Showing posts with label family friendly. Show all posts
Showing posts with label family friendly. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 29, 2019


ChiIL Live Shows on our radar
JUNE 7 – 22 
ComedySportz Chicago (CSZ) will Host First Pride Month Program by Celebrating LGBTQIA+ members in Select Performances Every Week in Junet

(L to R): Mishell Livio, Simon Collier, Cynthia Kmak, Jason Geis, Kevin Daliva
by Edward Fox Photography 

ComedySportz Chicago (CSZ) will commence Pride Month with the company’s very first ComedySportz Chicago Pride Month featuring a series of performances,and a Pride Weekend celebration with CSZ’s LGBTQIA+ cast members from June 7 – 22 at ComedySportz Theater Chicago, 929 W. Belmont Ave.  A special one-night only 18+ Rainbow A-Go-Go Variety Show will take place Saturday, June 22 at 10 p.m. In addition to the regular performance schedule, the company will hold family-friendly performances. These all-ages performances will be Fridays  June 7, 14, and Saturday, June 22 at 6 and 8 p.m. Tickets are $25 a person for 6  and 8 p.m. shows and $10 a person for the 10 p.m. performances and may be purchased at or by calling 773-549-8080.
Members of the ComedySportz Chicago’s LGBTQIA+ ensemble including Simon Collier, Artistic Director Jason Geis and ensemble member and D&I Director Luis Cortes are organizing the event, as well as performing. All performances will contain an all LGBTQIA+ cast, made up of ComedySportz Chicago ensemble members and they will be performing in the classic ComedySportz format with new and unique LGBT takes on each match.

The theatre will also sell a signature cocktail, The Pride Tai, created by our Audience Services Director, Nicko Patterson (who is also a member of the LGBTQIA+ community)  with 100% of the profits going to the Pride month partner Howard Brown Health. Howard Brown Health exists to eliminate the disparities in healthcare experience by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people through research, education and the provision of services that promote health and wellness.


ComedySportz is the longest-running, game-based, short form improv comedy show in the comedy capital of the world, perfect for all ages, offering comedy for everyone! ComedySportz's interactive format is emceed by a referee overseeing a hilarious battle of wits between the home team, the blue Downtown Chicago Bosses, and the "visiting" red team, scored by live keyboard music and rocking popular music between scenes! Using audience suggestions and willing volunteers, our professional players create short games, scenes and songs on the spot, and the winner is determined by the Applause-o-Meter and your laughs.
ComedySportz Chicago (CSZ) will commence Pride Month with the company’s very first ComedySportz Chicago Pride Month featuring a series of performances,and a Pride Weekend celebration with CSZ’s LGBTQIA+ cast members from June 7 – 22 at ComedySportz Theater Chicago, 929 W. Belmont Ave.  A special one-night only 18+ Rainbow A-Go-Go Variety Show will take place Saturday, June 22 at 10 p.m. In addition to the regular performance schedule, the company will hold family-friendly performances. These all-ages performances will be Fridays June 7, 14, and Saturday, June 22 at 6 and 8 p.m. Tickets are $25 a person for 6  and 8 p.m. shows and $10 a person for the 10 p.m. performances and may be purchased at or by calling 773-549-8080.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

The Alice Is Here! Goodman Theatre's New Education Building Is Open

MAY 19-21


Here at ChiIL Mama and ChiIL Live Shows, we're so excited about "The Alice". As a Chicago mom, theatre critic, and huge arts advocate, I'm beyond excited that these new facilities will enable The Goodman to expand their excellent educational arts programming. The children are our future, whether you are pre/post/or non parents of the birth to 18 year old bracket, raising a new generation of creative thinkers benefits us all. Theatre loving, arts loving kids make great problem solvers and assets to society. 


