About

Photo by Emi Clark

Awards and Recognition:

  • 2013
  • Goodman Theatre Playwrights’ Unit
    Selected
  • Jean Kennedy Smith Playwriting Award
    First Place
  • Paula Vogel Playwriting Award
    Second Place
  • The Kendeda Graduate Playwriting Award
    Finalist
  • Joseph Jefferson Award for Best New Work in Chicago
    Nominee
  • 2012
  • Joseph Jefferson Award for Best New Work in Chicago
    Nominee
  • Princess Grace Award
    Semi-Finalist
  • 2010
  • Joseph Jefferson Award for Best New Work in Chicago
    Nominee
  • Otis Guernsey New Voices in American Playwriting Award
    Nominee
  • Woodward/Newman Drama Award
    Finalist
  • 2009
  • Resident Playwright, Chicago Dramatists
    Inducted
  • Heideman Award
    Finalist
  • 2007
  • Austin Film Festival, Original Dramatic Screenplay
    Semi-Finalist
For a copy of Andrew’s resume, click here.

Professional Bio:

ANDREW HINDERAKER is a Resident Playwright of Chicago Dramatists, an ensemble member of the Gift Theatre in Chicago, and a three-time Jeff Award Nominee. His plays include, I AM GOING TO CHANGE THE WORLD, DIRTY, KINGSVILLE, and SUICIDE, INCORPORATED, which premiered at the Gift in 2010 and was subsequently produced Off-Broadway at the Roundabout Theatre. Hinderaker’s newest play, COLOSSAL, featuring a dance company, a drumline, and a fully-padded football team, was the recent recipient of multiple awards from the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Hinderaker has been hailed as “a hugely-exciting, risk-taking young writer” by the Chicago Tribune’s Chris Jones, and as an author of “stupid, soapy melodrama” by a critic he’d prefer not acknowledge by name. His plays have been produced and/or developed by Manhattan Theatre Club, the Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf, the Araca Group, the Alliance Theatre, Mixed Blood, No Rules Theatre Company, Victory Gardens, Rattlestick, Stage Left, and several others. He currently holds commission from the Roundabout Theatre Company and Marc Platt Productions, and recently completed his M.F.A. in Playwriting at the University of Texas in Austin. Hinderaker is a member of the 2013-2014 Playwrights’ Unit at the Goodman Theatre.

Somewhat Professional Bio:

ANDREW HINDERAKER believes that the theater should be a place where the impossible is made manifest before our very eyes.

Of course, that could just be a bunch of abstract nonsense, so let’s talk specifics.

Hinderaker is an ensemble member of the Gift Theatre in Chicago, a 29-seat Equity house. That’s right. 29 seats. And Equity.

His latest play, COLOSSAL, has a 20-person cast, a dance company, a drumline, and a lead actor in a wheelchair. He wrote it in response to a mentor’s challenge to “write an unproduceable play.” And he failed. COLOSSAL is already slated for three major productions in 2014.

And most theater companies initially passed on Hinderaker’s SUICIDE, INCORPORATED, claiming that any play with ‘suicide’ in the title was impossible to market, a sure-fire dud. But after a twice-extended, sold-out run in Chicago, the play was produced Off-Broadway at the Roundabout Theatre. It was recently optioned for film and television by one of Hollywood’s leading producers.

Hinderaker’s plays have taken us inside socially responsible porn companies and to schools where children legally carry guns to class. The worlds that he creates, often a little askew, always a little impossible, allow us to see our own world more clearly, and with a renewed commitment to our fellow human beings.

Totally Unprofessional Bio:

Andrew Hinderaker is as uncomfortable talking about himself in the third person as he is having his headshot taken. Maybe it’s because I’m a Midwesterner. You grow up in Wisconsin, you can’t help but apologize for the self-indulgence required to create your own website. Really, I just wanted a place where people could read about my work and drop me a line, if interested.

Here’s something else about the Midwest. I’ve fallen asleep in a doctor’s waiting room in Wisconsin, and when I woke, complete strangers were whispering because they didn’t want to wake me. See, to me, you take that mindset—that the person next to you matters—and you superimpose it on a mainstream American culture that usually nurtures the opposite… and now you’ve got an interesting tension for a play. My work’s often set in brutal places—companies that edit suicide notes, football fields where young men hurt each other—and explores how human connections form in the most unfeeling of places. To me, it is this hard earned intimacy that is at the heart of theater, the belief that honesty only happens when face to face with a living, breathing person.

And if this all sounds a little heady or pretentious, don’t be fooled. I’m as influenced by Dumb & Dumber as I am by Chekhov and McPherson. I’m the guy who groans when rehearsal’s inevitably scheduled during the Final Four. My work is approachable, and so am I. Drop me a line.