The heart of Steppenwolf is that while the work may soar, our foundation is decidedly human scale – an ongoing celebration of discovering the extraordinary in the every day.

– Anna D. Shapiro, Artistic Director


Steppenwolf has inspired generations of theatre audiences and has long been a benchmark for theatre excellence. This next act offers new opportunities for productions of varying scope and voice, welcoming new generations of audiences, an embracing and humane approach to life both onstage and off, and public spaces that throw open our doors and invite folks to spend more of their lives with us. The new campus will be an expression of not just what we do but of who we are: a home for the greatest theatre ensemble in the United States and a thriving center for culture in Chicago.

“This campaign is about being relevant and accessible to all of Chicago. We will create an urban theater campus that will bring people from all manner of backgrounds together to have artistic experiences that are in dialogue with their lives, as vastly different as they can be. The theaters we create will be the home for the most talented, brave, compassionate, and diverse ensemble in the country, working alongside engaged and adventurous young adults. And the architecture will create moments where the artists are so accessible, you’re going to feel that you are making this work alongside them.”

– David Schmitz, former Executive Director


Steppenwolf’s $73 million campus expansion and renewal is an invitation to Chicago, offering bold and ambitious opportunities for creative expression, social exchange, unparalleled accessibility, and arts-driven learning for Chicago teens. This change in our footprint is happening over three phases.

Phase 1
1700 N Halsted
Opened June 2016
Phase 2 
1646 N Halsted
March 2019 - 2021 
Phase 3
1650 N Halsted

Architect: Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture
Theater Design: CharcoalBlue
Construction: Norcon 
Project Manager: CBRE
Environmental Engineering: ESD
Structural Engineers: Thornton Tomasetti

Play a Part

An ever-evolving community of some of the most conscientious, courageous, and dedicated people have rallied around Steppenwolf since 1976, helping drive the cultural conversation in Chicago and, at times, around the globe. Our next act is an expression of all Steppenwolf has been and promises to be to our community. It will only be possible at the hands of our supporters. We hope you will help us shape the next 40 years of social and cultural life in Chicago. Learn about virtual site tours.

Please contact Campaign Director Mercedes Rohlfs to learn more. 

Key Players

To date, Steppenwolf has raised over 60% of its fundraising goal. Special thanks to the following key players, including the Steppenwolf Board of Trustees and civic leaders for their outpour of support. 

Leaders of the New Steppenwolf
$1 million +

in memory of Martha Lavey
Douglas R. Brown and Rachel Kraft
The Crown Family
The Harris Family Foundation
Liz and Eric Lefkofsky 
Pritzker Foundation 
Pritzker Traubert Foundation
The Rowe Family Foundation
Bruce Sagan and Bette Cerf Hill
Cari and Michael J. Sacks
Robert and Louise Sanborn
Matthew Shapiro 
Zell Family Foundation

View the full donor list.

Want to know how this will affect your Steppenwolf experience? Check out our plan your visit page.

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The Elizabeth Morse Charitable Trust, Lead Underwriter of Fundraising for The Campaign for Steppenwolf