Mad Shak
Mad Shak Credit: William Frederking

Pivot Arts formed last fall with a focus on Uptown, Andersonville, and Edgewater. Through 6/22, this new annual affair (Fable Festival in a previous life) features theater, music, dance, and sometimes snacks—often all at the same time—in historic venues like an old Uptown vaudeville theater and bank building. Some highlights follow; see the website for a full schedule.

On the first night, after Ice Cream and Improv at Lickity Split Frozen Custard & Sweets (Thu 6/6, 4 PM, 6056 N. Broadway, $5), RE | Dance Group performs The Lonely Visitors, 30 quick takes on desire and longing choreographed by Michael Estanich (Thu 6/6, 8 PM, Senn High School Auditorium, 5900 N. Glenwood, $15). The punk marching band Mucca Pazza crams all 28 members into a Saturday-night party; snacks and food are from Goose Island (Sat 6/8, theater/bank building, 1050 W. Wilson, 8 PM, $15, 21+). On Sunday the Neo-Futurists perform The Carter Family Family Show, three solo pieces inspired by the country music dynasty, followed by the Backroom Shakespeare Project’s The Taming of the Shrew (Sun 6/9, 7 and 8:30 PM, respectively; theater/bank building, $5 each, $7 for both).

Members of Theatre Oobleck adapt the poems of Charles Baudelaire for Possession: Baudelaire in a Box, presented cantastoria style with original paintings, and Manual Cinema offers Ada/Ava, a “New England gothic” shadow-puppet show (6/13-6/16, Thu-Sat 7:30 PM, Sun 3 PM, Essanay Studios, Saint Augustine College, 1333-45 W. Argyle, $15). Steep Theatre’s Backyard BBQ Reading Series features readings of new work plus a late-night snack (Sat 6/15, 1115 W. Berwyn, $10). The Goodman Theatre’s Tanya Palmer curates six short plays inspired by music at The Coffee House Music/Plays (Mon 6/17, 7 PM, Kitchen Sink, 1107 W. Berwyn, $5; also Mon 6/10, 7 PM, Uncommon Ground, 1401 W. Devon, $5), and on Wednesday Oobleck is back with Rough Magic!, a celebration of the theater’s 25th anniversary with excerpts of plays past and present (Wed 6/19, 941 W. Lawrence, $10). Molly Shanahan and her troupe Mad Shak perform their most recent piece, The Delicate Hour (Thu-Fri 6/20-6/21, 7:30 PM, Senn High School Auditorium, $15), and finally a closing reception at Berger Park’s Waterfront Cafe (Sat 6/22, 8:30 PM, 6205 N. Sheridan) features music by the Cafe Antarsia Ensemble.