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See Chicago's finest improvisers under the direction of the legendary Mick Napier in an evening of unscripted and unequaled improvisational comedy. This show is highly interactive, hilarious and thoroughly original. Suggested rating: R.
Professional grade stand-up comes to The ComedySportz Theatre. Featuring comedy talent from around the city, 100 Proof Comedy will make you laugh. Among our lineups you'll see comics who have performed on HBO, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, The TBS Just For Laughs Festival, and more!
Lifeline Partners with 16 Chicago Storytelling Collectives in Celebration of the Form Free Kick-Off Event.
The Adventures of Tapman follows the triumphs and trials of the tenacious Tapman, a lovelorn scientist turned tap dancing superhero. Audiences meet his crime-fighting comrades, Hourglass and Modern Marvel, as well as his arch-nemesis, the MADD Tapper, during this adventure. Inspired by Bruns' childhood love of comic books, The Adventures of Tapman is an exciting show that the entire family can enjoy.
In the parking lot of The Hummingbird, a once-glamorous motel on New Orleans' infamous Airline Highway, a group of friends gather. A rag-tag collection of strippers, hustlers and philosophers have come together to celebrate the life of Miss Ruby, an iconic burlesque performer who has requested a funeral before she dies. The party rages through the night as old friends resurface to pay their respects. A world premiere from the author of Detroit, Airline Highway is a boisterous and moving ode to the outcasts that make life a little more interesting.
In the world of high stakes, we become a more heightened version of ourselves, which can sometimes resemble more simian behavior than human. From unitard sporting performance artists, an intimate encounter with robot culture and the primal effects of downsizing, Apes of Wrath embraces the dark and light sides of our human devolution.
Tony Award winner Richard Nelson's widely celebrated series of four The Apple Family Plays explores politics, change, and family dynamics. Set on dates of historic significance between 2010 and 2013, the plays have been heralded by The New York Times as "a rare and radiant mirror on the way we live … no previous works of theater have been topical in the resonant and specific ways of The Apple Family Plays." Now TimeLine brings two of these remarkable plays (the first and third from the series) to Chicago to be presented on alternating nights.
That Hopey Changey Thing is set as the polls close on the 2010 mid-term elections, and Sorry is set on the morning of the presidential election in 2012. Both explore how a family sorts through personal and political feelings of loss and confusion in the shadow of history as it is being made. "One of Mr. Nelson's points with this series is how world events are refracted and reflected in our own living and dining rooms in ways we're not always aware of" wrote The New York Times, and the New York Daily News raved that "the big picture illuminates and informs what's happening close to home and vice versa."
A poignant yet uplifting story of two extraordinary women exemplifying the triumph of the human spirit and the bonds of sisterhood. Beaches was adapted from the 1985 novel by Iris Rainer Dart, which was later adapted into the popular 1988 film starring Bette Midler and Barbara Hershey.
A refugee from the Armenian Genocide seeks to build a new family with his mail-order bride in 1920's and 1930's Milwaukee. He succeeds in unexpected ways. Staged in conjunction with observances of the Genocide's 100th Anniversary.
The songs of the Fab Four are now part of our great treasury of popular music, and we'll bring a dynamic a cappella take to these timeless classics. Multi-talented musician Paul Langford, known for his work in both classical and pop fields, serves as guest music director. Celebrate the 75th birth year of John Lennon with this irresistible program of Beatles favorites.
Come see where it all began! The Best of The Second City features some of the best sketches, songs, and improvisations from their fifty-two year history performed by The Second City Touring Company. From the company that launched the careers of Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert, Steve Carell and more, comes the next generation of the comedy world's best and brightest performing hilarious sketch comedy and The Second City's trademark improvisation.
An adult son with a disability must deal with the needs and demands of his aging parents. This tragicomedy by Chicago playwright Todd Bauer that captures both the pain and love between parents and children.
Best friends Hulda and Brimir live on a planet much like Earth—populated only by children. They live a simple but ideal life. When they meet an adult, the mysterious Jolly-Goodday. they are promised a life of greater joy, even more spectacular fun, but at what cost? The exuberance of Peter Pan, the wonder of the myth of Icarus, mixed with an eco-conscious message, Blue Planet is a family-friendly and lively integrated theatrical experience using movement, puppetry, aerial dance and object work with traditional elements of storytelling. The performance is sure to illuminate, entertain and inspire.
The Blue Show is comedy for the 18+ crowd. Join us after the Friday 8pm ComedySportz match to see the players shed their uniforms and play dirty. No audience suggestion will be turned away, and nothing will hold these players back from the bawdy, the outrageous, the downright hilarious. This is pure, unfiltered, late-night improv.
There is no age limit for this show - but enter at your own risk! 18+ recommended.
Bye Bye Liver is a series of outrageous sketches, all centered around the one thing that connects all of Chicago…Alcohol! Whether it's the girl that should never, ever drink liquor…or that one guy that confuses courage with shots of Jameson, we've all known them…or been them. This is the hilarious romp that satirizes all of those fun times and f*ck ups we've all had when we had just one too many. Interspersed with hilarious, interactive social games, you'll laugh until you cry at Bye Bye Liver: The Chicago Drinking Play.
