CHARM by Philip Dawkins

When Mama Darleena Andrews—a 67-year-old, black, transgender woman—takes it upon herself to teach an etiquette class at Chicago’s LGBTQ community center, the idealistic teachings of Emily Post clash with the very real life challenges of identity, poverty, and prejudice faced by her students. Inspired by the true story of Miss Gloria Allen and her work at Chicago’s Center on Halsted, CHARM asks—how do we lift each other up when the world wants to tear us down? 

“CHARM is an uplifting LGTBQ fairy tale…[an] urgent dialogue about identification and acceptance…CHARM is a celebration, a story rooted in reality but touched with a kind of optimist fantasy: It is attempting to create the world it wants us to live in.” —New York Magazine. “…[a] funny, heart-warming play…[a] bona-fide charmer…The playwright’s command of language puts a nice kick in his dialogue.” —Variety. “…bold and tender…CHARM is inspired by the real-life work of Miss Gloria Allen, but it is richer and more complex than mere homage. Dawkins…juggle[s] a colorful array of characters with skill…” —Time Out NY. “[CHARM] is that rare play that is simultaneously funny, smart, and emotionally gripping…Dawkins leaves us swimming in crucially relevant questions:…at what point does etiquette become less about fostering comfort and respect, and more about enforcing an exclusionary class system?…CHARM exercises our brains, [hearts], and our funny bones, resulting in a very satisfying night at the theater.” —

CHARM by Philip Dawkins


Jagriti is a Performance Arts space dedicated to Theatre, Music, Dance and Comedy. Founded in 2011 by Arundhati and Jagdish Raja, the space has hosted several productions from India and around the world. A 200-seat theatre, built around a full-thrust stage, it is fully equipped to cater to both artistes and audience. The main stage is designed for intimate performances, with adjoining spaces for informal lectures and gatherings, and an attached restaurant- 'The Fat Chef'. Jagriti is owned and operated by the not-for-profit ART Foundation, a registered charitable trust.

The Rooftop - above the main auditorium is an open-to-sky space with a staging area that can accommodate about 50 people. A raised and walled off platform can work as a perfect area for puppet theatre. The Rooftop has a restroom and a pantry. 

The Terrace - alongside the auditorium, the Terrace can accommodate about 20 people as an informal gathering area.

Lumbini - extending out from the foyer, Lumbini has a stage and an open-to-sky terraced space for about 80 people.