Welcome to our highlights of events and entertainment on stage at Chicago’s theaters. From local productions to Broadway hits, our guide has the latest on shows in the city. Bookmark this page and check back for updates and ticket information.
WHAT: Jose Cruz Gonzalez’s “American Mariachi” is the story of a young woman, Luca (Tiffany Solano), who spends her days caring for her ailing mother, Amalia (Gigi Cervantes), but longs to shake up her life. When the mariachi songs on a forgotten album spark her mother’s memory, she sets out to create an all-female mariachi band, an unheard of idea in the 1970s, the time in which the play is set. It’s a “funny, tender-hearted story about family, tradition and memory,” says director Henry Godinez. The cast includes an ensemble of musicians from the Grammy-nominated group Sones de Mexico.
WHEN: From Sept. 18-Oct. 24
GOODMAN THEARE: Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn
INFO: For updated information regarding the theater’s Covid 19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit goodmantheatre.org.
Lyric Opera — ‘Macbeth’
WHAT: The Lyric Opera’s 67th season begins with “Macbeth,” the inaugural production of music director Enrique Mazzola. The new production of Verdi’s opera from Scottish director Sir David McVicar is an adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic tragedy, a portrait of a power-hungry couple and their bloody ascent to the throne of Scotland. Roman Burdenko portrays Macbeth with Sondra Radvanovsky as Lady Macbeth. Sung in Italian with projected English subtitles.
WHEN: From Sept. 17-Oct. 9
WHERE: Lyric Opera, 20 N. Wacker
INFO: For updated information regarding the Lyric’s Covid 19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit lyricopera.org.
‘The Golden Girls: The Lost Episodes, Vol. 5 — Sex!’
Ed Jones (from left), Grant Drager and David Cerda with (bottom, right) Ryan Oates in “The Golden Girls: The Lost Episodes, Vol. 5-Sex!” Rick Aguilar Studios
WHAT: Hell in a Handbag Productions long-running parody series continues with “The Golden Girls: The Lost Episodes, Vol. 5 — Sex!,” in which Dorothy, Rose, Blanche and Sophia explore their naughty side. Original cast members — David Cerda, Grant Drager, Ed Jones and Ryan Oates — star as the Geriatric Fab Four. Written by Cerda and directed by Madison Smith.
WHEN: From Sept. 16-Oct. 23
WHERE: Leather Archives & Museum, 6418 N. Greenview
INFO: For updated information regarding the theater’s Covid 19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit handbagproductions.org.
WHAT: Drury Lane Theatre returns with “Forever Plaid,” Stuart Ross and James Raitt’s musical revue packed with hit tunes from the 1950s. Paul Stancato directs.
WHEN: From Sept. 17-Nov. 7
WHERE: Drury Lane Theatre, 100 Drury Lane, Oakbrook Terrace
INFO: For updated information regarding the theater’s Covid 19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit drurylanetheatre.com.
“The Infinite Wrench” by the Neo-FuturistsJoe Mazza
WHAT: The Neo-Futurists kick off their season with the return of the late-night show “The Infinite Wrench,” in which the ensemble attempts to perform 30 plays in 60 minutes.
WHEN: Ongoing performances are at 7 p.m. Sundays
WHERE: Neo-Futurists, 5153 N. Ashland
INFO: For updated information regarding the theater’s Covid 19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit neofuturists.org.
A.I.M. by Kyle Abraham
A.I.M. by Kyle AbrahamCourtey of the artist
WHAT: A.I.M. by Kyle Abraham performs the world premiere of “An Untitled Love” at the Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago, 1306 S. Michigan. Drawing from the music of R&B singer D’Angelo, the piece pays homage to the complexities of self-love and Black love while also celebrating culture, family and community.
WHEN: At 7:30 p.m. Sept. 16-18 (post-performance discussions with Abraham on Sept. 16-17).
INFO: For updated information regarding the Dance Center’s Covid 19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit dance.colum.edu.
‘Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992’
Jazzma Pryor in “Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992.”Courtesy of Fleetwood-Jourdain Theatre
WHAT: Jazzma Pryor stars in Anna Deavere Smith’s tour-de-force solo show “Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992.” In it she portrays nearly four dozen people who were connected either directly or indirectly to the 1992 Los Angeles riots that erupted after the trial and acquittal of the police officers accused of assaulting Rodney King. The playwright shaped the piece from interviews that she conducted while researching the play. Tim Rhoze directs.
WHEN: From Sept. 11-26
WHERE: Fleetwood-Jourdain Theatre at Noyes Cultural Arts Center, 927 Noyes, Evanston
TICKETS: $25. For vaccination and/or mask policies, visit fjtheatre.com.
‘The World Goes Round’
Kevin Earley (from left), Allison E. Blackwell, Meghan Murphy, Joseph Anthony Byrd, Amanda Rose are featured in “The World Goes Round” at the Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire. @BrandonDahlquistPhotography
WHAT: The songs of musical theater team John Kander and Fred Ebb are the centerpiece of the revue “The World Goes Round.” The hit parade of songs includes selections from “Cabaret,” “New York, New York,” “All That Jazz,” “Funny Lady,” “Kiss of the Spider Woman,” “Maybe This Time” and more. The cast features Allison E. Blackwell, Joseph Anthony Byrd, Kevin Earley, Meghan Murphy and Amanda Rose; Marcia Milgrom Dodge directs and choreographs.
