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Showing posts with label Hot Tixs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hot Tixs. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Fall Brings Over 100 World Premiere Productions Opening In Chicago

Chi, IL LIVE Shows On Our Radar:

Fall 2016 Chicago Theatre Season Highlights,
Featuring an Exceptional Number of
World Premiere Productions


Photo Credit for all shots: ©Kenaz-Mara 2016

The Fall of 2016 will see Chicago bursting with new works and adaptations. Long regarded as the leader in the U.S. for producing new work, Chicago companies will stage a record number of new plays making their world premieres in Chicago. More than 250 companies of the Chicago theater community typically produce more than 100 world premieres each season.  



Many of this season’s world premieres are written by Chicago playwrights, including Miss Holmes by Christopher M. Walsh at Lifeline Theatre, The Magic Play by Andrew Hinderaker at Goodman Theatre, The Mars Assignment by Ronan Marra at Collaboraction, Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth by Doug Hara at Lookingglass Theatre, Hell in a Handbag Productions’ Scooby Don’t by David Cerda, Cinderella at the Theater of Potatoes by Andra Velis Simon at The Hypocrites and Sideshow Theatre Company’s Give It All Back by Calamity West.


Other new work will be presented by a cross-section of Chicago’s vibrant theatres, including storefront theatres and large regional theatres, including The Gift Theatre’s A Life Extraordinary by Melissa Ross; The Poor Theatre’s Dirt by Creighton James; American Theater Company’s T. by Dan Aibel; Teatro Vista’s Parachute Men by Mando Alvarado; and Court Theatre’s Man in the Ring by Michael Cristofer; Writers Theatre presents The Hunter and the Bear by Pig Pen Theatre Co. and Steppenwolf Theatre premieres Visiting Edna by David Rabe and The Fundamentalists by Erika Sheffer.



“It is an incredibly exciting time in Chicago. This year will see so many new plays and new voices launched in Chicago.  Marked by creativity and innovation, these new works are sure to delight and astound audiences this year and for many years to come,” says Deb Clapp, Executive Director of the League of Chicago Theatres. 

Check back with ChiILLiveShows.com like we vote in Chi, IL... early and often. I'm reviewing a record 25 shows in September, and plenty of openings throughout the fall. We have plenty of Chicago based theatre news, reviews, interviews, and even ticket giveaways for our readers. For family friendly productions check out our sister site, ChiILMama.com.

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Follow ChiIL Mama on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for fabulous fun in Chi, IL and beyond. 

For a comprehensive list of Chicago productions, visit the League of Chicago Theatres website, ChicagoPlays.com. A Fall Theatre Guide will also be distributed in early September. Discounted tickets are available at HotTix.org or at the three Hot Tix half-price ticket locations: across from the Chicago Cultural Center at Expo72 (72 E. Randolph); in the Water Works building (163 E. Pearson); and inside Block Thirty Seven (108 N. State). Hot Tix offers half-price tickets to more than 250 Chicago area theatres, full price tickets to all Ticketmaster events including concerts and sports, and Play Money gift certificates.

About Chicago theater
Chicago theater is the leader in the U.S. with more than 250 theaters throughout Chicagoland, comprising a rich and varied community ranging from storefront, non-union theaters to the most renowned resident theaters in the country, including 5 which have been honored with Regional Tony Awards, and the largest touring Broadway organization in the nation. Chicago’s theaters serve 5 million audience members annually and have a combined budget of more than $250 million. Chicago produces and/or presents more world premieres annually than any other city in the nation. Last season alone Chicago theater companies produced more than 100 world premiere productions and adaptations. Each year Chicago theaters send new work to resident theaters across the country, to Broadway, and around the world. 

The League of Chicago Theatres’ Mission Statement
The League of Chicago Theatres is an alliance of theaters which leverages its collective strength to promote, support and advocate for Chicago's theater industry locally, nationally and internationally. The League of Chicago Theatres Foundation is dedicated to enhancing the art of theater in the Chicago area through audience development and support services for theaters and theater professionals.


