Godzilla Rainbow Troupe

Dates: 1971-1974
Size: 2.5 linear feet in 2 boxes
Repository: Chicago Public Library Harold Washington Library Center, Special Collections, 400 S. State Street, Chicago, IL 60605
Collection Number: spe.ctc-grt
Immediate Source of Acquisition The majority of the pieces in the collection, including several one-of-a-kind photographs, were donated to the Special Collections department by Mr. Tucker shortly before his death in 1989. Additional material has been generously donated by Dr. Richard Foley and set designer Rick Paul.
Conditions Governing Use: Please consult staff to determine ability to reuse materials from collection
Conditions Governing Access: Materials are open without restrictions
Physical Location Note: Materials are stored offsite and advance notice is required for use. Please request materials at least 24-hours prior to your research visit to coordinate access.
Preferred Citation: When quoting material from this collection the preferred citation is: Godzilla Rainbow Troupe Records [Box #, Folder#], Special Collections, Chicago Public Library
Finding Aid Author: Original author unknown. Updated and ingested into ArchivesSpace by Sarah Zimmerman, 2021.


Founded by Gary Tucker (pseudonym “Eleven”) in 1971. Includes programs and promotional material for six productions starring such well-known Chicago theater personalities as Linda Kimbrough and Jack Wallace.


The Godzilla Rainbow Troupe was founded in 1971 by Gary Tucker (d. 1989) under the pseudonym ‘Eleven’. Tucker had previously worked with Charles Ludlum’s Ridiculous Theatrical Company, and Godzilla Rainbow had many of the same characteristics: scatological content, nudity, gender-neutral casting and a high dose of camp. Their first show was Bill Vehr’s Whores of Babylon that opened at the Body Politic Theatre and then moved to the Kingston Mines. The Mines also housed their next two shows, Bill Vehr and Charles Ludlum’s Turds in Hell and a drag version of Tobacco Road. Their final show, Eleven’s adaptation and staging of John Colton’s The Shanghai Gesture played at a run-down burlesque house in the South Loop. In 1973, Godzilla Rainbow took Whores of Babylon to the Festival Mondial Theatre in Nancy, France.

Despite their short run as a company, Godzilla Rainbow produced vital, memorable theater. Many of Chicago’s well-known actors and designers such as Jack Wallace, Linda Kimbrough, Tom Biscotto, J. Pat Miller and Rick Paul worked with the Troupe.

Scope and Content

The Godzilla Rainbow Troupe Records include programs, promotional material, photographs and poster for their productions during the 1971-1974 theater seasons.


The material is arranged by production.

Related Materials

  • Body Politic Theatre Records
  • Goodman Theatre Records, A House Not Meant to Stand by Tennessee Williams, directed by Gary Tucker, 1981

Subject Headings

  • Tucker, Gary, -1989
  • Paul, Rick
  • Foley, Richard
  • Godzilla Rainbow Troupe – Archives
  • Theater – Illinois – Chicago – History – Sources
  • Theatrical companies – Illinois – Chicago – History – Sources

Collection Inventory

Box 1 Folder 1 General. News clippings, 1973
Box 1 Folder 2 Whores of Babylon by Bifi Vehr. Directed by Eleven [Gary Tucker] at the Body Politic Theatre. Reviews and clippings, 1971, undated
Box 1 Folder 3 Whores of Babylon. Script; xerox of original, with notes in Tucker’s hand, undated
Box 1 Folder 4 Whores of Babylon. Photographs (3), [1971]
Box 2 Folder 1 Whores of Babylon. Oversize photographs (2), [1971]
Box 2 Folder 2 Whores of Babylon. Poster, [1971] July
Box 1 Folder 5 Turds in Hell by Bill Vehr and Charles Ludlam. Directed by Eleven [Gary Tucker] at the Kingston Mines Theater. Sets by Ed Paschke, costumes by Stuart Iverson, choreography by Dido, lights by Jack Berlinski, music by Van Karisson and Eleven [Tucker], with J. Pat Miller, Roberta Custer. Jack Wallace, Lily Monkus, Tom Biscotto. Program, 1972 October
Box 1 Folder 6 Turds in Hell. Promotional material and reviews, 1972 July-October
Box 2 Folder 3 Turds in Hell. Oversize photographs (3), [1972]
Box 2 Folder 4 Turds in Hell. Charles MacArthur Awards, 1973 December
Box 1 Folder 7 Tobacco Road adapted from the novel by Erskine Caldwell by Jack Kirkland, at the Kingston Mines Theater. Directed by Eleven [Gary Tucker], sets by Stuart Iverson, costumes by Poss, lighting by Michael Hooker, with J. Pat Miller, Eleven [Tucker] Hedda Lubin, Wild Cherry. Program, undated
Box 1 Folder 8 Tobacco Road. Photographs (2), undated
Box 2 Folder 5 Tobacco Road. Poster, undated
Box 1 Folder 9 Highlights of Tobacco Road and Whores of Babylon with Screen Test by Ronald Tavel (directed by Eleven [Tucker] and the 1944 movie Cobra Woman) as part of 1973 An Endless Party at the Kingston Mines Theater. Program and flyer, 1972 December 31
Box 1 Folder 10 Whores of Babylon by Bill Vehr, at Le Palace-Tex Pop, Montmarte and Festival Mondial Theatre du Nancy, France. Reviews and clippings, 1973 May-June
Box 2 Folder 6 Whores of Babylon. Poster, [1973] May-June
Box 1 Folder 11 The Shanghai Gesture by John Colton Directed by Eleven at the Foffies Burlesque Theatre on State Street. Sets by Rick Paul, costumes by Flemming Wilson and Reece McBride, lighting by Clyde Foster, with Gary Houston, Tom Biscotto, Linda Kimbrough. Program and reviews, [1974]
Box 1 Folder 12 The Shanghai Gesture. Photographs (2), negative (1), 1974
Box 2 Folder 7 The Shanghai Gesture. Poster, 1974 June
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