Build a play with your family, try your hand at stage combat, hear Chicago’s finest actors spill stage secrets—and more! Goodman Theatre proudly opens its Alice Rapoport Center for Education and Engagement (“the Alice”) with free opportunities for audiences to sample the variety of programming offered in the theater’s newly dedicated space for classes, lectures, discussions and special performance events. May 19 is “Lorraine Hansberry Day,” with events connected to the critically acclaimed current mainstage production, Hansberry’s The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window, directed by Anne Kauffman (on stage through June 5). A schedule of events appears below; reservations are recommended as space is limited: or 312.443.3800.

Thursday, May 19 – “Lorraine Hansberry Day” in Chicago
12 Noon | Mayor Rahm Emanuel has proclaimed May 19, 2016 “Lorraine Hansberry Day,” in honor of what would have been the Chicago native playwright’s  86th birthday. The company of The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window kicks off the special day with a reading of the mayoral proclamation—followed by birthday cake for all.

12:30pm | A conversation with artists about Hansberry’s body of work, the background and themes of the Goodman’s revival of her rarely-produced play, and her significance among American playwrights.

6pm | A screening of the 1961 film A Raisin in the Sun, starring Sidney Poitier, Ruby Dee, Claudia McNeil and Diana Sands. Jackie Taylor, founder and executive director of the Black Ensemble Theater Company, introduces the film.

Friday, May 20
7pm | Listen to the Poem: Spoken Word and Open Mic
The Goodman Youth Poetry Ensemble delivers an electrifying performance featuring pieces from their past season and the work of other Chicago youth poets. Audience members are invited to share their own poetry works during an open mic session.

8pm | All tickets to this performance of The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window are $10 for students.

Saturday, May 21
9am and 10:30am | Play ’N 90 Workshop (two sessions)
An interactive family program in which 5-12 year-olds and their parents/guardians fashion a theatrical creation together—in only 90 minutes.

10am | Insider Access: "How Do Actors Learn All Those Darned Lines?"
Meet acclaimed actor Mary Beth Fisher (star of such Goodman productions as Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike and Luna Gale) and particiate in her creative process, bringing a script from page to stage.

12 Noon | PlayBuild Workshop
Realize your creative potential in this intergenerational collective workshop! Participants will create performance pieces using personal history and storytelling techniques.

2pm | Storytelling Workshop
Master the art of storytelling with teaching artists from the Goodman’s GeNarrations program. In this collaborative ensemble-based workshop, participants learn the basics of writing, editing and performing personal narrative stories.

3pm | Insider Access: “Slap! Kick! Punch!”
Have some energy to burn? Learn the art of stage combat, the technique used to perform physical combats without causing harm to actors, from a professional fight choreographer.

4:30pm | Insider Access: "Not Acting Our Age"
A lively discussion with a handful of Chicago actors age 55+ about their esteemed bodies of work and the thrill of a life in the theater.

In addition to these activities, all pre- and post-performance discussions—“PlayTalks” and “PlayBacks”—for The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window and Soups, Stews, and Casseroles: 1976 by Rebecca Gilman will take place in the Alice May 19 – 21, one hour prior to and immediately following each performance. Moderated by a Goodman artist, discussions include cast members and are free of charge for patrons.

About the Alice Rapoport Center for Education and Engagement (“the Alice”)
The Goodman becomes the first Chicago theater to establish a facility dedicated to education and engagement programs when it opens the Alice—the next phase in the Goodman’s decades-long commitment to educating Chicago youth and promoting lifelong learning for audiences of all ages. Named for the late Goodman Trustee Alice Rapoport, the Alice is a 10,000 square-foot, LEED certified (upon completion), $15 million expansion effort (of which 80% supports expanded programming) that deepens the theater’s practice of using its art as education—using the process of artistic creation to empower and inspire youth and lifelong learners. The new facility includes classrooms, a hands-on STEM learning lab, rehearsal spaces and more, and will enable the Goodman to impact hundreds more Chicagoans through its myriad education and engagement programs. Patrons access the Alice though the Goodman Theatre, entering at the south end of the mezzanine lobby. The Alice is named for the late Alice Rapoport, a Goodman Trustee, chair of the theater’s Education and Community Engagement Committee and passionate advocate for the theater’s outreach efforts.