For a comprehensive list of Chicago productions, visit the League of Chicago website, www.chicagoplays.com.  Discounted tickets are available at www.hottix.org

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Highlights of the Spring and Summer Theatre Season Via The League of Chicago Theatres

Chi, IL LIVE Shows On Our Radar:

Here at ChiIL Mama and ChiIL Live Shows, we review multiple shows every week, so we know Chicago's theatre scene is second to none. Summer is a great time to get out and see a plethora of shows. Take the visiting relatives and friends. ChiIL out this summer in Chi, IL and be sure to check back with us early and often for theatre news, reviews, and even ticket giveaways! ChiIL Mama (family friendly) and ChiIL Live Shows (for the big kids, AKA: adults).

ChiIL Mama's kids ChiILin' in Chi, IL at SEEDFOLKS at Chicago Children's Theatre. 


Unless otherwise stated, all photos by Bonnie Kenaz-Mara ©2016 all rights reserved ChiIL Mama/ ChiIL Live Shows

The Chicago theater community will present a wide variety of plays and musicals, as well as dance and concert offerings this summer.  In support, the League of Chicago Theatres will once again create a comprehensive Summer Theater Guide that will be available at hotels, theaters, events, and destinations across the Chicago area.  A full list of shows with additional details about each production is available throughout the year at ChicagoPlays.com.  Additionally, many shows will be available for half-price at HotTix.org, Chicago’s local discount ticketing service.

The following is a selection of notable work playing in Chicago throughout the spring and summer. For more, visit ChicagoPlays.com.

We've highlighted our favorite shows that we've seen and reviewed in red below. Many more must sees have not opened yet. We'll be there for the press openings of THADDEUS AND SLOCUM: A VAUDEVILLE ADVENTURE,THE SPONGEBOB MUSICAL, TUG OF WAR: FOREIGN FIRE, XANADU, WAR PAINT, THE HOUSE THAT WILL NOT STAND and more. So check back soon for our full reviews.

New works and adaptions include:

Steppenwolf Theatre Company premieres Pulitzer-Prize-winning playwright Tracy Lett’s new play MARY PAGE MARLOWE, directed by Artistic Director Anna D. Shapiro. Runs through May 29, 2016.




















by Bonnie Kenaz-Mara ©2016 all rights reserved ChiIL Mama/ ChiIL Live Shows

Writers Theatre and The Second City collaborate on DEATH OF A STREETCAR NAMED VIRGINIA WOOLF: A PARODY and explore “What happens when the most recognizable characters from some of the greatest 
American plays of the 20th century suddenly find themselves sharing the same stage?” Directed by Artistic Director Michael Halberstam and Stuart Carden, the production runs April 27 - July 17, 2016 at Writers Theatre in Glencoe.



Chicago Playwright Ike Holter’s newest play SENDER premieres at A Red Orchid Theatre in Old Town. Directed by Ensemble Member Shade Murray. The world premiere production runs April 14 – May 29, 2016.


Lookingglass Theatre Company presents THADDEUS AND SLOCUM: A VAUDEVILLE ADVENTURE written by Ensemble Member Kevin Douglas and directed by Ensemble Member J. Nicole Brooks and Krissy Vanderwarker and featuring Ensemble Members Lawrence E. DiStasi and Raymond Fox, along with “Chicago Fire’s” Monica Raymund and a cast of Chicago favorites. The world premiere begins June 1, 2016.

Musicals include:
A legendary roster of Grammy Award winners. A visionary director and Tony Award®-winning design team. One of the world’s most beloved and unforgettable characters. Turn them all loose on Broadway and what do you get? Broadway In Chicago presents THE SPONGEBOB MUSICAL, running June 7 - July 3 at the Oriental Theatre.


Goodman Theatre premieres WAR PAINT, June 28 - August 14, 2016. Two-time Tony Award winners Patti LuPone and Christine Ebersole star in a world premiere musical about two business titans—and their infamous rivalry.


