Filament Theatre’s hit immersive play experience for families is headed back for the holidays!

FORTS is back! Enter a world of play and creation as Filament Theatre transforms into a play-space for children and parents to build new worlds. Using cardboard boxes, sheets, clotheslines and more, build adventures of your own devising. With theatrical design elements working together to support creative play, your family is sure to be swept away in the adventure!

Conceived by Filament Theatre’s founding artistic director Julie Ritchey and created in collaboration with Andrew Marikis, Eleanor
Kahn, Jeffrey Levin, Carley Walker, and Christian Libonati, FORTS welcomes families to build and imagine together.

Dates: December 2nd-December 31st, 2023

Performance Times: Saturdays at 1pm & 3pm / Sundays at 11am & 1pm

Run time: 60 minutes

Age Recommendation: Ages 2-102 (all ages always welcome at Filament)

Cost: $10-15 per person

FORTS: Build Your Own Adventure

When: December 2nd, 2023 – December 31st, 2023

Where: Filament Theatre, 4041 N. Milwaukee Ave

Ages: Ages 2-102 (all ages always welcome at Filament)

Run time: 60 minutes. Audiences are encouraged to arrive up to 15 minutes early to participate in pre-show activities.

Tips for your visit:

  • – The first ticket you purchase will include one adult admission and one child admission. You may purchase additional adult or child tickets after first purchasing the companion ticket.
  • – There may be no more than 3 children for every 1 adult ticket purchased. If you would like to bring a larger group of children, there will be an additional fee for us to provide additional facilitators.
  • – All participants will be asked to take off their shoes, so please bring appropriate socks.
  • – The experience lasts about one hour.
  • – A limited # of walk-up tickets will be available at each performance to accommodate last minute additions to your party. Please check the website for the most up to date availability.

The Creative Team

Conceived and Directed by Julie Ritchey

Environment Design: Eleanor Kahn

Sound Design: Jeffrey Levin

Original Lighting Design: Carley Walker

Facilitation Design: Andrew Marikis

Original Producer: Christian Libonati

Lighting Designer: Ellie Humphries

Events Planner: Caroline Watson


We love celebrating special days with young people! Parties for birthdays or other events can be booked HERE.
  • Party buy-outs are $550 and include
    • Admission for 24 children and up to 16 adults. (Must have at least a 3:1 Child to adult ratio)
    • A decorated private party area
    • Juice & snacks
    • Plates/napkins and forks (Cake / cutting utensils not provided)
    • A gift for the birthday child
  • Host arrives 30 minutes prior to performance start time for a special introduction with our Adventure Guides.
  • Guests arrive 15 minutes prior to performance start time. Activities will be available upon arrival.
  • The event itself runs about 50 minutes.
  • After the event there will be party tables set-up for cake (not provided) and further (seated) celebration.
  • Pick-up should be scheduled for 1 hour and 15 minutes after the performance start time.
  • If it’s desired to also provide Pizza or any other full meal to guests, an additional $50 fee will be charged. (Pizza not provided)
  • For questions or to confirm availability please email

Birthday info Sheet


press & media inquiries please contact

Coming Soon!

Masks are highly encouraged but not required for audience members. Due to the interactive nature of this experience, you may find yourself playing alongside someone outside of your household. We encourage everyone to make decisions that keep themselves and others safe and comfortable. 

If you or a member of your household is experiencing symptoms related to COVID-19, had a direct exposure, or has received a positive COVID-19 test, please stay home and contact us at and we will exchange your tickets for a later date. 

Our performers and facilitators are tested weekly for COVID-19 and follow a comprehensive safety policy. Please note that performers will be unmasked during performances.

We will have BYOB Adult nights every friday night of the run at 7pm.

Tickets and more information available here . All participants must be 21+

a campaign to reopen, recover, and reimagine

Filament Theatre’s doors were shuttered from March 2020 to March 2022. Please consider donating what you can to support Filament Theatre during this critical time of recovery. The financial impact of the pandemic on our organization will be felt for years to come. As a not for profit organization, support from our community and patrons plays a critical role in our success. With your sustaining partnership and patronage, we can reimagine Filament’s future together. 

Thank you to our partners at the Habitat for Humanity Chicago Restore for helping us make the most giantest living room ever by providing the furnishings for FORTS!

Filament Theatre is supported by the Artswork Fund, The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, The City of Chicago- Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events, The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, The Illinois Arts Council Agency, The MacArthur Foundation, and more!