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THEATER-REVIEW-The-Mecca-Tales

THEATER REVIEW The Mecca Tales - At: Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave. Tickets: 312-633-0630; www.chicagodramatists.org; $18-$40. Runs through: April 12 The pilgrimage to Mecca, the Hajj, is one of the holiest obligations of Islam; a journey—with rituals and prayers—to be completed by every devout Muslim. The Hajj today is inseparable from overbooked, under-facilitated religious tourism, but that's a fact of the play and not its ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Picture-Imperfect

THEATER REVIEW Picture Imperfect - Playwright: Richard J. Zieman and Joel Z. Cornfield. At: Bread and Roses Productions at the Athenaeum, 2936 N. Southport Ave. Tickets: 773-935-6875; www.athenaeumtheatre.org; $20-$30. Runs through: April 4 Its publicity leads us to expect another jeremiad involving first-world families fretting over less-than-perfect offspring, but while its personnel includes a little boy afflicted with autism, the play is not about him. ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Hammer-Trinity

THEATER REVIEW The Hammer Trinity - Playwright: Nathan Allen and Chris Mathews. At: House Theatre of Chicago at the Chopin, 1543 W. Division St. Tickets: 773-769-3832; www.thehousetheatre.com; $30-$65. Runs through: May 3 The Hammer Trinity myth is based on two assumptions: First, that what we call "history" is actually nothing more than stories, their adherence to facts determined by the storyteller—ahem, historian—and, second, that the dramatic ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Two-Trains-Running

THEATER REVIEW Two Trains Running - Playwright: August Wilson. At: Goodman Thaetre, 170 N. Dearborn St. Tickets: 312-443-3800 or www.goodmantheatre.org; $37-$80. Runs through April 19 The Goodman Theatre lays claim to being the first theater in the world to stage all 10 of August Wilson's plays exploring African-American lives, each set in a different decade of the 20th century. A couple of those plays ( Seven ...


SCOTTISH-PLAY-SCOTT-Travis-Turner-heads-Upstairs

SCOTTISH PLAY SCOTT Travis Turner heads 'Upstairs' - Gay actor Travis Turner is relishing his chance to return to The Upstairs Concierge, which is about to make its official world premiere at the Goodman Theatre. Travis previously appeared in the modern-day farce by Kristoffer Diaz ( a Pulitzer Prize finalist for the comedy The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Diety ) when it played the Goodman's New Stages Festival ...


Rivendell-Theatre-honors-Willa-Taylor-marks-20-years

Rivendell Theatre honors Willa Taylor, marks 20 years - Rivendell Theatre Ensemble's sold-out 2015 Salon fundraiser at Level Office marked the group's 20th anniversary of advancing women's lives "through the power of theater." Rivendell cultivates the talents of women artists—writers, actors, directors, designers and technicians—"by seeking out innovative plays that explore unique female experiences and producing them in intimate, salon environments." The event also honored Chicago's Willa Taylor for ...


SPRING-THEATER-PREVIEW-LGBTQ-works-for-the-spring

SPRING THEATER PREVIEW: LGBTQ works for the spring - There's comedy and tragedy in store this spring for plays and musicals featuring LGBTQ characters or those created by LGBTQ artists. All locations in Chicago unless otherwise noted. Legacies of Hope, Windy City Gay Chorus and Windy City Treble Quire at St. James Episcopal Cathedral, 65 E. Huron St. Reflect on the consequences of bullying with the Midwest premiere of ...


SPRING-THEATER-PREVIEW-Bring-on-the-premieres

SPRING THEATER PREVIEW: Bring on the premieres! - It will be an invigorating spring if we judge by the number and range of the world-premiere plays and musicals offered by Chicago theater companies. Islam and Judeo-Christianity nearly come into contact in the first two plays on our list, while African-American history also figures strongly. The new musicals favor the women, with Jane Austen and 1920s factory girls taking ...


