Artistic director Glenn Davis, actor Harry Lennix talk 'Purpose, playing at Steppenwolf Theatre

Lennix is turning a building on South Cottage Grove into an African-American museum and stage.

ByHosea Sanders and Marsha Jordan WLS logo
Tuesday, April 2, 2024
Artistic director, actor talk 'Purpose' at Steppenwolf Theatre
Artistic director Glenn Davis and actor Harry Lennix talked about their project at the Steppenwolf Theatre.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- "Purpose" is such a big hit at Steppenwolf, it's been extended through the end of the month.

It stars Chicago's own Harry Lennix and Glenn Davis, who told ABC7 about combining talents in a story with humor and passion.

Davis, one of Steppenwolf's finest actors, is also now a co-artistic director. He is finally onstage with Lennix, his inspiration since childhood.

"When I first started as an actor, Harry was the first actor who looked like me, who I saw, and I thought, 'I wanna be that. I wanna do that,'" Davis said. "I've been watching him for over 20 years now, and to be able to call him up and say, 'Hey, Harry, would you be interested in coming back to Chicago to do a play with me at Steppenwolf?' That meant the world to me."

ABC7 asked Lennix why he wanted to participate in "Purpose," which is playing at Steppenwolf through April 28.

"To come back here, it feels like home, and I am honored, privileged, and I accept the challenge!" Lennix said. "It's the company itself. That speaks volumes to what this opportunity represents and what this play will mean not just to Chicago, but to the country and the world. My hope is that they gain some understanding, I think that's what the theater does best, it helps us recognize those things in ourselves, and in others, that common humanity. That's what makes drama great."

Meanwhile, Lennix is turning a building on South Cottage Grove into an African-American museum and stage.

"We're hopeful that his quarter, we'll be able to break ground and get this art institution up and running. The South Side needs a Steppenwolf of its own," Lennix said. "There's nothing like live performance, nothing."