PlayMakers Laboratory Celebrating the power of children's imaginations since 1997

Events and Announcements

Celebrate Pride with That’s Queer Grandma


Celebrate Pride Month with PlayMakers Laboratory virtually with a FREE presentation of That’s Queer, Grandma, a hilarious romp through student-written stories that at the heart are centered on inclusivity, equality and what it means to be authentic. Directed by Artistic Director Brandon Cloyd and production managed by Cedar Larson, the virtual production will premiere live on Mondays at 8 pm CDT via Eventbrite from June 22 – July 6, 2020.


That’s Weird, Grandma NOW on Patreon

PlayMakers Laboratory is taking its signature revue online with That’s Weird, Grandma: House Par-Tay, featuring a creative line-up of stories written by elementary school students, adapted and performed by professional actors and directed by Artistic Director Brandon Cloyd. Streaming will begin Monday, May 11, 2020 via Patreon, with a new line-up released every Monday. Weekly Subscriptions for $2 to $4 will go on sale Friday, May 8, 2020.

That's Weird, Grandma on Patreon

FREE Online Teaching Tools for Teachers & Parents

During these uncertain times we want to bring comfort by sharing the voices of budding minds. PlayMakers Lab is thrilled to help young students create stories right at home. Click the button below for online learning resources, writing prompts, story adaptations, live workshops, and fresh digital content on Facebook.

Online Learning Resources

Help PlayMakers Laboratory Get Through COVID-19

It is during these uncertain times that we reach for the arts. Please make a gift to PlayMakers Laboratory today, so that we can have a tomorrow. Do it for the artists who are getting you through this, for the emerging artist doing this work in your communities, and for the next generation of artists we nurture in classrooms across the city.

Thank you,

Colette S. Gregory, M.A./M.Ed.
Executive Director


We Changed Our Name!

With much excitement, we are pleased to announce that as of October 15th, 2019 we are now known as Playmakers Laboratory. This change follows a year-long journey of engaging discussion and reflection among board members, staff, company members, and outside stakeholders. While our name is changing, our creative writing residencies in Chicago Elementary Schools and our long-running public revue, That’s Weird, Grandma will remain unchanged as they represent the cornerstones of our mission. We look forward to our continual growth and evolution as an Arts Education non-profit, committed to celebrating the power of students’ imaginations in Chicago.

Learn More About Our Name Change

What is PlayMakers Laboratory?

A PlayMakers Laboratory teacher with child authors in a classroom

PlayMakers Laboratory teaches creative writing workshops to students aged 7-13 in Chicago Public Schools and in our after-school program at Loyola Park.

PlayMakers Laboratory actors in a public performance

PlayMakers Laboratory actors and musicians adapt student-written stories into sketches and songs, which are performed for the schools and later for the public.

Smiling kids in the audience at Celebration of Authors

The students are celebrated and their voices are championed throughout Chicago.

Learn more about PlayMakers Laboratory