Production Photos

Lyric Opera of Chicago presents one of the most beloved musicals of all time, THE KING AND I. (*It was our great pleasure to partner with Lyric Opera and give away a pair of tickets to THE KING AND I for one of our lucky readers.) This Tony-winning musical will capture your heart as they discuss, debate, and ultimately grow in understanding and respect. The musical plays April 29 - May 22, 2016.

As a tribute to its late artistic director PJ Paparelli, American Theater Company closes its Legacy Season with a musical spoof of his all-time favorite movie. XANADU celebrates the artist's muse, even when it comes from the most unlikely of places. Lilli-Anne Brown directs the 1980’s camp classic, running May 2 - July 17, 2016.


by Bonnie Kenaz-Mara ©2016 all rights reserved ChiIL Mama/ ChiIL Live Shows

Mercury Theater Chicago presents Mel Brooks’ musical comedy THE PRODUCERS, directed by L. Walter Stearns. Runs through June 26, 2016.

Dramatic works include:



The epic TUG OF WAR: FOREIGN FIRE, adapted and directed by Artistic Director Barbara Gaines, opens at Chicago Shakespeare Theater. The first installment of the electrifying adaptation features Edward III, Henry V and Henry VI, Part 1. The production runs May 11 - June 12, 2016.

Profiles Theatre’s hit production of JERUSALEM by Jez Butterworth, directed by Joe Jahraus, continues at The Main Stage through May 22, 2016.



Production Photos

The House Theatre of Chicago remounts its hit DEATH AND HARRY HOUDINI, (This is one of our all time favorites and even after seeing it for the 3rd time over the years, we're still completely entranced! Oh SO highly recommended!) Check out our original video interview with Dennis Watkins (AKA: Harry Houdini) right HERE: Written and directed by Nathan Allen and featuring magic by Dennis Watkins, May 12 – July 24 at The Chopin Theatre.

Lucy Kirkwood’s acclaimed play CHIMERICA, directed by Nick Bowling premieres at TimeLine Theatre Company May 3 – July 31, 2016.

Teatro Vista presents IN THE TIME OF THE BUTTERFLIES, Caridad Svich’s new play based on Julia Álvarez's acclaimed novel at the Victory Gardens Biograph Theater. Runs through May 22, 2016.

THE HOUSE THAT WILL NOT STAND by Marcus Gardley, directed by Chay Yew will run June 10 – July 10, 2016, at Victory Gardens Theater.

The comedy THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO THOMAS JEFFERSON, CHARLES DICKENS AND COUNT LEO TOLSTOY: DISCORD by Scott Carter, directed by Kimberly Senior, runs at Northlight Theatre, May 6 – June 12, 2016.

Children’s/Family works include:

The Chicago summer tradition Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks’ TWELFTH NIGHT brings a free 75-minute abridged production to neighborhood parks across the city all summer.

ChiIL Mama ChiILin' in Chi, IL at SEEDFOLKS at Chicago Children's Theatre. 

©2016 all rights reserved ChiIL Mama/ ChiIL Live Shows

Chicago Children’s Theatre presents SEEDFOLKS by Paul Fleischman (*It was our great pleasure to partner with Chicago Children's Theatre and give away a family 4 pack of tickets to SEEDFOLKS for one of our lucky readers.) We highly recommend this Children’s Theatre Company of Minneapolis production directed by Peter C. Brosius at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts May 5-22, 2016.

Disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, the smash hit Broadway musical, is returning to Chicago, May 24 – 29, 2016 at the Cadillac Palace Theatre, presented by Broadway In Chicago.

Emerald City Theatre Company presents SCHOOLHOUSE ROCK LIVE! at the Apollo Theater through June 5, 2016 and then at the Broadway Playhouse July 8 – August 28, 2016.

About Hot Tix
Serving Chicago for over 35 years, Hot Tix offers half-price tickets to a wide variety of theatre productions for the current week, as well as future performances. Hot Tix has three convenient downtown walk-up locations and half-price tickets are also available online at HotTix.org, easily searchable by date, show, theatre, or genre.