This colorful tapestry of music from the Spanish-speaking world will feature fresh sounds and exciting rhythms from South America, Spain, and the Caribbean, with a special focus on Mexico.
Totally free open mike standup comedy.
A holiday tradition returns to Metropolis. A miserly and miserable man, Ebenezer Scrooge greets each Christmas with a "bah humbug," until he is visited one Christmas Eve by the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future. Through a restless night, the spirits show him memories from his past, cruel realities from the present and the grim future should he continue his miserly ways. Celebrate the holiday season with this classic as Scrooge learns the errors of his ways.
Charles Dickens' timeless tale of hope and redemption comes to life in this enchanting production filled with the electrifying arrival of ghosts, jubilant musical numbers, plenty of "Bah Humbugs" and Scrooge's joyful discovery of love.
Four star-struck holiday tourists are snowbound in a shuttered Broadway theater on Christmas Eve. With nothing but a few trunks filled with costumes, props, and set pieces, they live out a shared dream - starring on Broadway! From your favorite holiday classics like "Baby, It's Cold Outside," and "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas," to season classics from Broadway composers, the evening is a flurry of memorable holiday magic.
Poor Ella leads a miserable life of servitude under her wicked stepmother and unsympathetic stepsisters. Everyday, she dreams of something better, of escaping her chores and finding love.
Her prayers are answered in the form of her Fairy Godmother, who turns up to save her and conjures her from serving girl to princess, in time for the ball. There's only one condition, she must be home before midnight, otherwise she will face the consequences.
But when she leaves her glass slipper, she is sought by the Prince, who will stop at nothing to find the mysterious Cinderella...
Join the limber and handsome cast of A Clown Car Named Desire for a spectacular night of illusion featuring brave, multitasking mothers expressing themselves; hyper hipsters competing for the ultimate in cool; and long term monogamous couples desperately trying to remember how they got that way. It's a night to remember and the perfect antidote to that mundane and troublesome state called reality.
Old Memories, New Truths.
Celebrated mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade stars in this tour-de-force portrayal of 90-year –old grand dame Myrtle Bledsoe living in Egypt, Texas. Having outlived her family, she confronts a life of missed opportunities, broken dreams, and a family of liars and murderers. In a role written for von Stade, her performance is hailed by the Huffington Post as "transcendent and powerful." Gordon's intimate, touching score tells this unforgettable story of one woman's last moments of reflection and forgiveness.
A hilarious 90-minute improv comedy show in which two teams create comedy scenes, songs and games right on the spot based on your suggestions. You choose the winner and the show is never the same twice! It's clean, smart comedy for families and all ages! There are over 100+ games in the ComedySportz book - and nobody knows what will be played next!
This thriller is based on the true story of Danny Casolaro, a freelance reporter investigating high-level corruption in the Reagan/Bush Justice Department. A year into uncovering information, Casolaro was found dead in a Virginia motel room, his arms slashed more than a dozen times. The authorities called it suicide, but a host of conspiracy theorists—and the House Judiciary Committee—disagreed. Casolaro's recovered notes detailed his plan to expose several major players behind numerous clandestine activities, including the Iran hostage situation, Nicaragua arms-for-drugs deals, and much more. Playwright Dominic Orlando—a cousin of Casolaro—pulls the curtain back on Danny's journey and the ultimate price he paid trying to find the truth.
Dee Snider's Rock & Roll Christmas Tale tells the story of Däisy Cütter, a heavy metal bar band looking to make it big even though the 80s are LONG over. This year, these four guys are ready to take the ultimate step and, in mythic rock tradition, sell their souls to the devil in exchange for success beyond their wildest metal dreams! But every time they try to seal the infernal pact, their head-banging anthems turn into warm-hearted carols. Soon these rockers are forced to realize their dreams of stardom are no match for the Christmas spirit. Dee Snider, infamous lead singer of Twisted Sister, has created a new holiday musical, guaranteed to rock your holiday and twist your Christmas.
Desperate Dolls takes audiences back to Hollywood, 1968, where three beautiful women are in big trouble. Sunny Jack Fennigan has the best intentions: to make female-led independent films that turn a quick buck at the box office. A powerful agent known only as "Captain" has a proposition that may be the answer to all his hopes. His three best prospects, girls who go by the monikers Matchbox, Pretty Sexy, and The Vil, are ripe for stardom but a dark trip through seedy motels and murder scenes threatens to turn their dreams into a twisted kind of nightmare.
As vital today as when it was first written, Anne Frank's extraordinary diary has become an essential part of how we remember one of the darkest periods of human history. Filled with its young author's luminous spirit – her "boundless desire for all that is beautiful and good" – the diary also illuminates the coming of age of a complex, passionate young girl as she falls in love, grows into a woman and struggles to survive with her family amid the chaos of war and religious persecution.
A once-wealthy Texas family battles over splitting up the family estate in this darkly funny play by the author of The Trip to Bountiful.
