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‘Avenue Q’ Bases Musical Self on ‘Cheap Laugh is Better Than No Laugh’ Adage

Avenue Q in Chicago
HollywoodChicago.com Comedy/Tragedy Rating: 2.5/5.0
Rating: 2.5/5.0

CHICAGO – In the tradition of recent Broadway productions where touristy and crowd-pleasing scenery reigns over any type of theater substance, along comes the 2004 Tony Award-winning best musical “Avenue Q,” which is now in a touring version at the Cadillac Palace Theatre in Chicago.

‘The Mark of Zorro’ Nails Swordsman, Markedly Complicates Cast, Botches Dialect

The Mark of Zorro at the Lifeline Theatre in Chicago
HollywoodChicago.com Comedy/Tragedy Rating: 2.5/5.0
Rating: 2.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Sometimes less, of course, is more. Live theater often knows that better than anyone. That’s exactly the shrill reminder Chicago’s Lifeline Theatre needed in Katie McLean’s adaptation of the beloved Zorro book by Johnston McCulley.

Chicago’s ‘Shout! The Mod Musical’ an Infectiously Groovilicious, Estrogen-Only Stew

Shout! The Mod Musical

CHICAGO – Meg Ryan, eat your heart out. Since “When Harry Met Sally,” the salacious Danielle Plisz as Green Girl in “Shout! The Mod Musical” takes Ryan’s infamous restaurant eruption to a whole new level on stage.

Chicago’s Political Machine Runs Relatively Swimmingly in Strawdog Theatre’s ‘Old Town’

Old Town at the Strawdog Theatre

CHICAGO – As a testament to its set design, it wasn’t immediately clear if certain structures were naturally part of the Strawdog Theatre space or if they were fabricated specifically for the “Old Town” production.

Pie Maker, Loony Boy Steal Rightful Spotlight From Sweeney Todd in Chicago Musical

The musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Baber of Fleet Street

CHICAGO – While Johnny Depp’s portrayal of the demon barber of Fleet Street in the 2007 film iteration sells you on his fiendish ways, actor and singer David Hess in the musical bobbles more in purgatory rather than living hysterically in hell.

Neil LaBute’s ‘In a Dark Dark House’ Unearths Long-Buried Skeletons in Three-Person Play

darkdarkhouse.jpg

CHICAGO – It’s not in calm seas but within torrential rains when we lay bare our true colors. Lauded playwright Neil LaBute was fixated on testing these human limits and exploring our different styles of conflict resolution when he minted the three-person play “In a Dark Dark House”.

Chicago’s ‘Brontë’ Masterfully Resurrects Three of Planet’s Most Examined Scribes of All Time

Susan Shunk (as Charlotte Brontё), Carrie A. Coon (as Emily Brontё) and Patrick Clear (as Patrick Brontё) in "Brontё"

CHICAGO – Three of the planet’s most examined scribes of all time – a trio of Victorian spinsters, in fact, who are credited with some of the most passionate literature ever written – are resurrected in the meticulous Chicago production of “Brontë” from illustrious playwright Polly Teale.

Top Chicago Theater Picks For March 27, 2008: ‘Driving Miss Daisy,’ ‘Dead Man’s Cell Phone,’ ‘Bronte’

Driving Miss Daisy at the Mayslake Peabody Estate

CHICAGOFree or half-price Chicago theater and comedy tickets. No catch. Just click the link, take just a moment to make a free Goldstar account (or log into your existing Goldstar account) and you’re on your way.

‘Ceres’ a High-Octane Probe Into Chicago’s Slippery Investment Banker Slope

Ceres at the Prop Thtr by The Factory Theater troupe

CHICAGO – Tucked surreptitiously at the way-way-way-off-Loop location of the Prop Thtr – Chicago’s oldest-surviving non-equity theater in the area – the signature that is “Ceres” is its high-octane energy. The cast act in harmony much in the same way as the “X-Men” character Juggernaut: once their momentum is synthesized, it can’t be stopped.

Ray Bradbury’s ‘The Martian Chronicles’ Inventively Come to Life in Chicago Church Theater

The Martian Chronicles

CHICAGO – There was opportunity aplenty for director Kristina Schramm to miss this mark and leave theatergoers with acidic resentment. Tasked with the tall order of bringing to life Ray Bradbury’s classic anthology “The Martian Chronicles,” though, she wasn’t bested by the oddity of the undertaking.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Orange is the New Black

    CHICAGO – Orange Day is Friday (July 27, 2018)… as in “Orange is the New Black.” That’s when Season Six will be available for download from Netflix, as the online series continues to showcase the women inmates at Litchfield Penitentiary, three of whom are played by Taylor Schilling (Piper), Kate Mulgrew (Red) and Dascha Polanco (Daya).

  • Everybody, Brown Paper Box Co

    CHICAGO – When is the last time a stage play, based in an intimate setting, made you think about your life, death, and the destiny inherent in both? “Everybody,” staged by Brown Paper Box Co. (BPBCo), is such a play, and the energetic aura and sense of surprise that the show contains is soul soothing wonder. The show has various evening/matinee performances at the Pride Arts Center in Chicago run through August 12, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

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