The Northern Illinois Theatre Ensemble, SummerNITE, Northern Illinois University’s professional intern company, works in collaboration with Chicago's Organic Theater Company.
SummerNITE is dedicated to bridging the gap between training and the profession by providing opportunities for NIU's School of Theatre and Dance students to work with professionals in all the areas of theatre.
SummerNITE fellows work as actors (both performing and understudying), technicians, assistant designers, and marketing and public relations trainees.
The company is the ideal bridge between the academic and professional theatre worlds.
Prior to its relationship with the Organic, SummerNITE produced, among others:
- the Chicago Premiere of A…My Name is Alice, the sequel of the Off-Broadway smash hit
- four newly discovered plays by Thornton Wilder produced under the title of Ages of Sin
- Terminal Café (now published by Samuel French), which received the 1996 After Dark Award for Best Ensemble of the Chicago season
- the 1997 production of Death Defying Acts, which also received the 1997 After Dark Award for Best Ensemble Cast
- the American premiere of The Snow Palace, an “extraordinary study” of “inspired” Polish playwright Stanislawa Przybyszewska, recounting her haunted final days
- the Chicago premiere of Will and Bert, welding the words, wit, and very different worlds of William Shakespeare and Bertolt Brecht
- the Chicago premiere of Lewis Carroll’s skewed children’s fantasia Alice in Wonderland (adapted by Christopher Markle, originally for New York’s Lincoln Center)
- the U.S. premiere of Martin Maguire’s haunting work-in-progress Sins of the Father, originally conceived, written for, and orchestrated by NIU theatre students in a unique exchange project with Ireland’s nationally prestigious Gaiety Theatre School of Acting
- the World Premiere of The Day on Which a Man Dies by Tennessee Williams, presented at Links Hall in Chicago in 2008