Chicago Plays

web design | custom programming | event aggregation | membership management

Theatre is essential to the life of a great city and to its citizens. The League of Chicago Theatres is an alliance of theatres, which leverages its collective strength to support, promote and advocate for Chicago’s theatre industry. Through our work, we ensure that theatre continues to thrive in our city.

ChicagoPlays.com is one of the Leagues’ flagship offerings. It aggregates more than 1,000 members events and performances and uses that information to generate a filterable community calendar.

Simply put, if you want to know what’s showing inside Chicago’s enormously diverse and successful theatre community, ChicagoPlays.com is the place to go.

The project included a large amount of custom programming to accommodate the League’s unique filtering and event taxonomy needs. Venture created a dedicated theatre post type that is used to help connect individual events to their corresponding organization.

We also created a brand new user role made expressly for theatre managers to enter and edit event information. All of this was wrapped up into a custom design that provides an intuitive mobile-first experience that is every bit as engaging for desktop and laptop users as it is for those on mobile devices.

The site is lightning fast, cutting edge mobile-first, and highlights their member theatre’s remarkable show imagery.

Website Highlights

  • Featured images used as headers on static pages.
  • A strong material design approach makes it easy for site visitors to visually distinguish the large number of events on listings and searches.
  • Gorgeous landing page designs highlight their Year of Chicago Theatre and Theatre Thursdays projects.
  • Individual event pages automatically insert a show calendar with direct ticket purchase links.
  • WCAG compliant color contrast.
  • A searchable, filterable event listing that incorporates several custom event taxonomies such as genre, neighborhood, and member theatres.
  • A custom “Related Events” module allows the League to create a short list of related event cards based on the same neighborhood and genre as the individual show page it appears.

Ben Thiem; Director of Member Services, League of Chicago Theatres

We are so happy that we chose Drew and the team at Venture for our website redesign. Our organization needed a complete online overhaul involving multiple complex websites. Drew expertly and cheerfully led us step by step through the process of developing each new website to help us better serve our member theatres, patrons, artists and administrators. They kept us on task and on time so we could launch by our deadline and without any issues. The new websites all turned out great, and are now so easy for us to manage and update. Drew continues to be incredibly responsive and supportive and it’s reassuring to know that they’ve always got our back. We highly recommend working with Venture!

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