About "Grounded"

A play by George Brant | Directed by John Gawlik

A tale of isolation and lost dreams, Grounded examines how combat can take a psychological toll on drone pilots.

The play introduces us to a nameless American female fighter pilot and chronicles several years of her life. After she unexpectedly becomes pregnant, she is reassigned to pilot drones from a windowless trailer in the Nevada desert. The shallows of workplace existence replace the adrenaline rushes and military camaraderie of piloting actual fighter missions. Literally commuting to war, she fights terrorists by day and then returns home to her husband and baby each night. The pilot struggles through the disorienting and surreal differences between work and home as well as the pressures to fight terrorists half a world away.

Grounded features Elizabeth Laidlaw, a Joseph Jefferson Award-winning Chicago actress who has appeared at the Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, and many others.

Artist Biography

Elizabeth Laidlaw is the artistic director and founder of Lakeside Shakespeare Theatre in Chicago. She has guest starred on the television dramas Boss, Chicago Code, and Chicago PD.

Chicago theatre credits include The Two Noble Kinsmen, Kabuki Lady Macbeth, As You Like It, Romeo and Juliet, and Macbeth (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre); The Maids (Writer's Theatre); Lucinda's Bed (Chicago Dramatists Workshop) The UN Inspector, Omnium Gatherum, and Son of Celluloid (The Next Theatre); The Rose Tattoo (Goodman Theatre); The Berlin Circle (Steppenwolf Theatre); What Once We Felt, Xena Live!, and The Terrible Girls (About Face Theatre); The Kentucky Cycle, (Pegasus Players, received a Joseph Jefferson Award for Best Supporting Actress) and Angels In America (The Journeymen, received five Joseph Jefferson Awards, including best production and ensemble); Island of the Blue Dolphins, The Left Hand of Darkness, and The Talisman Ring (Lifeline Theatre); and Pope Joan (Bailiwick Repertory).

She also produced the long-running, award-winning late night show The Hick, the Spic, and the Chick.

Her voice can be heard on numerous television commercials, audiobooks, and videogames.