Theater-Spotlight-Critics-Picks

Theater Spotlight, Critics' Picks - Theater Spotlight The backstage world of a traveling 1930s circus troupe is revealed to be quite a tawdry and sinister affair in Chicago Tap Theatre's new show TightWire. The production features a script by Marc Kelly Smith, original music by Kurt Schweitz and choreography by Mark Yonally and the Chicago Tap Theatre ensemble. TightWire plays from Friday, March 20, through ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Garage-Rep-2015

THEATER REVIEW Garage Rep 2015 - Playwright: Steven Simoncic, Topher Payne, Taylor Mac. At: Steppenwolf Garage, 1624 N. Halsted St. Tickets: 312-335-1650; www.steppenwolf.org; $20 ( or all three for $45 ). Runs through: April 26 The annual Garage Rep—in which three young, small and diverse theater troupes are hosted and marketed by Steppenwolf Theatre Company—is one of the most worthwhile artistic endeavors the 'Wolfies have undertaken ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Full-Monty

THEATER REVIEW The Full Monty - Playwright: music and lyrics by David Yazbek, book by Terrence McNally. At: Kokandy Productions at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: 773-975-8150; www.kokandyproductions.com; $38. Runs through: April 12 Upstarts triumphing over adversity against seemingly impossible odds are a favorite theme of audiences in the United States, a country founded upon just such audacity. Our applause is even greater when ...


THEATER-REVIEW-20000-Leagues-Under-the-Sea

THEATER REVIEW 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea - Playwright: adapted by Clint Sheffer and Ann Sonneville from the novel by Jules Verne. At: Strawdog Theatre, 3829 N. Broadway. Tickets: 866-811-4111; www.strawdog.org; $15 . Runs through: April 7 The late Victorian period was the age of science and industry, all sorts of inventions opening new possibilities for the improvement of humanity. With hitherto unimagined concepts becoming manifest almost daily, ...


THEATER-REVIEW-First-Wives-Club-The-Musical

THEATER REVIEW First Wives Club: The Musical - Book: Linda Bloodworth Thomason; Score: Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier and Eddie Holland. At: Oriental Theatre, 24 W. Randolph St. Tickets: 800-775-2000 or www.broadwayinchicago.com; $33-$100. Runs through March 29 The producers behind the Broadway-aimed musical First Wives Club are certainly tenacious. After a 2009 San Diego tryout of the show faltered, First Wives Club was heavily revamped for its current Chicago ...


Upcoming-Willa-Taylor-honors-GayCo-event-Sculpture-exhibit

Upcoming: Willa Taylor honors; GayCo event; Sculpture exhibit - Rivendell to honor Willa Taylor Rivendell Theatre Ensemble will hold its 2015 Salon fundraiser—to benefit programming at Rivendell Theatre—on Thursday, March 19, at Level Office, 73 W. Monroe St., at 6 p.m. Willa Taylor—director of education and community engagement at the Goodman Theatre, U.S. Navy veteran and discussion panelist for Rivendell's production of Women at War—will be honored with the ...


SPRING-THEATER-PREVIEW-The-long-and-short-of-it-Classics-and-near-classics

SPRING THEATER PREVIEW The long and short of it: Classics and near-classics - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - Playgoers impatient for destination summer festivals in Spring Green, Bloomington or Ontario's Stratford can get in practice at currently running double- or even triple-feature "marathon" events. These would include the nine-hour Hammer Trinity—House Theater of Chicago's compilation of its 2012 The Iron Stag King, 2013 The Crownless King and now-concluding The Excelsior King—or Steppenwolf's Garage Repertory Series, featuring a revolving ...


Entertainment-Madonna-Matt-Bomer-Billie-Jean-film-Josh-Groban

Entertainment: Madonna; Matt Bomer; Billie Jean film; Josh Groban - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - "People are a lot more open-minded to the gay community than they are to women," Madonna has claimed, according to Pink News. In an interview to Out magazine, the pop star said: "Women are still the most marginalized group. They're still the group that people won't let change. Gay rights are way more advanced than women's rights. People are a ...


Kinsey-Sicks-campaign-on-Kickstarter-funds-trip-to-Scotlands-Fringe

Kinsey Sicks campaign on Kickstarter funds trip to Scotland's "Fringe" - San Francisco ( March 17, 2015 ) - One week after The Kinsey Sicks announced a month-long campaign to raise $24,500 to attend and conquer the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, they achieved their goal. The campaign was highlighted on Kickstarter's front page. Fans have until March 26 to contribute. Participating in The Fringe will still cost the gals approximately $16,000 more ...


-Out-Chicago-live-from-Boystown-March-22

Out Chicago live from Boystown March 22 - Out Chicago, the city's only LGBT-themed traditional radio program, will host a 'super-sized, star-studded' live radio broadcast from D.S. Tequila, 3352 N. Halsted, Sunday, March 22. "We have always described the show as Sunday brunch with your gay best friends," said comedian Scott Duff, the show's producer and host. "To kick off our second year, we have taken that to ...


