Posted inPerforming Arts Feature

The unforgettable Jane Blass

Actor, singer, and all-around raconteur Jane Blass, who called Chicago home from 1988-2006 before she relocated to New York, where she performed on Broadway and in the touring companies of many shows, died at 59 after a long struggle with stomach cancer on August 6. Dorothy Milne, her friend and cofounder of the long-running women’s storytelling collective the Sweat Girls, compiled these remembrances from those who knew and loved her in Chicago and New York.

Posted inGhost Light

Misalliance Repertory does it on the radio with The Music Cure

A pandemic hasn’t stopped Chicago theater artists from starting new companies and producing shows. Last year, Perceptions Theatre on the south side began producing digital work by BIPOC writers as well as offering online readings and training programs. Possibilities Theatre produced their inaugural offering (Noah Haidle’s Smokefall) outside in summer of 2020, moved to online […]

Posted inTheater Review

The Things I Could Never Tell Steven is a musical portrait of an enigma

After a year-and-a-half shutdown, the storefront theater formerly known as Pride Films and Plays is back open for business in Buena Park. Returning to live performance, the LGBT-focused company now called PrideArts has not only a new name but a new artistic director, a reconfigured black-box space with new seats and upgraded air-conditioning, and a […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Postcards from a stranger

You may have seen one of Jenny Lam’s blank, prestamped, self-addressed postcards affixed to a light pole or on a bookstore shelf somewhere in the city. The postcards always feature the same prompt: “Tell me one thing you dream of doing before you die. Use this card as your canvas.” Lam, a Chicago-based artist and […]

Posted inTheater Preview

Theatre Y explores Chicago’s “emerald necklace” in YOU ARE HERE.

In 2019, Theatre Y presented The Camino Project, an engaging five-hour miniature pilgrimage through Bucktown and Humboldt Park featuring experiential pieces intermingling dance, theater, and performance art. The adventure culminated in a group meal with audience members and actors breaking bread. It was a delightful experience and an ambitious endeavor having actors guiding guests through […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Rent in the 21st century

Before we get to the specifics of Possibilities Theatre’s earnest, engaging staging of Jonathan Larson’s Rent, we must first get into some generalities about Jonathan Larson’s Tony-winning Rent. It’s been a solid quarter-century since I saw the musical in its initial Broadway run. If you cannot recall 1996, when Rent opened on Broadway, know this: […]