Other festivals run one weekend, maybe two or three; but this one, hosted by the Pilsen area’s Blue Rider Theatre, runs three months–September 10 through December 17, with shows Fridays-Saturdays at 8 PM and Sundays at 7 PM, as well as children’s matinees on selected Saturdays and Sundays at 3 PM. Most evenings feature two or more artists, with intermissions between each act. Aiming to mix theater, performance art, dance, poetry, and music, the fest has scheduled 80 artists in 40 nights, by such groups and individuals as Theater Oobleck, Redmoon Theater, Donna Blue Lachman, Carmela Rago, Jeff Abell, MASS, Bob Eisen, the Chicago Moving Company, and many more. Blue Rider Theatre, 1822 S. Halsted, 733-4668. Tickets: $10 a night except where noted in the listings below; $60 for a festival pass (good for all performances).

The Reader carries festival listings on a week-by-week basis; following is the schedule for September 10 through 14.


Opening Reception

The festival begins with a free kickoff party for artists and audience members, featuring food, drinks, and live music by three Pilsen-based bands: Poverty Level, with Dina Predisik and Gene Whitright playing their own compositions on stand-up bass, acoustic guitar, banjo, and lap dulcimer; Donna Blue’s All Stars, an improvisational jam featuring several musicians who will perform in later months at the festival, with Blue Rider founder Donna Blue Lachman on clarinet; and Rebar with Pat Lawrence and spontaneous chamber music. 7 PM. Free (donations requested).


See Critic’s Choice. This 168-hour performance marathon runs through September 17, starting at 12:01 AM late Sunday. $10 (good for the entire week).