Hours and Locations
Expo 72: 72 E. Randolph (across from the Chicago Cultural Center)
Tues – Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 11am-4pm
Water Works: 163 E. Pearson (along the Magnificent Mile)
Tues – Sat: 10am-6pm, Sun 11am-4pm
Block Thirty Seven: 108 N. State (at the first floor Guest Services desk)
Mon – Sat: 10am-6pm, Sun 11am-5pm


                        Cadillac Palace by Bonnie Kenaz-Mara ©2016 all rights reserved ChiIL Mama/ ChiIL Live Shows


About Chicago theatre
Chicago theatre is a leader in the U.S. with more than 250 theatres throughout Chicagoland, comprising a rich and varied community ranging from storefront, non-union theaters to the most renowned resident theatres in the country, including 5 that have been honored with Regional Tony Awards, and the largest touring Broadway organization in the nation. Chicago’s theatres serve 5 million audience members annually and have a combined budget of more than $250 million. Chicago produces and/or presents more world premieres annually than any other city in the nation. In the 2014-2015 season, Chicago theatre companies produced more than 100 world premiere productions and adaptations. Each year, Chicago theatres send new work to resident theatres across the country, to Broadway, and around the world.

About the League of Chicago Theatres
The League of Chicago Theatres is an alliance of theatres which leverages its collective strength to promote, support, and advocate for Chicago's theatre industry locally, nationally, and internationally. The League of Chicago Theatres Foundation is dedicated to enhancing the art of theatre in the Chicago area through audience development and support services for theatres and theatre professionals.

For a comprehensive list of Chicago productions, visit the League of Chicago Theatres website, ChicagoPlays.com.  Half-price tickets are available year-round at HotTix.org

We also highly recommend The Last Defender at The House Theatre. My son had his 15th birthday party there and I also played the interactive theatre game the month before with my son and two of his friends when they first opened. It's too much fun! (*It was our great pleasure to partner with The House Theatre and give away 2 pairs of tickets to The Last Defender for 2 of our lucky readers.) 





We also highly recommend checking out the Shakespeare 400 Shows all over Chicago for the 400 year celebration of the bard's works.

©2016 all rights reserved ChiIL Mama/ ChiIL Live Shows

©2016 all rights reserved ChiIL Mama/ ChiIL Live Shows

©2016 all rights reserved ChiIL Mama/ ChiIL Live Shows

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

CHICAGO THEATERS GET FESTIVE FOR THE HOLIDAY SEASON #greatgifts #giftguide




League of Chicago Theatres’ 
annual Holiday Guide
highlights seasonal productions

The Chicago theater community will present a wide variety of festive plays and musicals, as well as dance and concert offerings this Holiday season.  In support, the League of Chicago Theatres will once again create a comprehensive Holiday Theater Guide that will be available in mid-November at hotels, theaters, events, and destinations across the Chicago area.  An updated list of holiday shows with additional details about each production will be available throughout the season at www.chicagoplays.com

ChiIL Live Shows.com  and ChiIL Mama.com will be reviewing many adult and family friendly theatre favs respectively--holiday themed and not--this month.   Check in with us like we vote in Chi, IL...early and often and we'll keep you up on Chi-town's must see shows.   Theatre season passes and show tickets make GREAT gifts.   We've highlighted our personal favorites in red below, out of The League of Chicago Theatres' List.

The following is a selection of Holiday-themed work playing in Chicago this season.

Classic Chicago favorites include:

The Goodman Theatre presents the beloved Chicago tradition, Charles Dickens’ classic A CHRISTMAS CAROL, November 17 - December 29, 2012.  We'll be there tonight 11/28 and will have a full review up shortly.

Capra’s holiday staple gets the 1940’s radio treatment with IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: THE RADIO PLAYnow in its eleventh year at American Theatre Company, November 15 – December 30, 2012, and IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: LIVE AT THE BIOGRAPH! presented by American Blues Theater at Victory Gardens, November 23 – December 30, 2012.