London's The Times proclaims, "If it's riveting spectacle, challenging ideas and human drama you want, this is the show to see." Playwright David Greig's captivating sequel to Shakespeare's Scottish play explores one man's attempt to restore peace in a country consumed by war. Macbeth is dead. Under cover of night, the English army has swept in, killed the tyrant and claimed Scotland's seat of power. But efforts to restore order appear futile as the situation spins out of control. Fierce one minute and funny the next, Greig's extraordinary ability to infuse a dark story with rich humor results in a lively, vital examination of power—illuminating uncanny parallels between Scotland's medieval and present-day political landscapes.
Now in its second smash year at the Greenhouse Theater Center, EL Stories stages the real life experiences of CTA commuters from across the city. Adapted verbatim from hundreds of first-person interviews, the Waltzing Mechanics perform a kaleidoscope of the commuting public's most memorable and hilarious encounters. Recognized by the Chicago Tribune as one of the "Best of the Fringe in 2011," EL Stories also gives you a chance each week to have your own transit tale played back live. Don't miss our train!
Labor Day has come and gone on Martha's Vineyard when Devon arrives to visit her sister Simone at her place of employment: a grand estate on the island. When Simone's wealthy employer reappears in the midst of a marital crisis, the weekend is thrown into chaos. The conflict pits family against money in this struggle between the haves and the have-nots.
Waves crash and sisters clash in this tumultuous comedy about the sacrifices we make to stay on top.
How do wealth and privilege affect how we treat one another?
In First Wives Club, three former college friends reunite to find that they have more in common than their alma mater! Ditched by their respective husbands for younger women, they band together to settle scores with the men who did them wrong. Featuring new songs and classic hits like "Reach Out…I'll Be There," "Stop in the Name of Love" and "I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)," First Wives Club is a hilarious, inspiring, and empowering story about friendship at its strongest... and revenge at its sweetest.
While Papa Bear, Mama Bear, and Baby bear live contentedly in the woods, spitfire Goldilocks sets out on her own adventure. As lives collide, heroes are made when bears and people learn to share their world. Award-winning writers George Stiles and Anthony Drewe (creators of Honk!, Mary Poppins on Broadway, and Emerald City's The Three Little Pigs) bring this golden tale about respect to the stage, making it just right for the entire family.
In this highly original world premiere play, Denis O'Hare and Lisa Peterson (An Iliad) weave stories of devotion and doubt into their very own creation myth about the place where human faith and divine inspiration intersect: the Bible. As thirteen year-old Connor struggles to reconcile his identity with his dream of becoming a priest and modern-day Biblical scholar Miriam wrestles to resolve her crisis of faith, they lead us through an incredible exploration on how the Bible was conceived. From ancient Judea to medieval Ireland to suburban America, The Good Book is a powerful and exuberant journey through the most influential book in Western history.
Fairy tales ROCK! Beyond the snowy depths of The Forbidden Forest, a family is frozen by the mystery of their missing mother. Soon after her disappearance, the daring sibling duo of Hansel and Gretel – one part dreamer, one part thief – embark on an icy adventure in hopes of rekindling the warmth in their home. Inspired by the whimsy of Lemony Snicket and Roald Dahl, this frosty fable of humor and heroism is anything but grim. Ernie Nolan teams up with Grammy-nominated artist Justin Roberts to create a wickedly delicious musical treat for the entire family.
Hear that? Yes, it's the sound of bells a-jingling already. Next thing you know dreidels are spinning and pumpkin-spiced everything is everywhere. Now your family is in town, you're numbed to frosty snowmen and black Friday bargains...and it's not even December! Thankfully the Second City is here with the perfect upheaval of your holiday malaise: Holidazed and Confused bursts the monotony of the season with a riotous send-up of traditional holiday fare. Put away your turkey baster and bring the whole fam to laugh until your cheeks flush with ho-ho-holidazed joy!
The Chicago premiere of Hot Georgia Sunday reunites Haven with the director of their successful spring 2014 production of Seminar. It's hard to tell the difference between right and wrong in this tragicomic tale of dysfunction taking place in a small Northeast Georgia town where private desires and public morality collide. The well-meaning, but inept members of the Vickery family cause trouble wherever they go and lust, betrayal and alcohol lead the way for this fractured family.
Come see the up-and-coming generation of improv comedians create some of the most fun, inventive and entertaining game-based improv Chicago has to offer! Each night, see three of our talented House Teams showcase a variety of improv that will only leave you wanting more.
A playful re-imaging of Gilbert and Sullivan's comic opera H.M.S. Pinafore, adapted and directed by Sean Graney, with new arrangements by Matt Kahler and Andra Velis Simon. In what has become an annual celebration of the Gilbert and Sullivan canon, H.M.S. Pinafore will run in repertory with remounts of the company's wildly popular productions of The Mikado and The Pirates of Penzance, also adapted and directed by Graney.
See Chicago's finest improvisers under the direction of the legendary Mick Napier in an evening of unscripted and unequaled improvisational comedy. This show is highly interactive, hilarious and thoroughly original.
