Julia Rhoads

Summer 2020

Art on theMART's second commission in alignment with the Year of Chicago Theatre in June 2019 was a collaboration between theatermaker John Musial and Lucky Plush Artistic Director Julia Rhoads. The work, titled Limelight Parade, utilized fragmented choreography and script from Julia Rhoads' work with Lucky Plush, a Chicago-based dance and theater ensemble, reimagined within John Musial's layered and evocative projection design. The source material drew from Lucky Plush's Rooming House, in which varied interpretations of personal and mythic storytelling led down a rabbit hole into the lives of everyday people who do extraordinary things.

“This project brings a surprising intimacy and humanity to the grand stage of theMART’s river-façade, truly reflecting the adventurous and collaborative spirit of Chicago theater,” Julia Rhoads stated.


Photography by Topher Alexander.

Works & Experience


Created by Julia Rhoads in collaboration with Lucky Plush Productions
Directed & Produced by John Musial

Lucky Plush Performers:

Kara Brody
Michel Rodriguez Cintra
Elizabeth Luse
Jacinda Ratcliffe
Rodolfo Sanchez Sarracino
A. Raheim White
Meghann Wilkinson

Music/Sound Design:

Michael Caskey


Ben Rodig & Brian Schilling
of Paul Louis Company

Whitehouse Post:

Editor: John Dingfield
Assistant Editors: Alex Kane & Caleb Keisker
Editorial Producer: Lauren Connolly
Whitehouse Executive Producer: Kristin Angeletti

Carbon VFX

Colorist: Julien Biard
Graphic Design & Animation: Sam Gierasimczuk
Flame: Steven Wind
Finish Producer: Gretchen Praeger
Carbon Managing Director: Phil Linturn
Production Assistants:
Stanley Juzwiak
Peter Wilde

Lighting Consultant:

Mike Durst
Lucky Plush Managing Director:
Kim Goldman

Special Thanks to:

John Boesche
The Den Theatre
Extensions Dance Company
Camera Ambassador Rentals
The Paul Louis Company

John Musial is a theatermaker and filmmaker who writes, directs, designs and creates. As a theatermaker, he has worked with Chicago Children’s Theatre, About Face Theatre, American Theatre Company and many more. Musial received a Jeff Award for the projection design of Lookingglass Theatre’s production of “Nelson Algren For Keeps and a Single Day” and was nominated for a Regional Theatre Tony Award for redirecting and editing “Nelson Algren...”for television with WTTW Channel 11. Musial holds a master’s degree in Architecture from University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).

Julia Rhoads is the founding Artistic Director of Lucky Plush Productions, a MacArthur Award-winning ensemble recognized for its unique blend of dance, theater, comedy and socially relevant themes. Her work has toured to over 55 cities worldwide, reaching notable venues including Joyce Theater (NYC) and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Independent directing and choreography credits include Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Lookingglass Theatre, Redmoon and River North Dance Chicago, among others. Julia’s work has been supported by major awards from Herb Alpert Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, National Performance Network, National Theater Project and National Dance Project. Julia received her BA in History from Northwestern University and her MFA in Performance from the School of the Art Institute Chicago. She is currently Director of Dance and Lecturer in Theater and Performance Studies at The University of Chicago.