefugeeOne and all their amazing work.
Here is the line up, it's going to be an amazing night. Tickets from here.
Mia Park will be hosting, Donica Lynn, Patrick Andrews, Sadieh Rifai, Kim Schultz, Owais Ahmed and Christine Bunuan.
Guest Host Mia Park announced/July 10th
We are delighted to welcome Mia Park (miapark.com) as our special guest Emcee for July 10th at Stage 773. The benefit is to raise awareness and funds for Refugees and proceeds go the amazing work of RefugeeOne.
Mia began professionally acting in 1997 hosting the Chicago cable TV access dance show Chic-A-Go-Go. Her acting career has brought her on stage, in film, on television and on the radio. She loves sharing stories and life experiences through different character perspectives.
Yoga became an immediate passion for Mia during her first class in 2002. Teaching since 2006, Mia is grateful for this transformative and healing practice.
Music is Mia's fist love and she's played drums and sang in many Chicago bands. She produces and performs in an annual rock music fund raiser called "Covers for Cover" benefitting women's organizations.
Tickets for the event can be bought from here.
Turning our focus to the plight of refugees
Our next event is to raise money and awareness for refugees and specifically for the organization RefugeeOne.
RefugeeOne creates opportunity for refugees fleeing war, terror, and persecution to build new lives of safety, dignity, and self-reliance. Every year, RefugeeOne serves more than 2,500 refugees and immigrants of all ages, ethnic groups, faiths, and backgrounds. Our primary focus is to assist these resilient individuals in becoming independent, self-supporting members of their new community.
They actively work with refugees to find housing, work, papers and safe and secure communities to live in. And we are delighted to be partnering with them.
We are holding a Benefit Evening at Stage 773 on Monday July 10th... more details to follow and you can read more about the extraordinary work of RefugeeOne here.
June 12th Benefit for Equality Illinois, Line Up announced
We are delighted to announce the line up for our June 12th Event at Uncommon Ground (1401 W Devon Ave).
Previously announced guest Emcee Delia Kropp is introducing a stellar line up of actors and singers from across the LGBTQ community all accompanied by the tireless Chuck Larkin.
Garcia is a poet, writer, and co-founder of Queer House. Chicago veteran Ted Hoerl lists himself as a professional homosexual and has worked at Goodman, Remy Bumppo, Writers Theatre, Eclipse, CityLit, Oak Park and many more over 45 years, he will be performing a piece devised by Susan Lieberman, a Jeff-award-winning and Emmy-nominated playwright. Joining them are Lucy Smith, Becca Brown, Jordan Dell Harris, Matthew Huston and Donny Acosta.
Tickets are available for $20 ($12 with industry02 code at checkout) from here.
Pride Month event:
Fabulous Benefit for Equality Illinois
Our next wonderful benefit will be held on Monday June 12th back at Uncommon Ground in Edgewater. Show starts at 7:30pm but doors open at 7pm so you can get your seat and order drinks and food from your table.
Proceeds are going to the vital work of Equality Illinois who work tirelessly to advance equal treatment and social justice through education, advocacy and protection of the rights of the LGBT community.
The line up is coming together and we are excited to announce that our Emcee for the evening is the amazing Delia Kropp, a company member with Pride Films and Plays. Before gender transitioning, Delia Kropp trained in England and Chicago, and acted with a variety of Chicago companies including The Goodman, Red Twist, Griffin, Lifeline, and Pegasus Players. She won Best Supporting Actor for her work as Alan in “Equus” at Michigan’s renowned Boarshead Theatre. She has also directed a number of productions for Chicago storefront and educational institutions. Delia’s female acting career began with “Raggedy And” at Pride Films and Plays in 2016.
Check back here and on facebook for further announcements of the line up.
It's going to be an amazing night, but places are limited so make sure you buy your tickets ahead of time from here! (if you are industry use the code industry02 for $8 off).
New event announced:
Tuesday May 16th, Uptown Underground
Benefit evening to raise awareness and funds for Mental Health
We are going underground for our fifth event. We are delighted to be partnering with Erasing the Distance to raise money for the work they do in the community. The line up is still being finalized but tickets are available here and you can find out more about the vital work that Erasing the Distance do here.
Put the date in your diary and check back here for more details.
Andrea Salloum from Kidworks confirmed for April 17
We are delighted to announce that Andrea Salloum from the acclaimed Kidworks Touring Theatre Company will be performing at our event at Theater Wit on Monday 17th April.
Andrea (Artistic Director) of Kidworks will use audience participation to re-enact a scene from her play ‘Endangered Animals! What's a Kid to Do?’.