WHEN:From Sept. 15-Nov. 7
WHERE: Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Dr., Lincolnshire
TICKETS: $50-$60. For vaccination and/or mask policies, visit marriotttheatre.com.
Sheila Willis (from left), Cameron Feagin, Kat Evans, Julia Kessler and Maggie Cain star in “Thirteen Days” at City Lit Theater.Photo by Steve Graue
WHAT: “Thirteen Days” is Brian Pastor’s adaptation of Robert F. Kennedy’s memoir of the Cuban Missile Crisis. The world-premiere play, performed by an all-female cast, is set in President John F. Kennedy’s Situation Room where he maneuvers his way through the conflicting counsel of his advisors as the world comes close to nuclear war. Leading the cast are Cameron Feagin as JFK and Kat Evans as Attorney General Robert Kennedy; Pastor directs.
WHEN: Sept. 10-Oct. 24
WHERE: City Lit Theater, 1020 W. Bryn Mawr
TICKETS: $32. For vaccination and/or mask policies, visit citylit.org.
‘Brighton Beach Memoirs’
WHAT: Citadel Theatre presents Neil Simon’s “Brighton Beach Memoirs,” a comedy about a teen who must cope with the mundane existence of his life in Brooklyn.
WHEN: Sept. 15-Oct. 17
WHERE: Citadel Theatre, 300 S. Waukegan, Lake Forest
TICKETS: $20-$45. For vaccination and/or mask policies, visit citadeltheatre.org.
Elissa Newcorn (from left), Kyra Leigh, Carl Herzog and Nate Hall star in PrideArts’ productoin of “The Things I Never Could Tell Steven.” Marisa KM
WHAT: PrideArts presents Jye Bryant’s “The Things I Never Could Tell Steven,” a four-character musical in which the four most important people in one man’s life struggle to communicate meaningfully with him and really know him. The cast features Carl Herzog, Kyra Leigh, Elissa Newcorn and Nate Hall under the direction of Jay Espano.
WHEN: From Aug. 19-Sept. 19
WHERE: The Broadway, Pride Arts Center, 4139 N. Broadway.
TICKETS: $30. For updated information regarding the theater’s COVID-19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit pridearts.org.
Michael Wordly makes his Paramount Theatre debut as Lola in “Kinky Boots.”Thomas J. King
What: Live performances return for a new season at the Paramount Theatre with Cyndi Lauper and Harvey Fierstein’s high-kicking “Kinky Boots.” This first regional production of the Broadway musical, directed by Trent Stork, stars Devin DeSantis as Charlie, the shoemaker attempting to save his failing shoe factory, and Michael Wordly as Lola, the fierce drag queen who shows him the way.
When: Aug. 18-Oct. 17
Where: Paramount Theatre, 23 E. Galena, Aurora
For updated information regarding the theater’s COVID-19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit paramountaurora.com.
WHAT: Theatre Y’s ambitious new adventure “You Are Here: The Emerald Camino Project” is a return of its urban pilgrimages, this time through Daniel Burnham’s Emerald Necklace — the boulevard system that links the public parks on Chicago’s West and South sides. The immersive 12-part walking experience was created with artists, community leaders and organizations across a dozen communities. “This is a joyful post-pandemic experience that connects Chicago’s diverse communities through the intersection of conversation and art,” says Theatre Y’s artistic director, Melissa Lorraine. If you are walking through the neighborhood in which you live, admission is free; all other participants are Theatre Y Members or encouraged to become members (for as little as $5/month).
WHEN: Aug. 21-Sept. 26 For updated information regarding the theater’s COVID-19 vaccination and/or mask policies as well as dates and times for each walk, visit theatre-y.com.
Blue Man Group
Blue Man Group Caroline Talbot Photography
What: Those crazy characters in blue return for more goofy fun. The show, which encourages audiences to reconnect with their inner child, is a combination of art, music, comedy and technology.
Where: Briar Street Theatre, 3133 N. Halsted.
For updated information regarding the theater’s Covid 19 vaccination and/or mask policies, visit blueman.com.
The artistry and the excitement of Teatro ZinZanni returns to Chicago starting July 8. Pictured: Lea Hinz.Michael Doucet
What: The immersive, whirlwind theater experience that is Teatro ZinZanni has reopened featuring a new show with a cast of comedians, aerialists, acrobats, singers, dancers and a gourmet meal, it brings comedy, music and cirque back after a long pandemic hiatus. Included among the performers are powerhouse vocalists Storm Marrero and Cunio, aerial acts Lea Hinz and Duo 19, veteran comedians Frank Ferrante and Joe DePaul and acrobatic dancers Mickael and Vita.
Where: Spiegeltent ZaZou on the 14th floor of the Cambria Hotel, 32 W. Randolph
Tickets: $119-$189; limited show only tickets $69. Visit zinzanni.com/chicago.