Artist, educator and activist Willa J. Taylor, Walter Director of Education and Engagement, has led the Goodman’s programs since 2007. Taylor and her team of associates—Bobby Biedrzycki (Curriculum and Instruction Associate), Elizabeth Rice (School Programs Coordinator), Brandi Lee (Education and Community Engagement Associate) and Adrian Azevedo (Education and Engagement Assistant)—collaborate with the Goodman’s artistic and executive leadership to oversee programmatic efforts in the Alice.

About Goodman Theatre
Called America’s “Best Regional Theatre” by Time magazine, Goodman Theatre has won international recognition for its artists, productions and programs, and is a major cultural, educational and economic pillar in Chicago. Founded in 1925 by William O. Goodman and his family in honor of their son Kenneth (an important figure in Chicago’s cultural renaissance in the early 1900s), Goodman Theatre has garnered hundreds of awards for artistic achievement and community engagement, including: two Pulitzer Prizes, 22 Tony Awards (including “Outstanding Regional Theatre” in 1992), nearly 160 Joseph Jefferson Awards and more. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Robert Falls and Executive Director Roche Schulfer, the Goodman’s artistic priorities include new plays (more than 150 world or American premieres in the past 30 years), reimagined classics (including Falls’ nationally and internationally celebrated productions of Death of a Salesman, Long’s Day’s Journey into Night, King Lear and The Iceman Cometh, many in collaboration with actor Brian Dennehy), culturally specific work, musical theater (26 major productions in 20 years, including 10 world premieres) and international collaborations. Diversity and inclusion have been primary cornerstones of the Goodman’s mission for 30 years; over the past decade, 68% of the Goodman’s 35 world premieres were authored by women and/or playwrights of color, and the Goodman was the first theater in the world to produce all 10 plays in August Wilson’s “American Century Cycle.” Each year, the Goodman’s numerous education and community engagement programs—including the innovative Student Subscription Series, now in its 30th year—serve thousands of students, teachers, life-long learners and special constituencies. In addition, for nearly four decades the annual holiday tradition of A Christmas Carol has led to the creation of a new generation of theatergoers in Chicago.

Goodman Theatre’s leadership includes the distinguished members of the Artistic Collective: Brian Dennehy, Rebecca Gilman, Henry Godinez, Steve Scott, Chuck Smith, Regina Taylor, Henry Wishcamper and Mary Zimmerman. Joan Clifford is Chair of Goodman Theatre’s Board of Trustees, Swati Mehta is Women’s Board President and Gordon C.C. Liao is President of the Scenemakers Board for young professionals.

Visit the Goodman virtually at, and on Twitter (@GoodmanTheatre), Facebook and Instagram.

Thursday, March 26, 2015


Tickets On Sale Now For The Regional Premiere of the Critically Acclaimed Musical 

Several years back, we had the great pleasure of reviewing the Broadway touring production of Billy Elliot and it remains one of our favorites. We can't wait to see Drury Lane's take on this extraordinary musical. Here at ChiIL Mama and ChiIL Live Shows we've been wowed in the past by Drury Lane's high production values and professionalism. Get your tickets as soon as possible for best seats and range of dates.

The International smash-hit musical BILLY ELLIOT makes its regional premiere at Drury Lane Theatre on April 10 – June 7, 2015. Opening night is scheduled for April 16, 2015 at 8 p.m.  Heralded as “A triumph! The #1 show of the year!" by Time Magazine and “Thrilling! Impossible to resist!" by The New York Times, BILLY ELLIOT follows a young boy as he trades in his boxing gloves for dancing shoes. In an unforgettable story set in a small mining town in the English countryside, a dance teacher finds a diamond in the rough when she discovers Billy—a young boy with a passion for dance who inspires the entire community. The musical phenomenon is set to an explosive score by Elton John, celebrating Billy’s journey against the odds to make his dreams come true.