On the eve of the United States' invasion of Baghdad in 2003, an Iraqi museum curator plots to save treasured antiquities, including the statue of ancient mother goddess Inana—metaphorically, the soul of the country—from destruction. Fleeing to London with his young bride, he makes a life-altering deal to ensure the statue's preservation. Against a background of international and personal intrigue, playwright Michele Lowe opens a window of hope and healing with her poignant and beautiful love story.
Inana was commissioned and received its world premiere at Denver Center Theatre Company in 2009, and TimeLine's production is the play's Chicago premiere. "By introducing us to human and complex Iraqi characters … Michele Lowe's play wants to smooth the border that separates our nations like a line of sand in the desert," praised The Denver Post. "[It] allows us to consider our 'enemy' in new and more humane ways. To consider the infuriating plight of Middle Eastern women. To reflect on the unconscionable desecration of a country's sacred heritage … All while escaping into an unlikely but eventually sweet romance."
For 13 years, the American Blues Ensemble has treated Chicagoland audiences to holiday classic featuring Clarence, George, and the delightful characters of Bedford Falls. They once again take you back to a 1940s radio broadcast of Frank Capra's holiday classic It's A Wonderful Life: Live In Chicago! in a full-scale production with Foley sound effects, an original score, and a stellar cast of eight. After each performance, milk and cookies are served. Featuring the entire cast of the sold-out hit including Ensemble members Dara Cameron, Kevin Kelly, Michael Mahler, John Mohrlein, Gwendolyn Whiteside, Artistic Affiliates Ian Paul Custer, James Joseph and guest artist Shawn Goudie.
From the original director and Ensemble that brought this holiday tradition to Chicago since 2002, the American Blues family takes you back to a 1940s radio broadcast of Frank Capra's holiday classic—It's a Wonderful Life (based on the short story "The Greatest Gift" by Philip Van Doren Stern) with live Foley sound effects, an original score and a critically-acclaimed cast of eight that bring the entire town of Bedford Falls to life. This production returns to the Greenhouse Theater Center. Critics called this production "perfect Christmas theater" and "first-class holiday fare."
From the moment you walk through the doors, you will be transported back to the "Golden Age of Radio" and experience the story of George Bailey like never before. In addition to the heart-warming story performed, the production includes 1940s-style commercials from actual local sponsors, holiday carols, and telegrams from the audience read live on the stage.
Separated from her brother by a storm at sea, the young lioness Violet must brave an unknown country all alone. Disguised as a boy, she joins up with a preposterous peacock on a quest to claim the attentions of the most graceful gazelle in town. But soon Violet is torn between multiple masters and her adventure takes a turn for the absurd when she becomes entangled in the clownish antics of a wacky warthog and his featherbrained dodo sidekick. Travel to the weird and wonderful land of Illyria in a magical comedy loaded with music, monkeys, and mayhem. Based on the rollicking comedy Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare.
Lifeline Theatre's KidSeries presents Lions in Illyria, a world premiere based on William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, written by Lifeline Theatre ensemble member Robert Kauzlaric and directed by Lifeline Theatre ensemble member Amanda Delheimer Dimond.
Imagination soars and laughter and awe abound when this signature production returns with all its gravity-defying spectacle and breathtaking theatricality. Lookingglass Alice is a marvel for all ages, transporting audiences down the rabbit hole to a circus-infused playground for an exhilarating wonderland adventure inspired by Lewis Carroll's beloved stories.
Loving Conspiracies, Romantic Revenge.
Composed by the 16-year-old Mozart, this tale of a tyrannical dictator was one of the young prodigy's earliest successes. When Silla is denied the heart of the woman he desires, he commits his considerable power and influence to force matters in his favor. He soon discovers that his are not the only plots and conspiracies hidden in the streets of Rome. This saga of deceit, love and intrigue is punctuated by awe-inspiring arias and ravishing melodies.
Before Britney Spears and Justin Bieber, there was Marie Antoinette. In David Adjmi's contemporary take on the young queen of France, Marie is a confection created by a society that values extravagance and artifice. But France's love affair with the royals sours as revolution brews, and for Marie, the political suddenly becomes very personal. From the light and breezy banter at the palace to the surging chants of "Liberte! Egalite! Fraternite!" in the streets, Marie Antoinette holds a mirror up to our contemporary society that might just be entertaining itself to death.
Gregor Samsa, an overworked salesperson, wakes up from disturbing dreams to find that he has transformed into an insect-like creature. His new condition disorients the Samsa family household who depend on him for their bread and butter. Gregor can't communicate, can't get enough to eat, and he certainly can't head into work. His desperation grows, as does his family's, as the world they thought they knew is turned upside-down.
Adapted from Kafka's novella, this surreal and disturbing account of a dysfunctional family is directed by Kelvin Wong, MFA Directing, Class of 2015.
How do we cope with extreme instances of nonconformity?
Midnight Blue is 60 minute show where, late at night, the ComedySportz Ensemble gathers to do improv with no fouls, no rules, and no subject matter too taboo. We invite you to ditch the kids and hang out after the 10:00pm ComedySportz match. We'll keep the bar open and tear this place apart.