About-Face-Theatre-celebrates-19th-year-at-Wonka-Ball-Worhol

About Face Theatre celebrates 19th year at Wonka Ball: Worhol - From a press release - CHICAGO ( March 11, 2015 ) — Come claim your 15 minutes of fame at About Face Theatre's annual gala WONKA BALL: WARHOL, where guests are invited to step into Warhol's infamous factory for one night only. This year's highly-anticipated soiree takes place Friday, April 10, 2015 at 8 pm ( VIP Cocktail Reception at 7 pm ) at Moonlight ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Royal-Society-of-Antarctica

THEATER REVIEW The Royal Society of Antarctica - Playwright: Mat Smart. At: Gift Theatre, 4802 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: 773-283-7071 or www.thegifttheatre.org; $25-$35. Runs through: April 26 Chicago audiences probably want to get as far away from the cold after the recent winter we've had. But there are wonderful rewards in store by visiting the polar cold of The Royal Society of Antarctica, now having its world premiere ...


THEATER-REVIEW-One-Came-Home

THEATER REVIEW One Came Home - Playwright: Amy Timberlake. At: Lifeline Theatre, 6912 N. Glenwood Ave. Tickets: 773-761-4477; www.lifelinetheatre.com; $40. Runs through: April 5 What we have here is a historical-environmentalist fable set in Wisconsin as it was in 1871, before the extinction of the passenger pigeon. What we also have is a whodunit mystery, precipitated by the disappearance of a young lady and later discovery ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Diary-of-Anne-Frank

THEATER REVIEW The Diary of Anne Frank - Playwright: Frances Goodrich, Albert Hackett, Wendy Kesselman. At: Writers Theatre, Books on Vernon, 664 Vernon Ave., Glencoe. Tickets: 1-847-242-6000; www.writerstheatre.org; $35-$70. Runs through: June 28 The Diary of Anne Frank is one of the 20th-century's most universally known literary works. It's iconic like Hamlet: People know of it even if they haven't read it or viewed it on stage or ...


NBCUniversal-partners-with-Second-City-

NBCUniversal partners with Second City - culminates in a showcase performance at The Second City. This fellowship program will begin April 7. —NBCUniversal Second City Emerging Voices Scholarship Awards: Three scholarships, one in each of the cities with The Second City training programs—Chicago, Toronto and Hollywood—will be awarded for one year of advanced improvisation or sketch writing training. Applications are particularly welcome from candidates from diverse ...


NUNN-ON-ONE-THEATER-Grant-James-Varjas-pens-gay-bar-drama

NUNN ON ONE: THEATER Grant James Varjas pens gay-bar drama - Continuing its 22nd season, A Red Orchid Theatre brings the Chicago Premiere of Accidentally, Like a Martyr to the stage. The story of a gay bar in Manhattan gives strong messages about ageism through the ages. The partying lifestyle is explored through humor and drama in flashes of time. with Red Orchid ensemble member Shade Murray directing, Martyr looks to ...


Theater-Spotlight-Critics-Picks-

Theater Spotlight; Critics' Picks - Theater Spotlight Seven world-class magicians team up to appear in the international hit and 2014 Broadway success The Illusionists—Witness the Impossible. See America's Got Talent alumni like Dan Sperry and Kevin James, comic illusionist Jeff Hobson and "2014 Magician of the Year" Yu Ho-Jin from South Korea and more. The Illusionists—Witness the Impossible continues through Sunday, March 22, at the ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Titus-Andronicus

THEATER REVIEW Titus Andronicus - Playwright: William Shakespeare. At: Babes With Blades Theatre Company at City Lit, Edgewater Presbyterian Church, 1020 W. Bryn Mawr Ave. Tickets: 773-904-0391; www.babeswithblades.org; $22. Runs through: April 4 Long before Quentin Tarantino, David Cronenberg and Mehron Squirt Blood, there was Titus Andronicus, William Shakespeare's attempt to cash in on the fashion for lurid sensationalism selling tickets in 1593. Featuring a ...


-THEATER-REVIEW-Fit-to-be-Tied

THEATER REVIEW Fit to be Tied - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - Playwright: Nicky Silver. At: Benevolent Theatre at Angel Island, 731 W. Sheridan Rd. Tickets: 773-871-0442 or www.benevolenttheatre.com; $15-$20. Runs through March 15 Comedy often needs a crowd to succeed. So it's unfair to review Benevolent Theatre's production of Fit to be Tied on a cold night where the audience barely outnumbers the actors onstage. But even with a packed house, ...


Windy-City-Gay-Idol-looks-back-on-twelve-years

Windy City Gay Idol looks back on twelve years - After a dozen years of hosting Windy City Gay Idol, Windy City Times newspaper and Nightspots magazine are announcing they will not be programming the annual event in 2015. Started in 2003 as a takeoff on the popular American Idol TV show, the contests have been held throughout the city and suburbs, crowning winners based on the votes of a ...