BILLY ELLIOT is directed by multiple Jeff Award-winner Rachel Rockwell (Ragtime, West Side Story, at Drury Lane Theatre, Brigadoon at The Goodman Theatre), with Musical Direction by Jeff Award-winner Roberta Duchak (Les Miserables and Sweeney Todd at Drury Lane Theatre, vocal coach for Russell Crowe and Hugh Jackman for the Academy Award-winning film Les Miserables). One of the most celebrated musicals on stage today, BILLY ELLIOT has been dazzling London's West End since 2005. The production is the winner of 10 Tony Awards and 10 Drama Desk Awards, including Best Musical. The production features a score by Elton John (The Lion King, Aida) with book and lyrics by Lee Hall, who wrote the screenplay for the Academy Award-nominated film that inspired the musical.

“BILLY ELLIOT is an incredibly emotional journey of a struggling community, a shifting country and, most importantly, a father and son relationship and my role is to tell this story in the most truthful way possible,” says Director Rachel Rockwell. “One of my main goals is to showcase this cast, in particular our two young actors playing Billy, by nurturing their raw talent to help them transform into this multi-dimensional character.”

After an extensive search, Drury Lane is pleased to announce that the title role of “Billy” will be played by two very talented Chicago natives, Nicholas Dantes and Kyle Halford. "When the casting process began we asked ourselves: are Billy Elliot's found or made?” says Artistic Director William Osetek. "After months of auditions it was clear that one must be created. The search required a young actor who brought incredible raw talent, but needed to be cultivated to stand up to the impossible task of performing the role of a young boy whose dance ability leaves one breathless.”  The two boys playing Billy have worked for months, honing skills in ballet, acrobatics and tap (not to mention acting and vocal lessons).

Nicholas Dantes                                                        Kyle Halford

Also starring is Jeff Award-winner Susie McMonagle as “Mrs. Wilksinson” (Broadway: Les Miserables at the Imperial Theatre, National Tours: Billy Elliot and Mamma Mia! and Next to Normal at Drury Lane), Ron E. Rains as “Dad” (BIG, The Musical and 1776 at Drury Lane, Goodman Theatre’s A Christmas Carol), Maureen Gallagher as “Grandma” (Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, The Goodman Theatre), and Liam Quealy as “Tony” (My Fair Lady at Paramount Theatre, Pirates of Penzance at Marriott Theatre). The cast also features Michael Harp as “Michael” (The Sound of Music at Lyric Opera, Chicago, Billy Elliot in St. Louis), Brooke MacDougal (Member of The Performer’s School ensemble, professional debut) and Peyton Schaffer (Les Miserables and Seussical at Drury Lane,) as “Debbie Wilkinson,” Terry Hamilton as “George” (Airline Highway at Steppenwolf Theatre), Brianna Borger as “Mum” (The King and I and Into The Woods at Porchlight Theater), Rhett Gutter as “Older Billy” (West Side Story at Drury Lane, Brigadoon at The Goodman Theatre) and Bret Tuomi as “Mr. Braithwaite” (West Side Story at Drury Lane, A Christmas Carol at The Goodman Theatre). 

Rounding out the cast are William Carlos Angulo, Julia Baker, Cody Bolithon, Johnson Brock, Grier Burke, Gary Carlson, Michael Di Leo, Abigail Dudich, Samantha Erne, Allison Graves,
Sage Harper, Hannah Clare Horner, Raymond Interior, Amelia Grace Kuhlman, Princess Isis Z. Lang, Emily Leahy, Iris Lieberman, Ingrid Clare Lowery, Katie Malchow, Mia Moore,
Ava Morse, Ashton Schaffer, Peter Scharbrough, Steven Spanapoulos, Brandon Springman, Holly Stauder, Zachary Uzarraga, Jonathan Weir, and Fred Zimmerman.

