ChiIL Live Shows on our radar
Venus Cabaret Theater, the intimate performance space at Mercury Theater Chicago, under the director of Cabaret Director Honey West, Artistic Director Christopher Chase Carter and Managing Director Shane Murray-Corcoran, announces its reopening celebration this fall with The Dark Night Series.
In theater, the night off is known as a ‘dark night’ since the lights are off. At Mercury Theater Chicago, the ‘ghost light’ burns so brightly that even when we are taking a break, the doors to the Venus Cabaret Theater are open for The Dark Night Series. The schedule will include open mic nights, karaoke, comedy, bands, variety, celebrity guests, and cabaret, and so much more.
The Venus Cabaret Theater will open with The Dark Night Series on October 2. The signature programming from Sundays through Tuesdays includes cabaret performances by Luminaries on Sundays, Comedy hosted by actor, comedian and OUT Chicago Radio’s Scott Duff, and Open Mic Nights with Chuck Larkin plus artists produced Cabaret. The month concludes on Halloween with a special Murder Mystery event. The intimate venue features specialty cocktails by Beverage Director Sarah Wurz.
Cabaret Director Honey West comments, “We are thrilled to celebrate the Grand Reopening of Venus Cabaret Theater. The Venus Cabaret Theater is a gorgeous, versatile space that gives a home to musicians, actors, variety artists and comedians.”
Christopher Chase Carter adds, “There is no other cabaret venue in Chicago as special as our gorgeous gem on Southport Avenue. Honey and I are assembling a lineup of shows by Chicago’s favorite artists, along with nationally recognized visiting artists, for not-to-be-missed evenings. We look forward to welcoming audiences back to experience the music, joy, comedy and variety with us and our family of artists.”
The calendar of events for The Dark Night Series and other events is available at MercuryTheaterChicago.com. Programing includes:
Cabaret performances special guest Luminaries as well as local talented favorites
Comedy Night, hosted by Scott Duff
Open Mic featuring Chuck Larkin on piano
Karaoke with Cray from Craoke in Chicago
Variety Nights and Jam Nights
Tickets to Venus Cabaret Theater produced shows are $15 with a two-drink minimum. Tickets for all Venus Cabaret Theater and Mercury Theater Chicago performances are available at MercuryTheaterChicago.com.
The previously announced Mercury Theater Chicago season follows. Season memberships and tickets to Sister Act and Women of Soul are currently available at MercuryTheaterChicago.com.
SISTER ACT November 5, 2021 to January 9, 2022
Music by Alan Menken, Lyrics by Glenn Slater
Book by Bill and Cheri Steinkellne, and Douglas Carter Beane
Directed by Reneisha Jenkins
Music Direction by Diana Lawrence
Choreography by Christopher Chase Carter
Featuring Chicago Legends Alexis J. Roston (Deloris) and Hollis Resnik (Mother Superior)
This feel-good musical comedy is based on the hit 1992 film that has audiences jumping to their feet! Featuring original music by Tony and Oscar winner, Alan Menken (Newsies, Beauty and the Beast, Little Shop of Horrors), this uplifting musical was nominated for five Tony Awards, including Best Musical. When disco diva, Deloris Van Cartier, witnesses a murder, she is put in protective custody in the one place the cops are sure she won't be a found: a convent! Disguised as a nun, she finds herself at odds with both the rigid lifestyle and uptight Mother Superior. Using her unique disco moves and singing talent to inspire the choir, Deloris breathes new life into the church and community but, in doing so, blows her cover. Sister Act is reason to rejoice!
WOMEN OF SOUL January 27, 2022 to March 13, 2022
Written and Directed by Daryl D. Brooks
A celebration of the most powerful women of soul to ever grace the stage. You’ll jump to your feet as we honor incredible women including Whitney Houston, Donna Summer, Diana Ross, Janet Jackson, Janis Joplin, and of course, you’ll get a little of Gladys, Dionne and Patti. Featuring powerhouse voices singing memorable music including “I Say a Little Prayer” “I Will Survive” and “Respect.” This concert recognizes the struggles and triumphs these women went through to reach the pinnacle of their success. This is a once in a lifetime musical masterpiece that you will want to experience over and over again!
PRISCILLA, QUEEN OF THE DESERT June 10, 2022 to August 7, 2022
Book by Stephan Elliott and Allan Scott
Based on the MGM Film
Directed and Choreographed by Artistic Director Christopher Chase Carter
Music Direction by Executive Producer Eugene Dizon
Featuring legendary cabaret chanteuse Honey West as Bernadette
Based on the smash-hit movie, Priscilla is the heartwarming, uplifting adventure of a glamorous Sydney-based performing trio who take their show to the middle of the Australian outback. They hop aboard a battered old bus (nicknamed Priscilla) searching for love and friendship and end up finding more than they ever imagined. With a hit parade of dance floor favorites including “It's Raining Men," "I Will Survive," "Hot Stuff," "Boogie Wonderland," "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun," and "I Love The Nightlife" this wildly fresh and funny musical is a journey to the heart of fabulous!
CLUE on stage August 26, 2022 to October 30, 2022
Adapted from the screenplay by Jonathan Lynn and Sandy Rustin
Additional Materials by Hunter Foster and Eric Price
Directed by Executive Producer Walter Stearns
Based on the iconic 1985 Paramount movie which was inspired by the classic Hasbro board game, Clue is a hilarious farce-meets-murder mystery. The tale begins at a remote mansion, where six mysterious guests assemble for an unusual dinner party where murder and blackmail are on the menu. When their host turns up dead, they all become suspects. Led by Wadsworth – the butler, Miss Scarlett, Professor Plum, Mrs. White, Mr. Green, Mrs. Peacock and Colonel Mustard race to find the killer as the body count stacks up. Clue is the comedy whodunit that will leave both cult-fans and newcomers in stitches as they try to figure out…WHO did it, WHERE, and with WHAT!
About Mercury Theater Chicago
The beautifully renovated Mercury Theater Chicago is in the heart of the Southport Corridor at 3745 North Southport Avenue, within a sophisticated neighborhood of restaurants and boutiques just steps from Wrigley Field. A delightful destination, Mercury Theater Chicago is a live-theater seating 280 people, adjoining Venus Cabaret Theater (seating 80).
The building that houses the Mercury opened in 1912 as a silent film nickelodeon, named The Blaine Theatre after actor and former Senator and Secretary of State James G. Blaine. The Blaine became obsolete when talking pictures became popular nationwide in 1928. The building served a variety of uses until 1994, when it was purchased by theater producer Michael Cullen and transformed into a live theatre, named the Mercury Theatre.
In 2010 the building was sold again and reopened as Mercury Theater Chicago under the direction of Walter Stearns, a veteran theater director and producer. Mercury Theater Chicago's second performance space, Venus Cabaret Theater, offers a unique intimate theatrical experience complemented by specialty cocktails. Mercury Theater Chicago is thrilled to be part of the city's vibrant theatre community, boasting record-setting long runs, employing hundreds of artists and recognized with dozens of award nominations. Mercury Theater Chicago's team includes Christopher Chase Carter (Artistic Director), Shane Murray-Corcoran (Managing Director), Walter Stearns and Eugene Dizon (Executive Producers) and Honey West (Cabaret Director). Visit www.MercuryTheaterChicago.com.
Carter, Murray-Corcoran, Dizon, Stears