Theater-Spotlight-and-Critics-Picks

Theater Spotlight and Critics' Picks - Fans of 1980s pop music and films by director John Hughes like Pretty in Pink, The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles and more won't want to miss the immersive concert experience For the Record: Dear John Hughes. Originally staged in Los Angeles, the Chicago run notably features some Hollywood glamour since Rumer Willis ( daughter of Demi Moore and Bruce Willis ...


DOUBLE-REVIEW-Dunsinane-Macbeth

DOUBLE REVIEW Dunsinane; Macbeth - Dunsinane Playwright: David Greig At: National Theatre of Scotland and Royal Shakespeare Company at Chicago Shakespeare Theater, 800 E. Grand Ave. Tickets: 312-595-5600; www.chicagoshakes.com; $58-$78 Runs through March 22 Macbeth Playwright: William Shakespeare At: The Artistic Home, 1376 W. Grand Ave. Tickets: 866-811-4111; www.theartistichome.org; $28-$32 Runs through April 4 BY SCOTT C. MORGAN Just three miles separate a home-grown ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Four

THEATER REVIEW Four - Playwright: Christopher Shinn At: Jackalope Theatre at Broadway Armory Park, 5917 N. Broadway Tickets: www.jackalopetheatre.org; $20 Runs through: March 28 Christopher Shinn's play had a 1998 London world premiere, with its American premiere a year later in Chicago at About Face Theatre. Seeing it again after 15 years offers perspective on how much things have/haven't changed. It's Fourth of July ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Sweeter-Option

THEATER REVIEW The Sweeter Option - Playwright: John Henry Roberts At: Strawdog Theatre Company, 3829 N. Broadway Tickets: 866-811-4111; www.strawdog.org; $28 Runs through: March 28 There's this big cache of money, you see, or maybe a few people just think there is—it doesn't really make any difference. Once the alleged existence of a fortune in stray cash has been clearly established, it's only a matter of ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Glass-Protege

THEATER REVIEW The Glass Protege - Playwright: Dylan Costello At: Giant Cherry/Glitterati Productions at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: 773-975-8150; www.theaterwit.org; $30-$40 Runs through: March 29 The contractual restrictions exercised by the studios over not only the careers, but the private lives, of its employees in the early days of the United States film industry is nowadays universally acknowledged. High-profile cinema celebrities were required ...


SCOTTISH-PLAY-SCOTT-Garage-activism

SCOTTISH PLAY SCOTT Garage activism - Steppenwolf Theatre Company's sixth annual Garage Rep is underway, and two of its three rotating repertory productions prominently focus on LGBTQ characters and issues. "It really was just kind of a happy accident," said Greta Honold, a Steppenwolf producing associate who curates Garage Rep. "But we looked at it and realized for all three shows that activism emerges as a ...


NUNN-ON-ONE-MAGIC-Jeff-Hobson-bringing-flamboyant-persona-to-Chicago

NUNN ON ONE: MAGIC Jeff Hobson bringing flamboyant persona to Chicago - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - "The Illusionists: Witness the Impossible" is coming to town, featuring a powerful mix of magicians who are ready to dazzle us. Audiences will witness levitation, mind reading, and a full view water torture escape. There are seven different magicians in The Illusionists act with a specific title and specialty in the art of fantasy. Jeff Hobson is one of the ...


The-drag-queens-speech-Talking-with-Terence-Boyle

The (drag) queen's speech: Talking with Terence Boyle - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - Terence Boyle traces his ancestry to Protestant Northern Ireland, but he is, himself, Catholic and teaches at the Jesuit-affiliated Loyola University. The openly gay Boyle's play, allegedly based on the Biblical tale of Cain and Abel, is titled The Queen's Speech—and that's "queen" as in "drag." The Biblical book of Genesis recounts the tale of Adam's two sons, whose bitter ...


SCOTTISH-PLAY-SCOTT-Catching-up-with-Jill-Grove-and-The-Property

SCOTTISH PLAY SCOTT Catching up with Jill Grove and "The Property" - Lesbian mezzo-soprano Jill Grove has appeared in some of the most critically acclaimed new recent productions at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Who could forget her topless tribal Klytamnestra waging interfamily battle in Richard Strauss' Greek tragedy Elektra in 2012? Or Grove as the earthy swamp witch Jezibaba in Antonin Dvorak's Rusalka in 2014? Now Grove gets to put her ...


