If you’ve lived in the Chicago area more than a year or have visited it during the holidays in past years, some shows and events spring quickly to mind when talking about traditional doings. Others are less likely to make it to the calendar simply because they’re not necessarily headliners in a city rich in good theater, music, dance and art.
You don’t have to be a Jane Austen fan to enjoy ‘Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley,’ a world premier now at Northlight Theatre.
You merely have to appreciate that Austen incorporated English society’s attitudes and expectations of women, marriage and social position of the late 18th century in such books as ‘Sense and Sensibility,’ published early 19th century in 1811 and ‘Pride and Prejudice,’ published in 1813.
Take the creative minds of children and a Scottish playwright who wants to change from churning out formula plays for the London stage to recapturing his youthful imagination in order to write an amazing play, and you will understand ‘Finding Neverland.’
A touring Broadway musical in Chicago now through Dec. 4, 2016, the production reveals how J.M. Barrie came up with his world-famous, beloved ‘Peter Pan’ stories.
A charming and fun adaptation of The Nutcracker’ is at Marriott Theatre now through Dec. 20, 2016. As part of Marriott’s Theatre for Young Audiences series, the Mouse King is comic rather than scary but with deft direction and choreography by Matt Raftery, the show will delight all ages.
In ‘King Charles III,’ a comic-tragic “future history” play, author Mike Bartlett brilliantly tackles Britain’s succession to the throne when 90-year-old Elizabeth II dies. His “what if” takes place within the perfect background of Chicago Shakespeare’s Courtyard Theater, a Globe and Swan Theatre-like setting.
The signs of the season are there. Macy’s windows have come alive with moving characters, holiday market tents are going up in Daley Plaza, a giant evergreen is hoisted in Millennium Park and people are wondering if we should pray for cold to have good ice in the park or warm weather for good shopping.
No matter what the weather holds, here are a few of the jolly, holly ways to celebrate the season in the Chicago area.
“Annie” at Chicago’s Cadillac Palace Theatre now through Nov. 13, 2016, is a pre-Thanksgiving family treat.
The current touring production feels so fresh that even if you have seen past “Annies” you will be glad to be back watching Miss Hannigan’s orphans prance across the stage and a pugnacious Annie change everyone’s outlook on life and business from Oliver Warbucks to FDR.
‘Fun Home’ is an unforgettable show that just came to Chicago after winning five Tony Awards in 2015. Unfortunately, it is only at the Oriental Theatre now through Nov. 13, 2016.
An intimate, questioning look back at a father and family life from a daughter’s view during youth, college years and in mid-40s, the show probably deserves an intimate space.Read More
While the Cubs spectacularly reigned Wednesday at the Indians’ Progressive Field, audiences were treated to a spectacular ‘Dancing in the Rain’ production at Marriott Theatre Lincolnshire.
Mobile phones checked Cleveland during intermission while MGM’s 1953 hit musical that starred Gene Kelly was brought back to life in Lincolnshire.
“This is just a card,” magician extraordinaire /actor Brett Schneider tells the audience. And so starts a little over two hours of Goodman Theatre’s fascinating The Magic Play.
Smaller than the Albert Theatre, the Owen’s space is perfect for appreciating Schneider’s magic. But playwright Andrew Hinderaker has put a lot more up Schneider’s sleeve than astonishing tricks.