As the first regional production, an incredible artistic team has been assembled to bring this story to life, led by Artistic Director William Osetek (Next to Normal, Young Frankenstein and Spamalot at Drury Lane). Scenic design for BILLY ELIOTT was created by Kevin Depinet (Associate Designer for Tony Award winning August Osage County on Broadway, Camelot at Drury Lane) with Lee Fiskness as Lighting Designer (Resident lighting director Santa Fe Opera, Young Frankenstein at Drury Lane), Costume Coordination by Maggie Hofmann (Camelot, The Game's Afoot, and Young Frankenstein [Co-design with Erika Senase] at Drury Lane), Garth Helm as Sound Designer (Tony nomination for Pippin on Broadway, West Side Story at Drury Lane), Nick Heggestad as Properties Designer (Resident properties designer at Drury Lane) and Penny Lane Studios (Samantha Umstead and Coral Gable) as Wig and Hair Designer (Steppenwolf, Lookingglass, Writers Theatre). Additionally, Christine Adair is the Dialect Coach (Broadway and First North American Tour productions of Mary Poppins) and Matt Hawkins is the Fight Choreographer (Les Miserables at Drury Lane Theatre and The Wheel and Belleville at Steppenwolf Theatre Company).

Tickets for BILLY ELLIOT are on sale now and available by calling the Drury Lane Theatre box office at 630.530.0111, TicketMaster at 800.745.3000 or visiting The performance schedule is as follows: Wednesdays at 1:30 p.m. ($45), Thursdays at 1:30 p.m. ($45) and 8 p.m. ($55), Fridays at 8 p.m. ($60), Saturdays at 5 p.m. ($60), and 8:30 p.m. ($60), and Sundays at 2 p.m. ($60), and 6 p.m. ($55). Student group tickets start as low as $30 and Senior Citizens start at $40 for matinees. Dinner and show packages are also available.

For more information on BILLY ELLIOT and the rest of the 2015-2016 theatrical season, please visit

About Drury Lane Theatre
Drury Lane is a beautiful, unique and versatile facility that combines ideal location, functionality and elegance to make it one of Chicagoland's finest facilities. As the premier destination for dining, theatre and events, Drury Lane is home to the nation’s most spectacular Broadway – quality theatre productions. For more information about Drury Lane, please visit its website or Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest pages.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

SAVE THE DATE: "Mearra - Selkie From the Sea” at Old Town School Sunday 12/7 (6+) #FamilyFriendly

Chicago singer-songwriter Linda Marie Smith will be presenting the multimedia show "Mearra - Selkie From the Sea” at the Old Town School on Sunday, Dec. 7 at 3PM.

This family-friendly performance features Smith's adaptation of a classic Celtic tale told with original songs and performed with a six piece orchestra playing along to projected animation. 

In this re-imagined story, Mearra, a mythical seal, makes use of her magical ability to transform into a human being, marries Ian, a lonely fisherman and eventually starts a family; knowing all the while she must inevitably return to the sea as a seal, or perish. The characters experience love, loss and transformation while emotionally charged music, beautiful stage lighting and evocative projected imagery all come together to make for an unforgettable multi-media concert experience.

This show comes to life on the heels of Smith's successful previous multi-media music production The Triumph of Artemisia. Smith's unique vocal style has a folk rock sensibility and her music has been described as romantic, soulful and earthy; her lyrics and melodies weave colorful stories of intriguing people and curious places. 

She received honorable mention in the Billboard Songwriting Contest, has co-produced and performed in two of the acclaimed Michael Smith's musical productions, teaches at the Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago and has been recognized by the Illinois Arts Council in conjunction with the National Endowment for the Arts.

Sunday, December 7, 2014    3:00 PM
Linda Marie Smith presents
Mearra - Selkie from the Sea
Recommended for Ages 6+
4544 N Lincoln Ave · Gary and Laura Maurer Concert Hall · 773.728.6000
  • $18 General Public
  • $16 Members

Google Analytics