Sep 21, 2021 - News
Chicago's theater icon Robert Falls on why he's stepping down
Robert Falls sits in a chair
Robert Falls. Photo: Flint Chaney/Goodman Theatre

Last week, Tony Award-winner Robert Falls announced he was stepping down as artistic director of the Goodman Theatre after a 35-year career there.

  • We talked to him about his time at the helm of one of the most influential theaters in Chicago.

Why now: "After 35 years at the Goodman, and 10 before that as artistic director of a small theatre on Howard St. called Wisdom Bridge, I simply felt, 'Well…that's 45 straight years of running theater companies — that's enough.'"

His favorite moments: "All of my collaborations with the great late Brian Dennehy were wonderful! ... I am especially proud of 'Death of a Salesman,' for which we both won Tony Awards."

On the future of the Chicago theater scene: "After every terrible event of our century — including other pandemics, the depression and wars — there have been extraordinary new plays that were created in response to those events."

On choosing to build a career here: "Over the years, I have been offered many opportunities to run theaters in other cities, including New York City and Los Angeles. But I love Chicago, and its audiences and its remarkable community of theater-makers."

The Chicago food he misses the most when out-of-town: "Such a cliché, but true. Pizza! For some reason, New York's pizzas are terrible. I do admit that I'm not a fan of deep dish. I prefer crispy thin crust; especially bar pizza cut in little squares."

What's next: Robert Falls will stay on through the 2021/2022 season. The play "American Mariachi" by Jose Cruz Gonzalez runs at the Goodman through October 24th.

avatar

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Chicago.

More Chicago stories

No stories could be found

Chicagopostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Chicago.