Friday, July 20, 2018

'Peter Pan: A Musical Adventure' review: Blink on Navy Pier and they've flown away by Chris Jones

What better company at the theater than summer campers? Especially in a show that not only asks you to be up for an adventure but to bring a fairy back to life. (Before noon.) No problem for…

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'Mycelial: Street Parliament' review: Ever been invited to a dance about digital connection and your phone doesn't work? by Lauren Warnecke

How can it be that not one, but two dances this year are inspired by mushrooms? Now at the Hyde Park Art Center, Erica Mott Productions and Chicago Danztheatre Ensemble present “Mycelial: …

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Thursday, July 19, 2018

‘The Color Purple’ review: This thrilling revival sings straight to us in the audience at the Auditorium by Chris Jones

The Broadway musical based on “The Color Purple” tried out in Atlanta in 2004. Sitting there in Georgia, I admired the zest and accessibility of the score and, in particular, the artful …

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Chance the Chicagoist and Miranda the bookwriter: Is this the new look of media? by Chris Jones

On Wednesday, Chance the Rapper announced that he had purchased a dormant news-and-culture website called Chicagoist from the New York public radio station WNYC. His means of doing so — sh…

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'Bus Stop' review: Stranded in Kansas, trying to make sense of Inge's relationships by Kerry Reid

“This is the Plains, a state of mind, right, some spiritual affliction, like the blues” says Barbara, the eldest daughter of the Oklahoma Weston clan in Tracy Letts’ “August: Osage C…

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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Milly's Orchid Show is back this Saturday: 'Summer Musical Spectacular Extravaganza' welcomes David Cale to its glittering stage by Kt Hawbaker

For Brigid Murphy, “Milly’s Orchid Show” was never about bringing New York to Chicago — it was about giving Chicago the kind of radical vastness that New York’s girth allows. That…

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Bruce Springsteen's Broadway show to be seen on Netflix by Mark Kennedy

Put away your wallet — you won't have to pay hundreds of dollars to see Bruce Springsteen's Broadway show. Netflix announced Wednesday that it will broadcast The Boss' one-man show on Dec.…

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'Victims of Duty' review: Michael Shannon is the smiling Detective in an absurdist trap at Red Orchid by Chris Jones

Michael Shannon, his acerbic biography in the program at A Red Orchid Theatre informs, is soon to be enshrined in wax at Madame Tussauds near Times Square. A lifetime achievement, for sure, …

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Broken Nose Theatre announces new artistic director, managing director by Kt Hawbaker

On Wednesday, Broken Nose Theatre announced two new leadership appointments. Associate artistic director Elise Marie Davis has been named the company’s new artistic director, succeeding fo…

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'Haymarket' from Underscore Theatre Company moves to Theater Wit for extended run by Kt Hawbaker

The movement just keeps building: On Wednesday, it was announced that “Haymarket,” Underscore’s folk musical about the 1886 Chicago battle between cops and labor organizers, will go on…

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'Something in the Game' takes another run at Knute Rockne musical by Chris Jones

Ten years ago — shudder — I pointed my Honda toward Munster, Ind., to check out a new musical about one of the Hoosier State’s most vaunted citizens: Coach Knute Kenneth Rockne of the …

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

'Heartbreak Hotel' review: Elvis musical needs the real story by Chris Jones

“Heartbreak Hotel,” the biographical Elvis musical from the creator of the Broadway shows “Million Dollar Quartet” and “Baby It’s You,” begins with a spirited gospel performanc…

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'The Band's Visit' to float in for Chicago premiere September 2019 by Kt Hawbaker

On Tuesday, Broadway In Chicago announced the Chicago premiere of 10-time Tony Award-winner “The Band’s Visit.” The show will run for a limited two-week engagement at Cadillac Palace T…

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Drew Schad to lead cast of Shattered Globe's 'Crime and Punishment' by Kt Hawbaker

Crime, Russia, sexual depravity — before 2016, Fyodor Dostoyevsky was the cultural figure most associated with this triptych, especially because of his novel “Crime and Punishment.” On…

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Monday, July 16, 2018

'Hamilton: The Exhibition' postpones opening on Northerly Island to April by Chris Jones

“Hamilton: The Exhibition,” the ambitious, tented attraction that aims to immerse fans of the hit Broadway musical in the life and nonfictional times of its central character, is postpon…

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At Lifeline Theatre, a new artistic director by Chris Jones