The House Theatre presents its fantastical version of THE NUTCRACKER, weaving dance, text, and songs to tell a story of magic and mystery, November 8 – December 30, 2012.  The House Theatre's Nutcracker is one of our annual favs.   Highly recommended!   We caught them last year and again last week.  Check out our past House Nutcracker coverage here and we'll have a new full feature up soon.   Check out more of our features on The House Theatre including our original video interview with Dennis Watkins here.

THE SANTALAND DIARIES, David Sedaris’ beloved account of his time in the trenches as an Elf at Macy’s returns, now in its eighth year, starring Mitchell Fain at Theater Wit, November 23 – December 29, 2012.

The Mercury Theater presents the Chicago holiday favorite, THE CHRISTMAS SCHOONER, November 23 – December 30, 2012.

Black Ensemble Theater presents THE OTHER CINDERELLA, a joyous retelling of the familiar fairy tale with an Afro-centric twist, November 23, 2012 – January 6, 2013.   We'll be catching this one for the press opening this Sunday 12/3.   Check back early and often for loads of theatre news and new reviews at ChiIL Live Shows and ChiIL Mama under our ACT OUT sections.

Holiday-themed musicals include:

Artistic Director Charles Newell and Music Director Doug Peck team up for a delightful reimagining of Court Theatre’s eccentric holiday classic, JAMES JOYCE’S “THE DEAD,” November 8 – December 9, 2012.

Fox Falley Repertory presents THE WINTER WONDERETTES a holiday musical full of classic “60s hits” and a missing Santa, at Pheasant Run Resort and Spa, November 15 – December 30, 2012.

Porchlight Music Theatre celebrates the true meaning of the holiday season with the new musical THE GIFTS OF THE MAGIat Stage 773, November 17 – December 30, 2012.

The National Pastime Theater presents HANNUKATZ THE MUSICAL, a totally new spin on Dreidl Days, November 29 – December 30, 2012.

Broadway in Chicago brings Dr. Seuss' classic to life in DR. SEUSS' HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS! THE MUSICALfeaturing the hit songs "You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch" and "Welcome Christmas," at the Cadillac Palace Theatre, December 5 – 16, 2012.   We can't wait to check this one out!  We'll be there for opening night on the 5th and we'll have a full review for you shortly.


Holiday comedies include:

The Second City presents a seasonal blend of hilarious scenes, songs, and improvisation in NUT-CRACKING HOLIDAY REVUE at Up Comedy Club, November 22 – December 30, 2012.

ComedySportz gets in the holiday spirit with IT’S A BIEBERFUL LIFE, a parody of the classic story featuring a fictional Justin Bieber visited by an angel with a distinct resemblance to Robert Pattinson, November 16 – December 29, 2012, as well as THE COMEDYSPORTZ CREW MEETS THE SNOW QUEEN, a special take on the Hans Christian Anderson story, November 17, 2012 – January 19, 2013.

Hell in a Handbag Productions returns to Mary’s Attic with the hilarious and politically-incorrect holiday escape RUDOLPH THE RED HOSED REINDEER, November 29 – December 30, 2012.

Dickens reaches his breaking point in CHARLES DICKENS BEGRUDGINGLY PERFORMS “A CHRISTMAS CAROL.” AGAIN., at the Building Stage, November 29 – December 24, 2012.

Chemically Imbalanced Comedy presents DIRTY 30’S CHRISTMAS, December 7, 2012 – January 19, 2013.


Music and Dance offerings include:

Dominican University Performing Arts presents A LEAHY FAMILY CHRISTMAS, a multifaceted Christmas-themed show combining music, dance, and song, December 1, 2012.

Chicago a capella brings NAVIDAD EN MEXICO, a concert of Mexican Christmas, at Nicholas Concert Hall, December 1 – December 9, 2012.

James Lumber Center for the Performing Arts presents THE MOSCOW BOYS CHOIR - CHRISTMAS AROUND THE WORLD, December 4, 2012 only.