Theater-Spotlight-and-Critics-Picks

Theater Spotlight and Critics' Picks - Those hopelessly idealistic missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are back to have their outlooks on life and faith severely tested in The Book of Mormon, the 2011 Broadway musical smash concocted by the irreverent South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker with Avenue Q and Frozen co-creator Robert Lopez. If you missed this nine-time ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Other-Place

THEATER REVIEW The Other Place - Playwright: Sharr White. At: Profiles Theatre, The Main Stage, 4139 N. Broadway. Tickets: 773-549-1815 or www.profilestheatre.org; $35-$40. Runs through April 5 Steppenwolf Theatre Company ensemble member Laurie Metcalf received a slew of critical raves and a Tony Award nomination for her performance in Sharr White's drama The Other Place. With the unreliable narrator character of Boston neurologist Julianna Smithton, White ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Marie-Antoinette

THEATER REVIEW Marie Antoinette - Playwright: David Adjmi. At: Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted St. Tickets: 312-335-1650; www.steppenwolf.org; $20-$86. Runs through: May 10 From A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court to Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, the juxtaposition of history's icons with familiar contemporary culture has never failed to amuse playgoers. At its best, this translation serves as a teaching aid, rendering the events of ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Trial-of-Moses-Fleetwood-Walker

THEATER REVIEW The Trial of Moses Fleetwood Walker - Playwright: Ervin Gardner. At: Black Ensemble Theater, 4450 N. Clark St. Tickets: 773-769-4451; www.blackensemble.org; $55-$65. Runs through: March 15 There's nothing like a courtroom drama for spelling out the issues of its day to audiences. This is no less true when the play under scrutiny is a 2015 world premiere proposing to recount the events of a real-life trial transpiring ...


Upcoming-Willa-Taylor-Knuckles-movieLouder-than-a-Bomb-Armatrading-Writers-

Upcoming: Willa Taylor; Knuckles movie;'Louder than a Bomb'; Armatrading; Writers - Rivendell to honor Willa Taylor Rivendell Theatre Ensemble will hold its 2015 Salon fundraiser—to benefit programming at Rivendell Theatre—on Thursday, March 19, at Level Office, 73 W. Monroe St. Willa Taylor—director of education and community engagement at the Goodman Theatre, U.S. Navy veteran and discussion panelist for Rivendell's production of Women at War—will be honored with the 2015 WREN Award ...


The-Skew-explores-trans-identity-topics-through-satire

'The Skew' explores trans-identity topics through satire - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - Television has so refined the model of caddy woman-centric talk shows that nearly every major network has one. The "by women for women" panels of hostesses typically include a stand-up comedian, an African-American woman ( or two ), an A-list headliner and a lesbian. Then there's the wildcard: likely to be Asian or Republican, possibly both. Discussion points run the ...


Entertainment-Darren-Criss-Kelly-Clarkson-chef-Art-Smith-Tom-Ford

Entertainment: Darren Criss; Kelly Clarkson; chef Art Smith; Tom Ford - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - Glee star Darren Criss is set to replace John Cameron Mitchell in the Broadway production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, according to NewNowNext.com. Mitchell is temporarily stepping out from the show to recover from a knee surgery, but is expected back late in February. After Mitchell leaves the show for good, though, Criss will step into those iconic heels ...


NUNN-ON-ONE-Actor-Colm-Feore-reigns-as-King-Lear

NUNN ON ONE Actor Colm Feore reigns as 'King Lear' - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - Colm Feore became a actor after leaving his birthplace of Boston behind, attending the National Theatre School of Canada in Montreal, Quebec. His skills grew from working at the Stratford Festival of Canada playing many leading parts in the works of Shakespeare. He went on to Broadway in Julius Caesar with Denzel Washington. His movie career includes roles in Pearl ...


Theater-Spotlight-and-Critics-Picks

Theater Spotlight and Critics' Picks - See the build-up and the aftermath of two lovers attempt to murder a cuckolded husband in Therese Raquin, composer Tobias Picker and librettist Gene Scheer's 2001 operatic adaptation of Emile Zola's influential 1867 novel. Chicago Opera Theater presents the Windy City debut of Therese Raquin in a production shared with Long Beach Opera for four performances only at Millennium Park's ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Finding-Grafenberg

THEATER REVIEW Finding Grafenberg - Playwright: Graham Brown. At: trip ( sic ), at Hairpin Arts Center, 2810 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: www.grafenberg.bpt.me; $20. Runs through: March 14 Finding Grafenberg concerns sex, office politics and the sexual subtext often lurking just underneath office politics. The dozen characters are white-collar employees of an anonymous company, ranging from the mail room clerk to a corporate vice-president. It ...