Andrea has served as the Artistic/Executive Director of Kidworks Touring Theatre Co since 1995, where she has researched and developed over 50 productions, including ‘Global Warming! What's a Kid to Do?’ and the sequel ‘Endangered Animals! What's a Kid to Do?’ . In addition, she is a veteran Chicago Actor, having performed in the original cast of Tony-n-Tina's Wedding, as well as at Second City, Chicago Shakespeare, Chicago Lyric Opera, Lookingglass, Silk Road and Oak Park Festival.
Currently, Andrea is studying with James Franco in his Master's Acting Program in Los Angeles
CACTA going green for April Benefit at Theater Wit
We are in the heart of the Theatre District on Belmont for an evening of musical, education and theatre. Find out how you can play your part in going green, defending the great lakes and helping to sustain our beautiful planet. Doors open at 7pm at Theatre Wit (1229 West Belmont Ave) and we are delighted to have the harmonious talented voices of trio Foiled Again headlining and to welcome back the extraordinarily talented Donica Lynn. More acts to be announced soon, so check back for more info and you can buy your tickets from our site now here.
Tickets are only $20 (no booking fee) and all this goes to the vita work of the Natural Resources Defense Council who fight for the planet. More about them, here.
Stars set for a wonderful evening for ACLU - Monday 20th March
We’re just putting the finishing touches to our benefit concert to raise funds for the American Civil Liberties Union. Irvine Welsh (author of Trainspotting) is headlining and there are still opportunities to get your tickets here (only $20 no booking fee). For that you’ll be graced with the ferocious talents of some of Chicago's finest performers including Isabel Quintero, Ross Lehman, Keely Vazquez, actors from Griffin Theatre, Coco Sho-Nell and our amazing host Avi Roque, all taking place at La Taberna in UIC Village. There is also a stellar list of raffle prizes, so treat yourself to some wonderful entertainment in a delicious tapas restaurant and raise some money for a great cause.
Monique Hanson from ACLU confirmed for Monday 20th
We are delighted to announce that ACLU Illinois's Development Director is coming to join us at our Monday March 20th Event. Ms. Hanson joined the state’s largest and oldest civil rights and civil liberties organization last September after holding senior leadership positions at YMCA of the USA in Chicago and NPR in Washington, DC.
Monique told us: “The creative community has always been at the forefront of issues associated with the first amendment. In Chicago, we have a long and proud tradition of artists, journalists and the ACLU coming together to speak truth to power, and we’re proud to have Chicago Actors Call to Action’s focus on our work for the month of March. It’s inspiring to see Chicago’s acting community come out in support of social justice issues. The series of monthly events they put together shines a spotlight on the values our communities share which are threatened on a daily basis in the current political climate. Like Chicago Actors Call to Action, the ACLU of Illinois is working in every community in Chicago to ensure free expression and equality for all people.”
Tickets for the event at La Taberna Tapas (7pm) can be bought direct from us here (no booking fee) and all the proceeds go directly to ACLU.
Full line-up announced for March ACLU event
It's quite a line up. Apart from our special guest author (and sometime actor) Irvine Welsh, we have ISABEL QUINTERO, ROSS LEHMAN, DONICA LYNN, KEELY VASQUEZ, COCO SHO-NELL, BILL MASSOLIA from GRIFFIN THEATRE COMPANY, RONALD KING and our host AVI ROQUE. It promises to be a spectacular evening of quality performances, in a great setting in the UIC Village, La Taberna Tapas. Tickets are now available here, don't delay!
March sees new partnership with ACLU and new event
With our successful NAACP February campaign behind us, we turn our attention to the ACLU (Illinois chapter) for March. Our goal is to raise awareness and funds for the critical work of the American Civil Liberties Union. We’ll be posting action points frequently (sign up for our newsletter above to keep in touch and make sure you follow our facebook feed). And continue to spread the word about what we do.
But the big news for the month is our next event which is shaping up to be our best yet.
It will be held on Monday, March 20 at La Taberna Tapas from 7pm, a delicious restaurant in the heart of UIC Village, just up from Maxwell Street. Joining us for an extravaganza of music and theatre is renowned novelist Irvine Welsh (Trainspotting) just in time for the release of the long-awaited sequel Trainspotting 2 (based on his novel Porno); the incredible voice of Isabel Quintero (fresh out of Porchlight's In the Heights); the distinguished Ross Lehman (a veteran of Broadway and a mainstay of the Chicago theater scene); the amazing Donica Lynn, artists from Griffin Theatre performing pieces from the highly anticipated In to America, and music from the sumptuous CoCo Sho-Nell. This is just a taste, more information to come, so make sure you snap up your tickets here and tell your friends and colleagues too.
Come for the ACLU, the incredible raffle prizes, and the entertainment; stay for the phenomenal sangria and octopus!
$2,000 goal reached with 4 days still to go
A few hours ago we reached our $2,000 target for donations to NAACP Chicago Southside. Our Founder and Managing Director, Lee Wichman said: “I want to thank everyone who has actively stood up by attending our first two events, participating, volunteering, and/or donating to our beneficiaries. We raised $2000 each for Planned Parenthood and NAACP thus far!”