Orphaned and homeless, New York's newsboys live, urchin like, day by day, dreaming of a better life. In the meantime, the popular and charismatic Jack and friends have got more than just dodging juvenile detention centre on his mind. The newspaper editors are inflating their prices, meaning the newsies can't afford to sell them. Now is the time to pull together, create strength in numbers and protest! Join Jack on the adventure of his life as he finds the courage and the hope to change his destiny!
Nikki Glaser is coming to UP Comedy Club! Nikki is a comedian and writer based in NYC. She has appeared on shows such as The Tonight Show, Last Comic Standing, Conan and hosts a popular podcast, You Had To Be There. On any given night, you can find her performing at New York comedy clubs such as The Stand and The Comedy Cellar, but don't fret: she frequently tours across the country.
Come to what is sure to be a thrilling and unique night of theatre, and you create it!
Every Saturday night we open our doors at 10PM and accept the first 15 original acts that walk through the door. Scenes, Poems, Dances, Magic Tricks, Stand-Up, Sketch, Improv, Puppets, Songs, Juggling, Mime, Acrobatics and/or General Shenanigans - whatever floats your proverbial boat.
1. All material must be original
2. Performances should be no more than five minutes in length
3. You can't break anything--not yourself, not the theatre--and you can't break any laws
No Shame Theatre focuses on immediacy, originality and brevity. So, whether you're coming to perform, watch or both, together we'll create a show that has never been seen before and will never be seen again.
The House's fantastical expansion of this holiday classic centers on young Clara's journey to save Christmas. With the help of a magical nutcracker, this brave little girl will fight the Rat King and save her family. This modern holiday production weaves together riveting dialogue, astonishing puppetry, original song and spellbinding spectacle to tell a heartwarming, darkly moving story of magic and hope -- a fun outing fit for the whole family.
For 27 years, the world of Ivan the gorilla was a dull cage in a roadside shopping mall. But when he meets Ruby, a baby elephant captured in the wild, Ivan's ambitions and imagination must grow to meet the challenge of rescuing his endangered new companion. Aided by Bob the scrappy dog and a young human ally, Ivan sets out to become the great silverback and protector he was always meant to be. Enter the mind of a remarkable hero in this unforgettable story of enduring friendship, drawn from true events. Based on the 2012 book by Katherine Applegate, a #1 New York Times bestseller and winner of the Newbery Medal.
During the great passenger pigeon migration of 1871, throngs of strangers descend upon Placid, Wisconsin, bringing prosperity in their wake. But as the skies clear, tragedy strikes and Georgie Burkhardt's sister goes missing. When a body is found and the town goes into mourning, Georgie sets out on her own to uncover the truth behind Agatha's disappearance. The journey that follows, both humorous and heartbreaking, will test the limits of her courage and the strength of her character. A powerful coming-of-age tale combines live music with historical events in a world premiere adaptation based on the 2013 novel by Chicago-based author Amy Timberlake, a Newbery Honor Book and Edgar Award finalist.
Lifeline Theatre presents a world premiere adaptation of Amy Timberlake's Edgar Award-winning and Newbery Honor book, One Came Home, by Jessica Wright Buha, directed by Lifeline Theatre ensemble member Elise Kauzlaric (Non-Equity Jeff Award nominee for Mariette in Ecstasy). During the great passenger pigeon migration of 1871, throngs of strangers descend upon Placid, Wisconsin, bringing prosperity in their wake. But as the skies clear, tragedy strikes and Georgie Burkhardt's sister goes missing. When a body is found and the town goes into mourning, Georgie sets out to uncover the truth behind Agatha's disappearance. The journey that follows, both humorous and heartbreaking, will test the limits of her courage and the strength of her character. A powerful coming-of-age tale combines live music with historical events in a world premiere adaption based on the 2013 novel by Chicago author Amy Timberlake.
Join the incredibly talented and funny cast of The Second City Mainstage for their 103rd Revue, Panic on Cloud 9, a hilarious and smart collection of original scenes and songs that invite you to relax, take a breath and laugh as they brave everything from Ebola to modern parenting to the lies of advertising and the advertising of our own lies.
In Shakespeare's most fantastical tale, Pericles embarks on a tempest-tossed quest in search of adventure, wealth and family. As he travels to parts unknown, our hero is confronted by villains, pirates, goddesses and kings. In the end, he discovers an essential truth—the renewal of love and life itself.
MCL Chicago is proud to announce the debut of its inaugural Musical Comedy Festival, Premiere Premieres! A Weekend of New Musical Comedies. The festival celebrates original musical comedies, with its mission being the ability to produce great works for Chicago's vibrant comedy and theater communities. We are looking for full-length, original musical comedies that have never been produced before.
On January 16, 1919 Prohibition was signed into law - ushering in an era of gangsters, bootleggers, and scoundrels that have influenced our nations culture. This January, ComedySportz Chicago plans to celebrate. Join us all weekend long as we turn the ComedySportz Theatre into a speakeasy, complete with an old-timey photo station, whiskey tastings, tommy guns, specialty cocktails and, to celebrate Al Capone's Birthday on January 17: Live Prohibition-era music by the Chi-Town Hotshots.