Chicago Tap presents TIDING OF TAP!, a dance celebration of all things wintry, including pieces recognizing Christmas, Chanukah and the snowy season at UIC Theater, December 14 – Dec 16, 2012.

Ruth Page Civic Ballet enchants the entire family with the classic ballet THE NUTCRACKER at James Lumber Center for the Performing Arts, December 15 and 16, 2012.  

MCA Stage presents Taiko Legacy, celebrating winter solstice with two of the world’s finest percussionists: Michael Zerang and Hamid Drake, at Edlis Neeson Theater, December 21 and 22, 2012.


Family-friendly holiday fare includes:

Piccolo Theatre presents BAH, HUMBUG!, a kid-friendly retelling of “A Christmas Carol” in Panto-fashion, at Evanston Arts Depot, November 9 – December 22, 2012.

Theatre of Western Springs presents MADELINE’S CHRISTMAS, based on the charming children’s story, November 30 – December 9, 2012.

Raven Theater presents the delightful holiday mystery SHERLOCK HOLMES THE CASE OF THE CHRISTMAS GOOSE, December 14 – December 30, 2012.


Other notable works include:

The 20th Anniversary Production of HELLCAB portrays the story of a cab driver in for the longest night of his life as he transports a bizarre and mysterious array of customers through the gritty streets of Chicago on Christmas Eve, at Profiles Theater, November 9 – December 23, 2012.   We caught opening night and were blown away.   Hellcab is highly recommended.   Do NOT miss this one.   The talent was immense and the giant curtain call alone is practically worth the admission price, and truly something to see.

The moving holiday story, A CHRISTMAS MIRACLE FOR JONATHAN TOOMEY, at Provision Theater, November 21 – December 23, 2012.

Street Tempo Theatre takes audiences on a seasonal adventure with singing, dancing, stories, interactive games and eggnog in IT'S A WONDERFUL SANTA LAND MIRACLE NUT-CRACKING CHRISTMAS STORY… JEWS WELCOME, at Stage 773, November 23 – December 30, 2012.

When a blizzard turns their neighborhood into a snowscape, three young adventurers climb out of their chimneys and create a new land in FOREVERENDIA, presented by The Black Ship Co. at the Athenaeum Theatre, November 29 – December 23, 2012.

Hot Tix
Hot Tix offers half-price tickets to more than 200 Chicago area theaters, full price tickets to all Ticketmaster events including concerts and sports, and Play Money gift certificates. Hot Tix tickets are always half-price and may be purchased up to a week in advance of the performance.  Hot Tix ticket centers are located in the Loop at72 E. Randolph Street, at the Chicago Tourism Center and on North Michigan Ave. at the Waterworks Visitors Center located at 163 E. Pearson. Hot Tix are available for purchase online at HotTix.org 

About Chicago theater
Chicago theater is the leader in the U.S. with more than 250 theaters throughout Chicagoland, comprising a rich and varied community ranging from storefront, non-union theaters to the most renowned resident theaters in the country, including 5 which have been honored with Regional Tony Awards, and the largest touring Broadway organization in the nation. Chicago’s theaters serve 5 million audience members annually and have a combined budget of more than $250 million. Chicago produces and/or presents more world premieres annually than any other city in the nation. In 2009-10 alone Chicago theater companies produced more than 130 world premiere productions and adaptations. Each year Chicago theaters send new work to resident theaters across the country, to Broadway, and around the world. 

The League of Chicago Theatres’ Mission Statement
The League of Chicago Theatres is an alliance of theaters which leverages its collective strength to promote, support and advocate for Chicago's theater industry locally, nationally and internationally. The League of Chicago Theatres Foundation is dedicated to enhancing the art of theater in the Chicago area through audience development and support services for theaters and theater professionals.

For a comprehensive list of Chicago productions, visit the League of Chicago website, www.chicagoplays.com.  Discounted tickets are available at www.hottix.org.

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