THEATER-REVIEW-A-Nice-Indian-Boy

THEATER REVIEW A Nice Indian Boy - Playwright: Madhuri Shekar. At: Rasaka Theatre Company at the Biograph, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave. Tickets: 73-871-3000; www.victorygardens.com; $30. Runs through: March 8 In pre-literate ages, the purpose of marriage was transference of property, progeny serving as the vessels of the transfer, and while compatibility as a factor making for smooth transitions was generally acknowledged, approval of heirs to the family ...


THEATER-REVIEW-A-Kid-Like-Jake

THEATER REVIEW A Kid Like Jake - Playwright: Dan Pearle. At: About Face Theatre at the Greenhouse, 2557 N. Lincoln Ave. Tickets: 773-404-7336; www.aboutfacetheatre.org; $35. Runs through: March 15 We never meet Jake. We meet Jake's mom, Alex, the privileged and fiercely competitive daughter of a likewise privileged, fiercely competitive mother. Alex has suffered two miscarriages since having Jake, rendering her extremely protective of her surviving son. ...


SCOTTISH-PLAY-SCOTT-A-second-marriage-for-First-Wives-Club

SCOTTISH PLAY SCOTT A second marriage for 'First Wives Club' - The pre-Broadway engagement of the musical First Wives Club at the Oriental Theatre is billed as a "world premiere." However, this musical is more of a second marriage after the first one failed. First Wives Club initially played a pre-Broadway tryout at San Diego's Old Globe Theatre back in 2009. On paper, the musical's collaborators and stars all looked very ...


DOUBLE-REVIEW-Sondheim-on-Sondheim-First-Date

DOUBLE REVIEW Sondheim on Sondheim; First Date - Sondheim on Sondheim Playwright: Bruce Graham At: Northlight Theatre, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie Tickets: 847-673-6300 or www.northlight.org; $25-$78 Runs through Feb. 28 First Date Book: Austin Winsberg; Score: Alan Zachary and Michael Weiner At: Royal George Theatre, 1641 N. Halsted St. Tickets: 312-988-9000; www.theroyalgeorgetheatre.com; $15-$59 In an open run It may take years for some Broadway musicals to ...


Queer-artistry-amplifies-Black-love

Queer artistry amplifies Black love - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - People celebrated Black love through the spoken word, poetry and song Feb. 10 during a February open-mic night at Jeffrey Pub, 7041 S. Jeffrey Blvd. Quare Square, Inc. co-sponsored the event, which brought amateur and professional artists together. While the venue offered free expression, Quare Square Executive Director M. Shelly Conner stressed its geographical benefit. "It's important that we have ...


Theater-spotlight-and-Critics-Picks

Theater spotlight and Critics' Picks - Every show for The Boystown Pregame will be different. The new comedy show features a rotating guest from the LGBTQ community and then comedians who transform the guest's topics into sketch and improvised comedy. There's also an activist spot on the bill, so get your social and politically minded friends to participate. The Boystown Pregame plays in an open run ...


THEATER-REVIEW-White-Guy-on-the-Bus

THEATER REVIEW White Guy on the Bus - Playwright: Bruce Graham. At: Northlight Theatre, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie. Tickets: 847-673-6300 or www.northlight.org; $25-$78. Runs through Feb. 28 There's a startling moment in White Guy on the Bus when playwright Bruce Graham essentially pulls the rug out from under the audience. The course of the drama shifts and the mood turns pessimistic as an unflattering mirror of U.S. race ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Dividing-the-Estate

THEATER REVIEW Dividing the Estate - Playwright: Horton Foote. At: Raven Theatre, 6157 N. Clark St. Tickets: 773-338-2177; www.raventheatre.com; $36. Runs through: March 28 It's said that what distinguishes U.S. citizens from their European counterparts are the former's propensity for chronological inflation. The Gordons of Harrison, Texas, accumulated their fortune over a period of barely exceeding a hundred years, but even this relatively short history of ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Red

THEATER REVIEW Red - Playwright: John Logan. At: Redtwist Theatre, 1044 W. Bryn Mawr Ave. Tickets: 773-728-7529; www.redtwist.org; $30-$35. Runs through: March 8 "What do you see?" are the first words spoken at the start of the play. It's an important question—Mark Rothko's paintings might not look like much at first, but when exhibited under subdued lighting conditions ( as Rothko preferred ), after ...