A hip-hop holiday treat set to a bangin' beat! CST and Chicago hip-hop sensation the Q Brothers—creators of Othello: The Remix and Funk It Up About Nothin'—have toured around the world, playing to sold-out houses in Edinburgh, Germany, South Korea, Australia and London. Now the team turns up the volume on Charles Dickens' classic tale, mixing everything from reggae, dancehall and dubstep to epic rock ballads. The Ghosts of Hip-hop Past, Present and Future lead Scrooge on a journey filled with rhythm, rhyme and redemption.
Rapture is a blend of freestyle and improv comedy, and features twelve of the funniest folks with flow you will find in Chicago. Watch them cut and scratch scenes together in a narrative, mixing hiphop with all genres. Rapture culminates in a massive freestyle session, calling back themes, characters, and story in a big mic dropping ending.
In the hazy aftermath of a wild campus party, dawn breaks on what appears to be just another day in the undergrad carnival that revolves around a circle of friends. But when morning-after gossip about privileged Davis and ambitious Leigh turns ugly, the veneer of loyalty and friendship is peeled back to reveal a vicious jungle of sexual politics, raw ambition and class warfare where only the strong could possibly survive.
It's the 150 year celebration of Blaine, Missouri. The "Lunts of Blaine" have gathered together to create an homage celebrating the rich history of the "Stool Capital of the World". Featuring songs and scenes never seen before.
One night, lonely orphan Sophie is snatched away to an enchanted land by a giant who blows magical dreams into children's bedrooms. Her harmless, large-eared captor is none other than the Big Friendly Giant (or The BFG as generations of Roald Dahl fans know him). When more menacing giants threaten to munch on human beans, the misfit duo embarks on an unforgettable adventure proving heroes come in all shapes and sizes.
Americans Katie and Craig are having a baby with Suraiya, a surrogate from India. As all three "parents" anxiously await the baby's due date, Katie and Suraiya are attacked by flights of their imagination: a seductive Frenchman and a sharp-tongued fetus. Originally developed at Victory Gardens' IGNITION New Play Festival in 2012, this smart world premiere comedy takes us on a hilarious and highly theatrical journey into 21st century parenthood and modern-day colonialism.
A holiday Town Hall that's ideal for families and groups with children ages 4-8. Kids get to ask tough questions, and unlike with politicians, they get real answers. Music, sing-alongs and games round out the sixty minute show. A half-hour meet 'n greet with the famous couple follows.
What happens when Chicago's best improvisers are tossed head first into a medley of classic game shows? Come laugh your way through Second City's Game Night and find out! From celebrity-guessing to fill-in-the-blankety-blanks, charades to feuding families to improvised commercial breaks, the laughs come rapid-fire as host, Joey Bland, segues seamlessly from one game to the next. Have a special talent? Think your linguistic skills are better than most? Have something bizarre in your purse? Get on stage and change the game! Audiences participate at every turn, taking the show a different direction each night as the whip-smart cast toes the line between absurdity and genius in a way that only game shows and improv can achieve.
The holidays are a time of giving and joy. A time of twinkling lights and mall Santas. A time of wrapping gifts and burning, I mean baking cookies. Of family parties, too much egg nog, marathon shopping trips, gray slush that used to be snow and itchy sweaters with jingle bells on them. That's right, everyone loves the holidays. Especially the Second City. Don't miss this hilarious send up of all the holiday activities we actually love, and the ones we love to hate featuring a phenomenal cast from Second City and their trademark comedy and improv.
After a vicious cholera outbreak in the British Raj claims the lives of both her parents, ten year-old Mary Lennox is sent back to England to live at her estranged uncle's estate. Orphaned and alone, Mary finds herself haunted not only by the ghosts of her own past, but by those of her melancholy uncle, Archibald Craven. As Mary begins to find her way through her uncle's maze of secrets, she makes an incredible discovery that unlocks a wellspring of hope and renewal for them both. Winner of the Tony Award for Best Book and adapted from the beloved 1911 novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden reunites Artistic Director Charles Newell and Music Director Doug Peck (Porgy and Bess) for this exquisitely beautiful musical about hope blooming from the darkest of places.
January marks the return of the all-ages hit show The Selfish Giant, a musical spectacle created for CCT in 2008 by two Chicago theater icons – master puppeteer Blair Thomas and singer-songwriter Michael Smith – based on Oscar Wilde's classic story about a grumpy giant who forbids children from playing in his garden. After the children are locked out, the trees and flowers refuse to grow and the garden plunges into an eternal winter. Then one morning, the children sneak back into the garden, bringing with them the joyous rebirth of spring. Featuring original puppets and music, The Selfish Giant is enormously imaginative, gigantically whimsical, and is sure to thrill children and giants of all ages.
