A delightfully wild and funny new comedy by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Clybourne Park.


At a beachside apartment complex, a group of friends gathers for their regular evening of food, drink, drugs and partner-swapping. When Chris and Kristy attempt to become the newest members, the evening does not go as planned. The artichoke dip grows cold as the party devolves into a territorial battle over mating privileges. Does sex ruin everything? And what is the purpose of monogamy? Bruce Norris's comedy explores the eternal struggle for power, status and getting laid.

Watch & Listen

  1. <i>THE QUALMS</i> - A Look Inside

    THE QUALMS - A Look Inside

  2. <i>THE QUALMS</i> - Audience Response

    THE QUALMS - Audience Response

  3. <i>THE QUALMS</i> in Production

    THE QUALMS in Production

  4. <i>THE QUALMS</i> in Rehearsal

    THE QUALMS in Rehearsal

  5. 2013/14 Season: <i>THE QUALMS</i>

    2013/14 Season: THE QUALMS

Cast & Artists

The Artists

The Cast

Featured Ensemble Members


"Mr. Norris’s knack for writing smart, crisply funny dialogue has been well established…these debates are lively, funny and racy– The New York Times

Fascinating world premiere…Bruce Norris's satire of swingers is pretty damned delicious- Chicago Reader

Plenty of amusement ensues from the bawdy dialogue…The Qualms really is funny” – Variety

Debauchery at its finest...Norris’s dialogue crackles with humor, drama and truth”– The Fourth Walsh

Every comic beat lands just right– Time Out Chicago

"“A breezy 90 minutes—Norris lays it all out there with button-pushing glee"– Daily Herald

Buy Tickets

Tickets for this production are not currently on sale. Call 312-335-1650 for more information.

Running Time

Content Advisory

Steppenwolf does not offer advisories about subject matter, as sensitivities vary from person to person. If you have any questions about content, age-appropriateness or stage effects (such as strobe lights or theatrical fog) that might have a bearing on patron comfort, please contact the box office at 312-335-1650.

Additional Information

Downstairs Theatre Info & Seat Map Map / Directions to the theatre The Qualms Program

Take advantage of our SONO Sundays ticket special!

Special Performances

Fully accessible performance featuring ASL Interpretation, Open Captioning and Audio Description, presented as part of the Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability Conference

Tuesday, August 5
Touch Tour: 6pm
Curtain: 7:30pm

American Sign Language Interpretation
Sunday, August 10 at 7:30pm

Open Captioning
Saturday, August 16 at 3pm

Audio Description and Touch Tour
Sunday, August 24
Touch Tour: 1:30pm
Curtain: 3pm

More from the 2013-14 Season


  • Leading Individual Support by Helen Zell
    Leading Individual Support by Helen Zell