Lifeline Theatre, the venerable and ensemble-based Rogers Park arts institution known for its theatrical adaptations of literary classics, has a new artistic director. It’s Ilesa Duncan, t…

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'Pamplona' at the Goodman is Hemingway's words, Stacy Keach's courage, battling it out in a hotel room by Chris Jones

“I’ve taken some hits,” observes Stacy Keach, playing Ernest Hemingway in the solo play “Pamplona” at the Goodman Theatre. The venerable, courageous actor might well have been spea…

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Theatre at the Center, Northwest Indiana's only professional theater company, announces 2019 season by Kt Hawbaker

On Monday, Theatre at the Center announced the lineup for its 2019 season, with artistic director Linda Fortunato at the helm. The season will kick off with a revival of “Million Dollar Qu…

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Chicago theater openings for July 20-26

Friday “The End of TV”: Manual Cinema presents a multimedia art-song cycle rooted in the Rust Belt. Through Aug. 15 at the Chopin Theatre, 1543 W. Division St.; 773-278-1500 and manualci…

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Chill out — Cirque Dreams Holidaze will return to the Chicago Theatre this December by Kt Hawbaker

It’s mid-July, the air is heavy with humidity and the best a/c in town is on the CTA — there’s no time like the present to fantasize about the winter holidays. On Monday, Cirque Dreams…

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Sunday, July 15, 2018

Sunday's 'Cher Show' in Chicago is cancelled by Chris Jones

The final Chicago performance of "The Cher Show" at the Oriental Theatre was cancelled Sunday afternoon after a technical malfunction. Instead of the planned performance of the pre-Broadway …

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Michael Che at the Vic: 'Uncle Grumpy' gives a blunt, funny toast to Chicago by Zach Freeman

In a neon green hoodie, jeans and white tennis shoes, comedian Michael Che, a stand-up comic best known for his “Weekend Update” co-hosting gig on “Saturday Night Live,” took the sta…

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Thursday, July 12, 2018

Victory Gardens announces casting for four of its upcoming productions by Kt Hawbaker

On Thursday, Victory Gardens Theater announced casting for several of its upcoming productions. In the fall, Paula Vogel’s “Indecent” will be directed by Gary Griffin and will feature …

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11 recommended shows to see right now

"20,000 Leagues Under the Seas" ✭✭✭ 1/2 Say "Nemo" and most kids now think of the Disney clown fish. But in 1870, the great Jules Verne imagined Captain Nemo as a misanthropic, Homeric…

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'Come From Away' musical is coming to Chicago in 2019 by Doug George

“Come From Away” will make its first landing in Chicago next summer, Broadway in Chicago announced Thursday. The unlikely musical set in Gander, Newfoundland, will play July 30 to Aug. 1…

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Red Clay Dance Company announces 10th anniversary season by Kt Hawbaker

On Thursday, Red Clay Dance Company announced the lineup for its 2018-19 season, marking its tenth anniversary. The company, which creates and performs Afro-contemporary dance, will feature …

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Full cast announced for City Lit's season opener, 'Arms and the Man' by Kt Hawbaker

On Thursday, full casting was announced for “Arms and the Man,” the George Bernard Shaw comedy opening City Lit’s 2018-19 season. Set during the 1885 Serbo-Bulgarian war, the show ribs…

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Steppenwolf Theatre will host memorial service for manager Claude Binder, dead at 65 by Chris Jones

Steppenwolf Theatre has announced a July 16 memorial service for Claude Binder, the theater’s former production manager and general manager. Binder died July 1 from cancer. He was 65. A St…

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Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Raven Theatre casts 'Crumbs From the Table of Joy' by Lynn Nottage by Kt Hawbaker

On Wednesday, Raven Theatre announced casting for 'Crumbs From the Table of Joy,' written by two-time Pulitzer-winner Lynn Nottage. Tyrone Phillips is slated to direct the family drama. The …

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Tuesday, July 10, 2018

In writing the music for 'Waitress,' Sara Bareilles taught musicals a thing or two by Chris Jones

"We got such a kick out of doing the Tony Awards," Sara Bareilles said the other day, over the phone as she walked around Los Angeles. "Josh and me? We're such theater nerds. And we've been …

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With 2018-19 season, Jackalope Theatre Company to stage two world premieres by Kt Hawbaker

On Tuesday, ​Jackalope Theatre Company​ announced its 2018-19 season, featuring two world premieres and a Midwest premiere. Things kick off with​ “In The Canyon” written by ensembl…

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