This is great achievement, so thanks to all of you who came to the event, spread the word and shared our message. Together we can make a difference.
Inspiring Night on the Southside
Our second benefit concert last night was a wonderful occasion, full of passion, beautiful words and uplifting music. We raised $1,700 for the vital work of NAACP Chicago Southside and gave our some amazing raffle prizes. If you missed it, there is still time to donate here. Full report and pictures of the event to follow...
Rebirth stars slamming on the 19th Feb
We are delighted to announce that Rebirth – winners of the 2016 Louder Than a Bomb city wide poetry slam competition – are performing at our Benefit Concert on Sunday 19th February, at The Promontory. They were honored to represent Chicago in the international Brave New Voices youth poetry slam competition where they placed fourth and performed at the Kennedy Center. They are delighted to be helping raise money for NAACP (Southside Chicago). Get your tickets now!
Chicago Veteran Actor André Teamer “Thrilled” to be on board for Sunday 19th
André Teamer, has been a Chicago actor for over 25 years. He is a company member of MPAACT and Black Ensemble. He has performed throughout Chicagoland at theatres such as; The Goodman, Steppenwolf, Writers Theatre, Black Ensemble, Eclipse, Chicago Dramatists, Court, Next, Congo Square, LookingGlass, Chicago Children's, MPAACT, Theatre 7, Windy City Playhouse, TimeLine, Victory Garden's, Pegasus Players, and many others. His television credits include; The Playboy Club, Chicago P.D., and Empire. “I am thrilled to lend my voice to help raise awareness for such an important cause. Thank you Lee Wichman and CACTA.” Get your tickets now.
Denzel from The Scottsboro Boys is on deck for Feb 19th
The talented musical theatre star Denzel Tsopnang is confirmed for our Sunday night party. He holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Millikin University. You can currently see him as Mr. Bones in The Scottsboro Boys with Porchlight Music Theatre (info here)! Some of his Chicago credits include: Annie Warbucks (Theatre at the Center), Smokey Joe's Cafe (Drury Lane Oakbrook), Velveteen Rabbit (Marriott Theatre), Heathers: The Musical (Kokandy Productions), Northanger Abbey (Lifeline Theatre), South Pacific and Guys and Dolls (Light Opera Works). See him play Coalhouse Walker in Ragtime this fall (Griffin Theatre).
Ashley J Hicks confirmed for Feb 19th
We are delighted to confirm that the amazing Ashley J Hicks is going to be performing at our Benefit for NAACP. on February 19th. Get your tickets now.
Here's a bit about the show she's currently in:
“BAD WORD. MEAN WORD. UGLY WORD. UGLY ME.”
Beautifully Broken explores one woman's desire to find her place in society, as a black woman with Albinism.
Ashley J Hicks (lovingly know as Ash) is an actor/writer in Chicago. Since moving to the windy city in 2010, she has worked very hard to carve out a space for herself within the theater scene. Ashley hopes to continue to produce work that engages and unifies the masses of Chicago and beyond. Check out her solo show Beautifully Broken at the Greenhouse Theater on February 25th at 11pm.
Lynne Jordan confirmed for Feb 19th
We are delighted to confirm that the extraordinary Lynne Jordan is returning to The Promontory for our February 19th event. Have a watch below and get your tickets now.
Our February Event is launched!
Following our successful inaugural event for Planned Parenthood this month (we're still collecting donations (see below) and as of now we’ve raised $1,960!), we are holding a benefit to celebrate Black History Month in support of NAACP. We have teamed up with the Chicago Southside Branch of NAACP and are planning another incredible evening. to be held at The Promontory at 5311 S Lake Park Ave in Hyde Park. This time we're holding the event on a Sunday evening, Feb 19th, 7pm. More details to follow but tickets are available now from their site.
Final push for donations for Planned Parenthood
We have less than 24 hours left to try and reach our goal of $2,000 for Planned Parenthood. We've had an amazing response, and a wonderful event, so help us to get over the line. That's only about $250 more or $10 an hour (more or less)...
Click on the button here to donate:
A wonderful evening and $1,500 raised on the night
Our inaugural event happened last night, 23rd January and we are pleased to announce we raised $1,500 for Planned Parenthood from the evening (this doesn't count people who've donated online). Thank you to all who came and all our amazing performers. Watch this space for more information about our next event.
If you would like to be kept informed about future events please add your name to our mailing list and we'll be in touch (we promise we won't bombard you with emails!)
What is CACTA?
Chicago’s acting community reaches across all demographics and areas, both geographically and socially. Our skills are to communicate, tell stories, engage and interact – and our reach is broad. We feel that there must be something we can all do together (in addition to our shows and readings) that utilizes our unique talents to help those that need our support.