THEATER-REVIEW-La-Cage-aux-Folles

THEATER REVIEW La Cage aux Folles - Playwright: Harvey Fierstein ( book ), Jerry Herman ( music & lyrics ) from Jean Poiret's play. At: The Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Dr., Lincolnshire. Tickets: 1-847-634-0200; www.MarriottTheatre.com; $50-$55. Runs through: March 22 Thirty-two years after its Broadway premiere, La Cage aux Folles should be an amusing period piece. Instead, its obvious message of tolerance and self-respect remains necessary as ...


Music-Box-gets-a-new-look-addition

Music Box gets a new look, addition - Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - On Feb. 2, Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Ave., hosted an open house for its new concession stand and new lounge addition. The multi-use lobby expansion will serve as a space for audiences and an opportunity to program additional special events and film discussions. The hope is that the lounge—which serves espresso drinks, wine, beer, and a full bar ...


Book-of-Merman-to-move-to-the-Apollo-Theater-Studio-Feb-26

Book of Merman to move to the Apollo Theater Studio Feb. 26 - From a press release - Chicago, IL — Pride Films and Plays announces the transfer of its world premiere production of The Book of Merman to a new six-week engagement at the Apollo Theater Studio, 2540 N. Lincoln, Chicago. The new musical comedy by Jeff Award-winning author Leo Schwartz has been playing to sellout crowds at Mary's Attic in Andersonville since its opening on January ...


Kelli-Strickland-named-The-Hypocrites-Executive-Director-

Kelli Strickland named The Hypocrites' Executive Director - From a press release - CHICAGO ( February 5, 2015 ) — The Hypocrites are pleased to announce the appointment of Kelli Strickland as the company's new Executive Director. Strickland joins The Hypocrites' leadership directly from her post as Executive Director of Chicago's Raven Theatre. Artistic Director Sean Graney is eager to begin this new collaboration. "I cannot wait to work with Kelli who is ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Waiting-for-Godot

THEATER REVIEW Waiting for Godot - Playwright: Samuel Beckett. At: Court Thaetre, 5535 S. Ellis Ave. Tickets: 773-753-4472 or www.courttheatre.org; $45-$65. Runs through Feb. 15 Samuel Beckett's 1953 absurdist drama Waiting for Godot has secured its place in theatrical history as a monumentally influential 20th century classic. But that doesn't mean that Waiting for Godot still can't be controversial or confound audiences. I noticed the audience ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Apple-Family-Plays

THEATER REVIEW The Apple Family Plays - Playwright: Richard Nelson. At: TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington Ave. Tickets: 773-281-8463; www.timelinetheatre.com; $39-$52. Runs through: April 19 Richard Nelson's witty works sport plenty of theatricality, but his early plays were so politically insistent and cerebral that they lacked emotional warmth. Maybe Nelson had a midlife crisis ( he's 64 ), but his writing has changed in the last 15 ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Princess-Mary-Demands-Your-Attention

THEATER REVIEW Princess Mary Demands Your Attention - Playwright: Aaron Holland. At: Bailiwick Chicago at the Biograph, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave. Tickets: 773-871-3000; www.victorygardens.org; $30. Runs through: Feb. 21 A recurring phenomenon in families encompassing multiple offspring is the de facto selection of one child to remain close to home and care for the parents in their old age. This task is typically assigned to a daughter, but ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Rapture-Blister-Burn

THEATER REVIEW Rapture, Blister, Burn - Playwright: Gina Gionfriddo. At: Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn St. Tickets: 312-443-3800; www.goodmantheatre.org; $25-$81. Runs through: Feb. 22 If you've never seen a Gina Gionfriddo play before, be wary of hasty impressions based on her work for television. Left to her own devices, this mischievous playwright displays a fondness for luring audiences into anticipating one kind of story, then abruptly ...


SCOTTISH-PLAY-SCOTT-Gender-expressions-

SCOTTISH PLAY SCOTT Gender expressions - Playwright Daniel Pearle drew from his own personal experiences when he wrote his award-winning 2013 off-Broadway comedy A Kid Like Jake, which makes its Chicago debut this week in an About Face Theatre production. A Kid Like Jake focuses on the titular four-year-old boy who has an obsession with Cinderella and dressing up as princesses. When Jake is in the ...


Chicago-Theatre-Week-grows-Billy-Elliot-in-April-auction-actors-take-stage

Chicago Theatre Week grows; 'Billy Elliot' in April; auction actors take stage - 'Billy Elliot' at Drury Lane in April Oakbrook's Drury Lane Theatre, 100 Drury Lane, will present the regional premiere of the hit musical Billy Elliot April 9-June 7. Rachel Rockwell will direct, with Roberta Duchak providing musical direction. The plot is as follows: Set during the 1984-85 U.K. miners' strike in a small working class town in the English ...


