Lucky Plush Productions
3825 N. Bell Ave.
Chicago, IL 60618
Producing Artistic Director
JULIA is the founding artistic director of Lucky Plush Productions. She has created over 25 works with the company, several of which have toured extensively throughout the U.S. and received competitive creation, residency, and touring grants from NEA, National Dance Project, and National Performance Network. Other choreography credits include Lookingglass Theatre’s The Great Fire, Walkabout Theater’s Mama: A Play for Voices, Redmoon’s Project Y, and River North Chicago Dance Company’s Oasis and Between Three, among others. Julia is the recipient of the 2013 Alpert Award in Dance, a fellowship from the Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography, a Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artist Award, a Cliff Dwellers Choreography Award, two Illinois Arts Council choreography fellowships, a Jacob K. Javits fellowship for graduate studies, and a 2014 Fractured Atlas Arts Entrepreneurship Award for spearheading Creative Partners, an innovative nonprofit financial model shared with eighth blackbird and Blair Thomas & Company. Julia is a former member of the San Francisco Ballet and ensemble member of XSIGHT! Performance Group. She received her BA in History from Northwestern University, her MFA in Performance from the School of the Art Institute Chicago, and she has taught in the dance and theater programs of several Chicago-area colleges and universities. She is currently a lecturer and dance advisor at University of Chicago’s department of Theater and Performance Studies.
KIM works in tandem with Artistic Director Julia Rhoads to carry out the mission of Lucky Plush. Kim handles general office administration, scheduling, assists in budget creation and bookkeeping. She manages touring, residencies, rehearsals and performances, and supports the booking manager. Kim is the Project Director for Creative Partners (a shared development staff for three Chicago nonprofits: Blair Thomas & Co., Eighth Blackbird and Lucky Plush), she partners with the board of directors, interns, and volunteers to plan fundraising events, and assists in grant proposals. Kim oversees marketing and social media content, designs marketing materials and merchandise, and managed the creation of our latest website. Before her role as Managing Director, Kim was a Lucky Plush collaborating ensemble member for five years at which time she performed in eight works at venues like the the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Jacob’s Pillow, Hancher Auditorium, Dance Center of Columbia College, Steppenwolf Garage, Spring to Dance (St. Louis), and Links Hall. Her professional dance career also includes performances at Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, Joyce SoHo, and St. Marks Church. Kim has been a part time faculty member of The Dance Center of Columbia College and Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington. She received an MFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, a BFA in Dance and a BS in Psychology from the University of Illinois at Champaign Urbana.
Grants Manager and Finance Manager
LAURA manages the financial framework of Lucky Plush, overseeing accounting processes and grant opportunities. Her passion for volunteerism has led her to extensive professional development in the nonprofit sector and she serves on a number of other local nonprofit boards. Before her role with Lucky Plush, she was CFO of 2 small businesses and a wealth advisor. She received her degree from Columbia College and is a member of the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, a certified Quickbooks ProAdvisor and CFP® professional.