Because Chicago is so well known for its “Magnificent Mile” retail district—North Michigan Avenue between Oak Street and the Chicago River—it’s all too easy to overlook, or take for granted, the importance of what can be called the city’s cultural corridor: Michigan Avenue stretching south from the river to Roosevelt Road. What an extraordinary array […]
Norwegian filmmaker André Øvredal directed this predictable, gruesome, but unscary horror tale, which is inspired by chapter seven of Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula, known as “The Captain’s Log.”
UPDATE JULY 19: Due to a fire next door to the Reginald Vaughn Theater, Blank Theatre will be presenting their closing weekend performances of Merrily We Roll Along in concert readings at City Lit Theater Company, 1020 W. Bryn Mawr. Performances are Fri-Sat 7:30 PM and Sun 3 PM. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for information on exchanges […]
Dial of Destiny is action-packed and breathlessly paced, to be sure.
John Pielmeier’s 1979 drama Agnes of God—whose title is a reference to “Agnus Dei,” Latin for “Lamb of God”—is an intriguing if somewhat murky mystery that asks both “whodunit” and “whydunit.” Inspired by real events, the plot concerns a 21-year-old novice nun, Agnes (Soleil Pérez), who is suspected of killing her own newborn infant. Agnes […]
Idle Muse Theatre Company’s The Last Queen of Camelot, scripted and directed by Idle Muse artistic director Evan M. Jackson, plays like an Arthurian fantasy graphic novel come to life. Jackson’s take on the tale of legendary sixth-century British King Arthur Pendragon (Joel Thompson) focuses on Queen Guinevere (Caty Gordon-Hall), Arthur’s wife through an arranged […]
This engrossing 2022 documentary chronicles the 50-year-and-counting collaboration between two literary lions: political biographer Robert Caro, who turned 87 on October 30, 2022, and his editor, Robert Gottlieb, who turned 91 on April 29, 2022.
Every superhero saga needs a villain, and Mark Pracht’s new play The Mark of Kane—an origin story for the comic-book character Batman—provides one in the figure of Bob Kane. In Pracht’s account, Kane was an ambitious freelance illustrator who, in 1939, came up with the concept of a crime-fighting vigilante who could fly with the […]
Invictus Theatre Company delivers a solid, sometimes stirring, and strikingly relevant rendition of William Shakespeare’s 1599 tragedy. It’s the story of Marcus Brutus (played by Invictus artistic director Charles Askenaizer, who also directed), a well-intentioned aristocrat in the waning days of the ancient Roman Republic, who joins a plot by his fellow senators to assassinate […]
Director Dusty Brown, who makes their Chicago directing debut with Three Crows Theatre’s storefront staging of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, has trimmed the tragedy down to a fast-paced, intermissionless 105 minutes of blood-drenched storytelling. (“Macbeth has sword/dagger violence, onstage murder, and discussions of murder. Recommended for children 12+ due to all the murder happening onstage,” reads a […]
“Extraordinary,” muses Amanda, the heroine of Noël Coward’s Private Lives, “how potent cheap music is.” Her rueful observation, uttered while she is standing on the terrace of a hotel where she is staying, is in reference to a song playing in the ballroom below. The melody is described in Coward’s script as “a sentimental, romantic […]
Idle Muse Theatre Company’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is good, dark Halloween-season entertainment, especially if you’re a fan of the Hammer/Amicus/American International Pictures-style of lurid rethinkings of Victorian horror classics. Adapted by Michael Dalberg and directed by Morgan Manasa, this production ups the sex-and-violence aspects of Robert Louis Stevenson’s 1886 […]
“In a good play every speech should be as fully flavoured as a nut or apple,” wrote Irish playwright John Millington Synge in the preface to his 1907 comedy The Playboy of the Western World. By that standard, Playboy is a very good play—indeed, one of the greatest and most entertaining works in 20th-century English-language […]
The central characters of Redtwist Theatre’s current production are a conservative male government leader determined to impose his laws on everyone around him and a radical young woman passionately driven to defy those laws as unjust. This is no up-to-the-minute new drama about abortion rights in America, but rather a Greek tragedy from the fifth […]
It may be difficult to comprehend today just how shocking Edward Albee’s drama Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? was when it premiered in October 1962, the same week that the Cuban missile crisis began. While the atomic fireworks the world feared never happened, Albee’s three-act, three-hour-plus masterpiece detonated an explosion that rocked American culture to […]