Theater-Spotlignt-Critics-Picks

Theater Spotlignt; Critics' Picks - Issues like gentrification, economic disparity, violence and the education system are all explored in the interdisciplinary poetry show Redlined, which ties all these topics together literally and symbolically via the CTA Red Line. Redlined is created by the house ensemble of Chicago Slam Works led by writer RJ Eldridge and director J.W. Basilo. Redlined plays 8 p.m. Fridays through March ...


Continue-The-Love-Male-Impersonator-Show-Feb-16-at-Baton

"Continue The Love" Male Impersonator Show Feb. 16 at Baton - From a press release - Adair Entertainment is producing a Male Impersonator/Illusionist/Drag King Show at Baton Show Lounge. Jim Flint, Baton's owner, is supporting women from all over the country to participate. The first show is Monday, Feb. 16. "Continue The Love" Male Impersonator Show is Feb. 16 at Baton Show Lounge, 436 N. Clark St, Chicago. Show time is 7 p.m. VIP 5:45-6:45 for ...


Human-trafficking-survivor-performs-7-Layers-Captive

Human trafficking survivor performs "7 Layers Captive" - From a press release - Chicago, IL - Human trafficking claims an estimated 27 million victims worldwide, producing nearly $31 billion in revenue each year through the largest exploitation of innocent men, women, and children ever seen in history. In the United States alone, an estimated 100,000-300,000 children are trafficked every year. These terrifying facts uphold the fact that we as human beings must recognize ...


Theater-Spotlight-Critics-Picks

Theater Spotlight; Critics' Picks - If you've ever wanted to attend an immersive performance art happening, now is your chance to do so with REVIVAL 2015: Source::Evolution, which builds upon the 2013 version of the event. See what spectacles have been cooked up this year by creators Eric Andrew Hoff, Jesse Morgan Young and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. REVIVAL 2015: ...


Chicago-Theatre-Week-grows-About-Faces-A-Kid-Like-Jake-in-Feb

Chicago Theatre Week grows; About Face's 'A Kid Like Jake' in Feb. - Chicago Theatre Week is expanding. The upcoming celebration of theatregoing in Chicago is returning for its third year and will take place Feb. 12-22, spanning a week and two full weekends for the first time. More than 100 productions are expected to participate as part of the 2015 line-up. Chicago Theatre Week is presented by the League of Chicago Theatres ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Accidentally-Like-A-Martyr

THEATER REVIEW Accidentally, Like A Martyr - Playwright: Grant James Varjas. At: A Red Orchid Theatre, 1531 N. Wells St. Tickets: 312-943-8722; www.aredorchidtheatre.org; $30-$35. Runs through: March 1 Don't be fooled by the Bee Gees playing on the jukebox or the twinkling lights strung over the walls. This isn't 1973; it's 2005, the lights are because it's three days before Christmas and the music is so Edmund, ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Plastic-Revolution

THEATER REVIEW Plastic Revolution - Book: Will Cavedo & Andrew Hobgood; Score: Julie Nichols and Hobgood. At: The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: www.thenewcolony.org; $20-$25. Runs through Feb. 22 The New Colony may call Plastic Revolution a world premiere, but it's actually a thoroughly revised version of the company's 2009 show Tupperware: An American Musical Fable. And while Plastic Revolution is a definite ...


THEATER-REVIEW-Mr-Burns-A-Post-Electric-Play

THEATER REVIEW Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play - Playwright: Anne Washburn; music by Michael Friedman. At: Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: 1-773-975-8150; www.TheaterWit.org; $38 ( $25 if 29 or under ). Runs through: March 1 In Act I of this intelligent but disturbing play, television's The Simpsons is a fondly-remembered program in the near-future ( think I Love Lucy episodes ). In Act II, seven years ...


THEATER-REVIEW-The-Life-and-Sort-of-Death-of-Eric-Argyle

THEATER REVIEW The Life and Sort of Death of Eric Argyle - Playwright: Ross Dungan. At: Steep Theatre, 1115 W. Berwyn Ave.. Tickets: 866-811-4111; www.steeptheatre.com; $10-$35. Runs through: Feb. 28 Consider for a moment how many great works of art originated with a young man trying to impress a girl ( or boy—let's be fair ), or a young woman pouring out her heart to an unseen listener/viewer. Consider, also, the popular ...







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