Jane Austen's deliciously charming romance is full of wit, passion and now, glorious song. This world premiere musical from Tony Award®-nominated composer Paul Gordon was specially commissioned by CST for the 2014/15 Season. Under the masterful hand of Artistic Director Barbara Gaines, beautiful melodies trace the lives of Elinor and Marianne Dashwood—two sisters whose fortunes change following their father's untimely death. One cool and deliberate, the other consumed by youthful passion, their quest for suitable husbands unfolds in a period-perfect production that will set your spirits soaring.
The Tony Award-winning Shrek: The Musical takes theatergoers on a fairytale adventure like no other. Based on the Oscar-winning DreamWorks animated film, Shrek, the musical features an unlikely hero who finds himself on a memorable journey alongside a wisecracking donkey and a spirited princess. Add in a host of fairytale creatures and some toe-tapping music, and you've got the recipe for a musical that will appeal to kids of all ages…and their parents, too!
Spanning three decades, Side Man is the heartbreaking story of a splintered family as told through the eyes of Clifford, the only son of Gene, a jazz trumpet player, and Terry, an alcoholic mother. Alternating between their New York City apartment and a smoke-filled music club, Clifford narrates the story of his broken family and the decline of jazz as popular entertainment. Featuring Broadway actors and Ensemble Kate Buddeke and Jim Ortlieb.
The devious Doctor Impossible has escaped from prison and legendary superhero CoreFire has vanished without a trace. With the fate of the world in their hands, the New Champions have mere hours to recover their fallen comrade and stop their arch-nemesis before his doomsday device is complete. Joined by Fatale, a cyborg with an arsenal of deadly hardware and a host of self-esteem issues, the mighty super-team must face their darkest hour — and the truths buried in their deeply troubled pasts. A thrilling new musical about power and identity set in a vibrant world of heroes and villains, in a world premiere adaptation based on the 2007 novel by Austin Grossman.
From the creators of Talk Hard (named Chicago's "Best Sketch Troupe" of 2013 by The Chicago Reader), Spiked Punch is one part gameshow, ALL parts PARTY! The show features two teams of Chicago's sharpest comedians who are forced to make you laugh or suffer the hilarious consequences. We provide the set-ups, and it's up to them to deliver the punchlines . . . or pay the price! No preparation. No hesitation. And plenty of libations!
Follow the adventures and joyful milestones in the life of young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: boy genius, musical prodigy, and gifted composer. Discover how nature inspires and impacts Mozart, and how his family faces the acclaim, fame, trials, and tribulations of his early creative life in this story infused with music, dance, and a bit of magic.
Chicago Shakespeare Theater takes a leading role in the inaugural Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival, presenting the return engagement Blind Summit's The Table—the widely acclaimed production that played to sold-out houses last fall. Come meet Moses—a cantankerous puppet with a cardboard head immersed in an existential crisis on a table. Intended to be a theatrical interpretation of the biblical story of Moses, The Table is performed by a grizzled, crotchety old man—but the grumpy puppet narrator strays far from the planned storyline.
Blind Summit, theatrical innovators who have created puppetry for Anthony Minghella, Complicité and Danny Boyle's Olympic Opening Ceremony, presents epic puppetry drawing on the Japanese Bunraku style. Hilarious, beautiful and occasionally profound, it is performed completely on the table top with multiple, visible puppeteers who improvise and interact with each other and the audience. Blind Summit's remarkable artists breathe poignant life into the character, revealing something of ourselves in the cardboard, wood and fabric creation onstage. As part of the development of a new work, Blind Summit will also showcase a work in progress exclusively for Chicago audiences on Fridays and Saturdays during the festival.
This uncensored late night talk show will feature a topical monologue, remote video segments, off-the-wall characters and bizarre special guests. Together with a crack team of writers hand-picked from Chicago's world famous comedy scene, Jamie Campbell will put on a cutting edge show open to guests of all shapes and sizes over the age of 18.
Thérèse, trapped in an unhappy marriage, escapes into a stormy affair with her husband's best friend. Their newfound passion compels the young lovers to commit a crime that will haunt them forever. Picker's lavish and riveting score provides the suspenseful underpinning for this deadly ménage à trois. Based on Emile Zola's scandalous novel it is "a meaningful opera infused with moments of searing reflection and luxurious sensuality."(Opera Now)
In a celebratory performance, the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University presents the 10th annual Too Hot To Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah, a festive engagement honoring the life of Civil Rights activist and cultural icon Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The exuberant jazz reinvention of George Frideric Handel's "Messiah"—a vibrant mix of Jazz, Gospel, Blues, Swing, Classical and Scat—features star soloists Rodrick Dixon, Alfreda Burke and Karen Marie Richardson.
As a recently hired contributor for The Daily Show With Jon Stewart, Trevor Noah showcases his comedic and cultural flare in everything he does. As a South African native, Trevor has hosted several awards shows and comedy festivals as well as his own late night talk show. Noah had his American debut on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, which eventually lead to a tour with comedian Gabriel Inglesias. He presented his sold out one-man show That's Racist at the 2012 Edinburgh Fringe. He is also the subject of David Paul Meyer's award-winning documentary film You Laugh But It's True which highlights Trevor's career in post-apartheid South Africa. Trevor has also appeared on Late Show with David Letterman and has been featured in Rolling Stone, Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, NPR's Talk of the Nation and in this past October's GQ. Lastly, Trevor is also a polyglot. He speaks eight different languages, including six different dialects of African.
