This annual showcase of experimental theater, performance, and music from Chicago’s fringe takes its name from surrealist painter Salvador Dali’s use
of the term “rhinocerontic” (it means real big). The Rhinoceros Theater Festival runs through October 17 at the Lunar Cabaret, 2827 N. Lincoln, 773-327-6666. Consult the listings below for specific shows and times.
All events are $10 or “pay what you can.”
The Reader lists festival schedules (which are subject to last-minute change) on a week-by-week basis; following is the schedule for September 24 through 29.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 24
Laughs of Steel . . . a Workout for Your Diaphragm
Chicago monologuist-accordionist Dana Block performs a one-woman show. 8 PM.
Books on Tape
The Penlight Theatre presents Chicago playwright Eric Ziegenhagen’s one-man multimedia concert. 9 PM.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 25
Abby Sher’s play, inspired by Dostoyevsky’s writings, features Mary-Arrchie Theatre’s Richard Cotovsky in the story of “one man’s crusade against the postal system.”
Amy Ludwig directs. 8 PM.
Perfect Copy and Invasion of Desire . . .
Theater Oobleck veteran Mickle Maher’s new group, Theater Three, presents two plays about “weak and corrupt members of our community made so weak by their corruption they’re unable to retaliate in any way.” 10 PM.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 26
Chicago’s Curious Theatre Branch presents a play by Bryn Magnus. “Like a pointillistic painting . . . Magnus’s apocalyptic comedy makes more sense once you step back from it. With distance and contemplation, the seemingly disparate elements fuse to form a compelling if not always coherent whole. Part Faustian allegory, part anticorporate screed, and part critique of the American family unit, the work concerns a trio of misfits united by their love and worship of one woman. . . . Exploding with giddy wordplay and inventive satire, Small Together is a refreshingly pretentious and complex play. . . . Yet it seems very much a work in progress. Static, overwritten in spots, and tentatively performed at times, this promising play begs for . . . someone to trim some of the gleeful prose and structure it into the potent satire it could become,” said Reader critic Adam Langer when he reviewed the show’s original run. 8 PM.
My Murder and Other Local News: 3 Performance Pieces Linked by Voice, Persona, and Me
Chicago storyteller David Schein performs a one-man show. 10 PM.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 27
See listing for Friday, September 25. 3 PM.
Patronage and the Arts
Jenny Magnus moderates a panel on the responsibilities of artists and funders.
7 PM; this program is free.
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 28
7 Pounds of Mud
Beau O’Reilly’s drama concerns a 21-year-old named Mud (who’s hung up on heroin and an aging James Joyce scholar) and her meddlesome father and brothers. This Curious Theatre Branch production “scuttles around the borders of pathos and parody as it distorts and romanticizes the path that brought its heroes to live on the street as heroin addicts,” said Reader critic Carol Burbank when she reviewed the show’s original run. 8 PM.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29
Poet John Starrs and playwright Bryn Magnus team up for an evening of anecdotes representing two generations’ perspectives. 8 PM.
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Mickie Maher (See Perfect Copy) photo by Phil Cantor.