Those familiar with the Hyde Park area of Chicago, Illinois know that it’s a bustling hub for progress, creativity, and racial rights. It’s no surprise, then that the University of Chicago, located in the western section, is the main setting for our upcoming production Proof.
The University of Chicago has a long history of diversity and embracing people of all walks of life. In 1891, President William Rainley Harper was the first to start things off, promoting an overall policy of nonsectarianism and commitment to gender equality. In 1908 Carter G. Woodson, known as the “father of black history month” received two degrees there in history. UC was among the first non-historically black universities to tenure an African American faculty member in 1948, and was also among the first to award one of the first PhDs to an African American woman in 1911. Barack Obama also worked at the University teaching Constitutional Law between 1992 and 2004.
Proof itself is heavily imbued with Hyde Park culture, thanks to the fact that David Auburn resided there during undergrad. The Park has undergone a multitude of cultural and economic revolutions, coming out on top as an important location for the local African American Community.
Over time, Hyde Park has also become a place that embraces the odd and idiosyncratic. Offering a melting pot of racial diversity, and open minds, Hyde park is known for providing a place to find the unexpected.
With her father’s fate looming over her head, Catherine is forced to face both the good and the bad of life’s unpredictability. Hyde Park provides a perfect setting for David Auburn’s heroine to find the strength in her spirit and realize her genius.