Artistic Director Carin Silkaitis is proud to announce the launch of The Other Theatre Company, a new Equity theatre company, and its debut production, Anna Deavere Smith's Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992.
After sold-out runs in Los Angeles and Portland, The Second City brings their irreverent and interactive seasonal satire Twist Your Dickens home to Chicago. Scrooge, Tiny Tim, three ridiculous ghosts and a cast of Second City's funniest members take the Owen stage by storm, as wicked parody, daring improv and a host of guest celebs run rampant. Written by former The Colbert Report writers Peter Gwinn and Bobby Mort and featuring nods to beloved yuletide specials, Twist Your Dickens makes for a heaping host of holiday hilarity.
8 p.m. - Genesis League Five farm teams working tirelessly to hone their improvisational skills. Night and day these comedic athletes are training to be play smart, fast, improv for the admiration of their fans.
9 p.m. - The People's Improv, House Team CALIBER Throughout the history of Improvisational Comedy, Chicago audiences have set the standard of what is a truly great performance. Now you will be rewarded for your expertise. This is a show for you, about you and the outcome is decided by you. It's the People's Improv!
The After Party
The After Party is an improv jam led by the ComedySportz ensemble while providing a fun and supportive environment to try your hand at a variety of improv games each week. Whether you've never done improv or are a seasoned veteran, this improv open mic is a great way to take the stage and play the same improv games we play in the ComedySportz show.
One Christmas morning, a shy stuffed bunny enters the world of a young boy's nursery. Initially ignored in favor of more modern toys, she waits patiently to be noticed, wondering if she will ever be loved like the others. When the wise old Skin Horse reveals the majesty and mystery of what it means to become Real, the Velveteen Rabbit begins an odyssey of the heart to make a lasting connection with her boy that will endure for always. Return to a simpler time with this heartwarming story about the transformative power of love. Based on the classic 1922 book by Margery Williams.
On a lonely country road, beneath a barren tree, two vagabonds wait for a man named Mr. Godot. As the evening unfolds, a desperate, humorous, and unchanging universe is revealed that has delighted and challenged audiences for over half a century. Resident Artist Ron OJ Parson (Seven Guitars) returns to direct this absurdist classic with an all-star cast featuring Court Theatre favorites A.C. Smith, Allen Gilmore, and Alfred Wilson. As elusive as it is illuminating, Waiting for Godot offers a haunting meditation on the meaning of human existence.
Andrew Lloyd Webber's lauded new production of The Wizard Of Oz is an enchanting adaptation of the perennial MGM classic, totally reimagined for the stage. Following highly successful runs in London and Toronto, the show is embarking on the ever-winding Yellow Brick Road that is the USA!
Containing all the beloved songs from the Academy Award-winning movie score, it features all your favorite characters and iconic moments (plus a few new surprises along the way), including new songs.
Click your heels together and join Scarecrow, Tin Man, Lion, Dorothy and Toto, as they venture through the magical land of Oz to meet the Wizard and obtain their hearts' desires. Boo and hiss at the Wicked Witch of the West and her winged monkeys as you rediscover the real story of Oz in this fantastic musical treat for all the family.
Kids, parents, grandparents and school groups, get ready to rock. Wonderland, Alice's Rock & Roll Adventure, a new family musical created by top Chicago director Rachel Rockwell and music director Michael Mahler, is Chicago Children's Theatre's second world premiere in 2014-15, and its big season finale. Chicago's theater scene promises to get curiouser and curiouser when this powerhouse duo of A-list Chicago theater artists, both making their CCT debut, boldly reimagine Lewis Carroll's books Alice in Wonderland and Through the Lookingglass.
Wonderland is the search for one's authentic self. How can you march to the beat of your own drummer when you're still writing the song? Carroll's beloved, poetic tale of self-actualization is brought to life by a cast of actor/ musicians who create an eclectic rock soundtrack as 7-1/2 year-old Alice searches for her own inner musical voice. Ranging from classic rock to punk to ska with a little bit of Bollywood, the actors surround Alice in a rich musical tapestry as she searches for her destiny. Along the way, Alice faces challenges and fears, but meets the ultimate test in the form of the Jabberwocky, an insidious monster made of up of the dark thoughts and self-doubt that lurks inside of us all. In learning to believe in the impossible, Alice learns to believe in herself.
The jukebox inside the Yankee Tavern stopped in the middle of "Bye, bye, Miss American Pie" as the first hijacked plane impacted the north tower of the World Trade Center on September 11. Inside the walls of this crumbling New York tavern, a young couple finds themselves caught up in conversations of what happened that day and who is telling the truth. Dietz's acclaimed and dramatic thriller is a fierce, funny and ultimately mind-bending work of theatrical power that grips the audience until the final word. Creative team to be announced.